Teaching information systems development with sms
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Teaching Information Systems Development with SMS. Chris Wallace Information Systems School University of the West of England, Bristol. Motivation SMS in practice An example of SMS in teaching Pedagogic benefits Issues Questions. Motivation. Information Systems Degrees – balance over:

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Teaching information systems development with sms l.jpg

Teaching Information Systems Development withSMS

Chris Wallace

Information Systems School

University of the West of England, Bristol

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


Slide2 l.jpg

  • Motivation

  • SMS in practice

  • An example of SMS in teaching

  • Pedagogic benefits

  • Issues

  • Questions

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


Motivation l.jpg
Motivation

  • Information Systems Degrees – balance over:

    • Form

      • Information Technology and Computing

      • (Re)use of forms and form-making techniques

    • Context

      • Providing and requiring human activity systems

      • (Re)use of knowledge of Personal, Organisation and Social systems

    • Content

      • Semantics and data quality

      • (Re)use of information

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


Entrepreneurship l.jpg
Entrepreneurship

  • Encouraging innovative use of technology

  • ‘Design as a conversion with the materials’

    • Donald Schon in Winograd, T. (ed) Bringing Design to Software Addison-Wesley, 1996

    • Exposure to a wide range of communicative materials

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


Sms short message service l.jpg
SMS – Short Message Service

“Some 2.4bn text messages were sent and received in the UK in December,

according to new figures release by the Mobile Data Association –

the country's highest monthly total ever.” Pieter de Villiers , CEO at Clickatell

  • Very high proportion of messages are person-2-person

  • Server-based uses include:

    • product alerts to customers

    • news and sports alerts

    • reminders and cancellations to clients

    • collaboration

    • polling

    • quizzes

    • shared notice display

  • a mixture of S->M, M->S and M->S->M communication protocols

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


Infrastructure l.jpg
Infrastructure

  • Windows 2000 in labs

  • Windows Text Editor (PFE32)

  • Unix file space and web space and web home

  • Samba mapping Unix filespace into a Windows drive

  • Two UNIX servers

    • one running MySQL

    • the other Apache PHP with full error settings

  • QSEE ERM generates SQL for database

  • PHPMyAdmin for accessing the MySQL server – they have one database with access from the PHP server only.

  • Clickatell 2-way account

    • ~£50 setup

    • ~£17/month rental

    • £0.01 incoming

    • £0.045 outgoing

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


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Currency Converter

  • Scenario

    • Wandering around a French town, you see a car/house/computer/ on offer at 64,000 euros. You wonder what that would be in pounds sterling at the current market rate. You text

      • CUR EUR 64000 GBP

        to your universities SMS service

        In 5 seconds, the answer comes back

        64000 EUR = 44244.73 GBP

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


Slide8 l.jpg

message, to

a

1

User on

GSM network

mobile phone

reply

message, to, from

message, to

2

Clickatell

message, from ,api_id

message, to==from. api_id=CEMS

D1

Routing table

3

CEMS SMS

server

D3

log

text, code, from

Reply: message

4

an Application

D2

App db

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


See design install improve reflect l.jpg
See, design, install, improve, reflect

  • See – a fully documented case study in practical use to be used, read and discussed

  • Design – group exploration of issues in the design

  • Install – a just-functional implementation

  • Improve – make minor improvements

  • Reflect – review lessons learnt

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


Sms exercise l.jpg
SMS exercise

  • See – Bus timetable enquiry – times of next 2 buses on a route leaving the campus

  • Design – design the messages, the database and the database – what to use for currency codes, what rates, what data quality issues arise, how does a new user bootstrap into use..

  • Install – starting with the tutor’s basic solution, students implement this in their own database / web space and get running

  • Improve - then make a few minor improvements – case invariant, help, alternative message structures, background update to rates, memory of user’s past interactions

  • Competition – for the best implementation – judged by tutor (or peers)

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


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Starting Code

  • Database

  • PHP code

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


Pedagogic opportunities l.jpg
Pedagogic Opportunities

  • Simple text user interface

    • 160 characters

  • Simple application interface

    • in : HTTP get | out : key: value

    • ease of test-driven development

  • Varied communication patterns

    • S->M, S->{M}, M->S, M->S->M, M->S->{M}

  • Simple stateful implementation

    • using the caller id and database

  • Challenging user context

    • walk-in users, loosely-constrained setting

  • Leads into service integration

    • PHP NuSOAP provides simple implementation

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


Concerns l.jpg
Concerns

  • Security

    • of garnered phone numbers

    • of access by students to S->M channel

  • Costs

    • Need for a simulator and a sponser

  • Acceptance as an organisational messaging medium amongst students and staff

  • SMS overtaken by MMS, WAP and smart phones?

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


Questions l.jpg
Questions?

  • ? What are your policies on use of numbers for (unsolicited) texting ( e.g. reminder about first destination statistics, notice of class cancellation) to mobile numbers obtained at registration

  • ? SOAP as an introduction to objects

  • ? PHP or Java

UWE, Bristol - CJW - SMS - JICC9


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