This week, Backendless Spotlight returns to the education arena as we take a look at the app My Portal, built by students for students. My Portal was built by the members of the IT Club at Daystar University in Kenya as a tool for fellow students at the university. Facing the challenges of managing the workload of a full-time college student, the creators of My Portal wanted to find a way to be better organized. Looking for a way to keep track of their schedule and academic progress, the idea for the My Portal app was born.
Editor’s Note: If you or someone you know have an app using Backendless for its backend and would like to be considered for a future Backendless Spotlight, we want to hear from you! Send us an email with a link to the app or website and a description of how Backendless has helped them be successful.
According to club member Michael Bukachi, “My Portal is an app created by students to make the lives of other students easier.” The app syncs with the student’s school information and, once synced, that information can be accessed even without connecting to the internet.
The app gives students easy access to their schedule, grades (for current and completed courses), and even financial information such as the student’s fees balance. Putting all of this information in one place can significantly ease the burden of keeping track of everything related to academics in the hectic life of a student.
My Portal is a powerful example of how Backendless can help teams during the app-building process. In addition to the multitude of database management tools that Backendless provides, My Portal was able to greatly benefit from the logging functionality that the platform provides. The developers used logging specifically to assist them in debugging builds of the app. Thanks to Backendless’ Logging API, they were able to keep all of their logs and crashes in one place, making it far easier to make revisions and improvements to the app without duplicating work.
The developers also relied on Backendless File Manager within Backendless Console for file sharing among the team. Rather than using a service such as Google Drive, the developers found it beneficial to share their project files through the Backendless File Manager. As a team, they did not want to use the Google Drive associated with the app’s Google account because that account was reserved for managing Play Store matters. The ability to track their files in the File Manager allowed the team to keep important project files in one place and track revisions/version control as the project progressed.
My Portal is a perfect example of how Backendless can add value to a project in a variety of ways. More importantly, this app shows how Backendless can be an invaluable tool for inexperienced developers that are learning to build their first apps. The ease-of-use of the Backendless Console frees developers up to focus on the parts of the app that users find most important, the UX and UI.