Final Post for CS3216 v2.0

And so here I am, the second time now. Haha.

So as per tradition, we are supposed to write a blog post about what have we learned from the class.

This is what I wrote the last time around, back in 2010 “What have I learned from Cs3216” and this is what I wrote when I set out on this crazy journey 12 weeks ago “What I hope to learn in CS3216 again

I wanted to be a competent programmer. Did I become one? Er… maybe… maybe not.

Assignment 2 (Mobile Cloud) was quite a good training ground. I did quite a bit of javascript, JQuery mostly. But still I could not catch up with the real elite programmers. So when we decide to go full blast on developing an iOS Native App for the Singapore Heritage: Mobile, I know my days as programmer are numbered. It does not help as my Day Job (8:30am – 6pm) started around the same time. I tell you, you will be surprised how little time you have left for other projects once you start working. And my job is already quite flexible.

Anyway, there is no point ranting on and on about what I did not achieve. It is not that I have no choice. I made the decision and so be it.

But not all things are dark and bleak, the Singapore Heritage: Mobile project was a blast. I think I never had so much fun and sense of accomplishment in any school project before. Everyone in the team is so intrinsically motivated. I have never seen anything like these before. I guess this is what it means to have SYNERGY. When all our beings flow in the same direction. I really have no other explanation other than it’s God’s divine will that brought all of us together. I know I have said it before, but Alan, Zhenling, Kenneth, David, you guys (and girl) are simple 2AWESOME! I hope that you will continue to work with Sharon and me on this exciting project. Kenneth is right when he summed our experience up with the punchline “It was Gr8! And now, it’s simply 2Awesome“. (note: “Gr8” was “Group 8” for our Singapore River Assignment 2 group and “2Awesome” is “Group 2” for our final project group.)

1-2 weeks into the final project, I knew I could not commit the time required to be a “useful” programmer. So I fall back on what I do best, to be the morale-booster, technical and logistical support. Day by day my constant worry is that whether I have contributed enough to the group. I hope I did. For all the technical incompetencies, I supplement it with my enthusiasm and creativity. Alan described me as “wacky”. I think it’s quite apt.

I also got to fulfill my chinese martial art time travel dream. HOHOHO.

joshuatj kungfu fist
joshuatj kungfu fist. Thanks ZhenLing for the braid!

 

Of course, no project is complete without a nice video to sum it up. For some reason, video production seems to always find its way back into my hands. Here take a look at it, it’s only 30secs. Leave some comments.

One thing that I learned from making this video. Not really learned, more of reinforced. It’s that video editing, the piecing up the clips part, it’s the easiest of the whole process. The hardest part is coming up with the idea, putting it down on paper, refining it till it flows of honey. That, is the hardest part in making a video.

Looks like it is going to be a long while more before I will be a competent programmer. I will not give up though. At the very least I am now holding the title of “IT Officer”, I will have ample opportunity to practice my programming skills. World, you just wait, I’m coming to make a dent in you. Media + Programming, you just see what I can do, you just see….

 

 

(One last assignment we had to do is to read all 42 other people’s blog and do a “Mutual Blog Grading Survey”. Prof. Ben likes to outsource his work. So here we are, reading all of our course mates’ blog posts. Fortunately for me, ever since I have gotten my Galaxy S II, I have been keeping up with the blog posts. Not all of them, but I think I did read most of them. One thing I dislike reading blog post on the go is that there’s no one easy way to comment on the blog post that I have read. )

Exciting Times! Exciting Apps!

The order of presentations

  1. Cab.sg
  2. Mystery Story
  3. UOMe
  4. Yun Reading
  5. Rob the Robot
  6. Mobile Lions
  7. Appetit
  8. Letters to Amanda
  9. Better Me
  10. Trove
  11. Singapore River
Most of the opinions below are based on just listening to the presentation by the developer team. I would love to testflight all of the apps when they are launched.

First up we have Cab.sg. Simple Interface. Functional. They bought the domain Cab.sg, launching tomorrow (Nov 1, 2011). The main feature is the ability to “Book a Cab” by one touch.
This is one app that I will really use as it’s getting harder and harder to get a cab, especially after the two Integrate Resorts (IR) came up. According to one cab driver, cabs nowadays prefer to line up outside IR as they might get tipped highly by winning gamblers taking their cab. So there you have it.

Second up we have Mystery Story http://mysterystory.me/alpha/
– Interesting
– I like Mystery/Detective Stories – reminds me of DOS Text Adventure Games

UOMe. This is another app that I would really use. Right now I’m using EasyMoney an Android app to track the iOweU/uOweMe transactions. But it uses the complicated accounting system of “Accounts/Withdraw/Deposit”. It took me quite some time to get used to whether I’m supposed to “Withdraw” from my friends “Account” when he owes me money or should I “Deposit“. Perhaps it’s easy for people with accounting background, but it’s a hassle for me. That’s why I like the sound of UOMe so far. I think they are deploying it within the week.

YunReading 云读 
Great idea. HTML5 = Cross Platform support. Bookmark synchronization. Targeting Chinese Market – Chinese ebooks. They need to iron out the UI/UX issues before they launch.

Rob the Robot
Partner with 2359 Media. Launching mid-November in conjunction with the Rob the Robot Cartoon on Disney Singapore. Hey! This is no joke, this is big! I feel proud for yytellmewhy and Hoang, glad to have worked with you before! All the best with launching it on mid-November! This is the official website for the cartoon http://robtherobot.com/ Lookout for the App Launch in 2 weeks time. I think I’m gonna watch the cartoon. It’s so cute!

Mobile Lions 
Attendance taking to help LIONS Befrienders http://www.lionsbefrienders.org.sg/ in their checkcall procedures. Something along the line that the befriender has to visit 1000+ befriendees and keep attendance of their visits. HTML5. Cross platform support. Access Controls (Staff can approve/deny submissions). I think this will help the Voluntary Welfare Organizations (VWO) tremendously! They have a standard attendance checking API in the pipeline. I think that is pretty powerful.

Touch Appetit
Redefine Mobile Dining Experience. Platform. The idea is to have other restaurant apps live off the platform. Information is power. Collect customer data – targeted advertising. Salesforce as backend. Partnered Clients “Texas Chicken, Lerk Thai, etc.” Polish presentation slides. Polish app (screenshots).
Pro, ’nuff said.

Letters to Amanda (http://letterstoamanda.com/)
Everyone deserves to be heard, deserves to be loved. Empathy. Anonymous Platform. Simple UI/UX. Hotkey navigation.
1. Write a virtual letter to the rest of the world about almost anything you want
2. Read letters posted by others around the world
3. Exchange of letters with anyone around the world.
I like the font they use! Adding value for the world!
BetterMe (http://www.better-me.co.cc/)
Civics Moral Education (CME) – Moral Values Education Social Media Platform. Autonomous, peer-to-peer learning. Inspired by “Share a Quote“. Gamification. Learn moral values.

The Trove: where all things are treasured
The problem: Stuff gets thrown away when students move out every semester/academic year.
The solution: Convenience to sell/buy second hand items
Trade hub. Target Halls/PGP. Cold start problem.