Conservation Platform Update: Notes Feature Taking Shape!

Hi everyone,

It's been a few weeks since my last update, and I apologize for the delay. Sometimes life throws you a curveball, and the past few weeks have been one of those times. The conservation platform project had to take a backseat while I focused on some other things.

But I'm happy to report that progress is still being made! This time, I've been working on a key feature: the notes section. This will be a crucial tool for collaboration and sharing findings.

Here's a breakdown of what I've accomplished:

  • Security Focus: I've prioritized user security by implementing safeguards for the user profile API routes.

  • Building the Notes Feature: The groundwork for the notes feature is in place. I've created the user interface to display both notes where the user is the owner and notes where the user is one of the collaborators. There's also a dedicated page for creating new notes.

  • Choosing the Right Editor: Finding the perfect editor took some research. I explored Quill and ProseMirror, but they weren't quite what I needed. I was looking for something more like Notion, where you can create rich notes with various content blocks. After some investigation, I discovered BlockNote and Editor.js, both block-style editors. While Editor.js is open-source and appealing, BlockNote's documentation was significantly clearer and easier to understand. So, I opted for BlockNote, which is built on top of ProseMirror and TipTap. The clear documentation made setting it up much smoother!

The create note page is now functional with BlockNote, but it's still under development. There's more to do, including styling, implementing a save function, collaboration features, and user controls for privacy settings (private vs. shareable notes), real-time collaboration options, and sharing methods.

On the data front, I'm still waiting to hear back from AsESG about access to their spatial elephant population data. It seems like it might not be available. However, I'm not discouraged! I've already begun exploring alternative data sources.

Given the current situation, I'm adjusting my focus to prioritize real-time collaboration on notes and the ability to add sightings directly on the map. The scope of the conservation data might also need to be broader than just elephants for now. Populating the map with existing data can definitely be a later step.

I'm excited to keep moving forward and will share another update soon!