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Growing Together - software development in the Developing world

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Earlier this year EE partnered with VSO to help farmers in rural Bangladesh. This is the story of how we went from inception to production in four weeks and the challenges of developing software half the world away from home

Veröffentlicht in: Technologie
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Growing Together - software development in the Developing world

  1. 1. Growing Together Software development in the developing world Patrick Birchall Platform Engineer
  2. 2. ● 20+ years of tricking computers into working. ● 6 years doing so professionally. ● Other skills including but not limited to: ○ Music ○ Nope, just music. Expectation Reality
  3. 3. Background ● Equal Experts reached out to VSO in early 2018. ● Growing Together was selected for the information challenges it presented. ● Volunteers were selected and began preparing to travel in late 2018.
  4. 4. VSO Knowledge Exchange ● Knowledge Exchange is VSO’s corporate volunteering program. ● Pairs expert practitioners with challenges they may not see day-to-day. ● Partners provide expertise to VSO and their projects free of charge.
  5. 5. Growing Together ● Founded in 2014 as a joint venture between VSO and Syngenta. ● Initially aimed to improve the livelihoods of 10,000 farmers. ○ Hoping to engage with 30,000 farmers by the end of 2019.
  6. 6. Growing Together Structure ● Joikko, a for-profit social enterprise that owns the Farmer Centre franchise. ● Farmer Centres, ran by a single entrepreneur who brings together financial, educational and technical services. ● Agri-Entrepreneurs, members of the community who work with the Farm Centres to take the services out into the community. ● Farmer Groups, communities of farmers working together.
  7. 7. The Challenges ● Low quality data ○ Incomplete entries ○ Errors in transliteration, e.g. Horekrisnopur/Horekrishnopur. ● Data stored in a single 30k+ line Excel document. ○ Difficult to navigate. ○ Challenging to keep distributed copies in sync.
  8. 8. The Challenges ● Local infrastructure is less than ideal ○ Many families in this area lack an internationally recognised address. ● Very few people have access to a smart device or the internet.
  9. 9. The Solution - Objectives ● Allow new data to be added with ease. ● Always be up to date. ● Show information ‘at a glance’.
  10. 10. Inception to Production in three weeks -or- How to exploit time differences to work 17 hour days
  11. 11. The importance of planning ● Tickets outline everything that needs doing. ● Columns track the state of tickets. ● Allows everyone to keep up to date with progress.
  12. 12. The Solution - Application ● Node.JS ○ React-google-maps ○ Mongoose ○ Express ● MongoDB ○ NoSQL Document Store
  13. 13. Sample Code
  14. 14. The Solution - Infrastructure
  15. 15. Sample Code
  16. 16. Ta-da!
  17. 17. Initial Feedback ● Joikko are now able to decide locations for new Farm Centres more easily. ● Farm Centres can accurately forecast the required number of Agri-Entrepreneurs. ● Agri-Entrepreneurs can see their assigned Farmer Groups and receive navigational assistance from Google Maps.
  18. 18. But wait, there’s more...
  19. 19. What’s next? ● VSO are huge fans of our approach to engagements and are keen for many more teams to participate in knowledge exchange. ● Interest from other organisations in the development sector such as DFID.
  20. 20. Q&A
  21. 21. Thank YouThank You LinkedIn linkedin.com/company/equal-experts Twitter @EqualExperts Web www.equalexperts.com United Kingdom +44 203 603 7830 helloUK@equalexperts.com Equal Experts UK Ltd 30 Brock Street London NW1 3FG India +91 20 6607 7763 helloIndia@equalexperts.com Equal Experts India Private Ltd Office No. 4-C Cerebrum IT Park No. B3 Kumar City, Kalyani Nagar Pune, 411006 Canada +1 403 775 4861 helloCanada@equalexperts.com Equal Experts Devices Inc 205 - 279 Midpark way S.E. T2X 1M2 Calgary, Alberta Portugal +351 211 378 414 helloPortugal@equalexperts.com Equal Experts Portugal Avenida Dom João II, Nº35 Edificio Infante 11ºA 1990-083Parque das Nações Lisboa – Portugal USA +1 866-943-9737 helloUSA@equalexperts.com Equal Experts Inc 1460 Broadway New York NY 10036 South Africa +27 21 680 5252 helloSA@equalexperts.com Equal Experts SA (PTD) Ltd Ground Floor, Liesbeek House River Park, Gloucester Road Mowbray Cape Town - South Africa