• Science Oxford Apprentice 2011 – Voting closes Friday

    Reynold Greenlaw Blog Post

    The Science Oxford Apprentice is an annual enterprise competition for 16-19 year old students in Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire. The Competition aims to encourage young people to develop their skills by giving them the chance to interact with local science and technology companies. This year OCC is supporting Science Oxford Apprentice which sees students competing in a series of business-themed challenges for a cash prize of £475 and a two week work placement at OCC. Round 2 is currently underway. Six[...]

  • OCC MarketPlace

    Reynold Greenlaw Blog Post

    Over 50 Local Authorities have been using OCC’s electronic market place solution for several years.  To support the Government’s Individual Budgets programme, we have overhauled and extended our portal to become the OCC MarketPlace a comprehensive services directory for personalisation with information about trusted and safe services. 7 LAs have brought our new product and are already using it. OCC MarketPlace helps people identify high quality, affordable services using the latest information direct from service providers & council IT systems. Users[...]

  • OCC MarketPlace helps West London Boroughs reduce costs

    Reynold Greenlaw Blog Post

    The West London Alliance (WLA) consisting of 6 London boroughs (Brent, Ealing, Hammersmith & Fulham, Harrow, Hillingdon and Hounslow) are working together to make their combined adult social care more efficient, and have chosen Oxford Computer Consultants to provide our OCC MarketPlace system to support them. With a combined budget of £330 million a year the WLA has the greatest spend of any single local government organisation in England for adult social care. By combing their budgets the local authorities[...]

  • Sport England Market Segmentation Web Tool

    Reynold Greenlaw Blog Post

    The Sport England project involved the development of a Geographical Information System (GIS) that shows the profile of people living in different parts of the UK.  It is designed to help organizations plan their investment into sporting facilities. Sport England selected OCC to develop an interactive web-based tool for viewing their refreshed market segmentation data. The Sports market segmentation web tool enables users to analyze the general population and their characteristics at different social and geographic levels. It makes it[...]

  • Keeping our Clients Safe

    Reynold Greenlaw Blog Post

    At the recent ContrOCC workshop on ad-hoc reporting John Boyle was reminded of a paper he wrote in 1984  suggesting that the ‘on button’ for a simple calculator (one that could perform addition, subtraction, multiplication and division) should be replaced by a ‘test’ button.  On pressing the test button, the screen would display a simple, but appropriate, test: for example, 7 * 8.  If the human entered the correct answer, only then would the calculator switch on and the user[...]

  • ContrOCC Sales at Cheshire West

    Reynold Greenlaw Blog Post

    Here at OCC we are celebrating a double sale of our contract management system ContrOCC. Cheshire West Local Authority has recently purchased both ContrOCC Adult and ContrOCC Children and we also have a number of tenders in progress with other local authorities. This is a really positive step, given the anxiety at the moment surrounding the public sector cuts, showing that local authorities are prepared to and feel that it is still worth investing in contract management.

  • Object-relational mapping

    Reynold Greenlaw Blog Post

    At OCC there are regular presentations between the engineers on any technical topic of interest. We’ve decided to post a recent one on a technique called Object-relational mapping. Object-relational mapping in computer software is a programming technique for converting data between incompatible type systems in relational databases and object oriented programming languages. So it bridges the gap between the database and the code that uses the data. ORM can be used for Fast prototyping and any data-based product that doesn’t have[...]

  • Tips for streaming video with Amazon CloudFront + Flowplayer

    Reynold Greenlaw Blog Post

    Flowplayer is a Flash-based video-player that supports streaming video using the Adobe’s Real-Time Messaging Protociol (RTMP). Amazon CloudFront is a content-delivery network (CDN) tied in with Amazon’s Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), and can stream via RTMP. Great! This is a simple-to-set-up, cost-effective, and reliable video-on-demand system. Where you can get a little bit tangled up is the way the video resource is identified to the player. Following the recipe for Flowplayer with the RTMP plug-in, you need two values, the[...]

  • MCERTS

    Reynold Greenlaw Blog Post

    OCC software is being submitted for approval by MCERTS. This is the Environment Agency (EA) Monitoring Certification Scheme. As OCC provides software for air quality monitoring, we have attracted interest from “MCERTS for Software” which is new. As the EA document puts it: Problems with Data Management can have a number of serious adverse effects Nothing new there. So what’s involved in MCERTS certification? It’s one of those happy occasions where a standard imposes reasonable and not too onerous restrictions[...]

  • SPOCC achieves compatible with Windows 7 logo

    Reynold Greenlaw Blog Post

    SPOCC is recognised in independent evaluations by Supporting People consultants as the leading system for managing Supporting People contracts, administration, services, budgeting and Key Performance Indicators to improve quality and value for money loans for 3000 no credit checks. It boasts a powerful payments and contracts engine for calculating and recovering payments from service providers. SPOCC enables Local Authorities to easily track and report KPI progress whilst making significant savings in time and administration. Our solution achieves this by enabling[...]

  • Choosing agile development

    Reynold Greenlaw Blog Post

    The oldest software process is “code and fix”. This actually works on small one-man projects, but as a system grows, bugs become harder to fix. A typical sign of such a system is a long test phase after the system is “feature complete”. Such a long test phase plays havoc with schedules as testing and debugging is near impossible to schedule. The classic response comes from engineering, whose methods try to plan the software process in detail for a long[...]

  • iPad out sells iPhone in the US

    Reynold Greenlaw Blog Post

    Apple have reported that in the first month of its release in the states, the iPad has out sold the iPhone selling 1 million iPads in the first 28 days. Critics are predicting similar success in the UK when the iPad is launched later this month. Although there are rumours circulating that the UK release could be delayed.