Bicycling 14.000 kilometres around the entire continent of Australia in only 100 days. This grueling journey has just been started by the two dutch men, Reinier van Dieren and Mark van Rijmenam. The goal: to collect as much money as possible for the Dutch charity KiKa that supports research into and treatment of children’s cancer. 100% of all money raised will be donated towards KiKa at the end of the journey. To be able to reach their end-destination on September 17th they will have to cover an average of 175 kilometres per day without any support.
Besides the enormous physical challenges, which the team has been training for for 2.5 years, there were also a number of technical problems to solve. When the team contacted us to ask for help solving those problems we immediately said YES.
The problems that needed a solution were:
- Communicating with followers and the home support team during the trip
- Sharing journals, pictures and movies with the public
- Communicating about the progress along the route
Brand new website
The team had a website that had been set up during the preparation for the trip. The website served perfectly for communicating static information about the preparations, the goals and sponsors and partners. For the next phase of the project, the journey itself, other goals however became more important. After trying to integrate all the wishes into the existing site we decided, together with the team, that it would be better to completely rebuild the website using WordPress as a basis. Check the new website here.
The new setup would enable the team itself to continuously update the website with all information coming from Australia. It would also enable us to:
- create a more modern look-and-feel with more call-for-action. Thus a completely new website style was created.
- integrate the website with social media
- include secure donations using PayPal
- optimize the site for search engine rankings
- include tracking by Google analytics, set up goals and funnels to measure conversion
- integrate content from YouTube, Picasa and Flickr
- make the site multilingual
- integrate GPS tracking information
Aside from the site itself, a mobile site was also created. The first initiative was to build a native iphone application but because of the fact that Apple blocks most applications that are used to make donations, the choice was made for a mobile theme for WordPress.
To enable everyone to track the progress of the team a live tracking system was implemented. GPS tracking itself is handled by the RunKeeper IPhone application. The results from the tracks are extracted from the RunKeeper profile using a custom built extractor (exporting is not supported by RunKeeper) on a 5-minute basis. This allows us to track average speed, distance, elevation and calories burnt.
This data is then transformed into a custom dashboard widget that is visible on all pages and uses a combination of Google’s Map API and JQuery to show rotating information about the journey in near realtime. The charts on the live-follow page are created by RunKeeper and have been integrated into the site. When there is network coverage and the team is bicycling, the charts are updated every few seconds.
Appoint:solutions sponsored the complete development of the website and related functionalities and further sponsored:
- a portable but powerful solar panel with integrated battery pack. The solar panel keeps the IPhone’s battery from draining due to the constant usage of GPS and 3G. Without this solar panel the battery would die within 4 hours of usage while a typical day’s cycling is 12-13 hours.
- Hosting for the website
- Support for the team by consulting about the possibilities of technology and social media
It was a joy to be able to use our creativity and experience in supporting such a great cause. We wish 100 Days for KiKa all the best and hope to have contributed a small part in realizing their dream of collecting a large sum of money for KiKa. If you like the effort, please support their cause by donating! It will help create less aggressive treatment for children with cancer, better chances of survival and a better quality of live at a later age.
Good luck guys!