Location-aware Android app (basic app)
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We are looking to develop a bare bones "proof of concept" app.
REASON FOR THE APP: We have an academic research team of a few dozen people, most of whom use Android on their phones, and we work at several different university campus locations as well as field research sites (off-site from university). If one of us is at a field research site and another member arrives at that same site it is very useful to be aware of this, but we have no easy way of keeping track of who will be where (and when). So we want an app to alert us if someone else (also with the app installed and running) is "near our location."
LOCATION AWARENESS: Obviously it needs to be location aware to serve our needs; both GPS and network location provider would be desirable. The code to do this is open source and pretty easy to find. Our project is non-profit and should be able to comply with any open source code requirements. (Possible code sources include: mytracks, open-gpstracker, etc.) To make this easier, we only need a low resolution location: within a radius of 100 or 200ft is more than accurate enough. We are basically trying to track if one of us is in a certain building or not, as opposed to what room or what corner of a room (etc). Just knowing that another team member has arrived in my building is sufficient — from that point I can go find them in person without app assistance.
HOW THE APP SHARES ITS LOCATION: The app should take that rough user location and push it to a server (mysql database?). In the same transaction it will fetch a list of "last known locations of others" who are running the app on their phones, and if any are within a given distance (say 100-200ft radius, nothing terribly precise) and their geolocation data is not particularly stale (within the last 15 minutes) to alert the app user.
APP PLATFORM: Android. For storing of location data we would prefer our own Linux server with mysql. We can provide a login to this server (FTP) with mysql database(s) for development.
BACKGROUND RUNNING: Preferably the app would run passively in the background and update its location status (user location and location of other users) every few minutes, or run actively if manually opened in which case status should update "live" (every few seconds). Once opened the app should run in the background 24/7, unless the user actively selects to "quit" it. In background mode it updates infrequently. In active viewing mode the status updates "live" (every few seconds).
INTERFACE: The user interface can be incredibly simplistic. The following features are needed: A dropdown that says "update my location and fetch other users' locations every [number] minutes when running in the background". An alert that simply says "[number] user(s) are within 200ft of you" and this alert would pop up like any other normal Android alert (when the app detects another user has arrived within proximity of the Android device). A checkbox for "vibrate phone if a user enters my location". Lastly, a checkbox for "don't alert me when users enter my location" (so other users can come find the Android device owner, but the owner himself is not aware they have arrived). We can develop any graphics you might need.
LATER DEVELOPMENT: There are many small features we would probably like to add to this app, but for now we would prefer to find a developer we can work with to build this proof of concept. If the app is useful in the way we expect and the development relationship goes well, we would then pay you to add further features. For instance a way to track (and display on device) which users have arrived and to set a preference to "no longer tell me when [specific user] arrives at my location". Or a web interface that uses google maps (or similar), for users without their Android device handy to be able to see where other users currently are. These are the sort of things we would pay to add later if the app proves useful.
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