Monday, January 13, 2014

Introducing our weekly blog

Let me introduce Intermesh, a small company in the Netherlands that develops business software since 2003. We mainly develop Group-Office groupware and CRM (See the first post). Apart from that we also develop tailor made software. We stand for:
  • Easy and useful software
  • Great and fast support
  • Long term customer relationships
  • Fair pricing
In this blog I want to write about the challenges we face in our company every week on Monday. We hope that readers will learn from it, or that we learn from our readers comments!

I want to start with some topics about the software we use on our Desktops and why. Choosing the right software for your company is very important and can be difficult. There's so much software around it can be confusing. In this post I'll quickly run by the software we've chosen to use most and go more in depth in future posts.

LAMP

Short for Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP. That's what we use on our server platform since the beginning and it never failed us! Of course everything has it's drawbacks. But we'll get to that in a future post.
  • Linux is the operating system that's very stable and secure.
  • Apache is the most popular web server for Linux.
  • MySQL is a very fast and free database server that supports the most features on Linux.
  • PHP is a very flexible programming language for web applications that's widely used. Because of it's popularity it's easy to find programmers and learning material. Everything you need is available on the web.

Ubuntu Desktop

We use Ubuntu on our desktops as operating system. Why? Because all of our web applications run on Debian Linux, it makes sense to develop in a similar environment. Because Ubuntu is derived from Debian Linux, they are very much alike. When our programmers use Ubuntu every day, they will feel at home on a Debian server as well. In our company all programmers have multiple roles. They all do programming, software deployment and handle customer support. That's why they need to know how a Linux system works because our customer use it on their servers too.

Netbeans IDE

Netbeans is the editor we use to code PHP, Java and Javascript. We have some requirements in our editors:
  1. Syntax highlighting
  2. Code completion
  3. Navigating through code
  4. Subversion version control support
Netbeans proved to be the most user friendly editor that has all these features and runs them fast.

Subversion

All of our code is stored in our subversion repository. This makes it easy to maintain our releases, review code history and work in branches. Lately Git has become more and more popular. But I believe that when you develop code in your company with your own developers it makes much more sense to use subversion. In another post I'll do a comparison.

Pencil

When we are making quotes or project descriptions, screen mockups can be very useful and clear. We use pencil to create screen mockups for software development projects.

Group-Office

Of course! We use our own software for all the features it supports:
  1. E-mail
  2. Calendar
  3. Projects
  4. Mobile sync
  5. Customer Relation Management
  6. Support tickets
  7. etc.

This are the main software packages we use on the desktop. We'll go in depth in future posts and we'll write about the server software too so stay tuned!

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