Building a live app with gen-AI that helps you and your friends find a place to eat — a solo project.

Project Overview

This project was born from a real problem I regularly face with my wife — our inability to pick a restaurant that sounds good to both of us. We always gravitate towards the same handful of places, which, while comfortable, can become monotonous over time. Recognizing this issue is not unique to us, I was inspired to create BiteClub.

Creating a party

One person in the group creates a party, selecting a location, radius, priorities and some optional parameters to help find a specific type of restaurant. The party leader then shares the party code with the rest of their group, which they use to join in on their own devices.

So it's like Tinder but for food?

Well... yeah! Each user swipes through the restaurant results, right if it sounds good and left if they're not feeling it.

Making your picks

As each party member swipes through the restaurants, they see relevent informaiton like rating, price, and categories, with the ability to see more details on Yelp or check it's location. Most importantly, they are notified whenever a match is found!

Finding just the right place

Once a few matches are found, it's time to make the final choice. Party members can view matches in a list to pick based on the restaurant images or on a map where they location to make the decision.

Built from scratch with SwiftUI

BiteClub is built using SwiftUI, making use of it's declarative syntax, built in animations, and powerful APIs.

So are you a designer who can code?

Yes! Well, kind of — I've got a solid understanding of software development and have even built a few things on the web and iOS, but I don't have the technical chops to build a project like this on my own. That's where generative AI (ChatGPT specifically) comes in.

ChatGPT — my trusty sidekick, advisor, and bug squasher

ChatGPT has proved invaluable in helping me build BiteClub. From quickly building out view styles to setting up complex API integrations, ChatGPT has handled just about everything I can throw at it.

What's next?

I've got the main flow built out and hooked up to real restaurant data, but now I have to spin up a backend that lets users join parties together. Back end architecture is new to me, but with ChatGPT and my experience collaborating with engineers, I've already started to make progress.

What does this mean for designers?

Generative AI is reshaping the landscape of app development, creating a more beginner-friendly and efficient approach to creating digital products. This shift not only blurs the traditional boundaries between design and development but also opens up new avenues for creativity and technological feasibility, ultimately leading to the production of more sophisticated and user-centric applications.

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Copyright © 2024 Jake Martin