A journey through time and technology
We are sometimes asked about our technology and what InfoEd is made of; mostly originating during product demonstrations. We compare the question to someone asking you, “What is your university made of?” in the sense that, the answer would be different depending on the place you’re talking about, especially in the older places.
So what is InfoEd made of? Well, it’s made of a lot of things spanning 20 years of development, growth and overall, just being in business.
InfoEd applications are XML based in many places. Proposal Tracking (PT), for example, is 100% XML-based and has been for several years. We have Web services, which are Web-based. We have several Financial Staging Area services that are XML-based. We also have XML-based integrations into SharePoint and Single Sign-on (SSO).
InfoEd has worked through three generations of .NET technology. Our first pass was in 2006. In 2007, we implemented a vastly improved second pass with much better results. And finally, the .NET technology now used was landed on in 2008.
InfoEd is SQL Server 2008 and Oracle 11 compliant.
We do have a lot of .COM architecture in some places from pre-2007. This is where your business rules are compiled into “DLL’s” and then evoked as needed to perform Business Rules and Database access. This was a derivative of the “Web Classes” that Microsoft developed around 2000.
InfoEd continuously evaluates new technology and determines the appropriate places to either retrofit current code, or implement new code as we move forward. Sometimes, we may decide not to replace code with a new technology if the current technology is still fulfilling its design. Further, we do not automatically adopt the newest technologies until we are satisfied that they are stable and ready for integration into our code.
In short, we are more interested in utilizing the proper technology for the job, as dictated by our commitment to stability, quality, and usability, than the newest, shiniest technology in vogue.
Even so, construction is already underway to retire some of the older tools and technologies, such as ASP and Visual Fox Pro, as the cost of maintaining and developing in these technologies is becoming greater than the cost to change them.
Beginning in the fall of 2011, for example, ENABLE (Enterprise Nexus And Business Layer Extensions), a fully XML-based platform, will replace the older InfoEd foundation and we’ll begin rebuilding some of the older “rooms.” SPIN will be the first; followed by additional modules throughout 2012. Many of you have already experienced this with the recent deployment and launch of the new SPIN Quick Search.
So, like you and many other companies, organization and institutions, when we’re asked “what is InfoEd made of,” the answer is, “Bricks, wood, concrete, steel and aluminum” (.NET, XML, Active-X, DLL’s and ASP); whatever tools are best for the job at the time.
As a 20-year old company with over 46,000 pages and 10 million lines of code, we are a little bit of a lot of things. Mostly, InfoEd is a company that continues to progress, constantly improves on older technologies, and applies the latest and most beneficial technology available to grow with you and your needs.