Business Thoughts by Allegro

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Whether it is relaxing by the pool enjoying vacation with your family or filling in time while traveling to yet another client site, many of us turn to books to fill in this time.  If we're feeling motivated, these books are business or technology related to help us keep current in our professional life.

Progress is providing an unexpected boost to anyone looking for that next inspiration.  As part of their revamped website, they have started a book club to poitn out new releases in such areas as SaaS, mobile computing, social media and more.

Take a look at the OpenEdge Book Club to grab the leading chapter of these recommended books and start reading today.

Everyone loves a good buzz word.  All too often, this love affair leads to assumptions and misplaced trust and we all have heard about what happens when you assume.

 

Last month, a code hosting and project management service provider was forced to shut down because of failure to use common sense.  They advertised full redundancy and kept not only client information in their Amazon EC2 cloud but also backups of that same information.  Unfortunately it seems they did not have redundant backups stored elsewhere.  While Amazon's EC2 services protected them (as expected) from random failure, they were not protected when attackers hacked into their accounts and, after a failure to extort money, proceeded to delete their various client snapshots, SVN and GIT repositories, server instances and other critical data and backups.

 

Like any other service, putting something into "the cloud" has its benefits but should never be considered the silver bullet to resolve all of your worries.

Posted by on in OpenEdge

On October 22, 2013 Allegro Consultants hosted the Progress User Group meeting with guest speaker Peter Judge, Principal Software Engineer with Progress Software. The topics included Horizontal Table Partitioning and OpenEdge Mobile. With mobile devices becoming increasingly popular, this topic has generated much excitement with our attendees and the majority of the business world as well. More than ever companies are taking a serious look at how they can get a piece of the action. Mobile applications allow people to use free time while out and about to search a specific item, comparison shop, and make purchases online. If a business does not have a mobile application, they may be missing out on opportunities to gain new business.

OpenEdge Mobile makes it possible to connect potential customers to the OpenEdge business logic your company uses every day. OpenEdge Mobile provides everything you need to develop apps for Android and iOS platforms. Mobile applications can be developed easily from the Progress Developer Studio. Design your app using drag and drop functionality to sculpt your user interface. OpenEdge Mobile gives you the ability to add your progress code, your own security protocols, so that your users can access your data. OpenEdge Mobile offers an express setup allowing you to have a basic setup up and running in minutes, offering testing to see your work in action, and a QR code to scan and see your handiwork on your own mobile device.

There are three different types of mobile applications, Native, Hybrid, and Mobile Web app. Native apps are specific to one particular device, which would require building an app for each specific operating system. This type of application would allow full access to features of the device, and distribution of the app on the AppStore, allowing restricted distribution of the app.

The hybrid app is one that would allow you to develop one app for a specific group of devices. Hybrid applications are device specific and use HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript. This allows you work with most of the capabilities of the device, and you would also be able to distribute your app on the AppStore, but allow restricted access to the app.

The Mobile Web App uses HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript and allows you to develop one app for any device. For this app to work there must be an internet connection available. The access to device capabilities is diminished, and there is no native AppStore for distribution or restricting access to the app.  

OpenEdge Mobile uses the Hybrid App model which uses the native container and the web application as well. There is no need to learn new programming languages or purchase a specific computer to develop your app. Using the Hybrid approach also allows you to market your app in AppStores your customers are familiar with making it accessible to a wider audience. A hybrid application also gives you access to more functionality of the user’s device which gives a richer experience to the end user.

There are some expenses involved in going mobile. OpenEdge Mobile is only available in version 11.2 and up, so you may need to upgrade your software. OpenEdge Mobile also requires licensing. Depending on the device you are developing for, there are fees to submit your app to Apple or Google as well. It is typically a once a year subscription, and the cost is relatively low.

Connecting a device to your business logic can be made using different techniques, but the use of REST is the recommended method. Typically in the past, SOAP was used to connect the data to the mobile device, but REST is much more flexible and easier to use.

OpenEdge mobile uses drag and drop for the functionality of buttons, maps, and other interface items. Just drag over the fields from the table you are accessing and assign them to the desired display location. Button actions and page calls are all done for you through the intuitive tools of OpenEdge Mobile. Mobile development is just one of the new additions to the Progress Software collection.  Join us for our next Progress Users Group meeting to learn more.

To learn more about the OneSource ERP extensions available, select them below.

  • Advanced Search +

    Increase Magento’s normal search capabilities by providing advanced search. Customers will be able to easily and quickly search based on category, product attributes, terms in the product descriptions, and more.  
  • Amazon Integration +

    This extension integrates your e-commerce information with the leading Amazon storefront and allows for simple management of product listings with automated synchronization of stock levels, pricing, and item details. 
  • Assortments +

    OneSource supports the normal ERP pricing functionality that gives you the ability to provide quantity-based price breaks. The assortments extension expands upon this by allowing you to define groups in your ERP where the combined quantity of all items in any assortment group is used to provide quantity price breaks for all the items in that group.
  • Complicated Shipping, Splits, Extra Warehouses +

    The complex shipping customization adds shipping rules to support multiple warehouses and charge delivery rates from each warehouse origin. Break customer orders down by product group. The extension supports scenarios such as placing an order that has products shipping separately or from different locations. This type of order can become two separate orders in the ERP yet allow the customer to pay for them together.
  • Configurable Products +

    If you sell multiple products that only differ in size, color or some other characteristic, you need the Configurable Products extension. This module will allow you to display a single product to the customer and then let them select the particular attributes that differentiate between variations to get exactly what they need.
  • Coupons +

    Set up coupons to support promotions, encourage new customers, reward repeat customers, and more. This module allows the setup of a variety of coupons and discounts for your customers.
  • Data Feed to POS System +

    The POS data feed extension allows for order entry outside of your e-commerce website. For OneSource clients that have brick and mortar stores, you can have your catalog and inventory information available in your POS system and upload orders back to your ERP through your e-commerce storefront.
  • Featured Products +

    The Featured Products extension allows you to highlight items on your homepage and grab the attention of your customers.  Whether you choose best sellers or clearance items, help move more product by placing them front and center of your website.
  • Google Analytics Tuning +

    Google Analytics is a powerful tool for managing your web presence. This service can help you keep your site tuned for optimal reporting. A few of the features we will optimize are eCommerce tracking, ghost spam filters, and custom views.
  • Password Writeback +

    Normally, the OneSource end user either manages their password completely on their own or it is managed for them through the ERP. With this customization, gain the best of both worlds. Update your ERP each time a user changes their login password.
  • Purchase History with Reorder +

    Go beyond the ability to review past orders and invoices with Purchase History. This customization provides your customers with the ability to see all items purchased in the past month, year, or more; along with details. The customer can then easily add desired items to their current shopping cart.
  • Quick Order +

    For B2B customers or those that know your part numbers, Quick Order provides an easy method to rapidly enter a new order. Customers can easily enter part numbers with a helpful auto-fill capability to ensure accuracy, review the price, and indicated the desired quantity. Taking new orders in seconds will help turn good customers into great customers.
  • Salesman/Manager Module (Basic and Advanced) +

    This extension allows salesmen or managers to log in and place orders as any given customer. Whether needed for regional managers to watch over their sales teams or for sales people to assist clients in their territory, this customization will give managers oversite into the orders of those under their responsibility. The advanced version offers even more oversight features such as the ability for reports across customers.
  • Store Locator +

    The Store Locator extension allows customers to easily find the nearest retail location or dealer right from your website. Whether they are your own brick-and-mortar stores or the locations of retailers that carry your products, help your customers find you quickly and easily.
  • Ultimate Marketing Page Sliders +

    This extension takes your e-commerce marketing beyond the typical slider. Have even more impact with multiple sliders and sidebars with promotional images. Using spreadsheets, you can manage your own product lists to include in specific promotions.
  • Up Sell, Cross Sell, Related Products +

    Items in the ERP can be associated with each other as either “Related” or “Similar”. This information can then be used to drive the upsell, cross sell, or related items features of your e-commerce site.
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