June 8, 2009

So I’ve spent the past week fiddling with the dashboard and I think it looks pretty snazzy now.


The first image is the dashboard upon entering a project. The second image shows what happens when users click on ‘details’ for each graph. Things to note:

  • Navigational bar above the main content area. There is still some debate about what ‘Home’ should be. I think that it should be the project home, Florian said it should be the project list. Any input on the matter will be helpful.
  • Only the 10 most recent events get displayed and there is a link to see all the events in the events page. The events page has not been modified as of yet, but I am in the process of redesigning it.
  • When the user clicks on’details’ it opens up the detailed graph with dates just as it used to be and pushes the events down.
  • This is the screen that users will see if they are logged in. However, what should the user see if they are NOT logged in (i.e. an unknown user)? Should this information still be available if the project is public? I’m going to assume that there will be public projects that anyone can see as well as private projects that only registered members can see. SO, in the case of private projects, users not registered to that project shouldn’t even see the project in the ‘Home’ project list. For public projects, non-registered users should still see activity and the dashboard.
  • Another questions is whether the login and user preferences are now in the right place. Personally I think that they’re fine where they are on top of the search bar. However, that can be debated.

There are some other areas of concern now though. The following is what the ‘Home’ page looks like.


Because the navigation and search bar is project specific, the ‘Home’ page now looks very bare and lonely. Now imagine that nobody is logged in, that’s another thing that is taken out from the home page.

Clearly, there are several new issues that have surfaced. Any and all input is welcome. Thanks!


Basie Dashboard – Go!

June 4, 2009

So this week I’ve started working on the Basie Dashboard. I’m picking up where Heather left off essentially. Although I don’t know much about the flot library or java scripting, so manipulating the graphs is going to be tough. I have added a recent events table and a list of quick links for users. I think these are very important especially to get a quick overview of the most recent things that has happened on the project. 

Here are some things that i think could make the graphs useful to users:

  • hide/show ability -> this way users can choose which graphs they want to see. I think that having the overall graph visible at all times is useful. This we can toggle the more detailed graph, which is the one that takes up the most space. 
  • I want to have some way of changing the graph styles to be either lines or bars for each user. I know people like to see the totals as breakdowns of individual users in different colours (personally I like line graphs). I’m just not sure how managable that is especially if the project has a lot of developers on it.

As far as the ‘quick links’ go, I added it to the dashboard, because if this is going to be the screen that users see once they sign in, then it is important to be able to navigate away from there. That being said, we still don’t have an easy navigational system for other parts of Basie. At the moment, users have to click ‘back’ or on the breadcrumbs we added to the top of the pages. I think adding a ‘quick links’ widget to each page would be best. 

So far the dashboard is also project specific and not user specific. In the future I would like to have the dashboard user specific, which will display data and news relevant to that user across all the projects they’re in. This may be a v3.0 feature.

Basie Dashboard

May 27, 2009

Some questions about the dashboard for anyone who wants to discuss it. When Greg first hired me for the month, he said that I’d be working on the dashboard for basie. Now that the first couple of weeks are over, I can safely say that I know my way around the application code structure and have been looking into the dashboard code (just learning what I can about it). I know this wasn’t on the list of 7 things that Greg wanted to have done for v0.2, but I think it’d be fun to work on.I would like to work on it during some spare time over the rest of my summer before I leave and possibly while I’m in Japan after I get settled in.

1. What is the dashboard supposed to be? From my understanding, a dashboard should be what the user sees when then they first log into a project or their account.

2. What content should be displayed? I think for now it will be sufficient to have it project based to keep things simple, but I think it’s important to also have a dashboard that spans several projects. Right now, it is just a series of pretty graphs, which is nice, but I think that encorporating recent events would also be userful and then have navigation to the mail or wiki apps.

3. Does anyone object to me working on this? Since I will likely be working from home and completely during my free time so progress may be slow, does anyone feel uncomfortable with that idea?

Well that is all for now. I just wanted to post this and I’ll wait until Greg returns to Toronto to ask him about it I suppose.

2 Quick Little Thoughts

May 26, 2009

1. How does SVN handle renaming/moving of files? For instance, if I have files a.txt, b.txt in one revision and then rename both to c.txt and d.txt respectively. What happens if I want to look at a previous revision of c.txt? Does SVN know to get a.txt or does it just think there was no previous revision?

2. Ticketing in Basie: I remember Greg saying something about how each ticket should have a wiki page attached to it for finer details and to allow users to edit the tickets. However, should each ticket have a wiki page that will also show up in the wiki list? or should they only be accessible from the ticket list? I think it makes more sense to only access ticket-wikis from the ticket list.

Week 2 on Basie

May 22, 2009

Shortened week this week and what did we accomplish? Lots!

  • I did my first screencast EVER. That was fun, but you can hear people talking in the background. It’s posted up on the Basie Blog
  • Have a better understanding of the code structure and can make small modifications to test things on my own without bothering the guys too much.
  • Read code reviews just so I can get a feeling of what’s expected and what’s considered good/bad code.
  • Closed pretty much all the mail tickets in the Basie Summer project. Yay! Actually, the last thing was waiting on some code from Florian. He finished that so I started looking at it and basing the mail hiding system on that. Turns out there’s a bug in it and also Eran started on the mail app anyways. That was a little disappointing. But I’m looking at the Wiki app to try and fix that bug for now. Yay! Otherwise, the Wiki is done. Yay!
  • Met with OLM team about the source browser. That was lots of fun to design the code structure and see what they need compared to what we need now and in the future. Very interesting ideas thrown out there.
  • Did some usability testing for OLM team. I got to play around on their test system. Found a few bugs, gave them some suggestions to make it more usable. All-in-all lots of fun and they seemed to really appreciate it, which was nice. My comments are on their site Wiki page.

Time for weekend of…not sure what i’m doing. Hopefully something interesting OR some relaxation. Either or is fine by me.

First Week on Basie Code

May 19, 2009

Week 1:

So code learning was not so bad with Eran and Bill’s help. I’ve learned my way around the directories and am proud to say that I know something! Yay!

  • I worked mostly with Eran on the Mail browsing application and fixed a few things that really needed to be fixed
  • Learned a lot more about CSS and web frameworks
  • I still don’t know the little nitty-gritty details of django, but I’m not too sure if anyone does really
  • Lots of pair programming which is really nice. I think it’s the best thing ever especially for learning new code. It really gives you the chance to ask lots of questions about the code. I also thought it was nice how I could help think through problems even without knowing the exact code that was needed to implement the solution because Eran knew it well enough

Here are some things that I realized I *should* have learned in 309, but did not.

  • What a web framework is: This seems like something that is very important to web programming and yet I walked away from the course not away of its existence.
  • GET/POST requests: I knew they existed, I didn’t know the differences nor how to use them to their full extent with properties.
  • Good web programming techniques, utilities, structure: Did not seem to exist in 309.

Happy to be a part of this team. Learning *so* much as I go.

Back to work on Basie

May 8, 2009

So I’m starting on Basie on Monday. Yay! I think it’s a little scary because I’ll be coding again. I haven’t done any coding outside of C/C++ in over a year, so there’s a lot of learning to be done. I’m sure I can manage something, but it’s still scary. The last time I did python was over a year ago. I’ll definitely have to relearn python. Shouldn’t be too bad. I think I just have pre-coding jitters. hehehe.