A few days ago, I received an email from Fabian Cardenas. He competed in the City of Houston Open Innovation Hackathon back in May, and just released his project — SiddyTalk — to the iTunes App Store. It’s free – you can download it here.
Since the hackathon, we’ve seen a few implementations, including Budget Bootcamp on the City of Houston Finance Department website. Here is a short Q&A with Fabian about SiddyTalk:
Startup Houston: How did your team meet?
Fabian Cardenas: Up until the day of the hackathon, [SiddyTalk] was just my brother and me. He took care of the server end, and I did the coding and design. After the hackathon, we brought in an old BestBuy coworker of ours, Jonathan Tran. He is an art major at The Art institute, and his eye for design really brought SiddyTalk to where it is at now.
SH: Why did you pursue this idea?
FC: Just the idea of making something that can possibly be in the hands of millions was enough for me to never stop believing in it. And SiddyTalk is my first major project. Even if it is a colossal failure, it cost me almost nothing to build, and I’ve gained so much knowledge from doing it.
SH: How did the hackathon help you (or distract you)?
If It wasn’t for the hackathon, I might not be where I am today. Talking to other participants, I learned a lot about different languages and a lot of terminology that I used to find confusing. Overall, the hackathon was a huge learning experience and I look forward to participating again in future.
SH: How do you plan on promoting SiddyTalk?
Currently, we don’t have a set plan on how to promote it. We are currently using Facebook and Twitter to help spread the word. In Houston, we are approaching 200 users. Even though that’s not a lot of users, I see it as a kind of “soft opening” for the app. It gives us the chance to find all the bugs, and improve the app in ways that will attract even more users. But once all the bugs are out, which should be within the next week, we will be discussing on our next step to being SiddyTalk to the public.
What do you think of SiddyTalk? Tell us @startuphouston.