AboutWeb teamed with Lockheed Martin on the MI Central project for SSA. MI Central is a web application used by SSA to perform analysis of their data in the form of summary and detailed reports and print jobs. In the requirements gathering phase, the AboutWeb team formulated several design alternatives based on the requirements gathered from meetings with stakeholders and based on reviews of the current system and code base. These design alternatives ranged from 'very traditional' to 'very progressive'. After several presentations to the client (SSA), the most progressive system was chosen for development.
This new version of MI Central allowed even the most non-technical employees to create and define the screens, business rules, queries, and all other aspects of a reporting sub-application using an administrative GUI. Part of the project requirements were that all of the end-user content (the sub-application reports and screens authored using the Content Management System architected by AboutWeb) meet not just Section 508 requirements for accessibility, but SSA's (more rigorous) accessibility requirements. Another requirement was that the screen could never flicker or reload. Thus, the progressive solution was a content management system (CMS) that generated all output to use CSS for style and position and used AJAX for page navigation and dynamic behaviors - still meeting strict 508 reqs. The solution exponentially reduced the time and money formerly required to create MI Central sub-applications and reports; radically changing internal SSA business processes as a result. SSA is heralding MI Central as the leading example of "next generation" Social Security applications.
AboutWeb created and designed the software architecture, data caching strategy, and rich client GUI. Data access and caching required accessing DB2 and Oracle data sources and both massaging and caching this data on the J2EE Application server. The user interface and sub-application definitions were XML-driven in order to meet the projects release process and portability requirements. About-Web devised, managed, and implemented an agile approach to development and project management in the development environment.