Software Development Services
Expert project management, cutting edge software, and
LimeLeap has built its reputation by developing mission centric data and process management systems, as well as rich websites. We have delivered these capabilities to non-profit and for-profit organizations for nearly 15 years, and are specialists in web application development. Combining our design experience with our application technology, LimeLeap creates systems that benefit our clients in measurable ways over the long term.
Building custom software doesn't mean starting from scratch. Most information management solutions use a combination of databases, web forms, work flows, business rules and aggregate reporting to accomplish specific goals. Our data management platform, LeapSeed, includes toolsets to service those goals, which we use to assemble and configure your exact solution.
The clear advantage here is that we use solid, scalable, well-tested components in use by thousands of people, without having to start from zero. We use Microsoft and industry standard components to build custom online and mobile solutions. We also follow rigourous development and testing processes to address common custom development problems - cost overruns, security concerns, stability under heavy loads, usability, not to mention getting it right.
Effective solutions are more than just checklists of functionality. Effective solutions reflect your business, and they present the activities you need, in the way you need them, at the right time. To achieve this, we’ve adopted a software development model that focuses as much attention on you and your business as it does on developing the solution. This model embraces SCRUM as our project management method, and LeapSeed, our free data management platform, as the technology foundation of the systems we build.
Both the streamlined project management and the technology platform have a single mission: to enable us to spend more time getting to know your organization and producing an application that can serve you effectively.
Our process begins by performing an upfront, high-level analysis in coordination with AHRI staff to document your goals, and all of the necessary functionality to meet them. After this analysis, the requirements are broken down into short (2 week) bursts of work called sprints. Detailed requirements are gathered by LimeLeap’s project manager prior to the start of each sprint, followed by development and testing efforts to build that functionality.
During a sprint, the project manager and the developers briefly meet every morning to ensure everything is on schedule and determine if requirements are clear. After every sprint, LimeLeap’s project manager then meets with the appropriate stakeholders to review the functionality that has been built, and to gather feedback.
LimeLeap’s use of SCRUM methodology allows you to offer your feedback early and often. Only after you’ve reviewed our work, do we jump back in for another sprint and focus on your next set of priorities. Your prioritization, decisions, and feedback become as crucial and as necessary to the project as our development and testing.
LimeLeap’s project management methodology also requires clear and consistent communication between LimeLeap and our clients.
What you can expect from us What we expect from our clients
- A clear project plan
- Bi-weekly discussions about status and priorities
- Regular Demos.
- Time to watch demos
- Priorities and feedback
- Choices on which items will make it into the project and which ones will be left for a future effort
- End User testing
Our Technology: The LeapSeed Platform
Outside of project management methodologies, Agile development demands tooling and frameworks to insure stable, flexible, and scalability systems. To this end, LimeLeap offers our LeapSeed (http://www.leapseed.com) data and content management platform free to our customers.
This platform runs on .NET 4.5 and SQL Server 2008+, as well as Microsoft SQL Azure, and is the basis for well over 120 system deployments. LeapSeed consists of five core pieces of technology.
This toolset provides interfaces for adding, editing, deleting, searching, reporting, importing, and exporting records from any mapped SQL Server table. Intelligent forms can be created that incorporate database fields, HTML content, file upload slots and storage areas, business rules, and workflow processes.
Data Manager has been used over the years to facilitate access to databases containing millions of records in a controlled configurable fashion. A fully functional tool can be stood up against a multilevel database structure without engaging in any coding, and provide access to important data secured via a group rights configuration.
In addition, Data Manager includes mobile optimized interfaces for searching, adding, editing, and deleting data from any database.
Data Manager isn’t strictly a no-code tool; for truly custom functionality, it ships with a fully documented custom coding model allowing for clean creation of additional business logic through Visual Studio.
Read more about Data Manager here.
For advanced systems, particularly those involving accreditation and certification, data collection is only part of the solution. That is why LeapSeed includes a robust workflow engine that integrates into its Data Manager forms. With this toolset, submitted data can become a living document that is shuttled between stakeholders, who can submit addition information and supply approvals.
Process Manager workflows can also be multi-threaded, allowing multiple users to complete tasks for a process at the same time.>
Read more about Process Manager here.
This toolset provides scalable storage of file assets, and integrates seamlessly into Data Manager, providing a backend for files users may upload via data forms. File Manager also support mass uploads of files through its online unzip capability.
File Manager also provides for keyword search across large sets of files.
Read more about File Manager here.
For public-facing portions of systems, and even for internal help content, LeapSeed provides a visual content editor for web pages and a system that includes Pending, Live, and Previous versions of pages, allowing for easy drafting and rollback as need be.>
The Visual Content Editor can also be incorporated into any data form; providing users the ability to enter richly formatted information into databases is desired.
Read more about Content Manager here.
Data is valuable, and LeapSeed ships with a toolset called Commerce Manager which online customers can use to purchase products and subscriptions which can unlock access to important data. Commerce Manager integrates directly into the Process Manager module, allowing for orders to be routed properly for fulfillment.
Read more about Commerce Manager here.
In addition, LeapSeed provides additional capabilities, including:
- Site-wide Search of all Databases, Files and Pages in an application.
- A full user-to-group-to-tool security model
- Meta-Linking Objects to one another and to Topics
- A Testing Framework to validate the integrity of system configurations
- Configurable Dashboards providing users with snapshots of data they can then drill into.
- Detailed activity tracking to record all activities that occur on the site.
- A RESTFul Web Service Framework enabling integration into other systems via JSON.
The combination of our people, processes, and technology faciliate the creation of successful systems that remain in use for years. By using LeapSeed as the starting point for our software projects, LimeLeap provides our organizations with systems that:
Shorter Project Timeframes
Configuring pre-built tools is faster than coding, and LeapSeed allows our developers to configure a lot and as a result code less. LeapSeed’s configurable tools also make it easier for AHRI staff to play a role in system development, should they wish to.
A systems powered by LeapSeed have their core database and file management interfaces working right away.
Easy to Customize
For organization with programmers on staff, we can provide essential training, documentation and support for coding custom enhancements and integrating with other systems.
Easy to Enhance
Systems built on LeapSeed are easy to adapt as new needs come up. Need a new field on a database form? Just re-scan the table and add it on in five minutes.
Standard Microsoft Technology
LeapSeed is based on ASP.NET 4.5 and SQL Server, allowing for easy integration into thousands of .NET components.
When you work with Limeleap, LeapSeed is free. For any number of users. On any number of servers and cloud services. This allows LimeLeap the freedom to deploy it to solve problems big and small. It also provides an easy avenue to standardization across all systems, reducing training costs.
In additional to global information management systems, LimeLeap employs specialized processes for helping our clients reinvent their online presences. On the technology side, LeapSeed also provides several capabilities modern websites need.
Our Website Process
Design shapes the visual world around us. It encompasses everything we do in our lives and plays a vital role in the communication of ideas, services and products. A sizable part of our efforts are directed at refreshing our clients' media designs to present them as progressive, relevant, and the authoritative sources for their respective bodies of knowledge and areas of expertise.
The focus of your website must be to communicate the values that define your organization and drive visitors to the information you want to share with them. We concentrate on aligning the visual design, site navigation, and information on your site to those traits to help people to better understand who you are and to get to what they need quickly.
Every organization is unique. So we start by working with you to understand you goals, philosophies and values. We distill those to key concepts that will guide all aspects of the website. We then define the key stakeholders and audiences of the website. This will help us to target the appropriate information to the people that will value it the most.
We develop a cohesive plan that aligns the visual design, navigation, and information with those key concepts. The layout of the site will cater to the needs of the audiences that we defined and assist in getting those users to the information they require. The plan will also include a migration map for moving the existing site from its existing layout to the new design.
We build your new site from the ground up, incorporating your message into all elements of the new design. We organize your information and navigation functionality to highlight what you value most. And we work with your team and audience to gain feedback that will allow us to refine and add value to the visitor’s experience.
LeapSeed's Website Capabilities
Content Authoring, Security, and Moving Content Live
LeapSeed provides the ability to lockdown files, content pages, and entire folders of content via its group-based permissions security setup. LeapSeed also allows content authors to preview changes to their content before it goes live, as well as schedule when content goes live, and when it expires. The permissions for editing a page and approving a page to go live can also be split up; a content author can create/edit a page, and then another user serving in an editorial role can move the content live.
Search Engine Optimization
LeapSeed’s content system supports multiple SEO methods. Meta descriptions, titles, and keywords can be specified for each page. In addition, LeapSeed provides tools that allow content authors to scan a page’s content and generate a recommended file name that matches the content of the page, a key metric search engines use to gauge validity of a page in its rankings.
Blogs, RSS, and Social Media Integration
LeapSeed allows for any combination of content sections to be published as an RSS feed, with links that lead back to individual content pages. Multiple feeds can be created, and the ordering of pages in feeds is determined by a page’s publishing date.
In addition to producing RSS content, LeapSeed can be setup to import and display RSS feed results on a timed basis. For customers wishing to maintain a separate blogging site, a list of the recent articles can easily be displayed within LeapSeed, leading to the articles on the separate site.
LeapSeed ships with built-in integration for Facebook’s Like button and Facebook’s commenting thread. Either of these elements can be activated on any content page. In addition, LeapSeed includes its own native comment threading for each content page. Access to commenting can be limited to specific user groups, such as members.
Other social media services, such as Twitter, can be easily integrated with LeapSeed, either via LeapSeed’s templating capabilities, or via code customization on industry standard Microsoft ASP.NET.
LeapSeed provides a tool called File Manager, which can provide secured access to individual video, image, and photo files. This tool allows for easy organization of such files, including zipped download, and zipped upload capability. File Manager areas can also be setup so they only allow for a specific set of file types.
LeapSeed’s content pages include dynamic YouTube URL detection. In the event a URL is found, LeapSeed instantly replaces it with an embedded instance of the YouTube video.
Dynamic Homepage Capability
LeapSeed can host multiple templates, including one for general content, and one for the homepage. This template can include placeholders that can be replaced with dynamic content, such as news releases, announcements, blog entries, and articles.
LeapSeed includes the ability to setup multiple calendar sections, each with its own independent set of events. In addition, a master calendar section can be setup which merges all of the calendars into one view.
Web 2.0 Framework and Hierarchies
LeapSeed provides multiple method of providing easy access to pages. Content sections can have breadcrumb trails at the top of pages, making it easy for content readers to see what area of the site they are in, and navigate upward to parent content.
LeapSeed also includes a menu system for the top and side areas of the site that provide secured access to various areas of the site using popup menu navigation.
LeapSeed’s content is separated into nested content sections. Each content section in a LeapSeed site can have its content pages displayed in LeapSeed’s dynamically generated sitemap. Content sections can also be content theme specific, providing visitors with a clean separation of content that ties directly into LeapSeed’s menu system.
Each piece of content can be mapped to a term-based topic tree, providing extra context when searching through the entire site. LeapSeed includes a built-in free-text search capability that can search through all of LeapSeed’s content; in addition, Google.com has no trouble parsing and indexing LeapSeed’s publically available content.
Easy to Manage Design, Navigation, and Styles
LeapSeed’s visual design is contained within HTML templates, which can be edited directly through LeapSeed’s template management system online. Every edit archives the former template, allowing for retrieval of prior designs if necessary.
LeapSeed’s menu hierarchy can be managed through LeapSeed’s section administration tool. Menus can appear at the top of the site, or on either side of the site. Menu items can be nested via popup interfaces, and these popup interfaces can be customized via style sheets, or if advanced customization is necessary, ASP.NET.
LeapSeed’s style sheets are freely editable via LeapSeed’s system sheet editing tool. All of LeapSeed’s interfaces utilize styling, allowing for easy rebranding of all of its tools.
Visual Editor, Spell Checker, and Link Validation
All of LeapSeed’s content pages are editable using an industry standard visual editor called CKEditor (http://ckeditor.com/). This editor not only provides an intuitive editing environment, but it also allows for the integration of several third party enhancements. CKEditor also has built-in spell checking capabilities via its SCAYT plug-in, available as an ad-supported or paid service. In addition, LeapSeed is compatible with native browser spell checking capabilities.
LeapSeed also features built-in link validation that can determine when links inside LeapSeed content are no longer pointing to content pages or files.
Online Training System
LeapSeed includes an online training system, complete with the following features:
- Construction of course material by instructors
- Controlled enrollment of users into courses
- Individual modules that can contain restricted downloadable content
- Quizzes that can test whether the user understands the educational content. These quizzes can be administered by module.
LeapSeed has the ability to embed Google Analytics in all of its content pages through its online template editor.
Ability to Export Email Blast Analytics
LeapSeed can easily be integrated with Mandrill (http://mandrill.com/) or SendGrid (http://sendgrid.com/). These low-cost tools provide outstanding native reporting on bounce-backs rates, open rates, and click-through rates. LeapSeed’s native dashboard tools can be set to retrieve and display these statistics as well.
LeapSeed includes a fully configurable reporting framework that can output reports in CSV, HTML, Excel, or Microsoft Word.