Tech Corner: Site to alleviate registration woes

If you ask any Geneseo student about the registration process, most respond with the classic eye-roll and sigh; words like "arduous,"  "grueling" and "hell" are often in the vocabulary.     

This summer, senior Elliot Regan and sophomore Herb Sussman decided to change the common loathing of the process by creating a beneficial website meant to aid students in organizing their classes and schedules prior to registration. Although the project – KnightScheduler – is still a work in progress, Sussman (a computer science major) and Regan (a math major) have avid plans for the future in hopes of making the registration process easier and to help students get by with minimal conflicts.

The program, which is both easy to navigate and use, requires only a few clicks. The site lists every course offering for the coming semester; by simply choosing the courses you plan to take and the times during which you want to take them, you can get an idea of what your schedule will look like. The best part? KnightScheduler does it all for you. If all courses can't fit in a schedule, the site generates alternate schedules to fit the courses that did not work initially, giving multiple possibilities for a student.

These computer whizzes used the help of seniors Ryan Lockenvitz and Jeff Singer, founders of a similar site called "Price My Semester," which searches the Internet for the cheapest versions of the textbooks that Geneseo students need for that semester. Lockenvitz and Singer hold the KnightScheduler data and allow Regan and Sussman to use their server, consequentially sharing the site with the entire Internet.

"Hopefully, Price My Semester and KnightScheduler can work together someday," Sussman said. "Students will be able to search for their books after they sign up for their classes."

Plans for the future of KnightScheduler are well underway; the pair wants to include more features that will further help students, including text alerts and warnings.  

"Over the next few weeks, we want to gather data on how many people registered for what classes and how quickly the classes were taken so that next year we can use those statistics to warn students about what classes tend to fill up quickly," Sussman said. "We also want to involve text messages in the site. As soon as a spot in a class opens up, students will receive texts so that they can register for it right away."

"Right now, the view of the schedule is just a list, so we want to form a weekly calendar to really show students what their schedules will look like," said Regan, who designed the whole site. "I plan on redesigning the whole thing to make it a lot more clear and [add] a lot more room for features."

The site is currently a "test-run" that students can use for next semester. "We're basically just refining it now," Sussman explained. "The major improvements have slowed down and it's almost totally bug-free. The last 10 percent of progress is always the slowest."