WMU students design phone app for Kalamazoo Blues Festival

Contact: Mark Schwerin
Image of the Kalamazoo Blues Festival app.

The app is available at the Google Play store.

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—A Western Michigan University student and a recent WMU graduate have designed a phone app that is sure to be a big hit with visitors to the upcoming Kalamazoo Blues Festival, set for Thursday through Saturday, July 10-12, in downtown Kalamazoo.

The phone app, for Android phones, has been available since mid-June and is getting some attention at the Google Play store. Reviewers have given the app perfect 5.0 ratings so far.

"This app sure won't give you the blues!" writes one reviewer. "Great way to find your way around the festival, get all the info about these talented artists, and make sure you know who's going on stage when so you don't miss that must-see act."

Useful information, good graphics

The app is chock full of useful information and high-quality graphics, from artist bios and performance times to maps showing important points of interest, including stages, bathrooms and the beer tent. The app was designed by Adam Nolan, of Kalamazoo , a computer information systems major, and John Cook, of St. Joseph, an ebiz marketing major who graduated in December. Both were students of Dr. Alan Rea, WMU professor of business information systems, and took Rea's classes in business mobile programming and mobile commerce.

"This is exactly what I want them to do, once they have the skills, is to either start their own business or build apps like this for others," says Rea, who was asked by the Kalamazoo Valley Blues Association if some of his students would be interested in designing the app.

Nolan says he likes the way the app turned out.

"I think with a little more time, I could have added some more features," Nolan says. "But as far as the look and feel of it, I'm happy with it."

The app is available at the Google Play store.

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