App Design Blog Instructors Thoughts about Class

Android Day!

Tonight’s class was exciting – especially for me because I knew I’d hand out Android phones by the end of class.  Marco said he felt like Santa Claus today and he, Howard, and I really did work like elves to get the phones documented and activated.  Clueless to all the activity down the hall the students continued to work on their app designs from Tuesday.  Every now and then, I left to check on the android phone elves to ensure everyone would be ready for the big (surprise) presentation.

Imani, a Film student at Howard, was on hand to capture the event.  She’ll be around more often and will help capture and record various moments.  Today was her first day.  She said she wished she’d had this type of class when she was younger – a sentiment I hear often about the class.

Continuing the app design process today provided clearer pictures to the ultimate app ideas had by most students.  Some even got to explain their app on camera.  That footage will be edited, compiled, and posted soon.

But of course, the big event of the evening was the announcement about the arrival of the phones.  I encouraged the class to review the features of the two Android phones available on Cricket and discuss pros and cons of each.  After which, they were to notify me of their ultimate decision and according to what they knew at the time, I would make note of their decision and order the phones tomorrow.

Shortly after they announced their choice, Marco and Howard walked in with the mysterious box.  The students looked surprised.  Then the announcement came.  I know I heard cheers, but I also think it took them a while to realize we were serious and that there were phones in the box – for everyone.  It was an awesome moment – also captured (and will be made available later).

Students are tasked with exploring their phones over the weekend and blogging about what they find, what they like, what they think is good and not so good about their findings.  I can’t wait to hear what they share.

There are 15 new smartphone users in DC now trying to figure out what this ‘Android’ thing is all about.  If you are in the DC area, you just might see them taking pics, recording video, or just simply trying to understand how to use their new Cricket Android phone.

This should be interesting….

Lead Instructor

App Design Instructors Thoughts about Class

App Design – Day One!

Tonight was the first time the students focused on designing apps.  They faces were filled with intrigue, but I can tell they were a bit hesitant and not sure of exactly what to do.  To help, I used a design technique that I created with colleagues at the University of Maryland called ‘Moving Panels.’  Some students got into it, but others still looked at the materials of the technique as if they were pads of paper on which to list their ideas.  The technique calls for illustrations and explanations of the intended user interface.

But after some time, you could slowly see details of app ideas coming through, and some of the ideas were awesome.  I can’t wait until they are made and available for everyone to see and use.

The students are extremely creative and by the end of class, I could tell that they appreciated the true challenge of creating an app idea and fleshing it out with details.  It was inspiring to watch.  I would share some of their ideas, but I don’t want to spoil it.  🙂

We’ll continue this exercise on Thursday.

Stay tuned.

Lead Instructor

App Design Boys High School Students

It seems like it’s been forever since I blogged! Aside from Subway and Mr. Marco’s absence, today was a typical day. It felt like we wasted alot of time at Subway. We came up with quite a few ideas for apps today. I wanted to try a game app but it seemed very difficult and it would require alot more time than other apps, but hopefully I’ll get around to making one later.

App Design Girls Middle School Programming Students

Thursday November 18, 2010- Youth AppLab

Today is the    5th    day of the youth aapplab and we learned about Alice .Alice is very fun and I understand it today before the other students got in I was making my own little story. I was supprised at first because I thought it would take me a while to learn about Alice.

So far the youth applab is funish