Asmbly Dash – part 2
We‘ve been covering real-time user experiences in Connections Lab. This iteration of the Asmbly dash utilizes adds a web socket server to allow users to "raise their hand" and ask for help at individual stations. I found the discovered the model for this “assist” interactivity from Glitch and thought it would be interesting to adapt to an actual space.
Having some familiarity with socket.io, I wanted to learn a bit more about ws with this iteration. This library is super light weight, and unlike socket.io, clients in the browser can just use native WebSockets to interact with the server. I had some difficulty updating my Linode box to permit WebSocket connections, but after rolling out a standard Nginx server with LetsEncrypt, those problems were mostly resolved.
On the frontend, I used a library called react-hot-toast to manage the new toast notifications. These notifications broadcast when a user requests assistance and also serve as a status indicator for the requestor.
After user testing with some friends, I found that communicating a “pending” state was particularly important so that users new their request was received without issue. It also serves to alert them when help is on the way.
In project three, I’d like to make the assist interactions actually one-on-one, so that there isn’t several individuals responding to a request. In addition, I‘d like to add chat functionality so individuals tuned in from their home office can offer assistance. For a reach goal, I‘d like that communication to afford optional video chat.