Odyssey victory lap

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Prof Bill, Jan 2022

This page describes the current status of the Odyssey project in Jan 2022.

Odyssey is a web application built by my Capstone course almost six years ago, in Spring 2016. I expect the project will officially end this summer, hence the update. Read on!

The sections are: Timeline, Victory!, The Team, Some links, and Conclusion.


Spring 2016 – This was my first time teaching the CSC Capstone class. It's back when Noctrl had 10 week trimesters. In the first 5 weeks, we learned Ruby on Rails using an online tutorial. Then, we coded up our project in the final 5 weeks. Yes, it was intense. We named the project Odyssey (also intense, smile). The system is a web app created for a local charity called Sharing Connections.

Summer 2016 – We delivered Odyssey to Sharing Connections, and they began to use the system to schedule and keep track of their furniture pickups. The system also provided truck drivers with the best route to use when visiting donors' homes. Sharing Connections also began to use Odyssey as a data source for their development database, which is used to contact people for future donations.

From 2016-2021 – Over the years, Odyssey was updated three times by myself and a couple of students including Nick O and Kyle L (son of Krypton). Updates were done to either 1) add small features requested by Sharing Connections, or 2) keep the system up to date with new versions of Rails.

Jan 6, 2022 – I have paused Odyssey, using the "maintenance mode" at Heroku. During 2021, Sharing Connections began transitioning to a different scheduling system that works as an iPhone or an Android app.

And the future: I expect to officially delete the Odyssey app in the summer of 2022.


Odyssey was very popular and successful at Sharing Connections.

The Odyssey usage stats are impressive:

4,948 pickups
scheduled over
530 days

Here's another important stat for you: Zero bugs!

That's right. In 5+ years of usage, Sharing Connections never reported an Odyssey bug or that Odyssey was not working correctly for them. First and foremost, this is a testament to the outstanding students in the Capstone team. It also highlights the power of Ruby on Rails. As an application framework, Rails works at a much higher level than a programming language like Java. Rails also encourages quality software by incorporating testing directly into its foundation.

Lots of users. Over a long period of time. No bugs. It's why this update is a victory lap.

The Team

This is a screen grab from our About page. Yes, it's the Odyssey Team!

Some links

Some (fun) links:

  1. Our users...Sharing Connections is a charity in Lisle, sharingconnections.org
  2. Odyssey is a web app; it's paused now, odyssey2016.herokuapp.com
  3. The Odyssey repo and wiki are on Github, github.com/noctrl-csc495-spring2016/Odyssey2016/wiki
  4. My Noctrl web page for the capstone class, wtkrieger.faculty.noctrl.edu/csc495-spring2016/index.htm
  5. This is the (outstanding) Rails tutorial we used...it was free back in the day, www.railstutorial.org


Victory lap: Odyssey was an unqualified success! It was a lot of FUN to build as well.

I am grateful...

As I type, I'm still a part-time Prof at Noctrl. (cross fingers, ha)

You can email me here, williamt@williamt.com.

thanks...yow, bill