Biodose® Case Study
An Award Winning Piece of Software
Biodose ® is an award winning piece of software, winning the coveted E-Health Insider award! It is a testament to the innovative idea initiated by the Protomed team and the quality of the software development.
Protomed is the creator of Biodose ® – the world’s only medication management platform to accommodate liquid medicines alongside solid oral dose forms. Biodose ® software is a key component in the complete range of offerings from Protomed. They have also created the world’s first visual prescription Medigram ®.
Medigram ® is an easy-to-use software tool enabling pharmacies, nurses and dispensing doctors to create a unique visual prescription. Until recently, these two flag-ship software products from Protomed used to be offered as a single license desktop application.
In early 2010, we started work on Biodose® desktop application to address two main concerns. The first concern was the need to update Biodose’s existing functionality; these updates were to be implemented on top of their existing software codebase. The second and the most compelling concern was the future of the Biodose® system – Biodose® needed to be clearly structured and must use openly accessible APIs. While addressing the second concern, we quickly realised that Biodose® needed to be a web-based application to take advantage of the Internet and to break free from its isolation for being a desktop application.
Biodose® desktop was a monolithic rich client Java Swing application. Our major concern was that the architecture was not clearly defined in application tiers which would lead to maintainability issues. We re-architected the system using best practice enterprise application implemented the new architecture and the API of the Biodose® software using the most appropriate Java EE open source tools and libraries; the most notable ones being Jackson, iReport and Spring WS. At its heart, the Biodose® software uses the Spring Framework 3.0 where Spring’s core governs the life-cycle of the various system components.
Biodose® software is a fully compliant OSGi web application. We have successfully used Spring DM Server (currently known as Virgo OSGi runtime from EclipseRT) as the live deployment environment using Spring Dynamic Modules. The main reason for using OSGi was to take advantage of the dynamic component model of native OSGi, something that does not exist in the standalone Java/VM environment. As a result, Biodose® software can be remotely installed, started, stopped, updated and uninstalled without requiring to reboot the application server.
We used the Cake agile processes as Biodose® software was a large and complex project to build and manage. Using agile allowed us to share the same vision as Protomed and communicate directly with them. On top of that our expertise in agile made sure that the product backlog, accurate estimates, and good understanding of the features all combined perfectly to produce a very interesting piece of software.
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