A Platform For Valuable Information Sharing

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Client Requirement

Client required a platform for PhD students and professors and professionals to share information and build relationships. Encompassing the experts from business and academic fields, the website should be
a platform for all to share valuable information and provide the right minds with access to the right resources and create a global mindset.

The website requires registration and the features that each registered member could use would include: the ability to browse each section of the website that would include news, events, messages, question and answer, contacts, recent updates, statistics, articles, create your profiles, groups, forums, view other member’s basic profiles, search and apply for jobs etc.

Specific Features Requested Were:

  • Students should have the ability to share notes, gain insights, seek expert advice. Students
    should also have the ability to create groups, join groups based on their academic interests and
  • Students should be able to enroll for various courses of their interest and interact with other students all over the world.
  • The website should be designed to increase collaboration between students and faculty to make
    the most out of their experiences.
  • Help students to build professional networks fostering career growth.


The team faced the following challenges:

  • Site should be robust with the ability to handle millions of connections at the same time without slowing down.
  • Web usability principles should be used to make the site easily navigable.
  • Integrated features like articles, messages, statistics and more while being executed
    simultaneously should be in sync.
  • Load balance must be maintained even at peak traffic hours.
  • Secure data transfer.

Technologies Used

Operating System & Server Management Red Hat Linux OS, Multi-Server Architecture with Staging & Production Environment through Version Controlling releases, Server Optimization, Security & SSL Implementation, Alert Monitoring System Integration, Server Performance Tuning at regular intervals, Software Firewall Configuration & Maintenance
Development Tools & Environments PHP5+, Symfony Framework 1.4,AJAX, Java Script, HTML5, CSS3 etc. etc.
Database MYSQL Database Server, DB Clustering, DB Optimization, Master Slave Replication, Query Optimization, Scheduler for Backups


Project Leader 1
Developers 2
Designers 1
Quality Assurance Testers 1


Taking into consideration the enormous nature of the website, a four tier development approach was used.

  • MS SQL database for Tables, Stored Procedures etc was within the database layer.
  • Data conversion in the incompatible type systems in databases and data access from databases
    was achieved via Interface layer and Database Abstraction layer respectively
  • Business logic layer comprised of all the business logic procedures.
  • GUI of the website formed the UI Layer.


The website included rich features for user data and social networking capabilities. Symfony framework was used along with MySQL for database purposes. Development architecture was built around the faster to market concept. An interface translating the object logic to a relational logic was created to access the data from relational databases in an object oriented manner. An intermediary abstraction
layer was created to access the databases. Stored procedures were used only to retrieve complex data and everywhere else conditional syntax was used. Images, application dta etc. was called from their respective servers to keep UI layer free from the business logic.

Development Highlights

The framework was kept highly flexible to enable addition of new features in the future. Pre-development research was carried for extensive customizations and to be able to build a robust application. Strict adherence to web usability principles and the website was made easily navigable with the use of use of CSS, AJAX and HTML controls. The website was live and fully functional within a span of
6 months.

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