Soft launch of a new m.brown.edu puts campus information at student fingertips.
Based on the common feature requests of more than 400 students surveyed in 2012 by Brown Student Agencies (BSA), Brown’s new mobile website aggregates news, maps, events, and other data into a polished design.
Brown funded the site development, which is the effort of a team with members from Brown Student Agencies, Computing and Information Services, and Campus Life and Student Services, plus local designer Todd Linkner.
The site is “the first release of the first version; it is a work in progress,” said BSA’s Connor Shinn. A soft launch will allow the team to understand how users work through the site and will uncover bugs or other site flaws. The mobile site has a feedback section to gather user comments, he said.
The team is working to turn the site into an app for iOS and Android, available in January 2014, and is partnering with the Office of College Admission on a mobile tour, expected to launch in early 2014. For now, Shinn said, add m.brown.edu to a mobile device as a shortcut or a bookmark.
“It’s exciting to provide students with useful information in a form they helped develop,” said Margaret Klawunn, vice president for campus life and student services. “This partnership is a good model for transforming campus needs into new platforms.”
“I can’t say enough wonderful things about this collaboration,” said Ravi Pendse, vice president for computing and information services.
In a time of the Internet of everything, big data, progressive computing, and consumption of information from multiple connected devices, “mobile is where the world is moving,” Pendse said.
The new site will provide easy-to-use, easy-to-read information for students, staff, faculty, “and the entire Brown family,” Pendse said. Its launch “truly represents the Brown culture to get something done.”