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Case studies
Offshore Software Outsourcing Company in China

A web application of online marketplace for retail goods

The client

Abstract Technology's long term partner which is a UK Internet company thriving on innovation and excellent design.

What the client wanted

In order to provide a platform on which both the buyer and seller can conveniently and effectively bargain and trade with each other, the client desired an online marketplace for retail goods. This platform would be a public user website that allows buyers and sellers of retail goods to communicate with each other and allows sellers to compete for a buyer's needs on price and specification of goods.


Abstract Technology began with the analysis of functional specification. In order to quickly understand the function, we reduced a lot of processes to several modules. The detailed analysis was carried out and the exact work flow was agreed on by the communication with the client. The notable feature of the website included membership's confirmation by clicking on the link in email, buyer's request for desired goods, seller's making offers against given requests, seller's payment for sales leads, automatic operation like various email and SMS alerts etc.

Throughout the design phase, we followed standard architecture layout designs for multi-tiered applications and adhered to the principles like componentisation, CSS control and stored procedure for all the database operations rather than inline SQL. The prototype and UML Class Model design was firstly implemented. The architecture of the website was still the typical multi-tiered structure involving presentation tier, business tier and data tier, which had already become the technology that Abstract Technology was skilled enough.

During the implementation, all the functions of the website were well realized and all screens passed the validation service for XHTML 1.0 and CSS 2.0 as defined by W 3C . To some scheduled events, for instance, on the event of 12 hours before a request expired or when a request reached its expiry date, the time email for reminding would be sent to sellers, this was implemented utilizing the Windows Scripting Host in the Scheduled Tasks System in the control panel. Simultaneously, test engineers took part in to ensure all functions worked properly. For the sake of client's tracking of our working progress, the weekly work report and milestone were provided to client.

Technologies and Development Tools:

Development Tools: VS.Net 2003

Program language: VB.NET, WSH, VBScript

Database: SQL Server 2000

Browser: Internet Explorer 6 (or greater)
Opera 8 or greater
 Mozilla Firefox 1.0 or greater

W 3C standards: XHTML 1.0 and CSS 2.0

The benefits

  • Componentisation reduced recoding on similar functions, which greatly improved the work efficiency and facilitated the maintenance.
  • The implementation of stored procedure better prevented the injected attack and made the code clearer.
  • The compact and coherent development flow greatly shortened the development time and quickened the time to market.
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