Xamarin! It’s an amazing technology that is getting off the charts because of the endless possibilities it provides regarding mobile development. It’s sole purpose is to bring three opposing markets in one place: iOS, Android and Windows Phone. And we must say, it does a great job at it!
Xamarin is able to produce code that is reusable between three completely different platforms, together with the option of publishing your Xamarin developed app on Play Store, App Store or Windows Store. Bringing C#/.NET at the doors of mobile development, it also includes integration with Visual Studio, which makes the transition to mobile development smooth and easy. It produces fully compliant .NET Portable Class Libraries, which are reusable between 3 completely different platforms. That saves up on development time, increases the productivity and opens 3 different markets, while allowing the “ordinary” user to have access to the application on a operating system based on his own personal preferences.
Well, if you are reading until now, you can definitely feel our excitement regarding Xamarin.
It was some time ago, when we decided to get on the “Xamarin train wagon” and we did our math budget wise, the time needed for R&D, the topics on that we would touch on first. On paper it looked pretty amazing, since we had developers that were experienced in C#/.Net, we had the time and most important we had a team that was extra motivated to “dive into” all that Xamarin as a technology brings, meanwhile taking into consideration not only the benefits, but also the challenges that would arise from starting our brand new mobile department.
Even though we have hit some obstacles on our way, we managed to get to a point of time when our mobile development goes as smooth as it can be.
We have defined the guidelines for architecture, optimization, the tools that we are using. We are able to make estimation of the time needed to develop, as much as we are able to estimate the R&D time. Yes, we still need R&D time, Xamarin has a bit of a learning curve, and not only that, but we do try use the Xamarin benefits to the maximum in order to provide the best features we can for our clients. Not only that, but we try to “dig in” into the Xamarin universe as deep as we can, so we can come on top with even better solutions for them and cool new add-ons that are compliant with their vision.
Until now, we have touched on Xamarin.Android, Xamarin.IOS and of course the infamous Xamarin.Forms. Xamarin.Forms is perfect for “basic” features and it allows the developers to produce code for the 3 platforms at a rate of 90% re-usability. And don’t let the “basic” part of our sentence fool you, Xamarin. Forms is damn well powerful devil. Still, when you really need to go into the native features of Android or iOS you have to go on a little bit of a different route using “pure” Xamarin.Android and Xamarin.iOS. And still even in this case, the percent of the code that we are able to reuse between the platforms goes very far depending on the requirements.
The Xamarin learning curve
We would recommend Xamarin for teams that are familiar with the .NET technologies. It is very easy to transition from .NET/C# development to Xamarin development. The syntax is completely same, so if you have developed in C#, the only thing that differs from the “usual” development for you is going to be the phone components that you need to add. But even for this, you can find thousands of “recipes” online and furthermore, you can check out the solutions made for the native platforms(Android, iOS) and just “translate” them to fit into the Xamarin world.
The thing that nobody wants to talk about
How does Xamarin fits into my architecture? Think ahead!
Think of the mobile(Xamarin) part of your application as just the top layer from your application. When you start developing look at the bigger picture. If you are doing a web site for your client, go Web API all the way! Why? Xamarin applications should be “dum”. They should not have crazy logic nested inside them, so you need to use our favorite programming approach ever, that has the most romantic acronym ever, KISS(keep it simple, stupid!). You don’t want to kill the phone battery, and loose on performance when writing an app in Xamarin. So the “dumber” you make the app, the better! So, where does the web API fits into this story? If you are starting a web site for your client, and you plug a web api, that is the same api you can consume in the following Xamarin app. The BLL is the same, the DAL will be the same in most cases, so you will be able to reuse the same architecture you have previously created, and just “plug in” your Xamarin app on top of it!
Testing my app, how and what are we working on at the moment
Go out buy all the phones on market and get the biggest QA department ever! We scared you with the previous sentence didn’t we? Take a deep breath, there are better solutions for this don’t worry. First and foremost, you will have problems with different versions of OS(especially in the Android domain) and different brands of phones. That’s okay and it is expected. One way to cover this is to use the Xamarin Test Cloud. This will allow you to test on remote real devices and you can test on different versions, sizes and brands of phones. And this is what we are working on at the moment. Manually deploying your app on the test cloud is not good enough for us. For every department we have implemented automated deployment and this will be the case for the mobile apps also! We are currently working to have an automatic deploy on the test cloud on every “push” of the new version of our app. As you have seen until now, we are all about time saving!
So to sum things up in the end.. We do strongly recommend Xamarin for mobile development. It is the way to go from simple apps, to more complex apps, since you have the option to go “native” with Xamarin.Android and Xamarin.iOS. We urge you to give it a chance if you have a team that has been working in .NET and you want to go mobile, use Xamarin if you want to dive into multi platform mobile development and use Xamarin if you want to save up on time. And if you are seeing this from the other side(the “client side”, as in you want to hire somebody to develop a mobile app or a web site for you), we recommend think ahead! If you want to have a web site, ask the team to use a web api! We can easily plug a Xamarin app on top of it. If you want only a mobile app, keep in mind that the architecture from developing the Xamarin app can be used to develop a web site, an admin site so that you can manage the users better and expand your app into something bigger.
Although Xamarin itself has a lot of room for improvement, we do believe in the benefits of using them and the capability of our team.
Thank you for reading and hopefully we managed to clear some of the doubts you had about mobile development with Xamarin. Have a nice day!
photo by: DesignCue
Are you self driven?
If you happen to be a developer, working on your own startup idea and you believe in it so strong that you did not apply for an investment, than we are looking for you. And we don’t want to ask a share in your idea, but to offer you a job. Part time. A part time job that will help you cover your living costs while working on your prototype, MVP, or whatever your dream project looks like.
Why would we be interested in entrepreneurs?
People with ideas.
[Edit] Self driven people with *good* ideas and talent are rare.
And precious. Nowadays this type of people cannot be bought. The free and open world we live in gives too many opportunities for you to be captured by a house loan in a 35 year dull job. That’s why us, employers should be flexible with offers in order to attract the talented.
Why would you be interested in working for us?
It is very often a non sense for software developers to be working for somebody else. Why investing your time working for clients, while you can be creating “the next Instagram”, going to the beach, or dance, or sleep. The other side of the coin is that knowledge, inspiration and ideas are carried primarily by people. So working alone or with one or two people you already know so good is often not the best formula for self improvement. Environment is important.
What do we have to offer?
While freelancers usually end up working on “Home, About us, Contact us” pages, we work on projects that do actually challenge your mind and involve a more complex logic. The agile methodology applied in Vox Teneo and the best practices applied reflect the professional development of our employees.
We offer flexible working hours. And flexible amount of hours per week. Jumping on board with us will give you the freedom to continue working on your own project, ideas, bucket list or whatever you are involved with that makes you happy.
If you are interested, apply here: firstname.lastname@example.org
We have :
- A SQL table with records corresponding to files
- The files stored in a folder of the filesystem
The table contains information about the files like :
To search in the files, the system needs to use the information stored in the table and the files content. The system returns only the files containing the keyword searched for but the files are also filtered depending of the information stored in the table. (Only the valid documents in a selected language).
In the past, for multiple customers, index server (after renamed indexing service) was used to index the file contents.
In MSSQL server, it’s possible to query the index server in a SQL query with those concepts :
- Linked servers (to create a link between SQL server and Index server)
- Openquery (to query the index server catalog)
All the search are done using stored procedures combining all those elements.
I propose to work with the Full text search functionality proposed by SQL server. A constraint of this system is that all the files must be stored in the database. But in the last versions of SQL server, it’s possible to store only a link to the file stored in the filesystem. This solution avoids a too big database.
How to put this solution in place?
- Activate the Full text search
- Enabling FILESTREAM on an existing instance
- Enabling FILESTREAM on an existing database
- For each table:
- Enabling FILESTREAM on an existing table
- Creating a full text index on the new column
- Populating the new columns
- Updating the SP
Earlyer this month our very first Seattle based client, Milkana Brace an entrepreneur, angel investor and start-up adviser payed a visit to our Macedonian office. It was great pleasure having her here for almost two full weeks and collaborate on the exciting education technology project, she is working on.
The importance of empathetic leadership
One could feel Milkana’s significant experience in the tech industry and management of teams through the working process. The fact that she has become Senior Director twice in her career already speaks for itself.
Staying thoroughly empathetic, understanding the problems the development team encounters and helping us progress with ideas and flexibility made her a priceless consultant. The team was totally inspired working with a knowledgeable leader that not only requires, but also gives. The results are on their way.
The old school approach of sending the requirements and fixing the deadlines simply doesn’t work when creative work has to be done. Work where the value is not the quantity, but the quality.
Choosing the right technology
Those of you, involved with software development for sure know what “an obsolete technology” means for the performance of the platforms and motivation of the teams.
The project is a Xamarin mobile application. It is a technology we started investing in since the beginning of this year, because we believe that it is going to become the byword for mobile development in the coming years. Obviously we are not the only company that believes in the technology, since in February 2016 Microsoft acquired them.
Live communication in times of virtual reality
Another thing that was done right: we have met and worked together live.
The internet tools we all use today: documents with shared editing rights, chat platforms, design sharing platforms, facilitate the distant collaboration and this is unbelievable, making us location and time free. At this very moment I am collaborating with people in the office in a few tabs of my browser open. It happens that I work all day with somebody, here in the office and not to meet her at all. It would have been hardly possible to be in Skopje and work on a project in Seattle if the state of global communication was not at this level.
For the past 10 years, I have been constantly seeing titles like “How to avoid unproductive meetings” written from people annoyed by the corporate culture and structures and “live spam”. It was so cool to hate meetings that it became a trend (at least in my business environment). One could easily slip and start to hate meetings in general.
The truth is, online you would never benefit of the energy exchange when people meet and share ideas live. The non-verbal stream of communication carries so much information that cannot be transmitted digitally. One look, one smile, one sigh can totally change the direction of the thoughts and ideas. The small talks in the kitchen and at lunch also do impact the direction taken, and I am sure in a positive manner. The sterility of online communication keeps things clear when in pure production mode, but if inventing and shaping the idea itself it is better to go live.
To sum up, the value added at the price of the travel cost is definitely a good investment.
We at Voxteneo as a web development company follow the agile software development paradigm and what better way to obtain cross-functionality and flexibility than committing to the S.O.L.I.D principles. In software development the best way to the finish line is rarely a straightforward sprint. In most cases a careful pace, consisted of steps composed of additional principles and implementation goals, is required. What these principles provide is moving towards a loosely coupled code that operates cohesively and encapsulates the needed business logic.
“What does S.O.L.I.D stand for?”
The Single responsibility principle regards the creation of classes during the design phases of an application and identifying the correct responsibilities of each class requires a great deal of understanding of the application’s business logic. Designing the architecture in this manner will ensure that when changes need to be made regarding certain business rules, they won’t break the code in different places.
The Open-Closed Principle indicates how a system can be extended by modifying the behavior of individual classes, without having to modify the class itself. As the principle dictates, software entities should be open for extension, but closed for modification. This helps you create well-encapsulated, highly cohesive systems. There is a funny analogy regarding this principle, it states “Open chest surgery is not required when putting on a coat.” Meaning, we as programmers should not risk altering core functionality to add a simple feature and potentially compromise data integrity.
Liskov Substitution Principle states that objects in a program should be replaceable with instances of their subtypes without altering the correctness of the program. This principle says that you should not violate the intent or semantics of the abstraction that you are inheriting from or implementing. That is why you model your classes based on behaviors not on properties and model your data based on properties and not on behaviors. With this knowledge in hand, evaluating LSP adherence can be a great tool in determining when composition is the more appropriate mechanism for extending existing functionality, rather than inheritance.
The Interface Segregation Principle helps to make your system easy to understand and use. It says that you should not force a client to depend on an interface that the client does not need. Many client-specific interfaces are better than one general-purpose interface. In other words, you should not have to implement methods that you don’t use. Enforcing ISP gives you low coupling, and high cohesion.
“The Dependency Inversion Principle helps you to understand how to correctly bind your system together. It tells you to have your implementation detail depend on the higher-level policy abstractions, and not the other way around.” This principle could be rephrased as, use the same level of abstraction at a given level. When this principle is applied it means the high level classes are not working directly with low level classes, they are using interfaces as an abstract layer. As one analogy goes “Would you solder a lamp directly to the electrical wiring in a wall?”, that is a solution of course, but a rather impractical one, a better approach is to use a socket as an “interface” that is considered a contract for connecting appliances to the grid.
“Test, test, test!”
One might wonder, what is the ultimate benefit of following these principles?
Given there are a few benefits, but the most prominent one is testability.
In Agile development there is simply no way around it, practicing Test Driven Development is a must and there is no better way to obtain testable code than to follow these 5 principles. Highly cohesive, loosely coupled designs are testable. When dependencies can be replaced or stubbed out, you can test classes and methods in isolation from one another. The Single Responsibility and Interface Segregation principles enable this. Being able to mock or stub a dependency is a powerful and important technique, and it ultimately requires the Liskov Substitution principle and to a lesser extent, the Dependency Inversion principle.
“use composition over inheritance”
The lesson to be learnt here is that the road to stable development, that is prone to dynamic change in the business logic, is paved with “solid” blocks of tested quality and consistency. There are subtleties in the approach, but a general recommendation would be to most often use composition over inheritance. Bare in mind though that composition is not a panacea and a deeper analysis is required to decide whether it is to be used over inheritance. Composition over inheritance, however clichéd it has been as of lately in the web development community, it might just end up making our lives easier in the long run.
This WordPress presents products linked to water treatment. In addition to the different activities presented on the homepage, the website has a job section and a news section. A map shows their offices on the Contact page. The content can easily be managed through the administration – in two languages.
The problem : Your server crashed and you recover only the frm and idb files. If you have only the idb files, it works also but you need the SQL scripts with the DB structure.
Copying those files directly in the data directory of a new mysql server will not work. The process is a little bit more complex.
The resolution: It is good to know that table structures are store in .frm files, so the resolution of this problem is to recover those structures, to find the lost data or just recreate the tables. The concept of recovery the structure from a .frm file is really handful because in some cases the MySQL server is not necessary.
Process for recovering one table using .frm files
There are two different ways of recovering corrupted table
- Spawning a new MySQL instance and run structure recovery (Usage of the following switches is neede –server or –basedir along with –port)
- Recovery of a table without requirement of a MySQL instance (Usage of –diagnostic which reads the .frm files byte-by-byte and tries to recover all the information possible)
First way: Spawning a new MySQL instance and run structure recovery
Step 1: Recreate the structure from the frm files
To recreate the table structure, you can use the tool “mysqlfrm” provided with MySQL Utilities This tool extracts the structure and create a “Create table” script.
mysqlfrm –server=root:mypassword@localhost –port=3311 “<source/path>/mytable.frm” > “<destination/path>/recovered_mytable.sql”
The port instruction is any available port, it’s not the port of the mysql server. The end of the script is to redirect the output in a file.
Step 2: Recreate the table in a new database
In a new database, create the new table with the script generated at the step 1. This script will create 2 files in the database data folder :
Step 3: Remove the new idb file
To remove the new idb file, execute the sql command :
ALTER TABLE mytable DISCARD TABLESPACE;
This command removes the link between the table and the tablespace, and removes the idb file.
Step 4: Copy the old idb file
The idb file recovered from the old server must be copied in place of the idb file deleted at the step 3.
Step 5: Reactivate the table
The link broken at the step 3 is restored with the command :
ALTER TABLE mytable IMPORT TABLESPACE;
No worry about the warnings you will receive.
That’s it !
Second way: Recovery of a table without requirement of a MySQL instance
mysqlfrm –diagnostic “<source/path>/mytable.frm” > “<destination/path/recovered_mytable.sql>”
After the execution of the command finishes, all the recovered information for the table will be inside the “recovered_mytable.sql” file.
Steps 2, 3, 4 and 5 from above needs to be repeated in order to idb file be recreated.
Restoring mysql database table from .idb files only
If you have only the idb file from a table, you need the sql script to recreate the tables or at least the corrupted or broken table schema. Skip the step 1 and use the script in the step 2.
The topic of professional equality of sexes is frequently discussed. We decided to give away the statistic of our IT SME for those of you curious to know if IT is a “men’s world”
We remember times when professions were separated in mens and womens. Now it is really uncommon to find a job that is done strictly by one gender. Equality between the sexes has been a great issue for many people since we can remember, so we wanted to look at the facts, and see what the numbers say, at least in our offices. So, is there such a thing as a “guys job” or a “girl’s job”? Let’s see what the numbers say.
Vox Teneo right now has about 95 employees and the rate of M/F is about 70% to 30%.
This is just the rough chart that shows that there are a lot of female employees in our company but to go further down and see if there really is a thing like a “man’s job” we broke down the numbers of the employees by departments. Here is a table that will give you a rough idea of the numbers in % by departments.
The good news here is that we have at least one girl in every department, which is here to say the non ot the activities is a “man’s job”.
Would you share the statistics of your IT company?
One of the newest recruits is our first American born employee – Benjamin Reinhardt. He started in Vox Teneo in early 2016 as a Project Manager and he fitted in right away. Being the only US citizen in our company and not one of many that live in Belgium we wanted to see how does he like his new way of living and his new job.
Benjamin was born and raised in a small town in Pennsylvania. He lived there for the most part of his life and then moved to North Carolina for a short while, before moving to Belgium. He got a bachelor degree in Computer science from the university of Delaware but his life led him to a completely different career in one of the biggest French pharmaceutical companies where he met his now-wife. His biggest passions aside from his job were two main things: photography and racing cars which unfortunately he had to leave as a hobby when he moved to Belgium.
Moving to Belgium
Moving to Europe from the US Ben didn’t encounter many problems, except for couple things that came as a cultural shock for him… One is that shops close earlier and don’t work on Sundays in Brussels, and that Europeans do a really strange thing when it comes to food… They put mayonnaise on their french fries! Being used to a faster life back in the US, he took his time adjusting to his new environment, and the more slow-pace live in Belgium. However, his main concern was the language barrier. Only at a beginner level with French he was shy to speak publicly and often ran into problems in communication with people.
Getting in Vox Teneo
After a while in Brussels, Ben decided he was staying there so he started looking for a job and soon found Vox Teneo. Being a free spirited and open minded person he loves communication with people and solving problems so he applied for a Project Manager in our company. Of course his previous knowledge of Software engineering helped him a lot here. Now a really valuable member of the company and being a native English speaker he is always the go-to-guy when problems in communications occur.
Ben has been with us since early 2016 and he loves his new job and life in Belgium. In the past four months his French has significantly improved and now he has no trouble in communications with his colleagues and clients. He also just got married so he plans to stay in Brussels for a long run.
Vox Teneo is always on the look-out for new talents. Young and energetic people are always welcome to join our orders. We invest in our people and their advancement and training, so very often we hire juniors or trainees helping them learn and improve their skills.
We have new employees all the time but this one is special, being the first female candidate for the IT support position.
Aleksandra Toromanoska was just the right person to fit the profile we were looking for. Aleksandra is a young and energetic girl from Skopje. She has a passion for technologies and arts. She has very refined eye and talent for design and likes doing photography for fun in her spare time. A cool and relaxed person to hang out with, but very serious when it comes to work. She had the knowledge and the talent, she was only missing the experience so we decided to give her a chance. We provided her with the best “personal trainers”, our very own IT Support Team from Macedonia: Dragan, Ivan, Igor and Voislav. Aleksandra has still a lot to learn and prosper but so far she is doing amazingly good and she was quickly accepted by the whole team. She has brought new freshness and energy to our IT Support and she is now “one of the boys”.
We have launched a Facebook campaign in April 2016 that reached 35 000 people with 65,00 $ budget. This is not unusual for the platform. What was unusual is that not one single user reported us as spam…
What does creative concept means?
Internet has changed the game in advertising long time ago, but most of the brands still struggle to adjust. Emitting the message of the company is not the way to speak with people. Rarely somebody is interested in your monologue.
What we did is – we have opened ourselves to the audience. We have put the people in the lights of the projectors, because the people are our most important asset of Vox Teneo and chose to share the knowledge instead of hiding our know-how.
We are a global company and wanted to show our international face. Talented people from all the offices did participate in the campaign.
We wanted to show the different technologies we work with. That is why we have picked experts from different fields to be answering questions. Marjan from Macedonia, for example is a Drupal expert…
Oppie is a Belgian with Indonesian background, perfectly matching our international company culture….
Pierre was a difficult catch for our campaign. Like most project managers he is hard to reach, because of his tight and floating schedule of a problem solver operating on many fields.
Whisnu is experienced with e-commerce and Prestashop in particular. He is employed in our office in Bandung, Indonesia.
Eva is keen on technology. Apart from her JAVA expertise, she was also one of the first in the office to adopt Elastic search.
photo by Alex Jones.
How you got there doesn’t matter.
With all my respect to higher education, a degree mentioned in one’s CV has often as much to do with the professional skills as one’s looks. There is most probably a link between your white collar and your management skills, but having a white collar doesn’t make you a good manager.
In IT the link between the diploma and actual skills is even more loose. Not only the first does not lead to the other, but having great programming or project management skills does not depend on having the degree at all. You might be a self-educated gem that did not follow the classical old scheme:
Degree – > Experience – > Skills
But instead the more real life inspired pattern:
Urge to do something – > Self-education – > Skills
Because of this hiring philosophy, we are putting in our job ads as a requirement: a Degree OR experience equivalent
The best hires we have ever had were from people, who have proved they can deeply understand the problem. Years of experience, diplomas and awards are all welcome, but not that important for us. Our efforts during an interview are focused on getting to know what you can actually get done. For example, knowing how to structure a database in theory is important, but not enough to make it happen.
Like many other development companies, we have a four hour “Practical Test” in our recruitment procedure, when candidates can prove what they can actually do.
Some thoughts on higher education, circa 2016
(provoked by the suggested Google searches)
Well, it is worth it…
When living in a world of abundant information, the hard part is fighting back the chaos and picking the right road. And this is the point where the now-trending skill-oriented tutorials on the internet are not enough. The broader understanding of the matters helps you progress and know what to look for. And this is where the “learn alone” practice cracks. When alone “in the dark” it is hard to see the big picture and draw a road ahead. University is the best place to start getting oriented in a certain field. It is a magical place, gathering people with common interests and professors with all the time dedicated to tutor you. The priceless senior people in the companies would never have that much time for the younger employees.
…but learn to unlearn
Education can definitely help, but it is very likely that “education” will form thinking patterns you might need to unlearn after, because the environment transforms dynamically, because the education programs are often obsolete and mismatch with reality is probable. The first step towards unlearning is getting to know it is an option at all… “Question everything!”. And it is not about ceasing to use a certain tool for example, the problem might be much, much broader. Only deep understanding of the concepts you operate with will help you alter your thinking/working pattern.
There are no rules
The only rule is to get quality stuff done. What road brought you to the skills arsenal needed to be a .NET developer or Project Manager should be of no importance to the employers.
This Sunday Vox Teneo was attending the 20km of Brussels marathon. We are proud to say that all the members from our team managed to finish the race.
The 20 km of Brussels is a marathon with a tradition of over 30 years and is held every year on the last Sunday of the month of May. This is not the first time that a team from Vox Teneo ran this marathon and it is also not the last. We want to make it our tradition and support this event for the years to come.
We are already starting our preparations for next year and we want to invite everyone to join in on the fun. See you next year at 20km of Brussels.
If you have never heard about Resonate, you can’t call yourself a geek. Resonate is conference/festival held every year in the beautiful Belgrade, Serbia. It provides an insight into the current developments in the fields of digital culture visual arts and music and it was THE place to be from the 12th to the 16th of April. This year Resonate was celebrating their fifth anniversary and we wanted in on the fun. Four brave soldiers from our ranks were sent to Resonate to steal the knowledge of the incredible lecturers and performers that were a part of Resonate. Our team was consisted of Stavros – Tech Lead Fron End Developer; Ljupco – Front End Developer; Ratko – PHP Developer and Jane – Communications Coordinator.
We can honestly say that we had a blast in Belgrade! From the inspiring lectures to the amazing performances to the beautiful sights of the city it was well spent four days. So for those of you who weren’t there, here is a short review of the things that happened on Resonate 2016.
Our day one started with Screenings in the beautiful big cinema in Kinoteka. The screenings were consisted of short videos including: Mapping videos, product presentations, short tips and tricks videos after which we moved to the Main Hall in Kolarac were we watched more extraordinary music videos.
The first lecture we attended was by Bethany Koby. She is as mom, CEO designer, educator and art director interested in creating brands, businesses and experiences that help imagine a more positive and collaborative future. Her presentation was named “Technology will save us”. She spoke about involving kids with technologies, aiming to spark their creativity with different DIY kits and games.
Next up was Sakchin Bessette from Moment Factory. He presented an amazing new project. An interactive forest. Moment Factory is a media and entertainment studio specializing in the conception and production of multimedia environments combining video, lighting, architecture, sound and special effect to create remarkable experiences. Since its inception in 2001, Moment Factory has created more than 300 events, shows and installations. Their latest project is placed in a forest where the creative use of lights and sounds makes for an incredible experience for the visitors. You can see more about this project Here.
We finished day one with the performance of Omar Souleyman. An Amazing artist and DJ who combines oriental sounds with amazing techno music which makes for a perfect combination!
Day two started with one of our personal favorite lecturers on this years festival. His name is Dan Hatt. Creative technologist, visual artist and VJ from Manchester (UK). While working as a research technologist for the BBC’s Research and Development UX group. His first lecture was on Object Oriented Video Broadcasting. Basically what they do is live stream events but it’s not really live. With the help of Primer (the software they use) they can broadcast live events with a small, almost not noticeable delay which helps a lot with having a perfect stream with no errors, because they can rewind bits, censor, change cameras without even being present at the event and the people at home not noticing anything strange.
After Dan we attended a Pannel Discussion about Digital Art Festivals. On this discussion there were representatives of a couple of well known Digital Art festivals from across Europe. This included Marie du Chastel (KIKK), Jean-Emmanuel Rosten (Mirage), Jarl Schulp (FIBER). The representatives talked about their festival, presented photos and videos, explained their plans for the future of the festivals .
Next up was Patricio Gonzalez Vivo. He is and artist and engineer who uses code and light to turn data into stunning landscapes. His landscapes address the problem of scale and the development of technology to perceive beyond the world in front of us. Patricio’s landscapes are compositions of time and perception.
Day two finished with an incredible performance from Atau Tanaka. An amazing artist, performer, and has been Artistic Ambassador for Apple France, and was the first artist to become researcher at Sony Computer Science Laboratory Paris. He performed using hand bands which react on muscle movement. This reactions are transferred to his lap top via wi-fi or Bluetooth (he wouldn’t tell) and converted to sound. After his performance we met him “backstage” and saw that he is and amazing and inspiring person.
Our last day at Resonate was as amazing as the first two. On our way to Kinoteka we caught up with the Belgrade City Marathon, and a midday party on Brankov Most. But we couldn’t stay since we had lectures to attend to. The first lecture of the day was by Travis Kirton. Travis is the original author of C4, a creative coding-framework for animation, media and interaction on iOS. He has been producing costume software, installations, and has explored the merging of hardware and software systems in the context of cultural and spatial experience. He spoke about his beginnings and the birth of C4, how they decided to go with iOS only, and plans for the future of his work.
We finished our Resonate experience with Dan Hett once again. This time he spoke about his “other side”. The research technologist by day, Dan crates and performs large scale improvised live visuals and exhibitions, concerts and festivals by night. Dan performs with a really cool technique, “Livecoding”. He uses code to make crazy visual effects and he lets people see his code and as he says: “Livecoding is the truth” and “Livecoding kills posers”. Dan loves improvisations and almost never goes prepared to perform. He doesn’t keep any of his used materials and lets anybody use what he made. He goes with the “Do what you want with it licence”.
In conclusion our overall stay in Belgrade was wonderful. From the hostel we staid in to the venues for the conference we saw amazing places and met wonderful people. Resonate was an inspiring experience for all of us. We learned about the newest technologies and projects that are yet to hit the global markets. It was fun, but it had to come to and end. See you again Resonate, see you again Belgrade.
The organization Olivia Hendrickx Research Fund encourages innovative cancer research and organizes a Gala Concert on Monday the 1st of February 2016 at Brussels’ Palais des Beaux-Arts for its 15th anniversary.
The musical program will be performed by laureates Queen Elizabeth international competition accompanied by the Romanian Youth Orchestra, in the presence of Her Royal Highness Princess Astrid of Belgium. All revenues and gifts will entirely benefit their innovative cancer research projects.
Vox Teneo will attend the Gala and supports Olivia Funds, notably with the creation of their new website: http://olivia.be.
After developing CompanyWriters website and intranet in 2013, Vox Teneo now created a brand new design, more modern – and fully responsive!
This job search website assemble workers and companies – but also private people for little jobs. A private mail system allows a first contact before any job interview. Additionally, employers have an ad space allowing them to diffuse more information about their company. Realized in Drupal, this website possess a design both corporate and trendy !
Belnuc’s website is centered on its members and their information. They can subscribe, pay their fee online and are reminded if they aren’t in order. Moreover, they have access to different zones depending on their category – and they also see different search results! They can also manage their own documents.
In the back-end, the website is synchronizes with a FilemakerDB. It also generates barcodes automatically depending on the INAMI number, and generates IDs.
On the public part of the website, you can find an agenda, news feeds, a forum and videos online!
And because Vox Teneo always proposes the best, it is entirely responsive.
Indeed, since July, two intrepid developers from our PHP team are contributing to developing of the official core of Drupal 8 & Drupal Commerce!
The mission started on July the 6th, with a 3 days’ workshop leaded by Bojan, the main developer of the Drupal Commerce suite. During one month, both developers worked full time on the Durpal 8 core development and commerce modules, then switched to half-time for four months still ongoing.
This investment will allow our Drupal Team to have an even better understanding of the CMS. As always, Vox Teneo strives to be at the cutting edge of technology.
The family company wished to open a windows on their delicious artisanal products. Their WordPress is now online, presenting their products by category as well as a few recipes, to everyone’s pleasure!
User-friendly, this CMS allows them to keep their content up to date without any technical knowledge. And the website is accessible on mobile as well as on desktop!
The OVH World Tour of Bruxelles was a success. Lots of exchanges, lots of meetings, and a very interesting presentation by Vox Teneo about the OTAKeys project.
The scope of this recent, revolutionary project is to make disappear our car keys from our pockets – and to ease the vehicles sharing.
Indeed, OTAKeys developed a box connecting to the car’s OBD bus: the Keyzeebox. Through a smartphone app, the users has a virtual key. Which allows him to book, open, start, stop the car, then give it back.
The companies hence can give access to all their cars to all their collaborators!
Vox Teneo sometimes helped OTAKey’s developerse but mostly takes care of the hosting and infrastructure outsourcing, in OVH.
Such a project has pretty specific needs:
- High availability (critical application)
- Peak load resistance (300k cars managed within 2 years)
- Secure infrastructure (pirating the system would give access to the cars!)
Vox Teneo put in place solutions meeting those needs.
In addition to this project’s presentation, Vox Teneo could present its activities on a dedicated stand. A true success!
More feedback on OVH website.
DevOps in general and hosting in particular is one of Vox Teneo’s main concern. To provide our client with security, a stable environment and 24/7 monitoring.
This concern was noted, as we were chosen by OVH among all their partners to be part of the OVH World Tour! More specifically, we will be part of the event organized in Brussels the 22th of May, and present one of our realizations: Otakeys.
The World Tour itself started in February and will keep going until December in most of Europe and North America. In each country, OVH chooses a partner to accompany them in their specific organization in the country. As OVH puts it: “Our experts join forces to talk to you about your projects and introduce you to technical solutions which meet your needs. Professionals in all industries can benefit from feedback and talking to others about their business issues. The world tour is a special occasion for dialogue between OVH and its communities.”
More information about the event can be found on the OVH website.
This website, which also includes UFHJ’s intranet, is tailor-made to fit UFHJ’s needs. We choose together to use WordPress because of its user-friendliness: this CMS is easy to use even without any technical knowledge.
The content itself has been thought to make it easy to share information, especially on the intranet. The private area allows to centralize specific documentation for their business and conversation on precise topics through the forum. If a member is available for a job, he can even publish his CV online!
Moreover, as pointed out recently, it is important for a website to be available on any device. We hence made sure UFHJ would be easily browsable on computer and on mobile.
Yesterday, Google changed its algorithm – and, for once, the main update has been announced officially: mobile-friendly websites will be favored if you do your research on a mobile device.
This algorithm is how Google decides the order of his results when someone types a research. Depending on the content of your website, its structure, etc., it will be considered more or less relevant.
And usually, it is secret. Google wants its result to reflect reality. They protect the information for the webmaster not to trick the system into increasing artificially the relevance of his website (the very essence of SEO).
Mobile results for mobile devices
This time, however, Google let people know that mobile-friendly devices would be showing up first when one makes a research on a mobile device. The point being to direct the user to websites which he will be able to browse on the device he is currently using.
Then again, mobile devices usage has been increasing exponentially those last few years. In the US, it even exceeded PC usage!
Vox Teneo goes mobile
Proposing to its clients a mobile version of their website or a responsive design was already part of Vox Teneo’s goals in 2014. The shift is visible: the vast majority of the website accessible to public produced by Vox Teneo are mobile-friendly.
You want your website to become mobile? We would be glad to help. Don’t hesitate to ask for a quote!
We can wish a happy birthday to Vox Teneo Macedonia, which just hit its first year of life today. The team evolved quite a lot since it started – for the best!
Starting at 5 people, VTM now includes 23 employees. Involved in about 30 projects for the past year, VTM focused on building specific skills. Those were declined into 5 teams that can basically fulfill any clients’ wish: PHP, C&S, .NET, Python and Infrastructure.
In PHP, VTM specifically focused on Drupal, creating not only a team but starting a Drupal Community in Macedonia!
With all those fact after only one year, we can be sure VTM will keep growing, always bringing new skills and technologies into Vox Teneo Group.
Because our clients’ websites are visited everywhere in the world, they must be available at any hour. Our Belgian, Macedonian and Indonesian teams take turns for us to propose a permanent service. Someone is always there to provide solutions.
This isn’t the only service proposed by our DevOps team. Like all our solutions, your infrastructure is tailor-made to fit your needs: SLA, security management, monitoring…
We manage the technique so you can focus on your business.
Spring makes people cheerful and boosted. And it shows: lots of projects emerged! There is something for everyone…
TCR – this corporate-designed Prestashop E-commerce synchronizes with TCR’s ERP through a tailor-made solution
IDAY – a flexible WordPress CMS allows this associative organization to present its activities
Arsia – this Django platform interconnects with several databases in a complex synchronization system
Fields of Knowledge Biopharma – a tailor made events and trainings calendar with a world map and a precise filtering system. The image, the logo and all prints were done by Vox Teneo.
Ewon – based on Drupal CMS, this very trendy website presents their cutting-edge products and their success stories
Afreximbank – this import-export African bank asked for an intranet solution as well as a modern, user friendly website. They adopted WordPress with much satisfaction
One year ago, Vox Teneo Belgium moved in its new offices: a lovely manor in Limal, Brabant Wallon. However, there was still a lot of work to do…
Ever since, we invest quite some time in order to personalize, to give the place its specific “Vox” touch – and, for all intended purposes, this is a success.
Vox offices offer a private parking, lots of green, a quiet place for everyone to focus on work. But also some fantasy, with touches of Vox orange in most rooms.
With its original wooden panel and parquet floor, the place mixes new technologies with simplicity, efficiency, fitting Vox’s values.
This is Vox Teneo.
Gazelle Awards – Vox teneo is in for the Brabant Wallon and appears in 5th position in the “small companies” category.
The word “Gazelle” comes from Persian and means elegant and quick!
For the positioning, 3 criteria were taken into account: sales revenue, cash-flow, employment.
The classification was done by summing the company’s position in each category (in absolute and relative values both). The winning company is then the one with the smallest score -or the highest rating.
This classification of the most performant companies in each province also puts forward our client Ewon: this company wins the gazelle for medium enterprises. We share this good news and send our contragulations! Thank you to Trends magazine for this initiative.
Vox Teneo developed a WordPress website for this Belgian inventor who received Eureka award of innovation in 2006. His invention? An easy and intelligent way to reinforce houses against earthquakes. And it’s all duty free! Everything is on the website…
The new Adessa WordPress is online since this very afternoon! This SAP company’s website has now a professional, optimistic design. News are available as well as a social networks’ links in the footer. The whole content is of course manageable through the administration panel, since WordPress CMS has been adapted to make Adessa fully independent!
Belgian Cuberdon eshop just opened yesterday, and you really should take a look: it’s classy design puts forward quite well the sweetness of this Belgian specialty. As for features, the Prestashop is multilingual and responsive, and its homepage slider is touch sensitive!
Step one of MoveZone’s new website is now online: a frontend website much more dynamic than their old one! MoveZone is a Brussels’ gym near Ixelles’ cemetary, and they wanted to redynamize their design as well as transform their old website into a CMS in order to be able to update its content themselves.
On those points, it’s a success!
Step two, in a few weeks, will be to integrate the online booking for their badminton fields.
Here are the brave ones who were at the race’s start line this Saturday! Indeed, Vox Teneo participated this year at the 20km of Brussels. Everything was there: the great tshirts, a beautiful sun, and of course the good mood!
And also the results: 1h28 is our best time, thank you François!
See you next year?
Already present in Asia and West Europe, Vox Teneo now explores Eastern Europe expending market with the opening, a few weeks ago, of Vox Teneo Macedonia.
This little team has its offices right in Skopje centrum. They already welcome five people since April! Ideally located in a cozy neighborhood, they are only at one minute walking distance from City Park and less than 10 seconds away from one of the most popular restaurants in the Macedonian capital: “Skopski Merak”.
Vox Teneo was attracted by the welcoming investment environment in Macedonia and its policy of development in the field of information and telecommunication technologies to start a new branch of the company in Skopje. The capital of Macedonia is perfectly located in the heart of the Balkans, opening opportunities for Vox Teneo to take advantage of not only the work force, but also the market of Eastern Europe.
VTM currently concentrates on Open Source project and adapts quickly to Vox Teneo methodologies. Being in contact with Belgium and Indonesia motivates the team a lot – something that would have been impossible only ten years ago!
Let’s wish them welcome in Vox Group… and good work!
Vox Teneo already created the previous website of this financial company. Old and static, it needed a complete redesign!
The new website is now a WordPress CMS which allows Stratego Finance to manage themselves the whole content (images and text both). Additionnally, the design is much more modern, clean and quiet like they wanted it:
Don’t hesitate to visit their website!
Taggtic is a new agency which seek to bring together employers and jobseekers. We just put online their brand new website this very week! It uses a Django CMS and allows you to post your CV directly or apply through Linked in or Viadeo.
The website is multilingual (FR/EN) and integrates last tweets and Facebook posts on its homepage. A big slider allows the administrator to put forward Taggtic strong points.
Go and visit the brand new website!
Since the very first page, you have a big visual and last news as well as incoming events showing. The international nature of this public employment association is put forward by an interactive map and the members’ list (which includes Actiris, the Forem and VDAB!).
Additionnally, the workflow of the website allows members to update their own information, moderated by the administrator. WAPES’ staff is of course included by several determined roles which allows them to either write or publish content.
We are very glad of the success of this project! Thank you to the whole team and to WAPES’ staff!
This Monday, Vox Teneo presented Cremagest to thirty funeral directors coming from Lille, Herlie, Uccle and Watterlos. The application allows to manage, online, their booking to the crematoriums.
Cremagest had a lot of success with its disponibility (online 24/7), its possible access through mobile devices and its real time information update.
The application allows the funeral directors to print and upload documents, to consult plannings of the several crematoriums members and to administrate their users. Therefore, a better organization to offer to families a quality service with reduced paperwork.
Vox Teneo participated to the development of a webtool allowing to calculate the carbon emission depending on different levers’ evolution (industry, behavior, etc.). Five key scenarios are proposed to the users, who can also modify then to see the impact of each lever on the emissions’ evolution.
This tool, coded in Ruby on Rail, is mostly based on the UK model developed by the DECC. Responsive, it adapts dynamically the shown graphs to the values given to the levers and shows additional information on mouse over.
All the calculations are based on the information collected by Climact, among actors of the included sectors and others. Those results will be the starting point to elaborate the Belgian politics on carbon emission (federal and sub-federal levels). The tool will also be presented by Belgium to the other State European members during the future negotiations about the field (for example in Warsaw).
Vox Teneo is very proud to help to protect the climate of tomorrow!
If you want more information:: http://www.climat.be/2050/
A brand new design for Audi e-shop is now online, by Vox Teneo! Multilingual, the website is also fully responsive and its clean design is quite adapted to the brand’s mood. A big slider presents the last news on homepage and each product has its own presentation page, with also details available directly in the customers’ cart!
It’s been a while, but here it is: a brand new website for Vox Teneo! You can also note a small change in the logo font, because Vox Teneo, while keeping its identity, always wants to stay on the cutting edge.
This new website is fully responsive, that’s to say, it is available on mobile and desktop both. Mobile? Yes: for tablet and smartphones!
Moreover, we have intregrated all our posts in social networks into our news, as you can see; but also a google map full screen and several smart features like last news automatically put in the footer or infinite scroll on news page.
Bruyerre’s e-shop has been put online, second part of our contract with Bruyerre which already have a WordPress. This Prestashop is linked with a logistician who manages stock and deliveries. It includes a Paypal solution.
Cawe/Induro’s Prestashop is online. It’s our first multishop (one shop for Cawe, one for Induro, with only one administration for both). Moreover, it has a mobile version!
A new WordPress online today : Aenergyes’ website, presenting the activities of this consulting company specialized in environment, energy and sustainable development.
Very simple, this website has a specific design, tailored to the client’s request of not having any visual. It includes administrable pages and news as well as the possibility to add tags on both.
The new website of the “Enfants d’Aleth” has been put online this morning, remplacing advantageously their previous one thanks to a very professional design. It will allow this association which helps the poors to improve its image and to bring it closer to their reality.
Multilingual, the website includes a share system for social networks and an online donation tool, but also a customizable slider and a specific system to post news and press.
A new mobile app has been developped by Vox Teneo, for Audi!
This satisfaction form was specifically created to run on I-pad tablet devices. Its clean and precise design was thought to ease its utilization by any profile. Moreover, it allows to send all the collected data to a centralized database.
Running on three languages, its local statistics are directly available to the administrators who can also customize the questions.
Lobet‘s website is online since the begining of the week!
This WordPress website contains a personnalized slider, news appearing on homepage and the management of displayed products. A contact form allows the users to order online.