Chief Warrant Officer Jeffery Dovan was recognized for winning the physical fitness category of the U.S. Marine Corps Mobile Application Challenge during the 10th annual Commands, Controls, Communications, Computers, Combat Systems, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Summit in Charleston, South Carolina, Dec. 6 through 9, 2016.
Dovan created and developed a fitness application for the competition that can calculate Physical and Combat Fitness Test scores for Marines, called Semper PT or "Always PT." Although apps like his exist, his brings a new approach to the PFT and CFT calculator.
"My application is actually a lot like other PFT, CFT calculators, however, it is for the new standards that are being implemented come Jan. 1," said Dovan. "It has the ability to calculate either pull-ups or push-ups, it has all of the different age categories, it shows all of the minimums and maximums for each event for males and females, and the body fat, of course, tells you whether you pass or fail based on your measurements."
Dovan competed against other Marines who had created and developed their own unique apps.
"There were at least 14 different applications that were submitted," said Dovan. "Out of those 14, there were three different categories and each category had at least three apps. To be the top, even out of three applications, is amazing."
With the standards changing at the beginning of the upcoming year, the app serves as a reference tool for Marines to check how their performance weighs against the Marine Corps physical fitness standards.
"The reason I wanted to create the app was because it is going to be very difficult for a Marine to calculate their score while they are out there doing it," said Dovan. "With this you can just put in the score for each event and it calculates the score for you."
The development of the app was a long challenging road for Dovan.
"It took me over 150 man hours to do the coding," said Dovan. "Then probably around five to eight hours of testing to make sure it worked correctly and that everything calculated correctly."
Dovan’s love for programming started in high school when his chemistry and physics teacher introduced him into it.
"I’ve done a little bit of old programming on the Texas Instruments TI-82 calculator in high school and it got me interested," said Dovan. "I really liked that feeling."
Dovan is currently pursuing a master’s degree in software engineering, but is currently undecided on whether or not he will retire after 20 years in the Marine Corps. Right now, Dovan’s focus is on Marines and doing his part to help them through his new application.
"I want Marines to have an intuitive app that works as flawlessly as possible," said Dovan. "I want them to be able to go out to the actual PFT/CFT course and have somebody tell them right then and there what their score is going to be. Walking away knowing what you got gives you a good feeling. You don’t need to be walking away worrying about what you got."