My Weekly Journal

Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8 Week 9 Week 10

Week 1
(5/30 - 6/2)
During this first week I met both my faculty mentor, Dr. Amato (a.k.a. "Nancy"), and my graduate advisor, Xinyu Tang. I also met the other graduate students of the Parasol group, and many undergraduate research students, including my research partner, Bryan Boyd. The majority of this week I spent becoming familiar with the Campus Navigator project and the goals for the summer. Since Bryan had already been working on the project for a week, he helped me with this process. We discussed design issues, the best implementation, and task priorities.
My tasks included to begin learning AJAX, PHP, Javascript. I also read about Google Maps API because we will be using this as our interface for our application. I met with Xinyu, Bryan, and his mentor, Roger, to discuss design ideas for the interface.
At the end of the week I found out I might be going to a conference to NYC!!  
Week 2
(6/5 - 6/9)
This week I concentrated on improving the interface and trying to determine what parts of the old CSS were associated with what (This is an ongoing discovery). I began creating the functionality for a user to click on the map and read this latitude/longitude point. I added the functionality for the map markers within a certain latitude and longitude range from where the user clicked on the map. I discovered more about MySQL functionality to query the database.
I also attended the Lattice Boltzmann Model (LBM) of Magneto-Hydro-Dynamic (MHD) Plasma Jet Flows seminar by Jacques Richard, the seminar about applying to grad schools, and the GRE workshop.
So far I have enjoyed becoming integrated into this project and look forward to continue working on it!
Week 3
(6/12 - 6/16)
This week I displayed the information about the markers within a given range from where the user clicked on the map. My group met to discuss the project and assign tasks for both Bryan and me. I wrote my summer research plan. Bryan and I had a meeting about our project status and any ideas we had to improve it.
We had a meeting about how the roadmap should look and how we should generate the XML document. I began working on creating this XML document and allowing it to be read in. Adding this functionality will help us when we generate maps for the NY
WAFR (Workshop on Algorithmic Foundations of Robotics) conference.
I also attended a number of lectures this week, including: Jyh-Ming's defense on ACD, the seminar on Assembling the Tree of Life, the financing grad school seminar, the USRG luncheon, GRE workshop.
Week 4
(6/19 - 6/23)
At the beginning of this week Bryan and I were able to complete the shortest path query correctly. Therefore we had reached the stage of full functionality at a primeval level. This was very exciting!
Bryan and I discussed how we would implement multiple edge types. We also discussed how we would store the vertices of a virtual edge (a curved edge). Both of these issues were later brought up in a meeting with Roger and Xinyu.
I finished the functionality for reading and displaying the contents of an XML document from a file. I then worked on querying for correct information from the database to be displayed, so that our application could read a generic file.
I began working on the edit edge page from the admin side. Previously it was running extremely slow due to the work on the Javascript side, so I started to change the interface to only allow the markers/edges which the admin has selected to be displayed. This took some debugging to find the best way to keep track of the current marker/edge color. Now the functionality allows the page to grab all edges/markers when the page loads but not display everything. There is still an option for all vertices/edges to be displayed.
I also attended the GRE workshop and writing workshop seminar.
Week 5
(6/26 - 6/30)
This past week I worked on the edit edge page. I wrote the search algorithm for finding the closest edge to the user's mouseclick by finding the distance between the edges' midpoints and the click point. This will be useful for displaying the current information about an edge and edit the properties of that edge. I also began working to allow functionality to zoom in on a section of the map, and then allow the user to select the marker/edge types to be displayed only in this section. This will help the Javascript run quite a bit faster. I also updated the home page by completing the functionality for a user to click on a part of the map and select from 5 nearby locations which specific place they want. The set up of this function will allow the user to click a few places that they would like to go, and keep track of these places for displaying and queries. I also went to the GRE workshop, grad student panel luncheon, Bjarne Stroustrup seminar, and the meeting/discussion over articles from New York.
Week 6
(7/3 - 7/7)
I finally have become a semi-expert at debugging Javascript and the XML displayed on the PHP interface. I worked with the database more this week, and I now completely understand the way in which the tables in the database are connected.
I debugged the home page in order to provide a more intuitive interface for the user. This took quite a bit of time, but in the end there was success!
In addition to this I began to work more on the admin edit edge page. I provided the capability to zoom and grab only the edges/markers that were within the window frame.
Throughout the week I read my articles for the NY conference and researched more about the information we needed to create the NY conference maps.
I attended a brain neuro-informatics seminar, GRE workshop, and the meeting/discussion over articles from New York.
Week 7
(7/10 - 7/14)
At the beginning of this week I debugged until I found out why loading the edges and markers takes a long time. I used date() stamps to time which part of the application was running the slowest in order to help make the application more efficient. I attended the GRE seminar and spent the rest of the week creating and perfecting the NY conference maps.
We finally left Friday morning for an exciting time in New York!
Week 8
(7/17 - 7/21)
NEW YORK!!! Visit the WAFR website to find out the conference's program. Our group returned to College Station Wednesday evening. Thursday and Friday were spent getting back into the project and writing our abstract for the program.
Week 9
(7/24 - 7/28)
We began creating our poster. This included taking many screenshots of our application. I focused on the Introduction, User and Administrator interface. This helped us get a good overall summary of the project. We also entered more data into the system and did a lot of testing.
Week 10
(7/30 - 8/4)
This last week Bryan and I focused on finishing the poster and any last touch-ups for completing the summer's portion of the project. We began to write a final report about the challenges and accomplishments from the project.