Thursday, January 15, 2009

What's cooking

I'd like to first apologize for the lack of substantive posts recently. The combination of the Holidays, work projects and an increasingly energetic toddler has left me with less time to blog. I think the energetic toddler is mostly to blame.

I wanted to take a moment to update everyone about what we have been working on over at www.usna.com lately with NetCommunity. As Blackbaud continues to build on the API the possibilities of what can be done within NetCommunity expands. Here are a few of our recent projects.

Pledge (reoccurring gifts) Payment - This application is relatively simple. It reads the logged in constituents active pledges from RE and then displays to them their outstanding & next payment(s). It also displays any EFT pledges they have on the books and the date of the next charge. They can choose which pledge(s) to pay and how much. The transaction is processed through IATS, written to their RE gift record and a receipt is sent to them. There is also another custom part that sits on our main Online Giving page that reminds a constituent they have an outstanding pledge before they make a new gift. 


Top Content (aka Top Five) - This was a fun project. Like most of you, we have a landing page where we display to our constituents personalized and targeted content after login. We were looking to expand our offerings on that page and this application came about. After login it will search the stats table in NetCommunity and display three items in an AJAX tab panel control;
  • The top five new articles on our site in the last 7 days.
  • The top five non-news article pages in the last 30 days.
  • The top five pages the logged in user has visited in the last six months.
This last piece is very useful for users who are trying to get back to a page they were on recently. 

Event Feeder - We use events pretty heavily especially around reunion season. This is a vey nice little tool that shows the logged in constituent the future events they are attending. When the click on the event they are able to see the last 10 people who have also signed up for that event. The "event feed" is also subscribe-able via RSS so a constituent could be instantly notified (the ttl is 10 minutes) when someone new signs up for the event. We haven't used this whole lot yet but as we get closer to spring that'll change. 

So those are a few of our more recent projects. We have a few big ones cooking right now and I'll be sure to showcase them once we've put them into the wild. I'm not making the source code for any of the above projects available but if you have any questions I'd be happy to answer them. 

Lastly, 18 Jan marks the 1 year anniversary of my first blog post. I hope I'm providing NetCommunity users with valuable information. Over the last year the NetCommunity developer network has exploded and I only hope that continues. Thanks for reading. 




1 comment:

yellowlabrat said...

Thanks for sharing these ideas!
I think the Pledge part is a great idea and I'm going to share that with our Development office. That is another useful tool for alumni and something that personalizes it more.