Mobile devices 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 create new inter-disciplinary 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 will be taught from January - April, 2014.
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 will be matched with those from non-programming backgrounds to do projects in the latter students’ disciplines.
This course was taught for the third time in January, 2013. You can see the videos, slides and reports from the final presentations here. You can get a sense of the content and flow of the course from looking at the slides posted under 'content' in that site.
The course will support the use of Google Android-based and Apple iOS-based platforms, but those who have access to other platforms and their related development environments (such as Windows Phone, Blackberry) are welcome to use those, with the permission of the instructor, and provided that they can find partners who are also interested in those platforms.
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.