Case Study for Web Development

Multi-language Portal for IT Leaders

Customer

The client is a large US-based software development company which specialization is designing and developing enterprise business applications for mobile, web and media industries.

Objective

The customer’s desire was to create a multi-language portal for the leaders in software development industry who work in the most significant multi-national companies all over the world. The portal should have become the place for IT leaders to discuss latest events in the industry, exchange their thoughts, and consider various options of their projects implementation; a place where like-minded experts collaborate with each other bringing new ideas to the IT world, thus producing the most quality software. Moreover, the website should have contained tools and content (articles, news, blog posts, newsletters) that would help market leaders to make their business even more profitable.

Solution

Our first working experience with the client had been a bit earlier than the portal development started. It was a small project based on a Fixed Price cooperation model. As it turned out later, the customer just wanted to test the developers’ skills, expertise and check the level of Altabel’s communication and involvement into the project process.

After the so-called test project had been successfully delivered and accepted, we started discussing the possibilities of co-working on another customer’s project. Due to the fact that the client company is a large one, there were some bureaucratic peculiarities, though being prepared for such course of things we managed to negotiate them without much complexity. The cooperation was agreed to be held on Time&Material basis.

It was decided to start with 2 Drupal developers adding a third team member (a tester) after a couple of months. The project has been divided into two large parts. During the first project stage the following tasks were performed and functionality implemented:

  • SEO optimization
  • The ‘Contact Us’ web-form
  • The box ‘Highest Rated Members’, which is the most active one
  • Network Activity feature that shows Facebook Network activity when someone is logged into Facebook. If a user isn’t logged into Facebook, he/she will see the most “Liked” articles by default. There is also a predefined tag for displaying Twitter content on the portal
  • ‘Related Links’, ‘Sponsored links’ boxes
  • ‘The most recent comments’ box
  • ‘Top comments in Articles and Blogs’ boxes
  • Option to “like” an article. The more “likes” the article gathers, the more chances it has to get into the “Most Popular” ones
  • Discussion Section: If a user is logged-in, there appears a text box where one can submit a comment
  • Facebook and LinkedIn synchronization
  • Community Council page functionality

As the first part had been delivered, Altabel started working on developing further site functionality adding new features and optimizing the code.

As a result of our joint cooperation, the website got more functional options (conducting a poll, sending private messages, content archive etc.), thus producing a way more opportunities for users’ communication. Moreover, a mobile version of the portal was developed that makes the website even more accessible. And the last but not the least important feature-the forum supports English, German, Chinese and Japanese languages.

The project described above has not been the final one in our cooperation with this customer. We have continued our working relationship till the present day, creating various enterprise web-solutions for successful businesses.

Technologies and tools

Web 2.0, Linux, Windows, Apache HTTP Server v2.0, MySQL v5.x, PHP v5.x, JavaScript 1.3, Drupal 6.19

E-commerce website for wholesale store of decoration items and furniture

Customer

The customer is a UK-based online wholesaler of affordable high quality furniture and interior accessories

Objective

The requirement was to implement the customer’s idea of an E-commerce website. The site brief was to display the catalog of high quality furniture and decoration items at reasonable prices to different businesses such as restaurants, bars and retailers.

Solution

The site was implemented in a simple and user friendly manner to allow an easy navigation of different products and categories. At the same time the site design was very elegant. Magento eCommerce platform was integrated to allow the client to manage the product catalogue and update the content of the site (text, images, videos etc)

At the requirement clarification stage the team explored the customer business processes and service peculiarities and came up with a solution that was tailor made. As a next step our developers built the design of the future solution and as soon as it was approved by the customer the development was started.

The following components were implemented: eCommerce solution and the Content Management System that allowed easy access to the site content by the end user.

As a result the customer was able to increase sales by improving the site usability. The simplicity of the design allowed all categories of customers to feel comfortable using it, the structure of the catalogue is highly intuitive, it allows browsing the categories, finding connected goods, searching for additional information, etc. Moreover, the built in CMS allows the end customer run the system independently, cutting off the maintenance costs.

Technologies and tools

Ajax, Javascript, Magento eCommerce platform, XHTML/CSS, Mootools framework, MySQL, PHP

Software Platform for Kitchen Industry (E-commerce)

Customer

The customers are a few kitchen manufacturers.

Objective

The customer’s requirement was to develop a site which would allow users to watch movies online as well as keep track of trends in the movie industry

Solution

The team of two Java developers has been assigned to the project with the goal of developing a production, modeling and sales platform that will work both for manufacturers and end customers.

As a result of Altabel and customers’ joint collaboration universal software has been developed. It automates all sales and production management processes for the kitchen industry. The most crucial point about the platform is that it eases kitchen selling process greatly, thus making it seamless for every party (manufacturers themselves, dealers, clients).

The platform possesses the following advantages:

  • Turning sales into an easy and effective process, what is most important for sales people
  • Forming correct orders by controlling user with the catalogue, thus excluding the possibility of errors in the orders that get to the manufacturers
  • Making kitchen sales through the Internet available for all the vendors
  • Turning manufacturing and selling processes translucid for all the parties

Technologies and tools

Eclipse, J2EE

Site for watching movies online

Customer

The Customer is a company specializing in selling the rights for movie reviewing online

Objective

The customer’s requirement was to develop a site which would allow users to watch movies online as well as keep track of trends in the movie industry

Solution

Altabel has faced the situation to find an effective way to cooperate on small projects which often need a quick start. The key challenge is to plan resources for a relatively short time period in each particular case. As in this case the discussion of all the formalities and clarification stage sometimes reaches the same amount of efforts as the development and deployment stage, we find the most suitable solution here is to work on Time and Material basis.

Following this approach the site was created effectively and within the time limit required by the customer. The site has Main page, News page with the information of upcoming releases, Movies catalogue, Client’s page, Page for right owners, Register page.

The site has a catalogue of movies with their posters and partial description. Each movie has information regarding number of reviews as well as movie ranking. The site has also got a search system including the following criteria: movie name, actor names, producer names, movie genre (24 types), the latest movies, etc.

Having selected a particular movie the user gets to the page with a movie trailer and a full description. The same page has the button for purchasing movie reviewing either by means of sending SMS from the cellphone or by means of credit card payment. As for cartoons and series movie genres the user is able to purchase a particular episode or a number of episodes. The site users have two payment options: they can either pay for a single movie review upon request or for a month subscription to movie reviewing upon request.

The site has a register page, where the users can create accounts. Additionally the users can subscribe to automatic service for receiving the latest news and movies updates on the site as well as related advertisements.

The site is available for users of Android OS devices.

Technologies and tools

PHP, Drupal

Modules for HR Information Management System (HR IMS)

Customer

The customer is an IT company providing custom software development for large businesses and governmental organisations

Objective

The aim was to develop two modules for already existing HR Information Management System (HR IMS).

Solution

A team of 2 Senior Drupal developers was assigned to the project implementation.

As a result of Altabel and customer’s joint cooperation two modules have been developed. The functionality of the first module consists in automating holidays, business trips, trainings application and transmission these data to the HR IMS. The functionality of another module lies in differentiation between access levels.

The first module has several module options, module roles; there is also a possibility of extending user profile by creating additional fields. When users (employees) create applications for vacation, business trips and trainings, their manager get an e-mail notification. After that the manager can either accept or reject the applications. The employees are also notified about the manager’s decision via e-mail.

Regarding a second module, access levels are differentiated into extranet and intranet ones. Our team has been developing an extranet module which is to interrelate with the corresponding users, groups, discussions, content graphical vizualisation etc., for which special requirements were created.

Technologies and tools

PHP, Drupal API, JavaScript, HTML, MySQL

Social Statistics HTML5 mobile web site

Customer

The customer is a company, offering their clients services in the Customer Relationship management domain. They also serve a wide range of socio-demographic and lifestyle data on consumers in this way helping their customers improve their RIO.

Objective

The Development Team was assigned a task to create a mobile web site that would feature some socio-demographic statistics on different regions.

Solution

As a result, an application was created that allows the user to receive statistics on a country population such as urbanization, gender, population age, basic wealth criteria, etc.As a result, an application was created that allows the user to receive statistics on a country population such as urbanization, gender, population age, basic wealth criteria, etc.

The application dynamically builds charts based on the users’ location or manual input (postal code, city name), creating visual aid based on the user’s location. As an option individual charts can be created. Moreover, the application offers a possibility to compare local statistics to general data.

The application builds up intuitive, user-friendly interface. It allows sharing to Twitter and Facebook.

The application has been successfully released and is now serving as a basic reference tool for customer’s clients.

Technologies and tools

HTML 5, HTML5 Biolerplate, Modernizr 2.0.6, jQuery 1.7.1, SCSS, Drupal 6, AJAX