Cal Day… Sleep!

So, it’s like almost 5 AM on the day of Cal Day, and I think like half our group is still awake. It’s going to be hilarious how tired we are on our big day.

Anyway, I’ve deployed the latest version of CalMap out to Sybak. This will probably be the version we’ll be demoing, unless some gigantic bug is found in it or something. (Routing to stopovers is still a little fuzzy, but the basic functionality is totally solid.) We’ve gone to great lengths to make our app look better, and it really shows. We’re no CSS experts, but as you can see, a lot of time and banging against the wall can do a lot!

We’ll probably give an update during Cal Day; man, we’re so excited! Come by and see us at Soda Hall. We’ve got a table out front in the breezeway!

Stability Required

As Cal Day approaches, we of the CalMap team are concerned utmost with the stability and usability of our app. While I realize now that we don’t have time to change the underlying structure of our data (MySQL, anyone?), we can still improve how our app reacts to unusual input. The Route button now packs up a bunch of requests all at once, instead of sending them one by one and being subject to the nondeterministic behavior of our servlet calls.

We’re also working to make the overall app look better, as we know we’re in for some harsh criticisms from the thousands of visitors on Cal Day. If there are any CSS experts out there, we so need you on our team. What do you think of our pathetically amateur attempts at layout?

As for new features, we think you’ll love the Points of Interest section of the app, which at the very least lets you see all the Buildings of campus at once. Kinda matches UC Berkeley’s interactive map, doesn’t it?

Autocomplete is now fully functional, another win for usability. Our next steps are to rework the menu used to configure your route, so that users will be more inclined to actually use and understand it. We took quite a few hours discussing the most straightforward and intuitive interface for it, and look forward to building and rolling it out in our next release. Stay tuned…

By the way, here’s the blurb I submitted to the Cal Day organizers:

Here is a short description of our product suitable for print, in the style of those on the Cal Day website:

10 am – 4 pm

CalMap: The UC Berkeley Mapping Solution. Might you be lost? The Berkeley campus can be quite difficult to navigate, but don’t worry! Stop by the CalMap demo station at Soda Hall, and we’ll show you the algorithmically optimal way to get anywhere, from anywhere on campus. Catered to your preferences, too. Try out our mapping application early, and you’ll cover more ground in less time. Useful!

320 Soda Hall