Sprint 2 Retrospective Blog

Our second sprint was much more productive than the first, thanks to our meeting with the representative from the food pantry. During the meeting we were able to gather a lot of information about what they needed from us. Currently, new users fill out a Google form which determines what level of aid they qualify for. This is something that we would want saved and automatically determined when that user comes to the food pantry. One of the main issues they’re currently having is that employees have to manually track the weight of their current stock. So every donation they receive they have to measure its weight and then manually enter the weight of the donation as well as what types of items were received. This is the main task we’re working on finishing this sprint. For this we should be focusing on making small quality of life improvements (such as automatically adjusting the total weight) and work from there. I’m interested in seeing if it would be possible to connecting to a scale to do this automatically after weighing a donation, but that’s something that should come later.

From the meeting we were able to figure out some of the food pantry’s pressing needs that we could address. I feel like we were able to devise clear goals to work towards.

After the meeting was over I believe we may have ran out of time before assuring that everyone knew what tasks were assigned to them for the sprint. During the sprint I think this was cleared up as Nick had already begun re-purposing one of his previous projects for the food pantry and let us know what he needed help with. Although, since we missed a couple of meetings we ended up making less progress than we could have.

During our retrospective, Nick showed us and the representative from the food pantry the progress he made on the new worker intake form. It’s definitely a step in the right direction. Once it’s cleaned up a bit I think it’ll be better than what they’re currently using. One thing we need to do is to make sure that we create something that actually makes it easier for employees at the food pantry to do their job. For this project in particular, we need to solve the main bottlenecks that they described: manual data entry and calculations. These are things that can easily be solved by automating the process. It’s important that we create something that is an actual improvement from just sticking with the Google form.

Near the end of the sprint I was given a different task to work on. This was what we were initially working during the first sprint prior to the meeting with the employee from the food pantry. For this I need to create a REST API interface using the USDA’s FoodKeeper Data so Joshua Farrar can deploy it to Heroku. While we were working on this during the first sprint, we were all researching what we needed to do individually which I feel may have wasted a lot of time. The resources for REST APIs that Professor Wurst sent me have been useful, and hopefully I’ll be able to finish this during the next sprint.

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