Monday, January 29, 2007

Into the world of researches

Finally I resigned as an instructor at JCC. I must admit there's something I miss in teaching at JCC. The curious looks of the participants, the words I blabbered to them, the computers I used to maintain. I don't miss the people in it coz I'm still in the center not as an instructor but as a researcher. Mobile and messaging again. Sounds boring but those research topics are the only topics available for me while I'm finishing the never-ending project. Even though I'm not missing the people of JCC, I definitely gonna miss them if one, or more, of my applications gets accepted which means I must be thousands of miles apart from JCC and the people in it. I don't know why I'm thinking bout those applications now after forgetting them for weeks. I've done enough for those applications. I completed all of their requirements and I already sent them on time so there's no need to keep them in mind. just wait for the surprises.
I'm planning to finish all my researches and the never-ending project while waiting for those applications result. There are two researches I'm working on. Those are from the national education department and research & technology department. These researches make me open my previous knowledge about mobile computing and instant messaging. Although they seem quite similar there is difference between them. The first research I'm working on is about the client side while the other is about the server side.
I already have the prototype for the first research topic, the client. The challenge is to re-design the user interface so it can be more user-friendly and fits the display environment of the cell-phone by any type as many as possible. Integrating the system with the main, m-learning, system would be another challenge too. Some improvements on the engine would be required.
The second topic is to maintain a server application. The application is already provided and available in internet. Yes, it looks lots more simple than the first one but don't get it wrong this could be the most complicated research I've ever worked on. Since there's a huge possibilities to hack the engine of the application so it can handle some features like compression, file sharing, etc. Although documentation is provided but still I didn't write the code and its always painful when u have to read someone else code especially when the writer is not around you. Well for this topic I'd try to make it as simple as possible :)
The progress for the first is that I finished working on the chat room interface. It took me about 3 days to build this interface. I tried to imitate the conventional desktop instant messaging chat room interface but some constraint occurred. My friend built one of this interface, a nice one, I asked him how he built it and he answered "use the Canvas". First stage was learning and using the canvas. I did it, I made the interface but I had no idea how to operate it since several functions must be embedded on that canvas. After hours of browsing and reading I decided to drop canvas off and switch to CustomItem component. This component gives Canvas capabilities and it can be integrated into Form which means some functions that the UI must handle can be obtained from other form-based components such as TextField. The second stage was implementing the Chat room into reality and it cost me entire weekend just to build the UI and implementing it's functions. Nah, I lied, I spent most of the time watching TV and movies. What a lazy boy :D
The progress for the second is that I've downloaded the software and ready to install it in my computer. But first I have to clean my computer after it got struck by a virus two weeks ago. I'm downloading the antivirus now. While waiting the download perhaps I could write a post and if I still have time to kill I'd just watch an anime. Well posting time's up and still I have time to kill so that's all for today. see ya.

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