Tourist assistance system
Timeframe:
6-12 m
Complexity:
Price:
500,000-1,000,000

About project

Tourist assistance system with mobile applications, interactive touch terminals and web-portal

Facts

System contains 8,400 location descriptions in two languages, dozens of public transport routes.
Mobile applications for 4 mobile platforms are available.
Systems worked on more than 800 touch terminals.
Thousands of users operated system during the Olympic Games in Sochi.

Customer

The government of Krasnodar Region

Krasnodar region is a federal subject of Russia, located in the Southern Federal District. The region population is about 5.5 million people on the territory of 75,485 sq. km.

The Region is characterized by industrial and agro-recreational type of development. The basis of the regional productive forces constitute the industrial, construction and energy complexes, information and communication technologies, as well as agro-industrial, transport, resort and recreation, and tourist complexes. The last three - agriculture, transport, and hotel & tourist complexes - correspond to the priorities of socio-economic development of Russia and determine the special status of the Krasnodar Krai in the national economy.

Also Krasnodar region city Sochi was the host city of Winter Olympic Games of 2014.

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Goal

To provide a comfortable information environment to get the city information using different gadgets for Sochi citizens and visitors during Olympic and Paralimpic Games “Sochi 2014”.

Challenge

We had a very short timeframe of 4 months to solve technical and informational issues. It was necessary to gather, to structure and to translate a huge amount of information. As well, we had to build up a reliable hardware infrastructure for high-load services. Moreover, the most complicated task was to implement software solution able to deliver prepared information to Sochi visitors with all possible communication channels.

Tasks

1
To build a project editorials office.
2
To gather, to structure and to translate the information about over 8,000 locations in Sochi.
3
To create public transport routes processing engine.
4
To build up hardware infrastructure able to guarantee service.
5
To implement software solutions for web-portal, mobile applications and touch terminals of two kinds.
6
To implement self-monitoring and self-diagnostic software.
7
To provide integration with external systems.
8
To deploy project-management solution for all participants.
9
To guaranty the information updates and system stability during the Olympic Games.

Implementation

In four months, we discovered, structured and translated the information about thousands of locations and most popular places. We created a database of public transport stops with coordinates and a registry of public transport routes operated by all state or commercial companies. We organized an editorial office and provided news feed.

In parallel, we built two independent nodes of server infrastructure in two remote datacenters. We used two CISCO USE BLADE-systems of 2 BLADE-servers each complemented with NetApp FAS2240-4 storage systems.

However, the main part was the software. On the first stage, we deployed the project management and collaboration system based on Bitrix24. It allowed us to plan and to control all project jobs and tasks.

On the second stage, we created a web-portal and implemented basic editorial processes of information preparation, checking, translating and approving.

The next step was a mobile application development for 4 platforms the most popular on that moment: Android, iOs, Windows Phone and Blackberry. The customer chose such a wide range of technologies to provide maximum clients coverage. The applications used remote database as a main information source and updated automatically whenever it was on-line.

At the same time, our team worked on building terminal software. One of the terminal applications was integrated with the existent Qiwi payment terminals; another was launched on its own hardware acquired specially for project purposes. One of the key features was two using modes. One of them had all user interface controls at the bottom of the screen allowing navigation for disabled people.

In total, we deployed our software on more than 20 custom build terminals and hundreds Qiwi payment terminals throughout the city.

The solution is built consists of four separated parts:

Results

1

We have published more than 8 000 places description into our system on two languages and organized the editorial office to deliver the valuable content as quick as possible

2

We have managed to build stable system available on four types of devices:
•    Standalone terminals,
•    Mobile apps for iOs, Andriod, Windows Phone and Blackberry,
•    Software embedded into payment terminal,
•    Web portal.

3

Our system is usable by people with disabilities. The terminal software contains special controls at the bottom part of the screen to provide experience for people who use wheelchairs. Our web portal have a customizable contrast version for those who have visual disabilities.

4

Our product allows people build routes to different places around city effortlessly. The objects are classified into more than 70 categories to the fast way to find location

Technologies

Basic technologies
1
.ASP.NET, Apache
C#, C++ (BlackBerry OS), Java (Android), Microsoft.NET
Storing and working with data
2
Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL
Web Interface
3
Adobe Flash, Google.Maps.API

Platforms

Web services
Web applications
Desktop applications
Mobile applications

Team

3 project managers, 1 technical architect, 1 software architect, 2 PHP programmers, 1 Java (Android) programmer, 1 Objective-C programmer, 1 C++ programmer, 1 C# (mobile) programmer, 1 C# (WPF) programmer, 2 user interface designers, 2HTML programmers, 1 JavaScript programmer, 1 system administrator, 1 database administrator, 2 system engineers, 2 editors, 8 journalists, 2 content manages, 5 translators, 5 quality engineers