Posts Tagged ‘NEO’

Neo to host Global Day of Code Retreat in Edinburgh

Wednesday, December 11th, 2013



International software innovation company Neo will again host software developers from across Scotland on 14 December for Global Day of Code Retreat. The annual event will take place at Neo’s European base at TechCube in Edinburgh, and in up to 200 other cities around the world.

A day-long, intensive practise event focusing on the fundamentals of software development and design, Code Retreat will give developers the opportunity to work on code away from the pressures of ‘getting things done’, thus allowing the freedom to invoke their creative side, practise their skills and develop new ideas.

Much like a musician who needs time to practise playing an instrument, programmers need to refine their skills without the constraints of time, budget or business brief in order to develop. Scotland’s tech and software development industry is vibrant, but to continue to lead in this field, skills must be refined and developed and new ground broken.

The Code Retreat format has proved to be a highly effective means of skill improvement. Practising the basic principles of modular and object-oriented design, developers can improve their ability to write code that minimises the cost of change over time.

Global Day of Code Retreat is an annual event taking place in Australia, New Zealand, the US, China, Singapore, South Africa, Poland, Germany, Sweden and Scotland among many others.

Paul Wilson, Managing Director at Neo explains: “Since the idea was conceived in 2009, Code Retreats have become a global phenomenon. Last year around 2000 programmers took part in 150 separate Code Retreats.

“As a global organisation, Neo organises Global Day of Code Retreat events in many of its offices. After extremely positive feedback from last year’s event, we look forward to another enjoyable and successful day.”

Neo is a global product innovation company working with clients including Time Magazine, American Express and Paypal, and whose board contains some of the biggest names in software and product development, including Evan Henshaw-Plath (lead developer at Twitter) and Joi Ito (Director of MIT Media Lab).

For more information contact: Jen Richards :: 0131 225 7880

‘Hackers’ to Save NHS £3m+ With Free Patient Handover App

Monday, July 30th, 2012

The creators of a free software app which took top prize at the first ever NHS Hack Day believe the product has the potential to save the NHS more than £3M per year.

NHS Hack Day brought together doctors, programmers and software developers to create innovative and high-tech solutions to everyday problems within the NHS. In just 24 hours the winning team created a browser-based “Patient List” system to improve the handover of patients.

Replacing the traditional task-list method usually used by staff, the application uses a feed from the hospital’s electronic medical records to provide doctors with a list of all their patients, allowing them to create task lists, update a patient’s record of care and better manage the handover of patients between shift teams and hospital departments.

Paul Wilson, MD of New Context Scotland, says: “I’m delighted to announce that we are developing our winning idea into a free open source product that can be easily downloaded and installed by any NHS hospital trust. Our solution will reduce the errors that occur during shift handovers and when patients move between departments. We estimate that this innovation has the potential to save £3.6 million worth of time – time that can then be devoted to frontline patient care.

“We’re currently working hard to get the product beyond the proof-of-concept stage and our efforts so far can be viewed online by the public.”

The application has attracted the attention of Professor Sir Liam Donaldson who, in a recent interview with E-Health Insider, said: “So many of the problems in healthcare, the errors, the mistakes, the lapses in standards of care occur during handovers of care from one team to another.”

The inaugural NHS Hack Day was held in late May, with 10 teams submitting their applications to an expert panel of senior clinicians and IT advisors, chaired by the former chief medical officer of England, Professor Sir Liam Donaldson.  The winning team was made up of New Context Scotland’s Paul Wilson and Adrian Mowat, ValueDecision’s Eckhard Schwarzat, Tactix4’s Rob Dyke and Dr Colin Brown of the Health Protection Agency and St Thomas’ Hospital.

Formerly known as EdgeCase UK, New Context Scotland is part of New Context, Inc, a global consultancy, which includes Silicon Valley tech guru Eric Ries as a general partner. New Context provides web and mobile software development for startups, corporations, and governments in North America, Asia, and Europe.

For more information and to view product development to date visit:


Web App Allows People To Explore Eyewitness News Across Social Media Networks

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

iWitness, a revolutionary new web application for the aggregation of eyewitness news from social media platforms, launches today.  Developed by New Context in partnership with designers of the application, Adaptive Path, the free web app allows people to explore content from social media services such as Flickr and Twitter by time and place.

iWitness uses geolocation data shared by users to pinpoint the location where a post, photo, or video originated. It allows users to see content from a particular location in real time or by specifying a time range.  It is expected that this will be particularly valuable during emergencies when people look to share eyewitness news across social media channels.

Designed to be easy to use by anyone, if a user knows when and where something happened or is happening, iWitness will show first-person photos, videos, and messages from people there on the spot, integrating diverse media types in one interface.

The web app was beta tested live during development by the news desks of five US national and regional newspapers. Reporters used iWitness in their daily reporting – identifying what was useful, what was not and what else was needed.  New Context worked closely with Adaptive Path to synthesize that feedback and incorporate it into the design, adding new features and shaping the final design.

“iWitness could be one of the most important tools during a breaking news event. Newsrooms are always turning to Twitter to find initial reports from the scene of breaking news and iWitness lets you find those key tweets and photos,” said Sona Patel, social media producer for The Seattle Times.

iWitness was designed and built with funding from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation after Adaptive Path submitted the idea for iWitness to the Knight News Challenge, an open competition for media innovation projects.

Adaptive Path brought New Context in to work on the project because of their track record in balancing the latest technologies with proven methodologies. New Context combines elements of extreme programming with behavior driven development to produce high quality, low defect output.

“New Context was an enormously valuable partner for us on this project,” said Jesse James Garrett, co-founder and Chief Creative Officer of Adaptive Path, and project lead for iWitness. “Their agile approach enabled us to quickly evolve the design of iWitness to best meet the needs of our users, and their technical savvy helped me realize my vision for the product.”

New Context developed iWitness as an open source application using Ember, a JavaScript framework.  This agile development process rapidly produces functionality with a minimum of waste.  Starting with a series of exercises New Context agreed the domain language, key concepts and features before turning the requirements into a discrete set of user stories.  Each user story representing a distinct requirement that could be understood or developed in isolation.

Mike Doel of New Context explains:  “This has been a fascinating project to work on and we are very excited to see how it will start to influence the news agendas and news reporting.  By using agile methods we have been able to work closely with Adaptive Path and the end user to ensure that iWitness does exactly what they need it to do.”

These agile methods follow short bursts of work that allow for rapid feedback and evaluation.  Developing in two week cycles or iterations at the end of the cycle New Context review the stories developed during the iteration before getting sign off from Adaptive Path.

New Context is an agile company specializing in rapid sustainable development of mobile and web applications.  Since its launch, New Context has specialized in the development of mobile and web applications for both startups and Fortune 500 companies.

Adaptive Path was one of the first design firms focused on user experience and over ten years has worked at the frontier of UX design, working with hundreds of organizations to define experiences for new products and services, strategically evolve existing ones and integrate experiences across channels.  Drawn to complex ambiguous challenges that defy known approaches and best practices.

For more information about the iWitness project, visit

Edgecase Develop Fundraising App For Maggie’s Monster Bike And Hike

Friday, March 23rd, 2012

EdgeCase has developed a fundraising app that tackles the problem of team motivation and aims to transform fundraising. The Go Team Go app enables participants of the Maggie’s Monster Bike and Hike 2012 to motivate their team, track their progress, share through social media, and promote the charity.

Maggie’s Monster Bike & Hike is an outdoor adventure in the Scottish Highlands where teams have 24 hours to complete their chosen bike and hike challenge. An average of 1,000 people attend every year to raise much needed funds for Maggie’s Centres.

EdgeCase is an Agile company specialising in rapid sustainable development of mobile and web applications. As part of the organisation’s creative values and culture, it sets a certain amount of time aside for developers to pursue their own innovative projects. In this time Software Artisan, Peter Aitken, chose to develop a web app for Maggie’s to help encourage participants and aid fundraising efforts.

Peter Aitken of EdgeCase explains: “I had taken part in the 2011 challenge with a team of five friends, and discovered that there was no easy way to track progress and successfully motivate our team. We needed a tool to aid this process and Go Team Go was the solution.”

Users simply sign up to Go Team Go, enter their team names and link up to their Just Giving page. The dashboard details each individual’s training schedule for the week. Email alerts remind each team member of their training targets and remind an individual if they haven’t logged their details for that week. These features help the individual and the team to achieve goals and raise more money for the charity.

The app also has the option to share each teammate’s progress on social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook, which helps to raise awareness of the cause, without participants having to directly ask people for money, which can be uncomfortable.

Peter explains:  “No one likes asking people for sponsorship money but by sharing progress and involving those who are not actually taking part, you build support for your challenge and make sponsors feel part of the team. This makes it easier to collect the funds. I’m sure Bike and Hike participants will love it and use it to raise even more money for Maggie’s.”

George Bushell, Events Manager at Maggie’s, says: “We are really excited about the new app and we think it’s a really positive tool to aid our work. We believe it will really support our Monster fundraisers and we look forward to hearing the feedback from its users.”

Go Team Go can be found at

For more information contact Lauren Cormack.

EdgeCase Acquired By Digital Garage to form New Context

Wednesday, February 1st, 2012

EdgeCase, the leading Ruby on Rails software company, has announced its acquisition by Tokyo based technology company Digital Garage, creating a global consultancy – New Context.  New Context will operate out of the US, the UK and Japan and signals a change in the way startups are supported.

Through acquisitions of leading companies like EdgeCase, Digital Garage hopes to expand its capabilities and offer a full service for startups. Targeting the Lean Startup movement, the consultancy will assist with the design, development and delivery of web and mobile applications based on lean and agile methodologies.

Digital Garage, since its establishment in 1995, has pioneered various domains of Internet business in Japan, including portals, media representation, e-Commerce, mobile communication and blogging. An investor in Twitter and Path, Digital Garage has created partnerships to customise the Japanese versions of Technorati, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Paul Wilson, EdgeCase UK MD explains:  “I am delighted that we will have the opportunity to bring the Lean Startup Methodology to established businesses, as well as startups, as it is the most important business development of the past five years. This is an incredibly exciting moment for EdgeCase and I am absolutely thrilled to be part of it.”

Since its launch in 2006, EdgeCase has specialised in the development of mobile and web applications for both startups and Fortune 500 companies. The company currently employs 33 people, from offices in Columbus and Cincinnati, Ohio and Edinburgh, Scotland.

The acquisition follows a period of sustained growth, and will see Paul Wilson become Managing Director of EdgeCase UK. Founders Ken Barker and Joe O’Brien will continue in their previous roles as President and CEO respectively.

Joe O’Brien, CEO and co-founder of EdgeCase comments:  “We have always excelled at building software and teams. We help startups get on their feet technically and by hiring and training teams for them. For our Fortune 500 clients we are able to translate the lean and agile concepts from our startup clients, as well as train their existing teams on the newer technologies for maximum impact.  Forming New Context gives us an incredible platform to help take our work to the next level and offer clients a broader set of capabilities and strengths as well as reach places we have not been able to yet, such as the Asian market.”

New Context President and group CTO of DG, Ian McFarland comments: “We’re excited to bring together so many thought leaders from the design and development worlds under one roof. EdgeCase has a proven track record in eliminating risk in the areas of design and implementation. Combined with Digital Garage’s strength in operations and finance, we see huge potential to reshape how software is designed, developed and delivered. This is just a first step, but we think it’s a big one.”

The acquisition has already drawn attention from leading industry figures. Biz Stone, co-founder of Twitter, Inc and the Obvious Corporation, says: “I’m really excited about the vision Ian has made for New Context. I think it has the potential to transform how software is made, and really help their clients to take Agile and Lean to a new level.”

And Eric Ries, author of New York Times bestseller ‘The Lean Startup’ lends his support:  “I’m excited by the birth of this new company, dedicated to lean startup principles, and addressing both design and development.  This integrated approach is both powerful and unique.”

For more information contact:  Lauren Cormack

EdgeCase launches to aid recovery

Monday, May 17th, 2010

Scottish web-developers are playing their part in the clean-up effort around The Gulf of Mexico. A social media powered website for the public to collect and share oil spill data has been developed by EdgeCase:

The site’s main function is to collect images, videos and reports from people impacted by the spill and to make them available to the public. People can upload images of oil on beaches, injured wildlife and volunteer activities among other things.

The goal of the project is to speed recovery by crowd sourcing information and making this information readily available to recovery teams. It is expected that’s data will be used by emergency response teams, wildlife organisations, educational institutions and volunteer groups.

In addition to gathering and displaying reports, will also provide information on the spill and recovery tools such as a business income loss calculator.

Paul Wilson, of EdgeCase Scotland and one of the lead developers on the site explains: “The potential of social media to aid the oil spill recovery effort by giving the public a platform to share images and the location of damaged wildlife is amazing.

“Ruby on Rails, the technology behind this website, allowed us to build a powerful social media site and get it live very quickly, so people can start using it. I am extremely excited about the potential of this technology to be rapidly deployed in response to emergency relief operations.”

“Over the coming weeks, we will be adding more and more functionality to the website” he continues. “The site that was launched today is just the first version of what we believe will grow and become a dynamic recovery tool. We hope that people will visit the site frequently to find the latest features and tools.” has been launched by Gulf Coast Spill Coalition, a charity formed in response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Technology and web design experts, educators, legal and business professionals and ordinary individuals have come together to form the Gulf Coast Spill Coalition, with the aim of cultivating innovation in the use of technology for mobility and efficiency during crises.

It was developed by EdgeCase, a leading Ruby on Rails software development firm, whose team built the website; Intridea, a technology firm that developed the mobile reporting application; and Engine Yard, a cloud computing and hosting firm. All companies involved have donated their time and resources to the project for free.

Roll up roll up for the greatest show in town

Tuesday, May 4th, 2010

The techy carnival is coming to town with TechCrunch and its ‘digital power broker’ Mike Butcher, hooking up with Informatics Ventures for Engage | Invest | Exploit 10 in Edinburgh on 12 May 2010.

This is the first TechCrunch Europe UK event to be held outside of London and its programme has attracted a prestigious line up of speakers and a powerful delegate list of the great and good from Scotland’s tech community.

Informatics Ventures is based in Edinburgh University’s School of Informatics and Engage | Invest | Exploit 10 is its third annual showcase of the most promising, high-growth companies spun out of leading Scottish Universities.

This year’s event will be the biggest to date with an exhibition of 50 start-ups and spin-outs from bio tech, clean tech, social media, gaming and mobile all in one place and in one morning. EIE is Scotland’s biggest opportunity for Informatics entrepreneurs and investors to meet.

During the TechCrunch afternoon sessions, Skyscanner’s Lara Bayley will be presenting on “Why Scotland for Startups?”; followed by fast pitches from some early stage local startups. A panel of entrepreneurs with Adtaily, Onedrum and Cloudsoft will discuss linking Scotland to Europe.

Andrew Nutter looks at “How to turn on an investor”; Rapid Mobile will cover “Mobile innovation in Scotland and finally a panel of investors will discuss “Investing in Tech startups in and beyond Scotland.”

We’ve done a roll call of Hot Tin Roof clients who are attending and we are almost at a 100% hit rate with MoneyDashboard, FreeAgent Central, EdgeCase, Flexiant, Civic and Informatics Ventures (naturally) all signed up. And of course, there’s no show without punch, so we’ll be there too!

Don’t worry – if you haven’t got your tickets yet – it’s not too late – just click here.

Neo in the news

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010


Neo brings together recognized thought leaders from around the world and puts them together one roof. Neo is the best of design and development, the best of lean thinking, the best of agile development, and the best of user-centered design. We’re leaders in agile and lean practices, and we’re leaders in user experience and service design. By bringing together great depth these two core competencies, we’re uniquely positioned to help our customers create truly great products. By developing along lean principles, we’re also able bring them to market quickly, and validate that we’re not just building a well-crafted product, but the right product, one customers will use, love, and pay for.

What is Lean UX? Computer Business Review, 24 February 2014

Neo to host Global Day of Code Retreat, Edinburgh Science Triangle, 11 December 2013

Pearson integrates Google Enterprise and Office 365, Computer Weekly, May 2013

Global day of code retreat, Test Magazine, 1 February 2013

New Context changes name to Neo, Private Markets, 13 November 2012

NHS Hack Day winners to launch open source Patient List app, E-Health Insider, 30 July 2012

Mobile app from NHS Hack Day winners is set to transform handovers & task lists, British Medical Journal, 27 July 2012

Patient handover app to save NHS £3m, Public Service, 24 July 2012

‘Hackers’ invent handover app that could save NHS £3m a year, Building Better Healthcare, 23 July 2012

NHS Hack Day winners claim app will save NHS £3m, Computer Weekly, 23 July 2012

Web app allows media to explore eyewitness news across social networks, New Media Knowledge, 17 June 2012

iWitness filters Twitter and Flickr by time and location, The Next Web, 13 June 2012

iWitness tool offers social content search by time and place,, 13 June 2012

The future of Ruby, .net magazine, 21 May 2012

Top 5 Lean Startup myths, .net magazine, 2 April 2012

New app will help boost fundraising, Third Force News, 16 March 2012

Fundraising web app developed by EdgeCase for Maggie’s flagship event, Civil Society Fundraising, 14 March 2012

Fundraising app for Maggie’s designed to boost team motivation, UK Fundraising, 7 March 2012

‘Dragons’ are friendly at business Startup event, Evening Times, 10 August 2010

Tech start-up community thrives in Scotland, Computer Weekly, 30 July 2010

BP activists pour oil on troubled waters, The Drum, 1 June 2010

Live Blogging Obama: If you don’t like Thad Allen’s answer come to directly me,
San Francisco Chronicle, 28 May 2010

Website to aid oil spill clean-up, Business 7, 28 May 2010

Website to aid BP oil recovery, CorpComms, 26 May 2010

Website aids BP Gulf of Mexico oil spill clean-up effort, The Drum, 20 May 2010

Can social media help clear up the #gulfspill?, TechCrunch, 17 May 2010

EdgeCase Launches to Help BP Oil Spill Recovery, USA Today, 16 May 2010

Social media website launched to aid BP oil spill recovery, Click Green,
16 May 2010

Test Driven Development with Rails Studio, Compute Scotland, 22 March 2010

‘Lean and mean’ development driven by recession, Computer Weekly,
8 March 2010

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