Health tracking platform

System for tracking, analyzing, and sharing physical exercises, diets, and the user’s well-being

Piattaforma health tracking
The request

Our client is a Californian startup working in the health tracking sector—the first in the world to conceive and launch a product that traces a complete wellness profile of the user.

To achieve the ambitious goal of completing the MVP within the required timeframe, it was necessary to delegate the developments to a team that had the necessary skills for the tools used: a Python-based backend stack, a data storage system implemented with Cassandra designed to scale massively, a full-text search engine built on Elasticsearch, and a suite of a fully-automated system tests using Selenium and Robot Framework.

Over time, the backend team has grown and has been joined by another dedicated team with the responsibility of defining and implementing automatic tests, which prevent regressions, making it so that programmers can develop new features without fear, and making sure that the end-user experience is always in accordance with the specifications of the UX experts.

Challenges faced

The CI system initially adopted by the client, based on Jenkins, had performance problems (it took more than an hour to complete a comprehensive test on the application) and was difficult to maintain.

Solutions implemented

We reimplemented the CI system based on Travis CI and offered our experience on this platform, lowering the execution time of the entire test suite to around 10 minutes.

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Requirements
  • Back-end web development
  • Achieve sales launch goal
  • Extensive test coverage
Develer’s contribution
  • Included the client in the Agile development cycle from day one
  • Assembled a team of testers
  • … but also created an internal miniteam to develop features independently
Results
  • Completed MVP in the time required
  • Expanded the existing team and mentored a dedicated team of testers
  • Improved infrastructure
Advantages of our solution

Advantages of our approach

Preparing the Develer staff—eclectic in terms of interests, but always firmly grounded in the demands of the real world—has allowed our group to quickly join forces with the rest of the team and achieve concrete contributions under tight deadlines.

We were immediately comfortable with the Agile development approach of the Scrum footprint. Thanks to their comprehensive background knowledge, our programmers could work on all of the backend aspects of the project, starting from implementing a feature, to performance optimization, to orchestrating the services that make up the platform.

Advantages of open source

Open source is at the heart of the project: Pyramid as an application framework, Cassandra as nosql storage, Elasticsearch as a full-text search engine, Redis as a cache system, Sphinx as a documentation system, and Selenium as an automated test tool.

The client also encouraged programmers to spend time solving problems or adding missing features of the projects used, and to contribute them upstream.

Client
Logo Enquos

Californian startup that works in the health tracking sector

Staff

“A team that is at the cutting edge of technology for developing web and mobile applications, but is at the same time quite constrained to be able to make everyone’s contribution tangible and crucial: this is the team—very demanding in terms of time and quality—that Develer supports daily.”

Lorenzo Mancini Project manager @Develer