A story that will surprise from down under...

The University of NSW Faculty of Medicine has developed an in-house student management system, dubbed eMed, which has remained cost competitive with commercial software for seven years and is now being extended into the Web 2.0 paradigm.

As the core internal undergraduate application for some 1500 students across six years, eMed has iterated through several major releases.

IT manager Luc Betbeder said there was nothing that "spoke our language" available in the market in 2003 to 2004 that supported the undergraduate capabilities the way the faculty needed and "those systems are just gaining credibility".

"It has handled re-skinning, Web 2.0 style refreshing, user-consumable content and just iterated along as the platform gave a lot of flexibility," he said. "The apps has a lot of Java views and great use of Javascript."

With the application designed to be service-oriented from the start, the faculty has been able to extend its functionality by integrating it with other internal and public systems.
eMed ties into the university's authentication system for single sign-on, and the general practitioner placement app is tied to Google Earth, so students can choose placement based on selection criteria and location.
And what is the great mysterious flexible integrated and open application written on?
The application is developed with Lotus Domino and consists of individual databases with specific requirements all "loosely tied together".

Betbeder says the Notes development environment has been good for mixing open source and commercial products, which add to the flexibility of the application. ...

The Eclipse development environment is used and objects can be plugged into it and the faculty also built its own Dojo-like JavaScript frameworks.

With the equivalent of one full-time developer working on it, Betbeder says the cost to maintain it is minimal and: "Part of our toolbox of skills is Lotus development skills and Notes admin skills."
Success stories like these are extremely powerful.  Almost every Notes customer has one.  The more you share -- through ibm.com case studies, IBM references, business partner success stories, and/or the press -- the more the market awareness of Notes/Domino's incredible application engine is raised.  We all almost take it for granted, since this has always been a core strength of Notes/Domino.  But an article like this serves as a powerful reminder of ways to amplify the message, starting with a solution and then describing how to get there rather than other way around.

Link: Techworld: Home grown eMed app gets Web 2.0 refresh > (thanks, Marty)

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