Telepen Barcode Generator developed for Windmill Computing

We have recently developed a couple of utilities for Windmill Computing that are used to generate bar codes for one of their clients. This particular client is using bar code readers supplied by Telepen.

The first utility is a command-line tool used to take a list of about 1000 students, generate IDs for them, convert these IDs into bar codes and record the results in a file. This file can then be used by the software used to print the IDs cards with bar codes on them.

The second utility is a small graphical application used to generate additional IDs and bar codes on an ad hoc basis. It keeps a record of the previous ID generated to ensure each ID is unique.

The bar code is generated as a series of characters that when printed using the appropriate bar code font will produce the bar code. The sequence of characters is produced by twice adding a check digit, and employing various rules for encoding the numbers generated.

Content Management System developed for Windmill Computing

We have added a content management system to the bespoke software package we created for Windmill Computing. This system is used to add, edit and remove the product pages and main menu on the main Windmill website.

The entry for each product page consist of the following elements, which are used to generate the page header:

  • Name
  • Title
  • Keywords
  • Description
  • Robots index/follow settings

and the following elements, which are used to generate the page content:

  • Content
  • Standard images
  • Standard download links
  • Products

There is also an interface for modifying the list of standard images and download links.

In addition to the product page editor, there is a utility for editing the main menu on the website. The utility provides a simple means of adding, editing and removing menus.

Product Management System developed for Windmill Computing

We have finally completed the first official release of a bespoke software package created for Windmill Computing Limited. Windmill Computing is a company based in Cranleigh that supplies ID Card Systems to a wide range of customers. They act as a European distributor for RF IDeas proximity card readers and a variety of other card readers and printers. We have worked on the development of the company’s website and e-commerce system since 2007.

One of the biggest challenges faced by Windmill Computing is managing its product list, which now numbers over 600 items. The company buys some of its products in dollars, but sells in pounds or euros. Also, it sells not only to end users but also resellers, who receive varying levels of discount.

This release is the culmination of many months effort to make the process of managing the product list more robust. We maintain a master list of products within the company’s private systems, and only calculate the end user and reseller prices for the website when synchronising selected products on the website with the master list.

One important area we have worked on is the calculation of prices. We now calculate all the basic prices, whether they be end user prices or the varying levels of reseller prices, offline, and write the prices in pounds to the live database. The only calculations performed online are currency conversions. This allows us to be confident that the prices for the various products are correct.

Another important area is the automatic regenerate of prices caused by a supplier issuing a new price list. We have automated the various methods for generating the end user and reseller prices from the original manufacturer’s buy price or list price. This both saves a considerable amount of work, and also makes the whose process far more reliable.

Miskar SOE Upgrade

We assisted ICS Triplex/Rockwell Automation in upgrading the Miskar platform. The platform is owned by the BG Group and is located in the Miskar gas field to the east of Tunisia.

We worked on reconfiguration of SOE (Sequence of Events) data collector used to monitor the Miskar platform ESD and Fire and Gas systems. The modifications were made in line with changes to the I/O points on both systems.

Britannia PLC Software Migration

In addition to upgrading the HMI on the Britannia Platform, ICS Triplex/Rockwell Automation also had the task of upgrading the underlying safety-critical systems.

The original system consisted of LM90-70 PLCs, which were to be replaced with RX7i PLCs. Rather than manually port the software from one platform to the other, it was decided to perform the conversion automatically, and to create a tool that would validate the conversion. This would allow the manual conversion work to be confined to a limited number of issues.

We were brought in to devise the test procedures for the tool, and to perform testing on the tool.