Meet the masterminds of school app

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Jamie Kim staff writer

High school can boggle minds, but the Beverly Hills High School app was created to do exactly the opposite. With a quick download, just one tap of the finger can easily lead to the three different bell schedules, monthly calendars, a staff directory and more.

During the board meeting on Oct. 13, the board decided to renew a contract with the creator of the BHHS app for $1,200 a year. The creator of the app, Brandon Talmood, who graduated in 2012 from Huntington Beach High School, and assistant developer, Daniel Newman, Beverly Class of ‘15, are still working to maintain and update this app to fit the needs of the students.

“I was biking past my high school a few years ago when I noticed our new Huntington Beach High School logo. I thought it looked really nice, and I remember thinking that it looked sleek enough to be an app icon. In that instant, I realized the possibility of making an iPhone app for schools. That’s how I initially got the idea of making the app. I made the first app for my own school, and the second was for the high school that my cousins attended, Beverly Hills High School,” Talmood said.

He initially wasn’t much of an expert on developing iPhone apps, but his curiosity only made him want to learn how to master this. In order to do so, Talmood watched video tutorials, and even began to take free online programming classes and reached out to iPhone development instructors.

This was one of the steps Talmood took in completing the BHHS app. Courtesy of: BRANDON TALMOOD.
This was one of the steps Talmood took in completing the BHHS app. Courtesy of: BRANDON TALMOOD.

“Making my the app was about a four-month long summer project, admittedly though, I thought programming the app would be easy. I learned really quickly just how difficult iPhone programming was when I had no idea how to use the software necessary to make iPhone apps, Xcode,” Talmood said. “I began by going to book stores and reading anything about iPhone development I could find. One book wasn’t enough; neither was two. I ended up reading over 13 books on iPhone development, spending hundreds of hours with just my laptop and a cup of coffee.”

Then, in his freshman year, Newman reached out to Talmood and expressed his interest in the app.

“I contacted Brandon my freshman year and thought I would be the perfect advocate for the app at Beverly. I was only a freshman and could spend the next four year investing myself in the app and its uses. Brandon entrusted me with the position as assistant developer and, as a result, I consistently reported back to him with student feedback about updates and changes. The app is what it is now in part because of all our great students and their wonderful feedback,” Newman said.

Newman, since he was a part of the mass to whom the app was directed, believes that the app was, and still is, relevant and beneficial to everyone of the Norman nation.

“This app doesn’t just benefit students, but it benefits teachers and administrators as well. It allows everyone at Beverly easy access to the bell schedule which is pertinent to all members of the school, regardless of if one is a student or teacher…Students and teachers alike can access the online grade book much more conveniently because of the app,” Newman said.

However, Newman believes that one of the more important aspects of the app is its push notification.

“The app also integrates push notifications which allow all people associated with BHHS to be notified of an event at the tap of a button. Currently, there are over 3,500 phones subscribed to push notifications. Push notifications were imperative during the bomb crises we had last year because I was able to update the student body regarding their safety, which is everyone’s top concern,” he said.

The creation of this app was definitely not the only project these two have undertaken; it was only one of the first steps.

“I love start-ups and the thrill I get from creating something out of nothing,” Newman said.

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