Ballot Voting System

CLIENT

Smartmatic, based in Amsterdam, and serves ‘voting’ solutions throughout the world.

SCOPE

  • Create a ballot voting system (high end prototype) within 1 month.
  • Users should be able to “swipe” and navigate through an interface, and digitally vote on their respective politicatian/party
  • User vote output would be printed out via a thermal printer.

ROLE

  • Product Owner

WHAT

The engineers of Smartmatic, were working on a high level prototype ballot voting system, which took 6 months. Too long in their Vice President eyes. He needed to deliver a working version because of tender. In other words: We needed to recreate it within 1 month. I said we could do that. And luckily we did.

Their main problem, was that the user “interface” needed to work like a big Apple Ipad – only in this case – it a very tiny mainboard / motherboard, a very small Raspberry PI, connected to very big touch 55″ screen provided by Microsoft.

 CHALLENGES

  • Interface output onto a 50″ touchscreen  via a Raspberry Pi (not a good idea)
  • Apple iPad swipe effect doesn’t ‘feel’ right on touchscreen
  • Thermal Printer = fragile and vote information is not displaying correctly
  • No documentation
  • Code in Python
  • Deadline 1 month

 HOW

When we looked at all the hard are, we thought, cool. But before we jumped in, we assessed the requirements of the main stakeholders / users, before we started programming.

  1. Mapped out the userstories and flows
  2. Mapped out the interaction flow
  3. Mapped out the screens / functional design
  4. Mapped out technical requirements

As final part of the “pre-production” phase, our GUI – graphical user interface – designer, made a visual flow of how the ballot voting system interface should operate / animate.

Time saver!

When we had this, we started to work on the hardware directly. There was no time to set up a test development area.

We did ran into some troubles, as the RaspberryPi was having huge troubles making the interface run  smooth swipe controls. Also, the Microsoft touchscreen (hardware) had troubles, with the Linux drivers of the thermal printer. It’s like an English and a German person, trying to understand each other.

This was not going to work – staying with the old code. So, we ditch it. We went back to ‘old’ skool HTML/CSS and some nice JavaScript animation tricks – to mimic – the ‘swipe’ effects.

  • Saves time
  • Easy to customize

 RESULT

  • Delivered the project within 1 month – with 3 days to spare (I must admit, that had sweat patches)
  • Very happy to work with my core team of self steering developers and quality test professionals.

 TECHNOLOGY USED

  •  Linux, HTML/CSS, MsQL, Apache Cassandra, JavaScript, Jquery, Python

 KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • First assess, think, map out the flow, then start building.
  • Use hardware-and software that are actually aligned. So, don’t use product x, y and software z, because the chances are high, that they don’t work together. The main reason is price. But as we experienced, price comes with a cost.
  • Their programmer only used “Python” – and because of that – they got stuck. So, don’t work ‘in the old code’ of something that doesn’t work. You don’t use a hammer, when a screwdriver is needed.
  • Under pressure, keep calm and trust your people and your network of professionals.
  • Bring beer to late hours of work. It’s appreciated.
  • Throw “money” at someone to fix a Linux driver – within a day – actually works. It’s true.
  • When an external project manager tells you: “We need more time…. e.g. need more money” – Just tell him, to work and plan more efficient’ – True story.

https://www.smartmatic.com

Blockchain

CLIENT

Xurux, a Dutch based Blockchain consultancy firm.

SCOPE

  • In need of (blockchain) developers. Who isn’t.
  • Advise / Consult on how to use blockchain technology
  • Advise / Consult on how to sell/market blockchain consultancy/technology

ROLE

  • Consultant

WHAT

  • I am advising www.Xurux.com on how to implement blockchain solutions, by first analyzing the business of their clients and then how to implement this technology. 
  • And yes – I do own some cryptocurrencies – but no, not a millionaire 😛

CHALLENGES

  • Brand position
  • Proposition?
  • Get new clients?
  • Get (blockchain) developers?

HOW

  • First I got to know the owners, why they started Xurux
  • Understand their long term goals, mission and visions
  • Understand their needs (now) and on the long run
  • Understand their businessmodel

RESULT

  • Mapped out a presentation and a plan of attack
  • “What do you claim” in the market; What makes Xurux unique (compared to competitors)
  • Plan of Attack: Roadmap + Marketing/Sales plan
  • Presentation with descriptive and visual explanation of their stakeholders/potential clients, leads and how to target them on their needs.

TECHNOLOGY USED

  • Pen and Paper
  • Creativity
  • Strategy
  • Experience
  • Sales / Marketing techniques

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • First assess, think, map out the requirements and the demands of themselves (as a company) and their respective stakeholders, and their roles.
  • Then – when you know the above “needs” – think about how to approach them? What do you offer them, as you already know, what they might be looking for.
  • Don’ forget that, tech guys/girls, who actually can program stuff in Blockchain, don’t necessarily have experience at big/small companies. So, they might miss out on actual experience, on why and when blockchain should be used in x, y, z situations?

 

PGB / AWBZ

CLIENT

  • Agis Healthcare / Insurance
  • Amersfoort

SCOPE

  • Reduce the workload of the processing team regarding personal healthcare dossiers.

ROLE

  • Analist / Semi-Nerd

WHAT

  • A lot of personal (medical) care files, formatted in ‘notepad’ txt files are being processed manually, because it wasn’t automated (and they did it always like this)
  • Certain codes, correspond to certain issues. Yet – again. This wasn’t automated, and to my understanding it could.

CHALLENGES

  • For me > no clue how the system worked
  • For me > no prior experience in healthcare / insurance corporations
  • Only saw the text output
  • Saw exhausted employees
  • Very repetitive, but you needed to be very experienced (many years of doing this proces)
  • The text documents with codes, where not always in the same ‘spot’

HOW

  • I looked and wrote down all the known codes.
  • I made a scan of how the text documents were built up
  • I went to the manager and told him that we could solve this problem:
    • Technically
    • Manually
    • Technically + Manually

The (interim) manager answer: Come back in 3 months, and provide me report. (This really happend, and sparked my career as semi-nerd.

As I am not a programmer, I did see the corresponding interaction flows, and connected the dots. But, I could not program an ‘If This, Then That’ program.

So, … what do you do, when you cannot write code (properly)

Next step. You go into the company cantine.

I went past each table, and asked who could code a certain piece of software for me.

There was this guy, who said: No problem. I am up for it.

So I provided him the schematics, and he delivered. The result: 80% efficiency on handling and processing the healthcare issues. WHOA!

 

RESULT

  • As above mentioned 80% efficiency in process handling
  • The interim manager was baffled and he didn’t chop my head off.
  • But I got asked into the IT office, on the 6th floor, and was asked not do something like this again (as I later understood they had contracts with external consultants) – but the director was amused.
  • Some employees were not happy, as they thought they could loose their job, because of automation.

TECHNOLOGY USED

  • Pen and Paper
  • UltraEdit
  • C++ and compiled by programmer

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • Assess the procedures and follow the trail
  • Work out the schematics, the interaction flow, and see if you can find a pattern and what the variables are
  • Interim-managers just want to get the job done. Doesn’t matter how. As they don’t (want) to understand
  • External-consultants are there for a reason. Because the people within the client company mostly don’t know. So, if you do know. Make your knowlegde and skills count on behalf of your employer.
  • Also be aware of ‘the soft side’ in automation; I really did have a crying man, standing at my desk, telling it’s people like me, who make their jobs ‘vanish’. I was stunned. But I told him, that if he was run over by a tram, all the knowledge would be gone. So, what if… you we automate some stuff, so he could focus on service. That was quick thinking. Phew. But fyi: there were no trams in the neighbourhoud anyway – but still … 🙂

 

Mijn Taxi App

CLIENT

SCOPE

  • Create an app for taxi owners.

ROLE

  • Product Owner

WHAT

  • Uber is consumer focused. And there is no for Taxi owners to give to their customers

CHALLENGES

HOW

RESULT

TECHNOLOGY USED

KEY TAKEAWAYS

 

 

Mafia-Times

This is my personal – never ending – First Person Shooter project. It originated in 2005, when I was still a student. But, I never completed it, as I had to earn some money .. and selling ‘entertainment’ is hard, compared to selling a ‘solution’.

Anyway, sometimes I work on the project in the Unreal Engine.

More info www.Mafia-Times.com

SMS Premium Payment API

Created SMS payment plugin for a game engine framework for international corporate CaaS (Communication as a Service) platform for KPN and Huawei.

One of the parents said ‘ow no’ – it’s gonna cost my kid more money.

Scorecard

scorecard for schools

CLIENT

  • Scorecard

SCOPE

  • Create (serveral) products that stimulate and visualize hard-software skill sets and competencies of graduaties/students.

ROLE

  • Co-owner
  • Product owner

WHAT

CHALLENGES

HOW

RESULT

TECHNOLOGY USED

KEY TAKEAWAYS

 

Auto3D

autotheorie 3d game

CLIENT

SCOPE

ROLE

  • Product Owner

WHAT

CHALLENGES

HOW

RESULT

TECHNOLOGY USED

KEY TAKEAWAYS

 

Auto3D (werktitel) is een game dat autotheorieles en autopraktijk met elkaar combineert, met gamification en didactische aanpak.

De game is zo opgezet dat de basis van autorijden aanbod komt, maar ook de specifieke gevallen simuleert, waarin actie en het ingrijpen van de rijder verwacht wordt.

De game is en blijft in continue staat van ontwikkeling, waarbij gebruikers feedback, tips en toevoegingen kunnen blijven indienen. Op deze manier wordt de game niet alleen beter, maar ook duurzaamer en efficienter bij het ‘overbrengen’ van autorijden kennis en vaardigheden.

http://www.autotheorieles.com/