A roundup of student-designed apps presented at the App Showcase


Some of the apps will continue to be developed in the fall




Several Computer Science and Networked and Social Systems courses held their showcase of student projects. The ten participating groups were from NETS 150, CIS 191, CIS 350 and CIS 399.

“This is the first time we’re doing a demo focused on software apps,” Chris Murphy, a computer and information science professor, said.

Swapneel Sheth , a lecturer from the CIS Department, got the inspiration from a recent conference he attended at Harvard University. He wanted to provide his students with a chance to present their projects at the end of the semester as a way to let them “know that there’s something at the end,” he said.

Some of the apps will continue to be developed in the fall semester and will be put into use by clients.

The Daily Pennsylvanian took a look at several of the apps presented at the demo.

Travel Buddy

This app uses Google Maps and Facebook to share travel plans “to see where ... Facebook friends are going to be over the summer,” members of the group said. By clicking on specific locations, users can see who is going to be there. It also allows them to see where people who are currently living near them will stay during breaks as well. The app does not need to have a separate server to provide this service as it uses the existing data from Facebook.

SHS Mobile Appointments

This app addresses the tedious process students have to go through to check messages from Student Health Service and to make appointments. Mainly because the medical database SHS uses requires a high level of security, it was difficult to access the website on a smartphone. The app provides appointments for all the categories originally provided on the website and ensures security by automatically logging out and asking for reauthorization when the app opens again.

SHS Defibrillator Finder

This app is an AED locator with instructions to cope with medical emergencies. It allows students to contact Penn police to report urgent situations. It also gives detailed guidance to help users find the nearest AED. In addition, Penn Police and the Department of Fire and Emergency Services can easily check the maintenance of all the AEDs on campus, as the app shows the status of each AED. Managers of the buildings where AEDs are located can edit and update information, which is then sent to app subscribers via email.

Food Trucks App “Skip Line”

This app minimizes the time students need to wait in line for lunch. Customers can order from participating food trucks and pay with Venmo. Vendors see incoming orders color coded differently for different customers. The app also indicates the remaining time until the customer is expected to come.

Working Dog Center Training Tracker

This app compiles all the training information from the Penn Vet Working Dog Center. Trainers can record the types of training the dogs have received and indicate whether their performance was successful. At the end of the training, users can indicate what activities the dog should do the next time to help the transition from one trainer to another.

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