Mid-semester Update

Wow time really flies and the mid-term break is already here (20% gone already?!). Just wanted to wrap up my thoughts on Assignment 1 and talk a little about Assignment 3.

Assignment 1

I think the Connectr app turned out rather pretty, though the map really thrives on having your friends already joined the app. It was hard to get much feedback from friends, since the first few that joined could only see my locations.

It was kinda fun recalling the places I have been to. But Facebook only had my recent ~3 yrs of data, so I couldn’t recall the places I have traveled to before that (which sadly are the ones that required more help to remember, if I don’t want to filter through thousands of old photos in an SD card somewhere at home). Well at least I won’t have this problem in the future. 🙂

These 2-3 weeks for a novice like me was really hard. Thankfully my awesome groupmates were all pros and honestly carried me through most of it. Reading the Assignment 3 pdf before starting Assignment 1 would have really helped too (evil prof haha), though my groupmates were experienced enough and did them all anyway.

Last, I feel that there is further potential to use/display the location data from Facebook. Some interesting studies have been done with location data from tweets (which I guess is public), such as looking at travel destination choices based on where you lived. However, this study was confined and generalized to inter-state travel in US. It might be interesting to see if holiday trends can be detected within social groups too.

Assignment 3

Our group chose work on an augmented map for SoC. Initially, I thought a indoor map for SoC is not really required, since I usually just used this to find my way around SoC. But then someone linked a post on NUSWhispers asking for a map of water coolers in NUS. So we decided to include other utilities like water coolers and ATMs on the map.

Pathfinding was an interesting feature that we considered, but chose not to implement as Google Maps did not support this on an indoor setting. Not sure if there is an efficient way to do this with an overlay though…

The main focus for this assignment was the Progressive Web App part, so we chose one of the recommended Ionic framework to give the app a native look. Ionic is an Angular module, thus it was pretty easy to learn and implement. The default design does look a little plain though. Fortunately, we found Ionic Material that allows us to easily add Google’s material design to the Ionic framework. It is still a work in progress though, so documentation and examples were sparse.

On a side note, I didn’t like Chrome’s new material update. Luckily, it could be disabled by setting this to Non-material. I guess the material look is not for everyone haha. Though it did make our app look nicer. =p

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