Fall 2017

ResultCare is developing a data platform for medical professionals. We implemented social features on Resultcare's backend and native Android application.



Introduction
ResultCare is a healthcare mobile platform that allows medical professionals to browse and share information on diagnoses, tests and research papers. The goal of the project was to make the platform more social to incentivize professionals to interact with others and the app.
Problem Statement
ResultCare already had a database of thousands of research papers, diagnoses and lab tests. However, in order to make the app more than just a large mobile collection of data, the platform had to implement social aspects to keep users returning and interacting. Our team was given the main task of adding social features and integration to the existing backend and mobile application. / More specifically, the first half of the project involved adding social network features such as likes, followers and messaging to the ResultCare backend. The second half the project involved implementing new pages for these social features in native Android, using the endpoints that we created in the first few months.
Implementation
The backend portion of the project was adding to ResultCare’s existing stack, which was mostly based in PostgreSQL and Node.js. We added endpoints to support Q&A, recent activity tracking, followers for users, reviews for lab tests and messaging between users. The native Android portion was completed using Android Studio, Java and XML. We created Android activities for messaging, user profile, community and reviews, along with infrastructure to communicate with the new backend API endpoints. / Another technical challenge was connecting the backend API endpoints to the Android application. Figuring out how to make API requests in parallel and properly parse the data was a much larger task than we initially anticipated, since we had to ensure both security and request speed. Native Android is definitely a challenging platform to work with and we all learned a lot from the experience.
Technical Challenges
One major technical challenge was building upon ResultCare’s existing applications and codebase. Their Android application, initially built several years ago, was still on a very old version of Android, which meant that we had to work with the older framework and features. As well, their backend functions and existing API were difficult to understand at first, which slowed down development, especially in the first few weeks.
Key Takeaways
In general, ResultCare was an amazing learning opportunity for all the members involved, as well as a great opportunity for the company to increase campus presence and finish features for a full launch. There are definitely areas I wish I planned better and certain tasks I underestimated, but overall I believe that the team gained a lot of insight into working with startups, effective client communication and software engineering as an industry. Currently, the ResultCare app is in beta testing with hopes to launch to Android and iOS markets soon.