Friday, December 12, 2014

Project: SAS Team 08


Jason Suttles and Taylor Deckard


Web Application for Archivable Communication


There is a need for a simple tool that functions as a central hub for shared project files and encourages collaboration among users. Specifically, marketing teams need a tool to build and organize their campaigns. Communication between users is essential and the tool should allow for this in a multitude of ways. Live data manipulation, segmentation of projects, and variable storage for archiving documentation could provide a large amount of added efficiency to campaign development.


The application uses a multitude of modern web technologies such as HTML, jQuery, CSS, JavaScript, Java Server Pages, Java Servlets, WebSocket, Apache Tomcat 8, and MySQL. The site's layout is defined with HTML and the style is enhanced with CSS. Many elements appear hidden at certain times with jQuery, to be shown based on user interaction. Transition animations are also defined with jQuery. File upload, file delete, and image commenting  are supported via Tomcat and Java Servlets. jQuery's ajax allows for HTTP communication between the servlets and the client pages.

The context-specific chat rooms are implemented using WebSockets. A chat room is entered when a user clicks on a top-most (light-green) heading. While the user remains in this page, he/she will see only messages from other users in that campaign.

It is possible to comment on an image by clicking the image to full-screen it and then clicking the comment icon in the top-right corner. When the comment icon is blue, a user can hover over points to view comments or click anywhere on the screen and a textfield will pop-up for submitting a comment at the point where the user clicked. Image comments are positioned based on height and width percentages stored in the database. This ensures that the comments are positioned relatively close to where the user intended them to go. However, this is not always an exact placement, due to differing browser window aspect ratios.

Unfinished and Future Work: 

The links on the "Dashboard" (left-hand side of the screen) and a few of the icons at the top of the page are not currently functional because their role was outside the scope of this project. Also, there are buttons on edit bar of a chat room that do not have a function as of yet.

File upload currently only accepts files that are below about 2 Mb. This limit should be increased to allow submission of larger files. A check should also be added to ensure that there is enough space to store an incoming file on the server.

A user should be able to choose the color of the dot on his/her comment. Some images with white backgrounds do not show white comment points.


*Note: The site link doesn't exhibit the entire functionality of our application because of the need for a Tomcat server and MySQL database.

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