How SEMO came together at Hack Access Dublin

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By Alan Weldon

 

We came together at Hack Access Dublin in November 2016. The team OF 4 had not met previously and worked very diligently during the course of the weekend in preparation for delivering our presentation of our concept {seamless mobility (SEMO)} on Sunday evening.

 

 

OUR team were overwhelmed with surprise and joy that the team was chosen as the overall winning idea and we set about preparing to develop our concept to the next level over the coming months. Over the course of the weekend we discovered that one of the common reasons that we had all come to the hackathon was that we all had strong beliefs around trying to create an inclusive society for all and it was clear that this belief was a motivation for us.

 

The SEMO idea, in brief: to create a network of volunteers and integrate them with an online platform that a person in need of short term assistance could access in real time. Fresh from the Hack Access event we brought our idea to Dublin Beta in the first week of December and this was a fantastic way to test our plan by talking to a number of open minded people who were in attendance and shared both their opinions, fears or concerns alongside helpful networking links throughout the evening.

 

What we did first upon winning Hack Access Dublin:

 

THE SEMO  team set about organising ourselves in terms of our workflow and discussed where we each thought we best could be put to use within the team. At the end of January We were very excited and grateful to enter Dogpatch Labs, a co-working space in the IFSC, who kindly provided us with space to hotdesk and progress our idea. During the first few weeks there we set to work on our plans for further developing our research to this stage, with the aim of achieving “proof of concept”.

 

 

How we’re validating our idea:

 

Our team decided to test the idea by talking to as many users as possible and under the guidance of Janice Valentine, who checked in with us every month, we set about formulating our questionnaires and arranging meetings with key people who could share their knowledge with us.

Our SEMO team are very thankful to all who have engaged with us so far, in particular many thanks to the Staff and Volunteers at the Irish Wheelchair Association, The Founders Institute, Mobility Mojo, the Staff and community at Dogpatch Labs, Robert Kichen and all who have taken part in our discussions.

 

 

The feedback so far:

 

For us so far the feedback has been interesting and we are currently pivoting on our original service idea in order to tailor it to the feedback to date. We are currently engaging with another group who are also looking to tackle transport issues for wheelchair users and are compiling our initial research results in order to determine the best way forward.

 

The SEMO team would like to thank Smart Dublin for making this possible. Their sponsorship and engagement with our team has made it possible for us to work on finding solutions and fixing a problem. We welcome opportunities to discuss possibilities with others who are passionate about solving these issues and invite conversation through contacting semo@dublin.ie.

 

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