Louis Hofer


Class of 2012
Senior Project Manager

I am a network assistant at Lakewood High School’s CAT program. Under the instruction of our proctor, we develop applications that function in our daily school lives. The most important project I am faced with at this time is Project Magikarp, the online hall pass system.

Project Magikarp, as intended by the name, started as a small project that did not seem to have much use. Eventually, as more work began to be put into it, Magikarp grew into a useful application. Magikarp is now almost complete and will be implemented into the school, replacing paper hall passes completely.

I had to prepare SharePoint lists of data containing student information, teacher schedules, and student as well as teacher pictures. My code is written in jQuery, a combination of JavaScript and HTML. I also had to make use of student ID cards with magnetic strips that contain the student’s local county number. This is used to check a student out to go to the bathroom quickly without disturbing the class.

When the second six weeks of school starts, the project will roll out into beta testing by the teachers to check for errors. We expect the project to be fully operational and functioning by the second semester or ever earlier.

A major challenge I came across in this project was the number of JSON objects I could call at once. Our school has upwards of 1300 students, and only 999 separate objects can be called at once. This only conflicted with one part, which was a code I wrote to do preliminary formatting on the list data. I simply split the list into two parts, since the code I made was just a temporary formatting function.

Another which took quite some time to figure out was a way to refresh the sidebar div in the page only when someone else checked a student out or in. Eventually, I found that I could use a setTime function to query the Hall Pass list to check for a change in the number of objects with a timeIn value of null. This would occur when a new hall pass is made and is in progress, and also when a student is checked in, setting the timeIn property to a value other that null.

Through development of applications like this, I was able to gain important real-life experience in this field of study. This has truly contributed to my knowledge of Computer Sciences and given me a better chance in the long run.

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