Experts In Web
CodeStringers has proven expertise building complex enterprise and consumer web applications.
Web Application Development Services We Provide.
CodeStringers offers comprehensive web application development services to clients whether the end-user is a consumer, client employee or employee of the client’s customer. Regardless of the engagement model, we can help you define, design, develop, test, release and manage your web application.
Building custom software involves thousands of decisions to be made and often with imperfect information with which to make them. When you work with CodeStringers, your primary point of contact – your engagement manager – is a senior executive who has managed the development of dozens of products and is able to provide strategic guidance to ensure you make the best decisions possible.
Clients routinely state that our consultative approach – and the seniority of the engagement manager – are what sets CodeStringers apart from other more traditional outsourcers. And much of that guidance happens weeks or even months before we execute contracts. Our goal is to help you whether you ultimately become a customer or not. Of course we hope you do, but we’re not in the business of blindly building software when other solutions are more appropriate.
Your engagement manager can help you:
- Assess the market need or business problem that you’re trying to address.
- Evaluate whether off-the-shelf software can address the need.
- Identify the specific user personas and their needs.
- Evaluate competitive solutions and gaps in the market.
- Pinpoint opportunities for differentiation and potential intellectual property (that you own).
- Conceptualize a software product that fills the market gap uniquely.
Many outsourcers will provide those answers knowing full well that they lack a plan sufficient to do so. And worse, when you discover that the first version of your product is going to take longer and cost more, they find creative ways to blame you, usually under the heading of “scope changes”.
At CodeStringers, we pride ourselves on our honest, transparent and gratis approach to web development services.
Led by your engagement manager, a team of cross-functional resources will prepare the following as part of our planning process:
- Feature definitions in the form of agile user stories, grouped into trackable “epics”.
- Information architecture (flow or object relationship diagrams).
- Web application user interface wireframes that illustrate the flow of the “journeys” through the application.
- A user interface style guide based on your corporate or product brand style guide and key screen designs.
- Software architecture documentation that illustrates the components of the system to be built, their interrelationships, and service or application programming interface (API) protocols.
- Technology selection (your “tech stack”) for the frontend web application, backend services and database(s).
User Experience & Interface Design
The user experience and interface (UX / I) design, as much as software quality, determines the success of any software product. As the saying goes, simple is hard and hard is easy. And if it’s not simple, it’s not successful.
CodeStringers’ UX / I designers are involved from the strategy phase on for every development program. Our work starts with user research and analysis. First, we profile the users of a software product and document “personas” for each unique profile. We then identify each persona’s goals and draft journeys for how they can achieve their goals. Subsequently, we wireframe journeys to create the bones of the frontend application. Finally, we create an application style guide that conforms to your brand styling but adds the styling necessary for application functionality and UI components (checkboxes, data tables, etc.). And we prototype the application into pixel-perfect screens and an interactive skin of the future product.
At each step, we test and validate our assumptions and decisions and continually improve. Great UX / I design is never complete. Even the best applications can improve and by continual observation and ideation, the CodeStringers design team is ever in pursuit of experiential perfection.
Frontend Web Development Services
The frontend of a web application is, as the name implies, the part that users see and with which they interact in their web browser. User experience is a direct result of the design and implementation of the frontend.
The backend of a web app is the part that users do not see, but that which enables every feature of the application. In well-architected micro-service web applications, the frontend of the application is “dumb”, meaning that it has no business logic or functionality. Its only role is to be the presentation layer which allows users to interact with functionality enabled by the backend. This part of the application is where all intelligence – business logic and features – is enabled.
The backend includes a combination of “services” and databases. Services connect the frontend to databases and create functionality for user authentication, notifications, data and content processing, and more.
CodeStringers’ backend developers are gurus who commonly build services in NodeJS, Java, Python and Microsoft .Net Core, and build databases in PostgreSQL, Microsoft SQL server, MongoDB, Elasticsearch, Amazon DynamoDB, MySQL and Redis.
Application programming interfaces (APIs) are the “brain” of a cloud software product. They not only connect the frontend to backend databases and services, but they enable all business logic and functionality for end-users.
Poorly structured APIs, API services with inconsistent handling of common errors across APIs, and poor API documentation are the most common causes of bad end-user experiences, escaped defects (bugs that make their way into production), and frustrated frontend developers, database architects and any third-parties hoping to integrate to your product via your APIs.
CodeStringers backend developers are experts in deconstructing web application requirements to determine the necessary API calls, “right sizing” each API to be sufficiently atomic while not overburdening frontend developer with too many integration points, ensuring consistent and “best practice” handing of errors across APIs, and ensuring that documentation for APIs is current, available and complete.
AI, ML & Data Science
CodeStringers can help you harness the power of AI and ML to improve your user experiences, exploit the value of data, analyse unstructured data to identify potential relationships, and more.
Many web applications involve sources of “big data” and understanding those sources and their potential value is the first step in envisioning how AI might exploit that value.
CodeStringers’ data scientists and AI technologists can help clients both identify opportunities to utilize AI functionality in their web applications and develop and refine that technology to differentiate their products.
Database Design & Development
A Database is the backbone of any web application, storing all information viewed and manipulated by end-users via the frontend application. Virtually every web application employs a relational database that has tables for each unique type of data (companies, contacts ,etc.), columns for each unique field each data type includes (company name, website, address, etc.), and relationships to other tables (i.e. one company can have multiple related contacts).
But many web applications also store unstructured or semi-structure data such as downloaded web pages, social media posts, documents/files, and more.
Selecting the right database technology, creating the schema/design for that database, and architecting the related services is critical to the scalability, performance and security of a software product. But it’s also vital to the extensibility of the product. Great database architects future proof their designs, which limits future data migration when new functionality is built. Data migration is not only hugely time consuming, but it’s also the biggest risk when upgrading products.
CodeStringers’ database architects have decades of combined experience working across every type of database technology available. They can ensure that you select the right technologies and support your current and future product requirements.
Quality Assurance & Control
Software quality assurance (QA) is integral to the short- and long-term success of a software product. Too many organizations skimp on testing resources under the theory that good software engineers self-test their work by writing unit tests or doing their own “smoke testing” of functionality. That approach is guaranteed to result in a growing accumlation of defects that will at some point adversely impact customer acquisition and retention, deteriorate the value of your brand, and overwhelm your software development organization when they reactively attempt to address the problem.
CodeStringers integrates QA at every step of our agile software development programs. Every release plan includes estimation time for functional, system/regression testing, and load/performance testing.
At the start of each program while software engineers are preparing their development environment, QA engineers are building their test environment and writing their test strategy. When development sprints being, QA engineers are drafting test cases from user story acceptance criteria. Then, when each feature is finished being coded, QA engineers execute test cases for each feature and declare the feature “done” or send it back to development to address defects. And every release includes time at the conclusion to complete system and regression testing prior to each production deployment.
At CodeStringers, we pride ourselves on the level of quality we achieve and we take escaped defects (those that find their way into production because our QA processes mssed them) personally.
Deployment, Operations & Maintenance
A common misconception is that once you build your software product and release it, you’re done. Disassemble your development team and move onto the next project. Building software is, to some extent, like building and owning a house. Houses need maintenance or they fall into disrepair. So does software. A house must have a lot and taxes and insurances a must be paid. Software must be hosted, monitored, scaled and secured. You may need to expand or remodel your house. Software needs improvements and updates to the technologies on which it was built.
Services we provide include:
- Setup and maintain contininuous integration & delivery (CI/CD).
- Define and oversee change control policies and processes.
- Manage source code repositories.
- Monitor third-parties for security patches and update hot patch software.
- Run security scans on software and address security vulnerabilities.
- Implement and manage software deployment tools (Kubernetes, Docker).
- Create software breach detection and handling procedures.
- Configure and scale cloud production hosting environments.
- Monitor production systems to ensure availability and service level agreement (SLA) compliance and reporting.
- Maintain software to ensure technology stacks are updated when needed.
MasterControl partnered with CodeStringers to build a customer onboarding web application. The result is a sophisticated set of data loading functions capable of handling 20,000 plus unique data records without pagination.
Microsoft SQL Server
JSON Web Tokens (JWT)
Amazon Web Services (AWS)
Ant Design Framework
Spring Core / Boot
More Case Studies
Web Application Architecture.
A component or service view of a web application.
A Modern Web App.
This image illustrates a modern web application, which is responsive and architected as micro-services. Click the information icons to learn more about the independent services or components.
Key Information About Web Applications.
Websites versus Web Applications
The terms “website” and “web application” are often used interchangeably, but they refer to different things in the realm of the internet. Here are the key differences:
Functionality and Interaction:
- Websites are primarily informational. They provide content for users to read and view. Examples include news sites, blogs, or portfolios. Interaction is limited to navigating through these pages and reading or viewing the content.
- Applications, on the other hand, are interactive and allow users to perform tasks, manipulate data, and interact with complex systems. Examples include online banking portals, social media platforms, or e-commerce sites.
- Websites usually do not require users to log in, and the level of user interaction is minimal, mostly restricted to navigation and search.
- Applications often require user authentication, allowing for a personalized experience, like displaying a user’s data or allowing them to input and manage data.
Complexity and Development:
- Websites are typically simpler and easier to create. They may consist of a series of static pages that present information.
- Applications are more complex and require robust architecture, planning, and development. They often involve server-side processing, databases, and more intricate front-end functionality.
- A Website example could be a local restaurant’s site that shows the menu, location, and contact information.
- An Application example might be an online food ordering service where users can choose dishes, place an order, and make a payment.
- Websites might not be updated frequently and often display static content.
- Applications may need regular updates to ensure functionality remains effective and secure, especially as user data and interactions are involved.
- The purpose of a Website is generally to inform and provide content.
- A Web Application’s purpose is to enable functionality and tasks, like editing documents online, managing finances, or social networking.
Understanding these differences is important for businesses and developers when planning their online presence and services, as the design, development, and maintenance efforts can vary significantly between a website and a web application.
Supporting All Screen Sizes
Depending upon the needs of your users, you may or may not want your web application to be accessed on tablets and smartphones in addition to desktop and laptop computers. In many cases, software products have a web application for use on computers and mobile applications for use on tablets and phones. In other cases, the web application needs to support all screen sizes. If so, most are implemented to be “responsive”, which means that the content on each page adjusts to the size of the screen. Some, however, are built to be “adaptive”, which means that there’s actually different frontend web applications for different screen sizes.
Selecting the Right Architecture
Microservice architectures build each discrete function of a web application as an independent component. By doing so, each component can scale independently of the others. For example, your frontend web application may be capable of supporting 10,000 simultaneous user sessions on a server while your relational database may only be able to support 2,000 running on a server with identical specifications. At low scale, multiple services may be hosted on the same server to save cost, but as the volume of usage increases, a microservice architecture allows you to run each service on a dedicated servers with specifications specific to each service. Some services use more processing power and less memory. Others are the reverse. There are some that use a lot of both.
Monoliths, on the other hand, intertwine the frontend and backend code such that they must be hosted on the same server. A Monolith may still have a role, though. Internal tools that will not have a large volume of usage may be better suited for a monolith architecture because it’s easier to maintain the code and faster to develop.
The different “Layers” of the Web Application
Frontend development, also known as client-side development, involves creating the part of the website or application that users interact with directly. It’s everything that users experience visually on the screen.
Backend development, or server-side development, is focused on the part of a website or application that users don’t see. It involves managing the database and server-side applications, and it’s responsible for the functionality and logic behind the elements that the frontend interacts with.
Backend developers use server-side languages like PHP, Ruby, Python, Java, and .Net. They also work with database systems such as MySQL, Oracle, and SQL Server.
“Frictionless” Design is the Objective
User Experience (UX) design is a critical aspect of web application development, playing a key role in determining the success and effectiveness of the application. Here’s why UX design is so important:
Enhances User Satisfaction:
Good UX design focuses on creating a seamless, intuitive, and enjoyable experience for users. When users find a web application easy to use and navigate, their overall satisfaction increases, leading to a positive perception of the brand or service.
Increases User Engagement:
An application with a well-thought-out UX design encourages users to spend more time on it and explore its features. This increased engagement can lead to higher conversion rates, whether that’s in terms of sales, sign-ups, or other targeted actions.
UX design isn’t just about aesthetics; it also involves making the web application accessible to all users, including those with disabilities. This inclusivity can broaden the user base and is also often a legal requirement.
Reduces Development Costs:
Investing in UX design in the early stages of development can save money in the long run. It helps in identifying potential issues and user needs early, reducing the need for costly changes and revisions after the application is developed.
Enhances Brand Perception:
The user experience is often the user’s first impression of a brand. A positive experience can enhance the brand’s reputation and credibility, while a negative experience can harm it.
Facilitates User Retention:
In a competitive market, retaining users is as important as acquiring new ones. A web application with excellent UX design makes users more likely to return and continue using the service.
Supports Business Goals:
UX design aligns the user’s needs with the business’s objectives. By focusing on the user, businesses can achieve various goals, such as increasing sales, improving customer engagement, and building brand loyalty.
UX design emphasizes usability. By making an application easy to understand and use, users are less likely to experience frustration or confusion, which can lead to abandonment of the application.
Increases Conversion Rates:
A well-designed UX can guide users towards desired actions, such as making a purchase, signing up for a newsletter, or downloading content. This effectiveness in guiding user actions directly impacts conversion rates.
Adapts to User Feedback:
UX design is an iterative process that involves understanding and integrating user feedback. This continuous improvement ensures that the application evolves according to user needs and expectations.
In summary, UX design is not just about making a web application look attractive; it’s a comprehensive approach to ensuring that the application is user-friendly, efficient, and effective in meeting both user needs and business goals. As such, it’s an indispensable part of web application development.
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