13 Replies Latest reply on Oct 24, 2011 7:01 PM by MichaelvdV@Atos

    vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input


      Hi Everyone!


      A couple of weeks ago I started to think about having a 'notification app' for vCampus. There is always a lot going around on vCampus, and sometimes it's hard to keep track of all the conversations going on. If you ask a question, or responded to one, you want to be notified as soon as possible, so you can continue the discussion.


      A lot of you are already using the RSS feeds and email notifications, but these notifications get burried into all the other stuff pretty quickly.


      I started to think, and thought it might be very usefull to have a notification (tray) application for vCampus. This application should provide an easy to use interface into vCampus, and notifications (with rules) when something interesting comes up. I looked at the possibilities of Telligent (the platform vCampus is running on), and it seemed that a lot could be possible. I'm also very interested in the social networking capabilities of the platform, as it seems we are not making a lot of use of that capabilities yet.


      I started programming, and I'm up to a point that I would like to present it to the community. I'm very interested in your opinion!




      The application is a tray application (when you minimize, you will get a tray icon in the taskbar). When you click the icon, the following screen will appear. This gives an overview of all forums, and informs you of all your unread and unanswered posts on a forum. You can click the forum title to go to the forum, or the unread or unanswered links to go to your unanswered/unread posts. You can also create a new forum thread by clicking the 'new' link.


      The forums will be configurable.


      You can see your latest activity on top, together with your avatar. If you click your own name, you will go to your personal page.




      When a new message appears on one of the forums, you will get a notification (much like a notification from MSN Messenger or Skype). This also works when the app is minimized (in tray).




      If you go to the 'Friends' tab, you can see all the friends you have on vCampus. If you click the name, you will go to their personal page (with bio, activity, etc). All the latest activity messages of your friends is displayed below their names. I want to make it possible to quickly send an email to a friend, but also create some instant messaging/conversation capabilities.




      If you go to the search tab, you can quickly search all content of vCampus. It shows what the search result is, where it comes from and a short body text of the result. If you click the title, you will offcourse go to the search result.






      What I would like to know from the community is:


      Do you see any potential in something like this?At this point, it's still very rough and in an early stage. In my opinion, a highly configurable and easy-access vCampus notifier / helper application could really improve the whole vCampus experience.


      What are the most important features you would like to see in an application like this? Configurable notifications and updates will be a big part of something like this. Maybe an option to be notified on certain keywords? Would IM between you and your friends be interesting?


      I'm really looking forward to any comments! If you don't think something like this is valuable, please also let me know!

        • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input

          Nice Idea, at the moment I use google reader to keep track not only on vcampus, but also on all the other forums, blogs, newspapers,...

            • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input

              Thanks for the comment Wolfgang. I agree, a lot of the notifications in RSS readers or mail get burried. That was one of the main reasons for this initiative.


              Any other idea's/comments?

                • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input

                  vCampus needs a "Like" or "+1" for forum posts, something more than giving stars for the complete thread.  If we had that then your app could create a nice stream of vCampus activity (like we now see on the Facebook stream).  If you added a tab of "Live" then you could include updates from all of vCampus, everywhere that you e-mail subscribe to a forum you get a stream of activity within those forums.  Also, would be nice on the Live tab to get updates of "New blog post" or "New document added to library" etc  A bit like the updates you have on your "Friends" tab but a broader view of activity.


                  I would use it if we get updates as frequent as the e-mails arrive - more frequent the better.




                  [Generic vCampus Discussions] Michael just +1'd Rhys' post on "vCampus Notifier App..."


                  [Generic vCampus Discussions] Rhys just gave 5 stars to Michael's thread "vCampus Notifier App..."


                  [Library] Daniel Takara just added the document "How to configure SSB" to "PI Server -> Add-Ons".


                  [Blogs] Ahmad just created a new blog post "Free beers at vCampus Live!".


                  [Blogs] Rhys just spammed/commented Ahmad's blog post.


                  Well you get the idea...

                    • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input

                      I "Like" and "+1" to Rhys's idea - that would be great to have!

                      • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input

                        Rhys @ Wipro

                        How to configure SSB


                        ... no thread without it ...

                          • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input

                            Don't know what you mean Andreas...

                              • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input

                                This is great Michael, I think the concept has a lot of potential. In addition to Rhys' points (which I fully agree with), I would like to point that Search might be the most important part of it to a number of users...  take somebody who is in Visual Studio or trying to integrate with some other product, he/she doesn't necessarily want to leave that environment, fire up <his/her favorite browser>, navigate to vCampus and then Search... how about just hit that tray icon, enter your keywords and go!


                                Also, it'll be great to see what that app looks like on Windows 8 (Metro-style app) ]

                                  • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input
                                    Ahmad Fattahi

                                    This can inject more life into the community via better visibility and more social interaction; therefore, definitely lots of potential.


                                    I would add to Steve's point the possibility of search "everything" including the documents in the library. Also, you might want to have two levels of notification: a softer version for any post in the forum where you are subscribed and a stronger one when you are actually a listener on a specific thread (posted something on it).


                                    Great job keep it up man!

                                      • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input



                                        Nice idea. It would also be nice if it support you favourite tablets.

                                          • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input

                                            Thanks for all the input so far. I've taken into consideration a lot of your comments.

                                            • Created more of a vCampus 'Look & Feel'. I'm not a designer, so that took quite some effort
                                            • Added the Live tab that Rhys suggested. There is no '+1' or post ranking feature yet, but this is the place where all 'events' stream in.
                                            • Working on improving the search results. At this point, the search should yield the same results as the search on the website, but I want to improve that, and also have more ways of sorting and visualizing results. Would it also be an option to include a bing/google search option?
                                            • Added the latest @OSIsoftvCampus twitter message at the bottom, this way the user should be kept up to date on upcomming events, webinars, random stuff, etc.
                                            • Created a configuration section, where you can (at this point) configure your login data, but also the forums you would like to see in the application (and thus get notifications from).
                                            • I don't own a tablet. It should run fine on win7/win8 tablets though. There is no optimization for touch. First, I would have to get a tablet
                                            • Thinking of different ways of configuring the notifications. I'm not sure about the best way yet, working on that!

                                            I really appreciate the comments and suggestions. Please keep it comming!


                                            Here are some screenshots to give an impression of the new progress.


                                            Forum view




                                             Friends view




                                            Search view




                                            Live View




                                            Settings - Logon




                                            Configuration - Select forums



                                              • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input

                                                Great job dude! I'm sure you'll get requests for a Beta soon ;)


                                                BTW I do have the Windows 8 tablet... I could test it for you ;)

                                                  • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input

                                                    Michael, loving the live tab view.


                                                    It doesn't seem obvious what section of the tool you are viewing, any room for a title or to highlight the tab you clicked on?


                                                    What view do you get when you click on a forum section?  Do we get things direct links such as "Latest Post" on a thread?


                                                    Where can I download it??


                                                    Where is the iOS version??

                                                      • Re: vCampus Notifier Application - Need your input

                                                        Rhys @ Wipro

                                                        Michael, loving the live tab view.


                                                        Thank you, you can take credit for the idea


                                                        Rhys @ Wipro

                                                        It doesn't seem obvious what section of the tool you are viewing, any room for a title or to highlight the tab you clicked on?


                                                        True, I tried to implement the same look and feel as the vCampus website. If you look closely, there is no obvious header on the site as well (apart from the breadcrumbs under the horizontal menu. But, you are right. I will make something that highlights the current selection.


                                                        Rhys @ Wipro

                                                        What view do you get when you click on a forum section?  Do we get things direct links such as "Latest Post" on a thread?


                                                        At this point, it will take you to the appropriate forum on the vCampus website. I'm thinking of creating an in-application view of the forums, with all kinds of nice features. But the issue is... once you go there, there is no turning back and you immediatly have a ton of features to implement (think of creating and editing new posts, tags, the rich post editor, etc. etc. My first goal is to have a workable version that has a feature set that will attract users, and show added value. My biggest concern now is creating a stable, fast and useable app (in short, turning it into something that I would entrust a user with.


                                                        Rhys @ Wipro

                                                        Where can I download it??


                                                        No where yet... But I really hope I can present something (incl. code, hopefully as a community project) before the end of this year.


                                                        Rhys @ Wipro

                                                        Where is the iOS version??


                                                        I might have chosen the wrong platform for that . Better chance we will have a Win8 version! (Metro style


                                                        What would you/vCampus think about chat (IM) functionality between vCampus friends built in?