Cornell Notifs, developed by two undergraduate students, finds user's Zoom links and sends them reminders prior to class starting.

Hannah Rosenberg / Sun Assistant Photography Editor

Cornell Notifs, developed by two undergraduate students, finds user's Zoom links and sends them reminders prior to class starting.

April 23, 2020

Pandemic Inspires Software Engineering Students to Streamline Remote Learning

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As remote learning further complicated student scheduling, developers Han Wang ’22 and Ansh Godha ’22 sought a solution.

The two developers launched Cornell Notifs this week, seeking to help students stay organized with school while at home.

The program links with each user’s schedule and finds the necessary Zoom meeting links so the program can email them 10 minutes before class begins.

In adjusting to online school, Godha and Wang felt the need to increase accessibility, both for themselves and their peers.

“The process of trying to access a class, of going to Canvas, of reminding yourself the class is happening at this time, of having to access the Zoom link, was quite a long process that I felt could have been simplified,” Wang said.

From conception to completion, Godha said that they got the project off the ground quickly. The two initially connected on Slack. From there, it was a process of coding, collecting feedback from friends and pulling the occasional all-nighter.

Since the project launched, Wang said that it has received largely positive feedback from the community — several students expressed to him that Cornell Notifs has made scheduling easier.

“Listening to those kinds of things kind of really makes it a lot more heartwarming,” Wang said.

While Wang and Godha recognized the difficulties of the present situation, they were optimistic as the pandemic has spurred the software engineering community to develop a myriad of ingenious initiatives and problem-solving programs.

Wang believed that software engineers have a unique ability to address problems during the crisis.

“There is some person somewhere who has that same problem and knows software and is able to get that solution to you in a very quick manner,” he said.

Godha added that widespread remote learning could help digital technology evolve.

“I definitely think there are going to be innovations both within Cornell and out of it,” Godha said.