Building a Collaborative Data Visualization Platform: Week 2 - Home Screen & Authentication

Hello everyone, and welcome back for week 2 of the collaborative data visualization platform project! This week brought a mix of exciting progress, a chance to delve deeper into responsible data use, and some valuable learning experiences.

Laying the Groundwork: The Home Screen with Leaflet

I began the week by focusing on the home screen, the central hub where users will interact with the elephant conservation data. Leaflet, a well-regarded JavaScript library, proved to be a valuable tool in creating the base map – essentially a blank canvas waiting to be filled with insights gleaned from elephant conservation efforts.

Data Acquisition: A Temporary Roadblock

The initial plan involved acquiring elephant data from the IUCN website as a CSV file. However, while exploring their data access options, I encountered a valuable reminder about responsible data use: their terms of use require explicit permission to utilize the data within my platform. I've already contacted the IUCN to request access, and I look forward to their response.

Shifting Gears: Building User Authentication with Formik and Yup

With data access temporarily on hold, I decided to pivot my focus to another critical aspect – user authentication. This system enables users to create accounts and securely access the platform's features.

Designing the Sign-Up and Login Experiences

Both the sign-up and login screens were designed and implemented this week. The platform's theme received a refresh as well, and to further enhance security, form validation was integrated using the Formik and Yup libraries. This ensures that user-submitted data adheres to specific formatting requirements.

Next Week: Conquering Authentication APIs and (Hopefully) Data!

Week 3 will be dedicated to tackling the authentication API, the backbone that allows users to securely log in and interact with the platform. Here's a glimpse into the plan:

  • NextAuth Integration: NextAuth, a popular library that simplifies the authentication process, will be incorporated into the project.

  • Data, Glorious Data! (Fingers Crossed): Hopefully, a response from the IUCN regarding data access will arrive. If so, it's visualization time!

While this data access hurdle presented a temporary delay, I'm energized by the progress made this week. Stay tuned for week 3, where we'll (hopefully) be diving into the world of elephant conservation data and building compelling visualizations!