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Android: HappyTrack

HappyTrack was a toy application I made in grad school. People all over the world used it until I wound it down in 2015.

You use HappyTrack to quickly and easily save snapshots of your mood at any time, optionally answering the question “why?”

All these updates show up on a map for your convenience. This way you can start seeing patterns, and a built in charts-and-graphs interface helps your self-discovery.

You have the option to keep your updates private, or to fuzz the gps so your precise location won’t be logged. For all updates that aren’t marked private, however, you can explore anonymous diary entries from people all over the world, or even just in your neighborhood.

Here’s a quick sample of screenshots of the app:

Under the hood:

HappyTrack is a multi-threaded Android application that also uses the built-in Google Maps library and a CRUD rails server. Every update is internally stored as a bottle, as in “message in a bottle.” Each new bottle is cached locally until a web connection can be made to the CRUD server. When that connection can be made, all new bottles are uploaded to the server.

A local database keeps a copy of all the user’s bottles. On the global map, the application uses a custom rails query to get the 50 most recent updates in whatever square of map is being shown at the time. The user can scroll forwards or backwards 50 updates into the past, or can set a date they want to observe.

HappyTrack originated in a team summer project at Brandeis University, where I was lead developer. I focused on multithreading, database, CRUD server, web work, and team tutoring. Since then, I myself have updated the code, published it, and maintain the application to this day.

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