Unique Web Services
Office: (631) 378-5920
FAX: (631) 514-3261
There’s An App For That… We Wrote It!

Anyone who has ever had to replace an older computer with a brand new one knows how frustrating it can be to get everything back running the way it used to. This is chiefly do the fact that once you upgrade your operating system, everything else in your computer will invariably require updates, patches and tweaking to work properly again.

Updating a printer driver is fairly easy, depending on the age of the printer, and most software, if it’s still being published, will have versions that can run on your new OS, but what about software that is no longer being published?

This is where our story begins. A client who was reluctant to give up their XP systems (understandably so), was forced by circumstance to order new machines running Windows 8. As part of the migration to this brave new operating system, preparations were made to identify and obtain every update and upgrade for all existing software and hardware. It was then that an obscure piece of software was found on one of the machines for which no installer could be located. An exhaustive investigation revealed that the original publisher was bought by a rival company and the product line was later dropped.

This modest application did one thing and it did it really well. Without requiring a lot of effort, attention or maintenance, it produced neat and accurate proposals for the types of jobs our client regularly bids on. This simple function was the centerpiece of the office workflow and had to be migrated to the new environment. Since it could not be upgraded or reinstalled, a new solution was required.

Recreating the program’s functions in Word and Excel would have resulted in an awkward workflow with too many potential points of failure. Purchasing a brand new product would have too steep a learning curve. Rewriting the program, while not the cheapest solution, would recreate the existing workflow, be more efficient and ensure system compatibility as the environment evolves.

Our engineers got to work recreating the program based on user input, screenshots and printed output from the old program. During the development of the new solution, our team was able to optimize several functions and introduce a few new ones. Once the prototype was completed, our design team whipped up a sleek interface and branded it with our client’s logo. Following some minor tweaking and an updated printer driver, the new program was in place. To our clients’ delight, our solution was actually easier to use and more efficient than the previous one.

Technology is complicated and humans use it to do complicated things. At UWS, our goal is to simplify the way technology is used so that our clients can accomplish more and scratch their heads less.

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