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Best of the Week 2019-2020: Excellence in College Prep


Mr. Anthony Mortimer's Computer Programming students have been working on internal client programming solutions for their end-of-year Internal Assessment as part of the IB program. After finding a client of their own (any individual who would find utility in the application they're implementing), students have been spending the last few months researching, designing and coding their projects and two students in particular have narrowed in on the final stages of their inventions.

Alexander Holly '20 has been producing a web application for Paul McLain, Manager of Application Development at Onix Networking, that will link with a user's Google calendar to show their availability throughout the day more easily. The purpose for this app is to make it easier for users to view their calendar and schedule their daily activities rather than sifting through the open spaces in between other obligations. "When you have a clustered calendar, it's hard to determine when you have free time available for other responsibilities throughout the day," says Alex. "This app will make it easier than manually scrolling through your calendar to find free time available for you." Using Google App Script, JavaScript, HTML, CSS, and Google's App Editor, Alex has pushed his skills and programming knowledge to learn new software languages in order to create this interactive app. "I came up with the idea after seeing my dad's busy schedule and watching him struggle to find free time to meet with people outside of work, so I wanted this app to help him and anyone else with the same struggle," says Alex. "It's different to create something for a client and make sure it's what they want instead of just making something for yourself and having complete control over what you do with it. I've learned a lot about budgeting my time and keeping to a deadline for my client while also learning to interact with him throughout the production process. I've really enjoyed making connections with other people outside of St. Ed's and creating something that will benefit them. It's provided me with real-world business connections that take an interest in computer programmers."

Maxfield Scanlan '20 (photographed) has created a language tutoring program designed to teach the basics of the complex Japanese writing system by using machine learning. Intended for his peers to learn the Japanese language alongside himself, Max wanted to create a free, open source language tutor program for Windows and utilize computer resources at St. Ed's to train his machine learning algorithm. "Having worked with other language learning programs before, I realized that there was a gap for free, easy to use, adaptable software to help with the tutoring process," says Max. "Designing and working with an interface that would be powerful enough, but also simple enough, to offer a high quality experience has been a great challenge, but I've most enjoyed incorporating topics in computer science that I'm passionate about, including artificial intelligence and machine learning, into my project."

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