Saturday, February 5, 2011

What exactly are we up to?

First thing first. We have to agree on a couple of points:
  • I will be using Netbeans for this - you could use Eclipse if you want.
  • We will be using MySQL
  • We are going to make a web application using Vaadin
So to start off by setting up our environment. What we are going to need are:
Download it, copy it off someone whatever. The sooner you get the stuff into your dev machine the sooner we can talk about what exactly are we up to?

Figure 1.0 Installing the Netbeans Vaadin plugin

Have it? Installed it? Good.

What we are going to build/make/develop is a facility-reservation system. So what exactly will our "FRS" application be doing? Here are our requirements:
  • All reservations must be submitted and processed online
  • Must have AAA type security
  • Granular user permission system
  • Resolve scheduling conflicts
  • Track histories like facility usage, request status, room schedules, etc.
  • Have a basic set of reports (exportable to PDF)
Figure 1.1 FRS Flow Chart
Our FRS web application is not that complicated. Take a look at the flowchart. A request is made. The request data is quite simple. It contains the facility being requested, when its to be used, how long its to be used and for what purpose. The request is of course submitted by a user authenticated by the web application. Anonymous users can't submit make a reservation request. The request is then evaluated by someone with higher privileges say an administrator. The request is then either disapproved, approved or rescheduled (or  reallocated). The request once approved does not end the cycle. It only ends when the request is carried out. This is done by a different role or class of user.

We will talk about the database design later in this series.