Our first sprint was rather difficult and unproductive. We did not start off with many clear goals, so we weren’t able to move forward much and had no clear direction. This is definitely a huge hurdle and one I hope we can get over soon. Our group would definitely benefit from clear, tangible goals and perhaps a little more structure. Other than that, we had many productive and insightful conversations about the needs and features necessary to the application we are trying to develop for the food pantry.
One of the things I worked on a little bit was trying to find a way to interpret the a data set so that we can further search and manipulate it. The data source was provided from our professor and our goal was to find a way to display that information in a way that could interact with a REST API interface. A great help to this end was an article found by group member Andy Pham. Using the exact code by the provided article works to some degree, although the field headers need to be changed to appropriately handle the data set for the food pantry project. This doesn’t seem like it will be too difficult moving forwards, although there is still a little work to be done in this department to finish it up. Overall, in this task I think we are headed in the right direction and nearly complete. However, I question how useful this work will be, as we may find out that a lot of this beginning work is already complete by another group or another university.
Another big goal of ours is to set up a server that can run this REST API so we can use it across the network. My team members have been doing research into what resources we can use and what would be best, however it is a choice that is hard to make when we cant consider any of the other needs of the project (yet). This server doesn’t need to be big or complicated, as with what we have we would only need to host a small data set as well as a pretty simple REST API interface to interpret said data set. However, we are unsure where this server will be hosted or who will front any potential costs.
It is challenging having no practical or finished work to show, as it highlights a lack of progress and means we have no reference for how we are performing. However, I think as the ball gets rolling and our project goals become clear we can build up momentum and reach our goals as they come to us. In the meantime, Team FIG has been using our time to discuss what we could potentially need to work on and other elements of the project. We have looked up different universities and food banks solutions and what programs they used to maintain their databases, and are considering what might work for our University.