Any web application/software developers/IT gurus on here?

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  • Any web application/software developers/IT gurus on here?
  • Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    Slightly unrelated but ended up looking through some of these
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_open-source_healthcare_software
    when a vet friend was looking at changing their patient management systems.

    poonprice
    Member

    I’m no expert but i’d be looking at HTML5 and Javascript using frameworks like JQuery and taking advantage of AJAX. For the backend i’d be using PHP and MySQL, you could use a service like parse.com which makes the database stuff really easy.

    Linux based hosting is usually slightly cheaper.

    tinribz
    Member

    Just been looking into this stuff myself lately. Don’t have a web server yet so have built something similar to what you want in C#, picked it up in a weekend following YouTube tuts.

    Asp.net doesn’t look that much of a leap from there. So worth downloading a copy of visual studio to see if it will suit. I prefer Oracle but get the feeling windows and SQL server is easier to integrate with.

    mulv1976
    Member

    I’m looking for a bit of advice please.

    I used to develop web/intranet based applications mostly using browser based ASP/vb/JavaScript front-end with SQL server/mySQL/Oracle back-end. This was about 10-15 years ago and obviously things have changed a hell of a lot since then.

    I would like to write/develop my own web based clinic management system to store appointment details, stock information, clinic statistics etc.

    I don’t think it would take me long to get back into the SQL language, stored procedures etc and building a requirements spec and data structure shouldn’t be an issue but my question is: what is the current best thinking on web based applications concerning language, database, platform and security? Bear in mind that I will be using a standard shared hosted web server (Windows based) and domain so cloud based apps are out.

    It’s a bit of a long shot I know, but I’ve been out of the loop for a long time. I could buy a cloud based management system but I fancy a project and some of them don’t do what I want and are expensive.

    Thanks for any help 🙂

    fubar
    Member

    Worth looking at LAMP bundles (or WAMP on windows)

    The free Microsoft Express editions (Visual Studio and SQL Express) can take you a long way on the Microsoft path. The downside of this path is usually increased costs , especially should your needs exceed the free versions (sql server express is limited by database size and server memory etc but still is good enough to host plenty of commercial offerings – well initially at least). Another worry is once you are committed to the Microsoft path you are at the mercy of any future decisions they make in terms of license costs and condition changes.

    I’d go the LAMP route for a new business / project

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    If it’s a hosted server then I’d imagine that a) they will presumably already have some form of SQL on there and b) you won’t be at liberty to change it if they do / don’t.

    chvck
    Member

    I’d use whatever SQL package they let you, for a web app (unless it has huge load) they’re much of a muchness. If it’s windows then I presume that it’ll be hosting the site using IIS so c# .net would integrate pretty well with that. If you already know Javascript then you could try use node.js as the backend instead.

    llama
    Member

    The up to date mainstream non-cloud windows stack is js/html5/css; talking to asp.net mvc; talking to entity framework with linq; talking to SQL server

    Boringly similar stacks are available for java, ruby, python etc all basicly the same thing. The .net stuff does work very slickly if you stick to all msoft.

    If you use VB.net it wont look a million miles from what you are used to.

    Premier Icon BigEaredBiker
    Subscriber

    Budget and certain business requirements will probably decide things for you. As mentioned SQL Server C# .Net etc can be done on a shoestring with the Express editions but can get expensive on licensing if you need to scale past the limits. Having said that I’ve seen well written stuff on that cope with lots of concurrent users no problem and your needs don’t sound too large.

    As far as an open source DB engine I prefer Postgres over MySQL. If you are familiar with Oracle and PL/SQL it is not such a big leap and its default handling of concurrency, NULL’s, constraints etc. is far superior to MySQL IMHO.

    If you are not really all that familiar with any kind of SQL and have a limited timeframe I would personally seek the budget to get someone in who lives and breaths relational database design, Set theory and SQL development. They will write efficient code far faster than you and it will work as opposed to the some of the nightmarish stuff I’ve seen when your average applications developer hacks a database together.

    allthegear
    Member

    It sounds from your brief that the technology is your smallest concern – that bit can be outsourced. Of much greater importance is designing the system and the policies and procedures that will need to be built around it.

    As it will be storing appointment details for a clinic of some description, you are entering the world of needing to think about data protection etc. A significant amount of business analysis sounds needed.

    I’d be happy to help, in the New Year, of course! 🙂

    Rachel

    mulv1976
    Member

    Thanks for the replies. I am steering towards the .net and MSSQL route as my options are limited to the hosting solution (php and mySQL or MS based), and I have always used more MS based solutions. I may have to learn c# over VB tho as I’ve heard good things.

    The system will be small so the number of concurrent users and connections will be minimal. As well as an administration application, it will be linked into the clinic website so that patients can book and view appointments. This will mean that security needs to be good too and an audit trail available.

    Scalability is always a factor. If the system works well I could potentially market it as a solution for other clinics as well as my own. I could design the database to hold external clinic data as well as my own (as a lot of cloud apps do) but this yield potential confidentiality and DPA issues so a standalone package is probably best.

    In terms of business analysis and RDBMS design I don’t need to outsource (thanks for the offer) as I was taught the fundamentals by a very good business and systems analyst using SSADM many years ago. I also appreciate the power of server-side SQL (stored procedures, t-SQL etc) over bodged coding solutions. Believe me I’ve seen some horrors too – including using an MSAccess database (with no indexing or relational structure) to store gigabytes of patient data. It was one of the reasons I got out of the industry – too many ‘analyst developers’ getting £4-500/day who used slick code to disguise the fact they had no idea how to design a structured and robust database.

    Premier Icon BigEaredBiker
    Subscriber

    Good luck – I recommend a copy of “Pro SQL Server Relational Database Design and Implementation” by Louis Davidson. The example project he steps through in the book is a database system for a chain of dental clinics 😉

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