Mobile smartphones have given rise to an explosion in creativity over the past few years. There have been exciting, inspiring and incredibly useful software apps in the areas of medicine, music, psychology, senior support, banking, cooking, global health, exploring, travel, shopping, games and many more fields.
These applications have only just scratched the surface of the potential of mobile devices. As our understanding of how mobile technology can be used, many new possibilities will occur to each of us. As new hardware sensors and other capabilities are added to the phones, ever-more clever ways of helping humans will be created.
The purpose of this course is to build a collaborative environment of creativity for new applications of mobile devices. Graduate students from all disciplines at the University of Toronto are invited to take the course for credit. This edition of the course was taught from January - April, 2013.
It is primarily a project-based course in which the goal is to produce a working app by the end of course. Projects will be done in groups of 2 or 3. Students with computer programming skills were matched with those from non-programming backgrounds to do projects in the latter students’ disciplines.
The final video presentations and reports for this, the third edition of the course can be found here.
The course will directly support the use of Google Android-based platforms, but those who have access to other platforms and their related development environments (such as Apple iPhone or RIM Blackberry) are welcome to use those, with the permission of the instructor.
Who Should Take This Course? Everyone!
Students with two kinds of backgrounds took this course:
1. Students with graduate-level programming skills, typically from the Computer disciplines (ECE and CS and other departments), but possibly from the many other disciplines that make use of computers and that program them. These students will be given exercises to learn the mobile applications development environment, and guidance towards the completion of a major project.
2. Students from non-programming backgrounds with a passion for the new uses possible with these devices, who want their creativity juices to be stimulated in a new, inter-disciplinary way! These students will be given lectures and exercises to learn the basic capabilities of mobile devices, and to explore what has already done in their field by way of mobile applications. They will also be trained in the use of tools that can help mock up the design of mobile apps. In addition, these students will perform work in their own discipline to show how the new software enhances some aspect of that discipline.