Posts Tagged ‘New Context’

‘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 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

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