At the SMART Desk meeting this week we talked about developing an app (and/or a website) that every club in the school can use to send out announcements and calendar updates / event schedules. I like this idea, but I think it’s important to remember the sheer number of clubs (200+) that we’re working with here. We would have to keep a lot of our information on a file/database server in-house, but I believe that would be manageable.
The most important thing, I think, would be concerning the layout. AD integration is a must, and I would imagine the layout to be close to a mix of TeamSnap (https://www.teamsnap.com/), Google Groups, and/or Facebook Groups. Ideally, I’m imagining each club having its own place to post announcements and, hopefully, have a small calendar (or a list of events). Someone mentioned using Apple’s iCal for scheduling events, but it would be best to avoid having to maintain 200 individual iCalendars for each club.
The idea for this week was Kevin’s and mine together. Our idea was to create a club app for the school so that people could be more organized and aware of what is going on with clubs in our school. It would allow incoming freshman to join clubs from their iPads, and be notified when the clubs they are in are meeting. Also, it would allow for people to see who is in charge of which clubs, what they’re doing, and possibly vote for officers or something.
Club Directory App
I think that creating an app for customized for this would be a great idea, though unrealistic. I think we need to built off a platform like wordpress or BSN to have this happen in a timely manner. This is to the clubs as BSN is the school. I think recreating BSN for clubs would be better spent integrating clubs into BSN. Not sure how possible it is, but we could look at groups and sub groups on BSN. This complies with the “Creativity” ISTE standard.
This week I mostly was helping Christine with the app she wanted to use on the school computer. The app for clubs would be a nice thing to have for club managers because they would be able to see who could come to the club meetings, and they could send out messages to the members for updates and other announcements. I think it was a good idea all around. I used most ISTE Standards this week.
This week, tickets still have been slow to enter, but many ideas have come about during this week, including the app that allows the clubs of the school to interface with the students to allow easier access to clubs. I think that this app is a great idea, but there is a lot of back-end work to get this idea going. This wouldn’t be impossible, though, and I already have ideas about how to put the app into production. With that, I don’t know if the ideas would be practical to deploy.
With that said, this week has been great for myself and Computer Reach. The schools are giving many of the retired machines to Computer Reach. This will be great for Computer Reach and good for the district as well!
So for the foreseeable future the smart desk is interested in creating an app/service to track, subscribe, and organize the over 200 clubs present in the USCHS. I have a couple tjoughts on the matter. Firstly, this situation, although it is a problem, does not necessarily require a custom solution. This problem, being a fairly common one, may be solvable with the use of a third party solution. Nevertheless, a custom solution is possible with a certain amount of time. I believe that a custom solution would be better for obvious reasons, but it isn’t necessary.
Last week most of my time was spent on doing tech for the school’s fall play production of Tartuffe. Although it isn’t exactly SMART Desk, it turns out that the equipment commonly used in technical theater, especially some of the newer stuff, has a lot of connections to IT and computer science. For our new intercom system, for example, I looked up frequency ranges and generally made sense of the user manual so that I could learn to use the new equipment effectively. Learning about the new sound/intercom system in general fell under the 6th ISTE standard for technology operation and concepts this week.
Back at the SMART Desk, there have been less new tickets coming in lately, so I’ve been able to think about the online work system for the FAB lab and otherwise briefly look into some of the potential projects/ideas that I’ve been thinking about. I’m also planning to (hopefully!) meet with Mrs. Despines later this week to do that switch-over to Google Docs.
This week has been somewhat slow ticket-wise, so I have been working on different things such as packaging software, working on a way to make computers shut down automatically, and other things like that. Outside of school, I have been redesigning my home server setup to include high-speed easy-to-access, fast storage for myself and my family to use. I have ordered in my new components and am eagerly awaiting their arrival. I think that working through problems at school and home have made me able to meet the ISTE standards for this week.
Week six has been a pretty normal week, except for dealing with the ongoing problem of the presentation remotes. If only that company decided to keep the user guide online, we would have all of the remotes paired on their own channel. But no, this problem remains an ongoing investigation. In other news this week, I discovered that the phone system’s switching capabilities make it faster to use as a ethernet switch than the actual switch we have setup at the desk. I believe that I have fulfilled all standards this week. I say that it has been a good week overall.
During the past few weeks, I’ve been working on an iOS app for my phone to help with a lot of the things that annoy me in the default iOS photos application. The goal is to be able to securely store pictures on your phone so that other people can’t look at all your pictures. The fact that people can do that has annoyed me for a while, so I decided to work on this project. So far, I’ve gotten some of the basic interface down, and the app allows the user to authenticate with either a numeric passcode or the builtin fingerprint scanner if the device has one. This relates to the ISTE standards because it requires creativity and innovation as well as a large deal of critical thinking and problem solving. Additionally, this relates to school because students could store things like homework agendas and answer keys on their phone, which is something that I currently do but it requires a separate app besides the standard homework application.