Car Talks to Accounting App – MYOB Claims a First at Hackathon
A team of MYOB software developers and business analysts connected its AccountRight program to a new operating system for Ford cars during a 24-hour “hackathon” held by Ford Australia on Saturday. The MYOB app, which won the competition, let a user update the accounting program by talking to the car’s voice commands system.
A hackathon was an all-night competition where teams of software developers compete to create the best program in 24 hours. The MYOB team decided to use Ford’s new operating system to connect to an iPad running MYOB AccountRight and use voice commands to look up information in the program.
“It’s getting on to 9:30pm and the lads are tinkering with code to write an update back into MYOB AccountRight direct from the car – YES you read that right, we will be using a freaking CAR to update the Accounting Software!!” wrote Keran McKenzie, API evangelist, on the MYOBapi blog.
The four-man team began work at 730am on Saturday, worked through the night with some taking a short sleep, until by 4.30am they had a working demo to show a Ford programmer.
The MYOB team demonstrated in a video (see below) how a user could ask the car for the address of the current job, call up the customer and load directions to the job through a connected iPhone or iPad.
“We now have the car calling customers from details within MYOB AccountRight. Before Russ went to sleep we all got most of the functionality working and the car is now able to complete the loop – fetch data, talk to the driver, receive voice commands from driver and then update MYOB AccountRight,” McKenzie wrote.
The 12 competing teams each gave a five-minute pitch to the judges at 9am with slides and a demonstration of their functioning app.
MYOB’s integration with the Ford AppLink system won the Best New App category, awarded to an app entirely built within the 24-hour period.
Bob Graziano, CEO of Ford Australia, presented the MYOB API team with a $4,000 cheque.