Category Archives: CS-448

Thea’s Pantry User Stories

I found the user stories section of the Thea’s Pantry GitLab repository to be extremely useful in understanding the scope of the project, as well as how it is actually used by the clients. It explained the general workflow for how the software is intended to be used and the frontend systems that facilitate that use. By using these entry points, it is a lot easier to extrapolate what actually needs to be done in order to create a functioning system. Each step in the process of using the food pantry requires different things from the system, and this shows the day-to-day use of those systems and how they have to interact.

I chose this section as it seemed the most useful to me for understanding the large scale of the project and how it is meant to work for the users.

From the blog CS@Worcester – Kurt Maiser's Coding Blog by kmaiser and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.

Familiarizing Myself with Thea’s Pantry

I found something useful when reviewing the Workflow documentation for Thea’s Pantry. There are five workflow steps listed online that we should be following but for this post I will focus on Conventional Commits. Although we reviewed this in class, reviewing on my own helped me solidify my understanding of this tool that we will be expected to use. Conventional Commits appear to simply be a set of rules we will need to follow whenever making a commit. The nice thing about Conventional Commits is that it is easy to read for both humans and computers, it works with plenty of other tools (like commitlint), and it dovetails with the Semantic Versioning Specification that is common in the developing field. There were plenty of examples on how to write Conventional Commits on the official website which was useful to review before I start writing my own.

From the blog Sensinci's Blog by Sensinci's Blog and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.

Familiarizing Myself with LibreFoodPantry

One thing I found useful was reading the FOSSisms that came from the Values on the LibreFoodPantry website. FOSSism are pieces of wisdom for individuals who are about to work in an open source community. I will focus on the second FOSSism that stood out to me. This FOSSism instructed individuals to “Be productively lost”. This resonated with me because I feel like my technical skills still have a ways to go. It helped ease some of my anxiety around this topic because a period of feeling disoriented is described as being “perfectly natural”. Furthermore, I was advised to use this moment productively to learn more about the open source project/community I am about to be a part of. This was only one of the first FOSSisms that caught my eye but I would like to include the link here because there are many more I could write about.

FOSSisms Link: https://opensource.com/education/14/6/16-foss-principles-for-educators

From the blog Sensinci's Blog by Sensinci's Blog and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.

Looking at the Thea’s Pantry project

Looking at the workflow page for the Thea’s Pantry documentation, the first thing I noticed was “conventional commits.” I’d seen them in the commit logs of the projects but wasn’t aware of the name of this format or the motivation behind it.

There’s also the system of having one branch per feature being worked on. In my college courses, none of the projects I’ve worked on have really been large enough to have a need for branches, unless the point of the project was learning about branches. The last time I’ve actually had to use branches was back in high school for my vocational classes (I’m pretty lazy so my personal git projects tend to not have branches) and so hopefully my git skills come back to me.

From the blog CS@Worcester – Tom's Blog by Thomas Clifford and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.

Invention Discovery

Hello Everyone, I am very excited about this new invention that is about to blow your mind once we finish putting it together. In the CS-448 course, we will put together some great features to update the foodPantry for our clients. Thank you for your patience, and I promise you, this will revolutionize this industry forever.

From the blog CS@Worcester – Site Title by proctech21 and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.

Looking at the LibreFoodPantry project

In the next few months, I’m going to be doing my capstone course for my computer science degree. It’s going to (possibly) involve working on the LibreFoodPantry project, so I decided to look over the website.

The first thing that stood out to me was the Coordinating Committee. Previously I had been picturing this project as essentially just something a handful of people were working on on the side. In reality it has slightly more people directing it than I imagined and also a much more rigorous organization and schedule than I had assumed.

More specifically, I thought that there being three versions of the software meant that there were three people managing a shop of developers, as the page says, but there’s actually six.

From the blog CS@Worcester – Tom's Blog by Thomas Clifford and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.

LibreFoodPantry Values

In the Values section of the LibreFoodPantry documentation, there’s a section linked to 16 “FOSSisms” that I found particularly interesting. They are essentially maxims for students that are working on open source projects, like LibreFoodPantry. They explain how students should become involved in a project’s community, how they should contribute and start contributing, and in the end how they should leave documentation that is good enough for others to be able to carry the torch once the semester is over.

This section particularly spoke to me because I have never worked on an open-source project, and it is a little daunting to start on, so knowing that the values of the project are geared towards people in my position makes it all a little less scary. It shows that it is an organization geared towards learning and reassures me that it is alright to make mistakes here.

From the blog CS@Worcester – Kurt Maiser's Coding Blog by kmaiser and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.

Thea’s Pantry User Stories

Thea’s Pantry is a custom pantry management system for Worcester State University. For developers to correctly design an application to meet the needs of the end-user, user stories are created. These stories are a generalized overview of the application workflow from the perspective of a type of user. Staff and Administrator are the two identity roles where Administrator has all permissions including those of the Staff role. The staff role is responsible for handling interactions with guests visiting the pantry and updating inventory when donations come in. Administrators are responsible for monitoring the inventory levels and generating monthly reports for the Worcester County Food Bank. I chose to examine the user stories of the Theas Pantry project because I am interested in how the application is operated by its users and the features it provides.

From the blog CS@Worcester – Jared's Development Blog by Jared Moore and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.

Theas Food Pantry: Worcester State’s Contribution to our Community

In my previous post I discussed Libre Food Pantry, a collaborative effort between multiple colleges in New England to create software to help local food pantries better serve their communities. This time I will briefly discuss Worcester State’s contribution in the form of Theas Food Pantry which is used right here on campus.

Theas Food Pantry is a software solution to the food pantry of the same name on campus created by Computer Science Majors. This is made up of many industry standard frameworks such as REST API calls, a JavaScript based front end written with the Vue framework, and Docker for containerization. It is interesting to see how, like many websites and databases this is made using tools that are commonplace in the industry. Many of these tools are open source and yet are still a part of the core workflow in many major software development firms.

From the blog CS@Worcester – George Chyoghly CS-343 by gchyoghly and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.

A Brief word on Libre Food Pantry

As some may know or not know, Libre Food Pantry is the work of several colleges around New England with the goal of creating software for food pantries everywhere to use in order to manage operations. Their mission is simple, create free software to be used at any and all food pantries in order to better serve their guests.

However, the most interesting part of this collaboration is that this is instructor led, and student built. Students have worked to create prototype software ranging from database solutions at Worcester State, to mobile app based solutions at Nassau Community College. These institutions assist and add to this software along with other contributors with the goal of helping those in need while furthering their own education.

Those who are interested as I am should take to their website to learn more about their story and how far they have come.

https://librefoodpantry.org/

From the blog CS@Worcester – George Chyoghly CS-343 by gchyoghly and used with permission of the author. All other rights reserved by the author.