News from dotUK

Desktop CRM Software with Loyalty Module

Continuing our technology partnership with Darlington Mowden Park RFC we have been commissioned to build a bespoke, multi user Desktop CRM Solution


Our partnership, through parent company YC Business Solutions, encompasses the IT, Telecoms, Web and Technology solutions the club require to grow in line with team’s aspirations.

Mowden Park, and the sports hospitality industry in general, have unique challenges in terms of engaging with their audience which are a wide and varied audience, ‘clients’ in a typical CRM environment include members, players, family, volunteers, corporate clients, retail, hospitality and more, each requiring a unique approach.

As well as traditional CRM functionality such as marketing, client engagement etc we will be focussing on membership management and loyalty functionality, this will encompass technology such as ‘smart’ membership cards that will help simplify match day ticketing, integration with retail and hospitality point of sale systems.

We will also be looking to help the club better engage and manage corporate clients, match day hospitality, and conferencing events.

Exciting times ahead!

Digital Print Template Generation Software

Windows Desktop based Digital Print Generation Software that will allow our client to take source artwork and batch compose digital print ready templates directly into their print process

Continuing our niche abilities in creating bespoke digital print software, this desktop application will take the client’s orders, source artwork and generate digital print templates in the required quantities. Products that the print templates will be generated for include;

  • Greetings Cards
  • Mugs
  • Coasters
  • Teddies
  • Notepads

This software will dramatically reduce the human labour hours involved in fulfilling the orders and allow our client to offer their unique customised products in far larger volumes than would normally be available in a manual process

Resource Planning Software

Windows Based Resource Planning Software, allowing businesses to see at a glance upcoming resource availability and holiday allocations

The second of our recent commissions for bespoke windows desktop software is for an electrical contractor based here in the North East. The challenge to overcome here is the ability to see clearly, quickly the spread of human resources in upcoming months, both those engineers and fitters allocated to existing projects, and of course holiday time when resource is unavailable.

Retroflo Resourcing

Our bespoke solution will record the allocation of staff resources to projects, and allow the categorisation of the labour types. It will also record upcoming staff holidays, with this combination of data managers will be able to scroll to a specific timeline and view, filtering down if need be, the allocation of resources and ability to schedule in, or not, additional work based on the still free resource.

This project is the precursor to a bigger solution, but allows us to focus on and solve immediate business problems for the client in a cost effective and timely manner

dotUK is a cross platform mobile app, desktop & server software, and web based or software as a service developer based in Yarm, Teesside in the North East of England, and all project requests can be made through

Service Engineers Reminders Software

The Service Engineers Reminder Software is a simple, single user, windows desktop app that helps tradesmen keep track of scheduled work, services, safety checks etc

dotUK pride themselves on offering function solutions of value to all ends of the business software market. This service reminder app, which has been commissioned by a local heating engineer, will start life as a single user, stand alone, windows desktop application. However it is easily scalable into a multi user networked environment (with little to know infrastructure costs) and even options to sync / backup data through cloud services to make a multi user, multi site product.

The core functionality is to record when clients have products, services, or schedules that are due for renewal and offer a range of reminder options. As an example landlords are required to have annual gas safety checks which is a service the client offers. This app will allow this to be recorded, and when comes due the option to remind via email, text message, or generate a mail merge document that allows letters to be sent out in the post.

As always the focus is on specific functionality, ease of use, and value.

dotUK is a cross platform mobile app, desktop & server software, and web based or software as a service developer based in Yarm, Teesside in the North East of England, and all project requests can be made through

Glasgow Watersports Industrial Programming

The Glasgow Watersports project is a multi phased industrial programming project that will ultimately empower the user to control and administer the canoe course pumps and lighting from mobile devices, and place site bookings over the web.

The core control system part of the project allows for programmatic control of the sites pump, lighting, and klaxon systems using the industry standard Modbus protocol. This is being offered in conjunction with Retroflo, a North East based Electrical Contractors and bringing on board their expertise in industrial process control.Canoe Course Control Panel

The full flow of the development will commence with a web based booking system provided by dotUK, end user bookings are then pushed privately to the Glasgow Watersports site where the onsite infrastructure will allow users to access their booking and the control systems via any wifi enabled device.

Local users can then control the pump output (strength of water flow) on demand in accordance with the abilities and expectations of their group.

A full remit of expected industrial safety, and health and safety best practices are of course in place but this investment allows the end user, through dotUK’s software development expertise, to bring control and a more beneficial user experience to the end user.

dotUK is a cross platform mobile app, desktop & server software, and web based or software as a service developer based in Yarm, Teesside in the North East of England, and all project requests can be made through

Baby Bio Android and iPhone Mobile App Project

The Baby Biography mobile app project is a cross platform, consumer,  mobile application development tasked with creating an iPhone app, and and Android mobile app to create ‘Baby Biographies’, or a collection of ‘Baby Moments’ through pregnancy, birth, and the early years of your child’s life.  The app will allow you to collect, record, and share those moments through social media and even offer you the chance to order a personalised, professionally printed book of your child’s moments.

Baby Biography Mobile App Home

The mobile app will be developed using dotUK’s cross platform, and multi platform mobile app development skills.  This skill set is a niche, and dotUK are one of the few development companies, certainly amongst North East Mobile App Developer’s to offer true, native mobile apps that can be developed simultaneously across the core mobile application platforms, in parallel.

The Baby Biography mobile app will be offered initially as an iPhone app, and also as and Android App, in addition to creating Baby Biographies within the app, other features include;

  • Creation of Multiple Books
  • Sharing of Baby Moments and Photos ‘In App’ to Social Media
  • Free Cloud based storage of all your books and moments
  • Collaboration with other parents
  • Conception and Pregnancy calculators
  • In App Support

Cloud storage and collaboration will be offered through dotUK’s in house cloud storage framework which allows the app to seamlessly synchronise the baby biographies into the cloud in the background when connected to a suitable internet connection, but doesn’t in any way impeded or restrict any app functionality when working offline.

dotUK is a cross platform mobile app, desktop & server software, and web based or software as a service developer based in Yarm, Teesside in the North East of England, and all project requests can be made through

Christmas Cards for Schools Clustered Print Generation

Christmas Cards for Schools – Case Study

PDF Download


Christmas Cards for Schools based in Middlesbrough here in the North East, part of Fundraising Creations, offer Fundraising solutions for Schools, their primary product being the production of bespoke printed and customised Christmas Card packs personalised with the pupils name, class and of course their own drawing. Having been responsible for the production of in excess of 1.1 million cards in the Christmas 2013 season efficiency and scalability are high priorities


Client Christmas Cards for Schools Ltd – Middlesbrough based School Fundraising
Platforms Linux, Web, WebServices,
Technologies PHP, Perl, CSS, Jquery, MySQL, REST, ImageMagick, Apache, Clustering
Development Web Development, Web Services Integration, Synchronisation

Case Study

To understand the scale and requirements to create, print and distribute in excess of 1million Christmas Cards in a 3 month period each year it’s probably beneficial to understand the workflow required, and the stages at which dotUK have been able to build out and scale, thus adding capacity each year.


  • Participating Schools are sent Artwork kits
  • Kits are returned and the drawings are scanned, grouped, and filed into our Web Based storage system
  • School batches are processed within our processing cluster leading to the creation of digital print ready personalised images (1 Per child)
  • Print ready images are synchronised to the print partner who takes responsibility for print and distribution, feeding back status to the storage system dashboard.

Due to the system being highly seasonal dotUK have built a bespoke hosting infrastructure that offers a cost effective, but highly scalable hosting solution. Services that are required year around are separated from the seasonal processing cluster, thus offering a base line cost for the majority of the year. The processing cluster is build in such a manner, that additional processing nodes can be added at 15minute deployment windows, and will automatically join in the pool of processing power, but can be removed when surplus thus reducing hosting and running costs that are unwarranted.

To maintain maximum data integrity, control, and compliance in excess of UK Data Protection requirements, the hosting cluster and processing engine is a bespoke, privately hosted solution provided, hosted, and monitored by dotUK

Depending on the solution offered to the school the workflow may include digital samples that are offered initially to the school prior to order, but ultimately school co-ordinators enter their school order quantities online through their own access portal, which triggers the print cluster and sync services to push final orders to the print partner.

In addition to the core card generation workflow, we also generate supplementary personalised products, and fully automate other ancillary services such as billing, marketing / kit requests and the ability for parents to view online samples prior to order

Blog Post: You get what you pay for – Mobile App Security

Originally posted as You get what you pay for – Mobile App Security

You get what you pay for – App Security


Andy Flisher is a Software Developer based in the North East of England specialising in cross platform development. Mobile Development experience includes Windows Phone, Android, and iPhone Apps. Desktop Software Development includes bespoke Windows, Linux, and Mac Applications. Web Development Skills include PHP, Perl, Python, Xamarint, C#, ASP (Classic and .NET) – Andy Flisher on Google+

In the course of work this week I had a cause to audit an iOS App that a prospect had had developed by a local competitor here in the North East, the reasoning for this was that the prospective client was looking at moving the hosted back end (ASP .Net, SQL Server – standard stuff) and wanted a price.

Mobile App Security
The purpose of the audit was to check what network connections the app was making, and correlating with what I knew about the backend hosting, just to make sure there were no surprises, we didn’t have the source code for either end yet, it was just a pricing exercise at this point (As it happens the App is written using PhoneGap so we *did* have the source code, but my route was quicker).

So, I installed the app, redirected my iPhone through a proxy server, and fired up the app – and proceeded to stare in horror. The app instantly, on first run fired up an un-encrypted, un-authenticated connection to the backend host and promptly downloaded the usernames, password, emails, and more for *every* user in the system. It then keeps a copy of these locally, and uses those details to authenticate later.

Why is this bad, in laymans terms, because anyone, on the internet, who knew the url the app uses could download the same list. Would people be interested in logging in to this system? Probably not, do people use the same username and password for Amazon, Tesco, Online Banking – absolutely, and there’s the problem.

Solutions, well it’s about paranoia, but key areas;

  • Authentication – Implement simple basic authentication so that the app logs in to the webservice it pulls the data from.
  • Https – Implement and SSL connection, then at least all traffic too and fro is encrypted (important as Basic Authentication is over plain text, so without https it’s still sniffable)
  • Change the login mechanism to completely remove the need to download all user info at all.

What’s really frustrating though, and actually makes the ‘You get what you pay for’ title of this post a misnomer, is this wasn’t a cheap solution.  The client paid a very reasonable amount for this app and solution.  This is the sort of thing we see, and sadly expect, when a ‘cheap’ solution is offered as a counter to ours.  We’re not expensive, but not cheap, we do do things correctly though.  It’s a classic case of the customer not knowing what they’re not getting, they trust, and assume that a professional job is being done, without really asking too many questions about why it’s cheap.

In this case no excuses though, I’ll not name anyone, and we’ve raised the issue with the client – We certainly won’t be taking on the hosting until it’s resolved!


North East Mobile Developer wins ‘Baby Bio’ multi platform mobile app order

dotUK Multi Platform Mobile App DeveloperdotUK, a North East based Mobile App Developer, has this this week won the order to develop a multi platform mobile app framework for a Newton Aycliffe (County Durham) based client that produces high quality ‘Baby Moment’ books for new parents and their families.

This will involve an iPhone App, and a companion Android app that will use dotUK’s in house mobile app synchronisation engine to enable the mobile applications data to be seamlessly integrated into dotUK’s cloud hosting infrastructure, enable both a transparent backup of all the baby moment app data and to allow other family members to be invited and to share and contribute.

The differing factor in dotUK’s sync engine is it allows the dual benefits of mobile applications that can work fully offline, with no connection at all, and those that are cloud enabled to centrally store, push, and receive update.

dotUK specialise in developing multi-platform and cross platform software solutions, re-using core business logic and making the development of similar apps on multiple platforms more cost efficient then developing each app individually

In the Press: Yarm firm dotUK helps home care provider improve efficiency

From The Journal;

Web development firm dotUK has completed a major contract to help one of the leading home care providers in the North East improve efficiency

The Yarm-based digital agency, which employs 18 people, was enlisted by Heritage Healthcare, which works closely with local authorities, to improve its management system for clients and employees.

The contract was worth £8,000 and took four months to complete.

It allows Heritage Healthcare to regulate and monitor the visits that have been made to clients and to assure quality standards are achieved.

The system, which is already proving successful, uses telecommunications, supplied by dotUK’s sister company Synergy Telecoms, to accurately verify calls made by carers from clients’ homes.

An electronic system confirms the call and location and stores the information.

Heritage Healthcare is now always aware of which clients have been visited, as well as the work its employees have done.

dotUK founder, Andy Flisher, said: “As Heritage Healthcare is steadily expanding and branching out, it’s great to have been able to ensure the company’s systems are functioning well so they can solely concentrate on the important work they do.

“We are already in discussion about bettering the system even more so by advancing into digital technology and developing a mobile app that scans a barcode at clients’ premises.”

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