What is this project all about?

So we have realized that we have completely forgotten to tell you what the project is all about!
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Friday, 23 March 2012

Everyone has presented, the white chocolate bunny has been smashed and everyone is happy!

It's somewhat sad but true, we have presented and the project oriented part of the intensive program is over. To sum up our experiences on the past two weeks:

  • We made huge improvements on the existing OpenARS Service: We reorganised, renamed and extended.
  • We almost had a working implementation of the Frontend, almost because it failed on us during the live demo (but this was probably due to Murphy's law and the lack of testing)
To be honest we underestimated the amount of work that was needed on the frontend, but this just means that there is still room for improvements and the most important outcome of the intensive programme was reached; we developed open source experiences and new friendships across students of European universities!
Maybe we will announce a video of our presentation if we can get our hands on it :)

For all the students attending the IP DOSSEE programme, thank you all for a friendly and open minded atmosphere! And for anyone else ... you missed out - big time :)

This will be all for now, as this blog has fulfilled its the obvious purpose, although we will be updating you on the progress of the OpenARMS project, as we hope that someone out there will be picking it up :) Use it, fork it or completely remake it - let's see what the future brings.

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Hi, it’s me again!

Today is Wednesday, 8th day of our real work! Kraen and Attila are too busy to write in our weblog, so I will do that!

Before starting about what we have done since Friday, I have to correct my mistakes in the last blogspot,; I had a mistake in writing Nacho’s name, I am so sorry NATRO! Also I found that we have not decided about the logo yet (actually I feel better now because I was a little bit mad at them for choosing the logo when I was gone for the presentation for the high school students!) anyway I hope that finally tomorrow we will vote for it.

Ok, let me think about the last 3 days, I was occupied with preparing the presentation, which I have been told to make it funny and at the same time serious! It’s so easy for me to fill it with jokes but how can I make the technical parts funny?! About the others, l don’t want to bother you with the details, let me tell you the main sentences that I heard in these 4 days:

Guy’s PULL!
Don’t PUSH until I told you!
 Guys in frontend part, we cannot PULL, what did you do?!
Ok, you service guys you are fired to frontend part!
Now, everybody PULL!
 Who PUSHED right now?!
DAMN IT (It’s kraen!)!

Also if you were in our lab you would hear Attila, Kraen and Bernhard sneezing in a row every 3 minutes and after that the other guys saying bless you altogether!!
Oh, my dear God, such a great time, I wish we had a few more days, I am so gonna miss you all guys and you Karina! :)

Maybe we could make to see each other once again; anyway I have a feeling that we all enjoyed this programme, so, Thank you TAKAASHI!!

Please let me know if I had a mistake because I am writing with closed eyes!

By the ways, you guys! Who are checking our webcam all the time instead of working, we don’t have chocolate anymore!

à demain

Monday, 19 March 2012

Hello from Mina!

Hi Everyone!

I am Mina, one of the team members of OpenArms Project; today I will tell you what happened in our lab on Friday instead of Kraen or Attila.

Like our previous days we started our work by description of the tasks assigned to each team member.
Mine was the best one! We have been informed that Friday is an open day in FH JOANNEUM University and we will have high school students who want to visit university and be involved in the projects of IP DOSSEE. So I was in charge of  joining these students and explaining them what we are doing.
  After each pair of technical leaders did their presentation (and I was alone and not a technical leader!) Mr. Takashi asked the students to choose their group and interestingly I got the most!

First I explained them what we are doing and showed them how our website works. They seemed interested in Java programming and told me that they learned programming in High school, also they asked me a few questions about doing an exchange programme and studying with international students. After that I invited them to visit our laboratory and meet the other guys.
Kraen explained the students the project in more details and suggested them to join different sub teams and see what they are doing.

After lunch we said goodbye to the students and I started searching about how to make a form in Google documents.
Oh sorry, I just talked about what I did; let me ask the others to see what they did!
Dima made an option which allows teachers to format text in the answer fields.
Karina has changed the view of our main page.
Bernhard exchanged the rest client with the API client and out phased the org.json package.
Pedro and Roman, they created the user model for the whole system.
Natro and Patrik created the method to get the API to work.
Attila did some stuff in the corner.
Kraen toyed around with the APIClient class of the frontend, trying to expose the API in a developer-friendly class. He also removed unused fields from some models and tried to separate the api package from the model classes of the service ... i.e. a lot of technical stuff

By the way, finally Friday we decided about the logo and one of the logos suggested by my brother was chosen. I saw Karina struggling to put it in the website!

For the afternoon we had a presentation about open source business by one of the graduated students of JOANNEUM University (honestly that’s just what I guess, I was asleep during the whole presentation!) and after that we left university for the social event of visiting Beer brewery in Göss.

That’s quite all we did on Friday, I hope you enjoyed reading our diary as much as I enjoyed writing it! Please share your ideas via comments!

à bientôt!

Thursday, 15 March 2012

So we are back for a short update for Day 3! Today we have got a lot of things done, all the sub-teams managed to close their first tickets. Well done Team!! The CRUD administration interface was completed, together with some nice templates and some authentication for the super users.  The QR team has also done some awesome code to generate and cache QR codes to be used to access the polls.
Some of the code has also been refactored to match our domain model, and most of the rich-text editing is now also complete! Nice work Frontend team!

Things to come: update to the HighCharts.js/Better Graphics for voting statistics, outphasing org.json and major API overhauls.

But so far, we have only been scratching the surface of the code, and the days to come will most likely be much more challenging as we venture deep into uncharted territory and perform an open heart surgery on the existing code to reach our ultimate 1st milestone: a stable service API.

Meanwhile, we are all pondering away on the choice of the future OpenARMS logo. Do you have a preference? Let us know in the comments!

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

First whole day of real coding! 14/3

We have had a really good day today!
I am proud of both myself and Attila but especially of all the team members - you did great. We had the following agenda for today.
On the frontend team we looked into choosing which rich text editor to use for the rich text editing the questions, also we made great progress on the out-phasing of the json.org lib (as this might as well be replaced by the gson lib already included in the Play framework - having one single lib for json (de)serialization lowers the risk of getting confused on this).
The service team looked into adding a CRUD administrative interface for the service app. This will help make debugging easier and also adds the possibility of administrating the system - without having to dive directly into the database to chance/delete records.
And finally we had one pair of students looking into adding a QR-code image generator, such that the teacher can display a QR code to the students - and make them scan it to join the poll.

We were given a couple of tablets and smartphones (Android and iOS) on which we launched the website for UI testing. We used the livestyle project to instantly update the CSS across all devices when we changed the CSS on the server.

And once again Attila has been compiling a timelapse of todays work .. If you are on the FH Joanneum Kapfenberg campus, you can come by and get some seconds of fame by standing in front of the cam! :)

First day of coding! 13/3

Yesterday (13/3) we had a workshop on teamwork from 9:30 (it was suppose to start 8:30 but some were late for the train) - 13:00, this had a questionnaire as its central tool on trying to get us to know our strengths and weaknesses as members of the team. To be honest we just wanted to get started on the project - I personally felt that it was like taking a nap in a sofa while you tried to run a marathon.
But we had a very nice experience, we saw that no single team member had more correct answers than the correct answers that was reached by consensus among the team members (by the principle of "negotiated majority rules"). Hopefully we will also get some valuable insights into the strengths and weaknesses of our team-members when we have a chance to sit down and look through the results.
After launch we had the first real opportunity to sit down with the team members and get some code going!
The agenda for the rest of the day was:
  • getting commit access to GIT.
  • getting the play instances started.
  • dividing into subteams.
  • choosing a logo.
We completed all tasks but the last: choosing a logo - but we got a lot of good ideas going - maybe you have a suggestion or some feedback?
Also we divided the team of 10 people into two, the service subteam and the frontend subteam:

  • Service - Subteam leader: Attila
    • Nacho paired with Patrik
    • Roman paired with Pedro
  • Frontend - Subteam leader: Kræn
    • Bernhard paired with Karina
    • Mina paired with Dmitrijs
We were very exited by the fact that every team member had the code checked out by the end of the day - we were ready for the day to come.

Attila has compiled a Youtube timelapse video of todays work :)

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Die epische Team wurde zusammengestellt!

So the first day (Monday 12/3) was really good, we had a lot of information and the FH Joanneum university (the university hosting the event) has done a really good job on getting us to feel welcomed.
After a pretty smooth registration, where we got nice green shoulder bags and ID-cards, we had the official welcome by Tiina Piipponen from the Metropolia university (in Finland), Takashi Linzbichler and Dr. Karl P. Pfeiffer (both from FH Joanneum).
Then each of the students on each of the national teams was introduced on stage and we were officially introduced to our team members (although we already had met virtually in the IRC chatroom).
We had lunch and a lecture on international teamwork, where we were introduced to some concepts about the different cultural approaches to teamwork. Some dimensions in the approach on teamwork was introduced and we were asked to think about where we saw ourselves on the following scales:
  • Linear time - Cyclic time
  • Individual - Collective
  • Informal - Formal
  • Direct (low context) - Indirect (high context)
  • Reserved - Expressive
This we incorporated in the our introductory presentation for the other team members. Afterwards we selected our new team name: The OpenMinds.
So from now on we will be known as The OpenMinds delevoping on the OpenARMS project!