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Top Performance “made in TCC”

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Even if the businesses at the TCC haven’t made it into the Guinness Book of Records, they are still a worldwide success with their innovative products and services. The Highlights section will present regular updates on the top performance and achievements of TCC tenants.


What do you do if there is a fire?

The Chemnitz Visual World brings expert knowledge all around the world

What do you do if there is a fire? Obviously children learn this in primary school – you dial 112. But what to do if an oil field in Iraq is on fire? Who do you call then? Or if the EU election observer needs to send someone to the presidential elections in Togo? This is where the Zentrum für Internationale Friedenseinsätze (ZIF) [Centre for International Peace Operations] in Berlin comes in. The ZIF coordinates experts for international deployment on international missions in conjunction with the EU, the United Nations and the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe. The basis of this work is one of the largest pools of experts worldwide and the management of them within an electronic database made in Chemnitz, which was developed by Visual World.

In late June, the new ZIF database of experts went online and enabled employees of non-profit organisations to run searches for some 5,000 to 6,000 specialists in the most diverse professions, sent on missions all around the globe, from Haiti to Sri Lanka. For the developers at Visual World, the ZIF project also began internationally, with a Europe-wide tender process. The tender called for a web portal with an Intranet application, and the Chemnitz company won the contract in early 2009, beating around 50 other competitors.

Before the ZIF expert pool was overhauled, a solution was already in place, based simply on a MySQL database and a Content Management System (CMS). However, in terms of user friendliness and, above all, performance, this proved to be inadequate. So that the new system could satisfy all requirements right from the start, some serious investment was required: “With a 300 page design draft and five members of staff who took care of the ZIF database during the main development period, this was one of our biggest and most demanding projects”, explains Rico Fritzsche, owner of Visual World. The ZIF database was developed using state-of-the-art technologies and particularly with a view to high availability and scalability. A WCF host (Windows Communication Foundation) was used as the application server for the distributed application. The frontend is an ASP.NET 3.5 application and the physical data memory is provided by an MS SQL server database, which, according to the developers, is exactly the right choice when it comes to performance and availability. So now from one side of the system, experts can register easily as an available resource, and from the other, a search can be performed quickly for these experts using personalised and storable complex filters via multiple criteria.

With this major project, Visual World has proven that the company is no longer a light-weight. With some eight or nine full-time and freelance employees, the company programs software tailored to the customer’s wishes. The main focuses of its developments are databases and MS .NET frameworks and it already has clients such as the Hartmannsdorf-based KOMSA AG or the Brandenburgische Landesamt für Denkmalpflege (Brandenburg State Heritage).

Rico Fritzsche has been at the TCC with Visual World since 2007 and can still see no reason to leave. “The TCC makes an important dynamic possible for us. If we eventually need more space, we can simply rent it here for a short period.” And this could well be the case again soon, given that Visual World will from now on not only be maintaining the ZIF database and possibly upgrading it, but also creating versions of the current database for the German Red Cross and the ZIF counterpart, the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC).
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