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Re: Lifecycle - Concept Development


Hey everyone!

My name is Justin Sievers and I am taking CIS 50 online at De Anza College in Cupertino, California. I am taking this class is to improve my understanding of computers and their systems.

Lifecycle-Concept Development project: Automotive Technician Mobile Network

I chose this idea out of my personal interest in working on cars. It would also be a useful tool in the mobile automotive repair industry.

Purpose of system: To collaborate with other techs, shops and dealerships on various automotive topics, repair, modification, recalls etc.

Intended users: mobile techs, do- it- yourselfers, dealerships and car companies.

User need: The ability to access automotive schematics, repair info, view streaming video with live chat maybe.

System needs: The ability to store large amounts of info ( jpegs, pdf, forum style postings and personal storage space for users.) Access to All-data and other automotive repair databases.

Mobile Automotive Tech network design specs

What: A collaborative mobile tech network to share repair info, upate repair info, have the ability to to view tech locations or avoid traffic to update tech arrivals, enable visual/audio confimation of work completed and ease of communication with head office.

How: Using mobile wi-fi modems in each vehicle so the techs can seemlessly communicate with other techs and the main operator/office with their laptops,wireless head mounted cameras with microphone would visually (and audibly if needed) document the repairs which would be downloaded to a repair archive back at the main office. Individual GPS tracking would enable the main office to keep track of the techs location, and would also help in avoiding traffic on the way to jobs.

The system I will be using for my lifecycle project generally would be used by the entire staff as far as communication between dispatchers, techs and the person overseeing the day to day business. One commerciallly avaialable resource that I would be interested in is solar power for assisting in running the service truck wi-fi computer network. I found some interesting product that would be useful here:

Buying the system would be cheaper versus building it as there are many economical choices out there. Delays in implementing this system would hurt the business and would have to be a priority. At the moment I don't have any new development ideas for new products, but the ability to speed communication between the customer, dispatcher and the techs will save time and give us the edge in availibility over our competitors.

To develop my system I will start by acquiring the needed server units that will act as a communications hub and also the archive database, the mobile vehicle Wi-fi units along with the desktop computers for the dispatchers and main office. Then finally the service laptops for the techs with peripherals for service (ear mounted camera, diagnostic tools and microphones). I would hire a computer network specialist to initialize, test run and configure the system for reliability, then the dispatchers and techs will be leaning how to use the network with the help of the network specialist to learn how to use the system. Integration of new system applications will be determined by employee and customer suggestion and need.

There should be at least 2 to 3 training personnel hired to help the techs and dispatchers during the training period to help with system troubleshooting and leaning the ins and outs of operating it. During the testing stages, the main problems I would worry about are making the system easy to use and keeping the price of the initial system at a reasonable price level. As far as regulations go there would be mainly state laws to worry about when concerning customer estimate procedures, waste disposal compliance, state automotive licensing (A.S.E certification) verification and insurance for my fleet of vehicles and technicians. The only operational problems for my business that I can think of are computer network glitches, and for the customers, quality of work resulting in a non operational vehicle and a dispute, which would also be a problem for us as well. Overall, I think we could be quite successful.

Lifecycle:Deployment and acceptance

For my life-cycle project, a single launch date for employees would work, other than basic computer skills training/updating, I would probably have a small test group work as potential customers that will call in and request service. This will be the training period for the mobile techs and the dispatchers to acclimate to the system. It will also enable me to save time training different employee groups separately and let them get used to working together as a team in a simulated "work" situation, with mock "problems" to also work on problem solving with the new system to bring it to production. The support staff will be educated by this procedure, in the event of possible system problems and questions from customers about the service. Alternative plans to deal with problems will be developed during this period as well, and other problems we may have missed will be dealt with as they occur.

Justin Sievers Lifecycle-production

Once my information system reaches production it should communicate updates and info to the techs, as well as let them communicate with the main office and dispatchers, The main office should be able to communicate to customers via online or by smart-phone. The technical database should be easily accessible to techs on the job as well as up to date GPS routes. Upgrades and fixes will be implemented as problems arise, in addition, customer feedback and suggestions will be used to aid in this process for future upgrades. As far as regularly scheduled updates go, there will be automatic updates as they are made available.