• Traceable Project Development With Azure DevOps

    Tim Palmer

    Companies within the Health and Research sectors often operate in regulatory environments with additional auditing obligations to meet. This includes with regards to traceability within their custom software tools (including item history, item tracking, issue tracking). As such, OCC use Microsoft Azure DevOps tool chain for software development. This article explores what Azure DevOps is and why you should be using it.

  • Digital Accessibility: How To Ensure You Are Getting It Right

    Marisa Bhagwandin

    "The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone, regardless of disability, is an essential aspect." (Tim Berners-Lee, W3C Director and Inventor of The World Wide Web) Digital Accessibility is about ensuring that content produced is accessible to all. This is not just a moral and legal requirement but is also good business. This article delves into the benefits of paying close attention to digital accessibility, includes information on automated accessibility testing tools and manual testing methods and an interactive exercise.

  • Optimisations and pitfalls in Entity Framework

    William Frankish

    There are plenty of reasons to choose Entity Framework as your database ORM (object-relational mapping) over something like Dapper that exposes SQL directly. But if you don’t know what EF is doing under the hood, it is dangerously easy to write innocuous looking code with abysmal performance. This article show you how to get optimal performance from your queries and how to avoid the worst pitfalls.

  • How to approach sentiment analysis of user reviews

    OCC Admin

    In this article, we discuss how to develop a mathematical model to analyse sentiment, using a hypothetical scenario of a client wishing to classify a large volume of user comments as having a positive or negative sentiment. The data in this case consists of online comments on a product. The comments do not have a specific structure but are received as free text.

  • OCC and Covid-19 Lockdown.

    Mike Buckle

    It’s now 9 weeks since we transitioned to remote working. We introduced more flexible hours to help our employees better plan their day around childcare and other responsibilities. Our teams are busy with ongoing and new projects and we recently expanded the workforce, adding a UX designer and project manager. Company inductions under lockdown are a little bit different!


    Joanne Stead

    With more and more of our information being stored in social media, businesses and other organisations, data protection and privacy is becoming a growing concern. We want more ownership of our information- where it is, who wants to access it and how to control its dissemination. This is especially true of sensitive information submitted to institutions such as Local Authorities.

  • React vs. Blazor: a comparison

    Luke Canvin

    If you want to write a dynamic web application in 2019 then the chances are that you will reach out for a JavaScript solution, and that solution will probably be React. We compare React to Blazor, a new .NET framework allowing you to write in C# for the front and back ends.

  • Discover what you really, really want

    Sally Croft

    Sometimes, when people are thinking about a new product or ways to improve or develop an existing product, their ideas aren’t fully formed. The Discovery process provides a framework for identifying the potential users of the product and investigating in detail exactly what their needs are. Each process is unique, adapting in response to where the customer is in their own thinking. Discovery outputs vary depending on needs, from specification, budget estimates and possible funding sources to prototypes to help clients see how their ideas might work.

  • Using JSON for polymorphic types in C#

    Luke Canvin

    Using Blazor, code written for the front-end has access to all the language features of C#. In particular, it may be useful to have a type hierarchy and make use of polymorphism. However, JSON objects have no explicit type, so how can we correctly deserialise a subtype?

  • Event Sourcing with EventFlow and Azure Cosmos DB

    Luke Canvin

    In our Dev Camp this year we chose to experiment with Event Sourcing, using EventFlow for the solution. One task was to configure it to use an Azure Cosmos database instead of a SQL Server one. There were some hurdles to overcome. This post takes you through the attempts we made and the solution we found.

  • The software commercialisation journey

    Reynold Greenlaw

    Meeting the challenges of software commercialisation is not just about the code. How do you start that journey? What needs to happen along the way to ensure the best launch? And once your product has made it into the market, what needs to be in place for its continued success?