Tracker Application Sets Precedent for Case Management Efficiency

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From the start, Reese saw that Revelation’s software, based on the MultiValue (Pick) data model, had all the pieces he needed. For example, at the time, the tables in many software systems were limited to eight-character names, but Revelation was not.  “It was that type of feature that attracted me in the beginning,” he noted.  “What has kept us with Revelation is that their original software was so well-written that it just continues to work from DOS to any version of Windows. We have software that was written way back that will still run on Windows 7 and Windows 8. Because the software is so well-behaved, we don’t have to rewrite our application every time a new version of Windows comes out.”

After its launch as a PC application, Tracker then went to client-server, until Solution Specialties moved everything over to the server. “We now have a multi-tiered application with a Java user interface on the front end, and Revelation handling the business logic and data tiers on the back end.”

A Turning Point

There was a time in the mid-1990s, before Mike Ruane and his team acquired Revelation, when Reese explored alternatives. Applications were moving from DOS to Windows and the time was right to take a fresh look at things. “We looked at everything that was on the market at the time in terms of a development environment,” he said.

Reese decided to stay with Revelation and at that point decided to write the front end in Java.  “Every time we looked at an alternative back-end database, and we considered the amount of work we had done, the complexity, and the way the data model worked in terms of the flexibility it provides, we decided we could not find comparable qualities in a product that was priced in the same universe as Revelation. It was just the best product all along.”

Moving Forward with Revelation

With a relational database system such as SQL Server, said Reese, “You still need a database administrator to manage and administer the database. Revelation is self-maintaining. It expands and contracts as needed. You don’t need to do a lot of the traditional types of database maintenance work. And, it is fast – especially given the complexity of the legal environment.”

The complexity that Tracker is able to handle with ease would grind a relational system to a halt, says Reese, noting that it is not uncommon in some database environments to ban reports from being run during the day so they don’t overwhelm the servers.  “That kind of thing is just not an issue with Revelation,” he said. Often, when new staff members with relational database training come onboard, they are surprised at how much the company has accomplished with a relatively small staff and credits Revelation. “It is because the environment makes it easy to do.”

Looking to 64-Bit Support in OpenInsight 10.0

Reese continues to be impressed by the support he receives from Revelation. “They have been great to work with. They work very hard to address any issues that come up, are always adding new features to the software, and are very responsive to us. They help us solve problems, provide tools and support, and if we do have an issue, they provide personalized one-on-one assistance.

Going forward, Reese wants to learn more about newer capabilities being added to OpenInsight. For example, he said, “Revelation provides options to integrate with other environments like SQL Server and Oracle, making it easier to interact with other systems at customer sites. We are not really exploiting them at this point, but we have them in place.”

Reese is also looking forward to learning more about the next major release of OpenInsight, 10.0, at the upcoming Revelation conference. So far, the 10.0 capability he is most interested in is the native 64-bit support. “Everybody has to buy 64-bit servers these days and they want to see 64-bit software on them. I don’t know if it matters all that much from a performance point of view because we don’t see limitations with the current technology. Still, that will be an important piece for us.”

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