The main activity of the client is railway transportation. To automate the collection of data about trains and their location, the company required a platform that combines several key functions: data collection, analytics, and reporting.
The client turned to Computools's engineers because of their high level of industry expertise and required technology. During the discussion, the main goals and objectives of the project were clarified, the features and functionality of the finished platform were discussed. The result of successful cooperation was a web development solution that allows handling, monitoring, storing data about trains, railway schedules, load, and speed.
During the project, Computools's engineers built a system that collects, stores, and analyzes data received from sensors placed in infrastructure (railways, stations, etc). Thanks to the use of reliable technologies and painstaking work of the team, the stable and safe operation of the platform is ensured. The business objectives of the project were fully achieved and the client received the expected benefits.
Several key options we solved:
Implemented strong analytical tools.
Implemented a convenient and customizable reporting system.
Applied technology solutions to automate routine tasks.
Business Process Automation
Digital Platform & Technology
To build a state-of-the-art platform, that provides automation of the data collection, we have carefully chosen a set of technologies with exceptional performance and security characteristics. Our chosen technologies were also highly efficient in terms of the total cost of ownership and support.
Java was designed to be easy to use and is therefore easy to write, compile, debug, and learn, then other programming languages. This allows creating modular programs and reusable code. One of the most significant advantages of Java is its ability to move easily from one computer system to another.
Apache Web Server
Apache is open source, governed well (the foundation), and probably the most stable computing platform ever. It is easily customizable and configurable, provides detailed configuration options that make it great for web applications where performance and a high level of security are a consideration.
Apache Spark is a data processing framework that can quickly perform processing tasks on very large data sets, and can also distribute data processing tasks across multiple computers, either on its own or in tandem with other distributed computing tools.
Working on projects we pay special attention to the creation of a transparent and convenient communicative eco-system. For this web development project, we have chosen several communication methods that include Skype, Slack, and e-mail, and have defined a schedule of discussions on the project.
The technical specification on the project included an algorithm for the phased development of platform parts, their testing, and implementation. Since the development was carried out in the scrum methodology and all the changes were made in the process, there was no need for a written fixing of this algorithm.
The goal was to create a convenient and reliable system to monitor, handle, and store information about trains, railway schedules, load, and speed. The main flow consists of several stages. Information from sensors located on railways and stations goes to storage facilities and is visualized using tables or a selected custom method. Further, the analysis of the received data is carried out, the results are recorded in the report and sent along the specified paths (specified recipients or systems).
To reach the client’s goals and complete the task on time the Computools formed a strong team of Java developers and experts in other technologies required for this project. A thorough selection of project participants allowed to perform all the tasks at a high-level quality and on time.
Keeping the team upbeat and motivated at all times is also an important part of working on a project. We strive to innovate in everything, including team management.
To find a really innovative solution and discuss web development ideas, our engineers meet for brainstorming sessions. They stimulate creativity and each participant has an opportunity to offer as many options as he can think of, including the most fantastic ones. It helps to find truly ingenious ideas and solutions.
Well-coordinated collaboration at all stages of the web development process increases the pace of the development. This works especially well when our software engineers cooperate closely with their client counterparts.
All team members participated in the end-of-sprint feedback sessions and discussions. Exchanging ideas and opinions between Computools and client-side engineers inspired innovative solutions and increased development efficiency.
Internal Communication Flow
To ensure transparent communication and understanding among the members of the distributed team, Computools applied an established communication framework. Tasks were assigned with Jira, Email was used to deliver status reports and updates, while daily meetings were held via Skype video and audio.
Project Management Methodology
For this project, Agile and Scrum were chosen as management methodologies. Each of them brought some benefits and advantages to the web development services project. Agile assists teams in responding to the unpredictability of constructing software. It uses incremental, iterative work sequences that are commonly known as sprints. The Scrum model suggests that projects progress via a series of sprints. Scrum methodology advocates a planning meeting at the start of the sprint, where the team members decide how many items they can commit to, and then create a sprint backlog – a list of the tasks to perform during the sprint. During an agile Scrum sprint, the Scrum team takes a small set of features from an idea to the coded and tested functionality. In close collaboration with the client’s team of developers, this methodology allowed each member of the team to take care of his own part of the work and stay in touch with each other.
Identifying high-level project goals
Analysis & Exploration
Researching and analyzing the existing and ready-made solutions
Defining main restrictions and providing solutions for them
Identifying the main risks
Selecting basic architectural patterns and tools
Forming an application stack, work processes with VCS
Forming the main development guidelines
Interactive Prototypes & Specification
Development of a prototype in parallel with specification
Choosing Project Management Methodology
Build Development Process
Calculating the number of project teams
Configuring the technological processes and interactions between roles
Build the Team
Making the initial scope based on the specification and estimate, calculating the optimal number of specialists for each role
Adding executors to the team's core
Conducting an intro meeting
Development of a road map, dividing the development process into parts
Implementation of the first series of solutions
Implementation of developed elements of the platform
Testing & Stabilization
Developing a testing plan
UI & Unit testing
Code stabilization/refactoring, increasing system stability, reducing the probability of bug emergency
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