MakerSquare Week 11: Thesis, Concluded

Week 11 saw the conclusion of our thesis projects. Our project idea centered around solving the problem of scattered personal health information. Throughout your life, your personal health information gets scattered and lost — at doctors’ offices, in various health systems, on paper records you’ll never find again. With no centralized way to store and access this data, often it’s just lost. When you need it, it’s not there. Our goal was to prototype a product that would serve as a personal health information vault — like a 1Password for your health.

Vitamin DB is a personal health information management solution. Using Vitamin DB’s convenient, easy-to-use interface, users can store information such as their immunization history, doctor contact information, family health history, prescriptions and dosages, and more. Customized text reminders also help users remember their upcoming appointments.

View the live demo. Note: The live site is only a demo and should not be used to store personal information.

Our stack consisted of React/Redux, Postgres, Node.js, and Express, and used Chai and Mocha for our test suite.

Final thesis impressions:

  1. Tests, tests, tests. From the beginning, one of our primary goals was to lead with, and focus on, testing. Frankly, we smashed that goal.
  2. Back-end development. Although I ultimately  plan to focus on front-end development, I’m so glad I chose to work fully on the back-end for the thesis. Eleven weeks ago, building a server and working with databases sounded virtually impossible — out of my reach. You (unfortunately) can’t become an expert in three months, but you can learn a hell of a lot more than you think you can.
  3. Scoping. Scoping is difficult when you’re working with experienced engineers. In a shocking twist (said no one), it’s even harder on a student project.

The cohort before us warned us that the last six weeks passed by even faster than the first. They were unbelievably right.

While I’ll be incredibly sad to see this particular chapter close, I’m very much looking forward to the fellowship — a chance to get to know, and even mentor, up-and-coming engineers, and to dig back in to self-driven work.

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