GetUpside CTO Jo Kochaniak Speaks to DC Python Meetup

Imagine if you could save up to 25 cents per gallon on gasoline, just by scanning a receipt with your phone. That’s idea behind GetUpside, a DC startup “that personalizes brick-and-mortar commerce to help communities thrive.”

GetUpside allows users to scan receipts from gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants. They’ve already helped consumers get back over 10 million dollars, and they’re just getting started.

On August 27, GetUpside CTO Joanna (Jo) Kochaniak spoke to the DC Python Meetup group about how she helped found GetUpside and create the app.

Jo spoke about some of the challenges of building app that can scan receipts, and the clever techniques they used to make it work. Receipts come in lots of colors and sizes, with a lot information that’s either missing or illegible. They had to figure out how to make an app that could “read” that information, so that users could get reimbursed for gas.

Jo’s talk was one of the most popular in recent DC Python Meetup history. The event was sponsored by hatch IT, Compass, Tidelift, DC Python, and GetUpside, and hosted at Compass’ DC headquarters near Dupont Circle. Around 60 engineers, software developers, and data science enthusiasts attended the event. Another 24 viewed the livestream.

In her talk, Jo explained the basic concepts of machine learning in the context of text processing and document classification. She told attendees how scikit-learn allowed GetUpside to quickly automate receipt categorization, which reduced their operational costs and improved the consumer experience.

Ready to download the app and start saving?

GetUpside is hiring, so be sure to check out their careers page.

Did you have a chance to attend the event? Let us know what you think at or check out the slides and github link.

If you weren’t able to attend the event, you can view a recording here, or check out one of the upcoming events.

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