Last year we started work on the LSNC Google API Project, a project we completed a few months ago. The gist of the project was to exploit open source Google APIs to integrate components of the Google Apps platform with the Pika case management system. At the most recent TIG Conference in Albuquerque, I gave a non-technical presentation about the project; last month, Michael Cizmar of MC+A in Chicago and Mark Sawyer, LSNC IT Manager, gave an IT-oriented presenation about the project at the most recent NTEN Conference.
Working on this project has been particularly daunting at two major breakpoints, no pun intended: We had the courage–perhaps the folly– last year of working on the development of our Google Apps integrations right at the juncture when Google made enormous changes to the underlying architecture of its core Google Apps, including Gmail, Calendar and Docs. (Anyone who was an active Google Apps user last year understands how significant the changes–hundreds of them–were made.) Those architectural changes in short order broke our project code. We rolled with it and spent additional months refactoring the code.
In March, we rolled out in sequence our updated code set to our entire organization with integrations of Gmail, Calendar and Docs and Groups. A month later, Google rolls out Google Drive, its very impressive replacement for Google Docs. And, not so surprisingly given our earlier experience, Googleâ€™s changes with the new Google Drive architecture broke our Docs and Gmail integrations. Again. Presumably, this is because both our Docs and Gmail integrations have dependencies on file synchronization and share processes that have changed with the Google Drive architecture. We’re on it, but we will have to make further changes, again.
The price of progress. But looking at the long term, I think Google Drive is well worth the cost to our project.