DataFlex Programming Competition 2016 Specification

Overview

Following the removal of Home to School transport in April 2016, the Mortimer Community Bus Service (MCBS) was setup and is run by volunteers to enable a school transport service to be made available to Mortimer residents. The MCBS is purely a body setup to administer the running of such a service.  The commercial bus company is contracted to supply a bus ONLY service. 

The process is laborious for the administrator, who uses emails and Word forms to administer the service.

Below is an example of the form that is emailed to parents each term, for reserving a place on the community bus.

MCBS Application Form

 Summer term 2017 Mortimer -  Willink

If you want to take place in this service then please complete the form below, along with an electronic photo of the passenger and return to the email address MortimerCBS@Gmail.com along with a bank transfer of 160 (the price for this term) to the account below stating the childs name in the comments part of the transfer.  After receiving the forms a bus place will be reserved for the passengers but not guaranteed until full payment is received and cleared into our accounts. If no payment is received 1 month before the start of service then the place will be forfeited.

Contact information

Email: MortimerCBS@gmail.com

Account 99999999 sort code 99-99-99 Account Name XXXXXXX

The following information needs to be entered by Parents/Guardians for each student who is going to use the bus.


Details

      Requested         

Notes

Name of Passenger

 .............................................

Full Name

Date of Birth

  .............................................

DD/MM/YY

Address

  .............................................

Home Address

Email address for invoicing 

   

Photo ID required electronically
attached with this form.

 

Electronic passport style photo

Requested Bus Stop

  .............................................

West End Road
Budgens
College Piece

Name of Parent

  .............................................

Point of Contact

Telephone Number

  .............................................

Home

Tel No. In Case of Emergency

  .............................................

Mobile

Facebook account name

  .............................................  

Upon receipt of the above information and payment, a time table will be compiled and passes produced to be collected from St Johns House Loves Wood Mortimer prior to the start of the term.

If more than one person / place is required then please complete a form for each child.

Build a DataFlex Web Application

The requirement is to design and build a DataFlex web application that enables:

What you need to know

  1. There is one, 70 seater bus, which does 1 trip to and from the Willink School / Mortimer over a 1 hr period. All seats are currently used. Note: In the future, if demand grows for more seats, this could increase either by the bus doing more than one trip, or another bus being used.

  2. Each fare payer will be allocated a seat on the bus.

  3. Each fare payer pays the same daily rate, currently 2.50.

  4. The termly cost of the service changes each term as the number of school days in a term varies. Generally, the number of days is about 70.

  5. Each student will be allocated a Photo ID bus pass for each term, so each applicant must supply (upload) a passport size photo. The passes are produced and distributed by the administrator and are outside the scope of this competition.

  6. The service will have 3 pickup points in Mortimer. These are to be West End Road, Budgens and College Piece.

  7. Payment for the service is on a term by term basis and no refunds will be given for part term usage.

  8. Payment is required 30 days before the beginning of the term. Non payment for a place by the due date will mean the user has forfeit their place and it may be taken by another person.

  9. Automatic payment from the application is beyond the scope of this competition and is not a requirement. Parents should perform a bank transfer manually. There should be a mechanism for parents to flag that they have made the payment on the interface. The administrator should be able to manually check the "payment made flag" against the actual bank transfers.

  10. A key part of the application is the process of monitoring who has reserved seats, who has paid and notifying parents with confirmation of receipt of payment. How you choose to do this is entirely open.

What you need to do

After installing DataFlex Studio into your Windows environment and using the tutorial to familiarise yourself with the basics of creating a DataFlex Web application, you are ready to start building the database and screens for your DataFlex web application.

The information below is simply for guidance, you are free to choose how you design and implement the system.

The database

Design an initial database. For simplicity, we suggest you use the embedded DataFlex database, however, if you prefer you may use Microsoft® SQL Server® Express.

Suggested database tables and some initial columns are:

Note: 

CompetitionDataDiagram

Log in screens for the Web application

Each user of the system will require a login. As a "WebAppUser" table that supports login functionality (including a Login dialog) is automatically created when you create a DataFlex Web application, we recommend you use this table to record the Parent details.

Note: The administrator must have access to perform administrative tasks to which other users do not have access.

Screens for reserving and verifying student bus places

Parents will require screens to:

Screens for administering the bus service

The administrator will require screens to:

Optional and nice to have

There is plenty of scope to add additional features to the application, here are some ideas that would be welcomed by the administrator:

  1. Track how many children are registered for a term, so the administrator can email out to say when the bus is nearly full.

  2. Allow parents to change their default password.

  3.  Easily identify who hasn’t re-registered from previous term or year.

  4. Record which parents have transferred payment to the administrator.

  5.  Enable the administrator to confirm receipt of payment to the parent.

Hint and tips

  1. Most development work can be done from the DataFlex Studio (including viewing, creating and modifying database tables), however there are additional tools that can help you, such as the  Database Builder (for creating and modifying tables) and Database Explorer (for viewing and editing table data).

  2. When you modify the structure of an existing table, all other processes using it must first be stopped (regardless of whether the modification is being done in the Studio or with Database Builder).

  3. In order to first create a web application, the Studio must be run "As Administrator", because it will need to make changes to the system to create the IIS Virtual Directory for the application.  Once this has been done, the Studio can then be run in normal mode.

  4. Data Access Europe have recently released DataFlex Styler, you may want to use this to change the look and feel of your application.

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