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s e a l e g s

Su Burtner edited this page Jan 27, 2019 · 49 revisions

Team: The Sheographers

 Welcome to the s e a l e g s wiki! 

About Us

We are a group of Geograph-hers here at UCSB!

Why sealegs? When you're new at something, you often don't have your "sea legs". We wanted to make a tool that aids new surfers in getting their "sea legs."


To celebrate the new year, some of our friends wanted to get together to do a "polar bear swim." When we looked at available surfing applications, none of them made any comment about the level of bacteria in the water. One surfer friend was especially concerned, wanting to do dawn patrol but worried about the recent rains, runoff, and bacteria levels in the water.

Safety of surfers based on skill level has been an increasing concern for emergency personnel. Two weeks ago, five surfers had to be rescued from local beaches after turbulent conditions made ocean departure difficult.

Tags: Local, Adventure, Health & Fitness, Safety


This application addresses the concern of safe beach and surf activity by combining bacteria data with typical surf spot conditions such as wave height, wave direction, wave period, and sea surface temperature. It can help users figure out which beaches to go to based on their skill level.

Intended Users

  • Surfers of all levels
  • Beginner surfers who are unfamiliar with local surfing culture (especially women--it's a male-dominated sport!)
  • Beach goers


We used the following data sources for our application:

Conceptual Framework

We combine both audio and visual information by using the Google Home Mini, Google Voice Assistant, Google Maps on Google Sites, and storage on the Google Cloud Platform.

Intended Workflow

  1. Real-time water conditions are pulled from an RSS feed and stored in Google Cloud. This data generally gets updated from the sources weekly.
  2. A user asks a surfing-related question to our Google Voice Assistant.
  3. The user can also see a visual representation of beach conditions using our map.
  4. A user can interact with the Google Voice Assistant after their surfing session to store sentiment of their experience in Google Cloud, which can help the Google Voice Assistant to refine future responses.
The conceptual framework for our idea.

Visualization & Chat Bot

Live Map map

Live Site site

Chat Bot chat_bot

To get the conversation started, type "Hi sealegs!" Example questions include:

What is the sea surface temperature at Goleta Beach?

What is the closest beach to me?

Based on my experience level, which beach is best for me?

Is it safe to swim at Campus Point today?

Live Demo of Google Voice Assistant

Time for the live demo!

s e a l e g s

Video examples: