What started as computer programming practice for Richard Deal has become a useful source of information for students traveling from campus to campus.
Deal, a WVU alumnus, created an unofficial, bot-operated PRT monitor Twitter account, called PRT Monitor, in February 2017. Deal studied computer science and is now a web developer for Marriott International.
Every five minutes, the account gets information on the PRT’s status. If the status is different than five minutes ago, the information is saved and an update is tweeted.
According to last Friday’s tweet from the PRT Monitor account, this semester the PRT has been down more than 70 times and had close to a 94 percent uptime.
Deal said he wanted the PRT Monitor account to have short tweets that would give the information on the PRT’s status that would be useful to students.
“WVU’s website only reports an outage if it’s going to be longer than 15 minutes, but any student will tell you that all outages are significant when you are trying to get to class on time,” Deal said.
In addition to its brief informational tweets, the PRT Monitor account also tweets at 5 p.m. on Fridays about the statistics of the PRT’s performance for the semester at that point.
The account currently has 65 followers.