Software Engineering Project (SEP): Introduction

In our 5th semester, we have a module called Software Engineering Project, in which we have to carry out a Software Engineering Project, individually. The purpose of this project is to put the knowledge we gained on Computer Science and Software Engineering in to practice. We could either select a project of our own or select from a list of ideas given to us. For my project, I selected a project given to us. It is a project of LIRNEasia, a regional organization which carries out various researches.

The project is to develop a web-based tool to visualizing propagation of information/disease in networks with the option to overlay such visualizations on a map. Such a tool will give valuable insights to researchers upon visual inspection of the data. There are actually 3 other projects related to this project, which in combination will give researchers and policy makers a valuable tool.

In my project, the aim is to provide a visualization overlaid on a map for researchers studying disease/information propagation through network-based models. When overlaid on a map, such models provide the ability to simulate scenarios and identify vulnerable regions etc.

There are several challenges to be addressed when going ahead with this project. First, the scalability. The tool should be able to handle large volumes of input data, without crashing the browser. Secondly the input file format is generic and not completely specified, which means the tool should be capable of handling input files with data formatted in various ways. Third problem is the extensibility of the tool. The tool needs to be designed in a way that it enables other developers to add features to it or build other components or services on top of it. At the moment, I haven’t really figured out how to tackle these problems. But I feel the right sort of modular architecture will sort out or at least make it easier to tackle these problems.