This past week, I was able to sit in on a meeting regarding the planning of a mobile application for our organization. This main goal of this app would be to enable leaders to take attendance at the small group or events. There are 3 University of Cincinnati students working on this project and they are actually building 2 different applications, one is the mobile web application (like a mobile website) and the other is an Android application. They are walking through the SDLC (Software Development Life Cycle) and presented the mock-up of screens to our group. I wrote about the SDLC in week 7.
The team is currently in the Design process and this meeting helped to clarify what our organization would like to see in the mobile application. There were some good ideas presented that would give the end user a better experience. This included making the app not time out for at least 30 minutes, adding some help information (such as the phone number for Facilities, the building and room of the event, and normal building hours), and adding a second level page that would allow you to click on someone and have their contact information pull up on the screen. In addition, the phone number and email would be ‘linked’ so that you could easily call a person.
Mark, our database expert and long-time contractor, suggested some additional tweaks to the design. In the event that we would like to allow other similar organizations to use this app in the future, it would need to be changed to fit the look of the organization, also called skin. The colors, logo, and name of organization should be able to be easily changed.
In addition, I just registered for my last semester of classes, which will start in January 2014. I should be applying for graduation sometime in the next month and looking forward to April 2014 graduation. Woo-hoo!
One of those Spring 2014 semester classes is my Capstone, a project-based class. I have talked about possible projects with one of the folks in our IT department. There is a real need for a good reporting tool that my organization could use. We have great data in our database, but not a great way to retrieve that data (and slice & dice it any which way). One suggestion was to look for an open-source reporting software that could be used and then write the code to connect it with our database. There are several categories of work here – research reporting tools (Reportico was suggested by Mark, our database expert and long-time contractor), SWOT analysis, write code to make connections to database, testing, and training other staff.
This seems like a valid project, but I need to get approval from the Capstone instructor before moving forward with it. I’ll keep you posted. 🙂