Enter the Business Engineer: Part 1
This is the season for added stress and holiday cheer. With this time of year comes a need to make sure that all of your holiday parties are planned and scheduled. For my family, it means it’s time to have our extended family party where everyone brings food, some people bring arts and crafts for the smaller children, and some bring gifts for our annual “Yankee Swap” gift exchange.
Somewhere just after Thanksgiving everyone in my family receives a kind reminder from my aunt asking us to fill out her wonderful Excel spreadsheet decorated with colored columns with our names and what we plan on bringing. Sure enough every year my wife and I fill the spreadsheet out with something only to have it returned to us saying, “Your cousin has already signed up for bringing this.” or “We don’t need that this year.”, now this is all well and good but it got me to thinking. I work with an application development platform every day that I know I am going to explain the wonders of to one of these people at this party. Wouldn’t it be a lot easier for my poor aunt to have a web application?
So with a few clicks of the mouse I was off, I made a data model that included all of two entities (person and item), I made an association so that a person could belong to multiple items, and then I made three forms. About fifteen minutes later I had myself a nice little application, I then stole the styling package from an existing application and threw it into my project folder. My next step was Microsoft Word where I made this little gem:
I then went into the style and changed my customer’s logo to this image and I was ready! With five more clicks I had my application in the cloud. I’ve since added some Excel import functionality (I’d hate to see my aunt’s hard work go to waste) and Google maps so everyone knows how to get to the party. All in all in under an hour I eliminated many hours of effort for my aunt. Plus now I have a basis to tell everyone what I do. Now I just need to figure out how to explain to people that it’s not just Christmas party planning applications that I build…