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Overwatch Challenge

This is the repo for the Overwatch Challenge Open Source project.

Please check out the User Guide for visual instructions here.

This project provides an application that teams can use to gamify their learning processes.

  • Users create "Activities" every time they learn something.
  • Everyone comes together at the end of a week to see who scored the highest
  • Admins maintain the scores
  • Scores and activities are saved for future reference

This project uses Google's Firebase with the Angular Fire 2 Library for the following:

  1. Hosting
  2. Authentication
  3. Database Storage (Document Driven)
  4. Cloud Functions

This project also uses CircleCI for deployments.

The project includes a slack integration for team members. Once you get registered, one of the admins can send you an invite to the slack channel.

The application uses Firebase Cloud Functions to emit slack notifications (1) when users are registered and (2) when activities are created



  • create a firebase app (for free) with the console here
  • register your app following the instructions here
  • take the values you got from your registration and put them into the environment files in the frontend/src/app/environment directory
  • make sure to install the firebase CLI
  • go to the frontend directory and run firebase init to initialize your application for hosting
  • from the project root run npm run frontend-serve and you should be good to go!
  • if you have further questions, please review the AngularFire2 docs


  • create a firebase app (for free) with the console here
  • make sure to install the firebase CLI
  • create Slack webhooks for your project
  • create a .env file in the functions directory and put the values for the Slack Webhooks (note that this project uses dotenv)
  • go to the functions directory and run firebase init to initialize the dependencies etc.
  • in the functions directory run npm run serve to run them locally
  • in the functions directory run npm run deploy to deploy the functions to Google Cloud

Project Folder Directories and Organization

This project is organized into the following folders:

  1. docs is where the markdown files are stored that are used in the instructions site
  2. frontend is where the Angular 2+ application code resides
  3. functions is where the Google Firebase Cloud Functions code resides
  4. scripts is where all deployment scripts are located

Frontend Project

The frontend project is organized based on feature in the following folders:

  1. /src/app/activity all components that are used to work with displaying and storing activity in the application
  2. /src/app/static all static pages that show users or activity in the application
  3. /src/app/users all components that are used to work with user accounts in the application
  4. /src/app/models any models used in the application
  5. src/app/services any services used in the application

Running Locally

  • npm run frontend-serve runs the frontend angular application locally
  • npm run frontend-build builds the frontend angular application locally
  • npm run frontend-deploy deploys the frontend application to firebase
  • npm run functions-serve runs the firebase cloud functions locally
  • npm run functions-deploy deploys the firebase cloud functions
  • npm run cypress-local runs the cypress tests locally with a test runner
  • npm run cupress-ci runs the cypress tests headless for CI deployments

NgRx Usage

Currently the application uses NgRx for the view-activity and create-activity pages. One of the items for improvement is to move some of the database calls into their own actions and improving the applications state management.

Nodemailer Usage

The application includes a Firebase Cloud Function that sends emails using Nodemailer. This automates sending an email to everyone with the week's high scores.

Cypress Testing

  • The frontend application uses Cypress for e2e testing
  • To run tests from the project root run npm run frontend-cypress-test
  • Note that you'll need to run the npm script for environment variables first with npm run environment-variables because the values used in testing are Cypress environment variables (see docs for more info)
  • When the project is deployed with CircleCI, Cypress is run in the pipeline with npm run frontend-cypress-run
  • When running the cypress tests for the frontend application, the npm module start-server-and-test is used
  • The use of http-get was necessary with start-server-and-test because the frontend is an Angular Webpack project (see special note here)
  • Cypress environment variables are loaded in from the cypress.json file
  • Please checkout my blog post on Cypress Testing

User Guide

  • User guide code is in the docs folder
  • User guide is built with MkDocs
  • In order to deploy a new copy of the user guide, you'll need to have MkDocs installed on your computer by following the directions here
  • Once you have MkDocs installed, build the site by running (from the project root) npm run docs-build
  • When you're ready to deploy the site, deploy the site to be hosted on GitHub pages with npm run docs-deploy
  • Note that the message for the commit includes "[ci skip]", this is so that CircleCI will not run a build on the gh-pages branch

Additional Documentation

Future Improvements

Future improvements on the horizon (PR's Welcome!):

  1. Build out more tests for code coverage (potentially may be using Cypress for this in the future)
  2. Increase use of NgRx for state management (currently only used in view-activity and create-activity components)
  3. make application more responsive
  4. Add more details to the instructions (docs) site


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