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?
Software as a Medical Device (SaMD) is software intended to be used for one or more medical purposes without being part of a hardware medical device.
A personal blog post from our Director of Consultancy Projects As well as delivering products, OCC has a team that specialises in custom software development; they are behind the wide variety of case studies on our website. This combination of teams working on custom software and product development & support is, I think, unique. Once a year I take the custom development team out for a day to discuss how we might write even better software. This time we crossed[...]
Over the last weekend in January I attended the NHS Hack Day at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford, with friends from Step Up Software and Dr Doctor. NHS Hack Days are weekend events that brings together doctors, nurses, developers, designers, and other “geeks who love the NHS” to create disruptive solutions to problems in the health space. Our team worked together on a novel application called the Dementia Scrapbook – a tablet app that allows content to be uploaded[...]
In SQL Server 2005, you can now use a variable when getting the first n number of rows in a SELECT query: DECLARE @NumberOfRowsIWant INT SET @NumberOfRowsIWant = 23 SELECT TOP (@NumberOfRowsIWant) * FROM T_Client The OUTPUT clause added in SQL 2005 gives you access to the inserted and deleted tables, normally only useable in a trigger, in your stored procedures (SP). Combine the clause with an UPDATE or a DELETE and you can, for example, select fields from the[...]
A tally table is a table with a set of numbers in, such as all of the integers from 1 to 1,000,000 in order. It may also known as a number table and could contain every day between two dates, or every Monday between two dates, etc. Tally tables can be used for a large and varied number of ways, to make code simpler and/or faster. Converting a CSV string into a dataset A common use of a tally table[...]
If you work with SQL you will know about the various types of join and what they do: [Inner] Join Left [Outer] Join Right [Outer] Join Full [Outer] Join Cross Join (Where the Inner and Outer keywords are optional). But how does SQL actually do the joining? Usually, it picks the most appropriate method (ie the fastest) and everything’s fine. Occasionally, however, it drops the performance ball and everything grinds to a halt. In these situations, knowing what’s going on[...]
Contestants have completed round 2 and the finalists have been decided. The final of Science Oxford Apprentice will be held at Science Oxford Live on the 4th of May. To be crowned this years Science Oxford Apprentice, the finalists will have to give a 10 minute presentation, followed by questions from the judging panel. In their presentations they will be outlining a software concept they have designed, and how it will encourage people to take up and maintain interest in[...]
OCC has been awarded a grant of £1,000 from Sustainable Routes, as we were able to show that we had purchased 2 new laptops, to help staff work from home and a web cam and microphone have been installed in one of our meeting rooms for distant communication. The award was a match funded grant. More information at www.sustainableroutes.co.uk OCC’s directors believe that the company’s IT solutions and services should bring value to clients and the local community in a[...]
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[...]
You can now follow OCC on twitter at twitter.com/OxfordComputers
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[...]
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[...]
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[...]
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[...]
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.
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[...]
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[...]
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[...]
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[...]