Echo Software Systems - warehouse managment systems, inventory control, fulfilment, warehouse information network

By: Echo Software Systems  09-12-2011

Warehouse Information Network

Almost all current Warehouse Management Systems are based on standalone, in-house type of systems; some older systems are even without a central database. Newer ones are based on Client-Server technology which have a limited number of licenses and lock to one operating system and proprietary technology. The biggest problems with those solutions are:

To overcome those limitations we used new tools and technologies based on the general idea of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). Our main goals are:

We achieved that by using new, emerging technologies. Throughout the whole project Open Source tools were used to reduce cost and more importantly, to remove the "vendor lock". Using Open Source tools also increased the stability of the system. Technologies that are geared towards web computing were utilized as well - our program can run on any device supporting a web browser, including smart phones. All the technologies described above are incredibly new and are changing rapidly, as such, we had to evaluate many new tools, and decide which of those are suitable. Then we had to develop inter connectivity between different technologies, such as: SQL databases, web interfaces and barcode scanners. We also had to develop network connectivity with various 3-party information providers, for example: Fedex, UPS and Purolator. We evaluated various programming languages to do that (PHP, Python, SQL scripts, Java Script, etc.). Various Web development frameworks and technologies (Fusebox, Zend, Zope, Pylons, Django and many more) were also evaluated. Because of the nature of the interface (web 2.0) we also had to assess various JavaScript libraries and toolkits like jquery, dojo, mochikit, and many more. Since all these technologies are so new and constantly developing, we have to adjust our development plans to deal with the tremendous speed of the changes and improvements. One of the biggest challenges is integrating all the technologies in a seamless way while at the same time keeping them current.

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