Opiq is a brand new and most modern learning management environment used in the majority of Estonian basic and upper secondary schools, which contains textbooks, learning kits, study journal, self-assessment system and other important information to be used by teachers, students and parents. The directory of materials is constantly updated. This is a web app, which the customer sells as a model software service. Besides a PC and tablet, the application can also be used on smartphones and needs no separate app. The Opiq learning management environment was ordered and is owned by StarCloud OÜ.
The customer wanted to give the students and teachers a convenient, exciting, interactive and modern facility for studying, which would fully replace paper-based textbooks and workbooks, while also serving as a study journal. As an extra bonus, Opiq would drastically reduce the weight of a schoolbag, and would also enable the student, parent and teacher to manage schoolwork at any location and on any digital platform. In addition, a lot of trees will be saved.
The platform is designed for conducting and assessing the study process between the students, teachers and parents in the most productive, convenient and modern way possible.
We have set the priority business goals of ensuring that the end-user is satisfied with the product. As in any agile development, the initial plan was not 100% definite. We have done things according to the changing needs of business and wishes of the customer and in this way have ensured continuous flexible development. We started with the functionalities of highest priority and expanded the functionality over time. The development cycles were short (2 weeks); at the end of each cycle, operative functionality was completed which was then tested by us and the customer, and then handed over to it. The customer was able to monitor and give feedback throughout the development process.
The technologies we used were TDD and Domain Driven Development. ASP.NET, C#, ASP.NET MVC, HTML 5, COF script. This is a cloud application, hosted in Microsoft Azure cloud. It uses Azure storage and search on ElasticSearch server. We use continuous integration, the image server is TeamCity, and version control is GIT (in Bitbucket). Project management is carried out in Pivotal Tracker, which includes code reviews.
This solution has been in use at schools for several years now. During that period, we have gathered a lot of user feedback and used it for improvement of the product, as is common in agile development. As the development has been agile, it has enabled smooth changes.
For today, Opiq is used in most of the Estonian basic and upper secondary schools, and also in some schools in Kazakhstan. Nonetheless, we are still gathering feedback and use it to improve the system in an agile way.
Accessible at https://www.opiq.ee/
Development of the open data system Riigipilv (State Cloud) in order to provide transparency and access to data on local government budgets and expenditures.
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