A Self-Care Slack Bot for Postman API Hackathon

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Work healthily. Live happily. This simple motto is the inspiration behind the Self Care for Devs API. As developers, we make the world a better and more efficient place via technology - but at the expense of our health.

We are constantly sitting down, exposing our eyes to screens and skipping meals. It is a common occurrence to find developers with muscle strains on their backs, necks, legs and even eyes. Many of us are also heavily addicted to caffeine and with the rising issue of burnouts in the tech community, my team and I decided to take the first step.

By building the Self-Care for Devs API, we hope to encourage fellow developers to start taking better care of their health before doing what they do best - building cool stuff for the world to see!


Hello everyone! Time flies so fast, doesn't it? I realize that I've been so busy building projects for hackathons back-to-back. It starts with Hashnode's Christmas Hackathon last year, then the New Year New Hack and now this one. That's 3 hackathons in a row!

In this article, let me present to you the project my team and I built for the Postman Hackathon.

About the Postman Hackathon

This hackathon runs from January 5 to 25. The challenge is to create a Postman public workspace with a Collection of APIs and build something that is creative, has compelling value to developers, addresses a problem, or has community interest.

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At that time I had just recovered from my 48-hour New Year New Hack hackathon, where the Image Classifying Pokedex was born. I didn't plan on participating on this project but on January 8, I got an idea, so I had to register.

Self Care for Devs API

The API is essentially a Slack Bot that sends notifications to users on self-care habits, as a reminder to always take care of themselves. Users can subscribe to different types of services (reminders). The bot also provides reminders on tasks on your to-do lists.

Here's an overview of what the bot can do.

Slash Commands

Slash CommandsDescription
/helpReturns list of commands
/todoReturns list of todos
/todo [task] [HH:mm]Adds task and deadline time in HH:mm in the todo list
/done [task]Marks task as completed
/subscribe [service]Receive notifications on the specified service
/unsubscribe [service]Stop notifications from the specified service

Services

ServicesDescription
quotesSends a motivational quote every morning
eye-careSends notifications to take eye breaks every 30 minutes, with helpful tips on eye care
stretchSends notifications to stretch once every hour, with helpful infographics to follow
waterSends reminder to drink water and only H20 every 2 hours
memesSends programming-related memes every 3 hours to brighten the day
naggingSends frequent reminders on random things like your posture, lighting on your setup, stand up occasionally and take eye breaks

Demo

Simply type the slash command action you want the bot to do and the appropriate parameters if any.

test.gif

Once you have subscribed to a specified notification, the bot will do its job and remind you according to its set interval. As seen below, stretch notifications will be sent every hour once you've subscribed.

test1.gif

Note: Because of the bot's nature to keep reminding and sending us notifications, our team nicknamed this bot the Granny Bot haha :D

Final Thoughts

This wonderful project could not have been made without my team members' dedication and efforts. What makes this hackathon truly a special one for me was that it was the first time I reached out and collaborated with my Twitter follower and amazing friend, V Thulisile Sibanda!

Since this hackathon is virtual, it was my first time collaborating with another developer on the other side of the world. Despite our geographical distance and difference in tech stacks, we overcome challenges together and build this project smoothly.

Whether we win this hackathon or not, this project is a winner to me. Thulie was an incredible, passionate and wonderful teammate. Even though building APIs was new to her because of her data scientist background, she didn't let that stop her from trying her best and contributing significantly to the project.

Thanks for reading this article! If you want to use this API to easily create your own Self Care Bot aka Granny Bot, feel free to visit the project links below. Stay healthy and safe with Self-Care for Devs! Cheers!

Jome Favourite's photo

I'm rooting for you and your team to win 🎉.

V Thulisile Sibanda's photo

you making me blush Victoria Lo 🤗🤗

Victoria Lo's photo

Thanks for the unforgettable experience Thulie! I hope you'll continue to find success in your passions! :)

Marko Denic's photo

Wonderful idea, Victoria. Thanks for sharing!

Osinachi Chukwujama 's photo

It's a really cool project.

Well done Victoria. Keep inspiring.. 🚀

Victoria Lo's photo

Thanks for the kind words Osinachi :)

Stefan Natter's photo

Wow, that's a fantastic idea. I wish you all the best for this product/project.