Lino running in Czechia

Interview held by Luc in September 2013 with Joe Kejzlar <> from wpj s.r.o. in Vrchlabí (Czechia).

Joe, your CTMS project is the first time in the history of Lino that somebody other than me wrote a functional Lino application. I thought that is worth to speak about that.

Please tell us shortly about you. How many people work at wpj? When was it founded?

Joe: Our company started as a small web-technologies studio 10 years ago. Since then our focus shifted slightly from small web presentations to larger projects and our team now counts 5 to 6 people.

Can you tell us about your CTMS project? Where is it being used? How much development time? How many users? Are they satisfied?

CTMS is an information system for pharmaceutical company doing clinical research. It has been build for one company, but we all hope there will be interest from other companies as well, because the demand for such an Information System is quite high and most of the processes IS handles are standardized in all countries and companies (sometimes by law).

How did you discover Lino and why did you choose it? Was it hard to learn?

Joe: We discovered Lino by chance. We were evaluating some Django frameworks and searching ideally for Django+ExtJs combination for one of our earlier project. Unfortunately we did not discovered Lino that time. While working on the previous project, we discovered how hard it is to create whole project from scratch (despite both Django and ExtJS is very helpful) and we searched even more and finally found Lino on pypi list of applications (we wanted ExtJS version 4 and Lino uses ExtJS version 3, that was the reason for not finding Lino the first time).

Since that time it was quite a pleasant journey to create the whole CTMS project. Almost everything our customer was requesting were already prepared or quite easy to implement.

The maintainer of Lino is very friendly and helpful. That makes also the whole process of using Lino much better.

Why do you use free software?

We are for-profit company and we do not want our final products to be free. But the framework we are using is something completely different. We want it to be open, so that all the developers can share the features they implement and we want all of our modifications to Lino to be available for everyone. This way the framework could improve quickly.

I personally use free-software only but the company needs to sell it’s work.

Would you publish your CTMS application so that other people can use it?

We plan to release all of the modifications and additions to Lino. Not the application itself.

Given how easy is to write Lino application, Lino modifications are the most interesting part of our work. The application itself is just a definition of tables and layouts of gui.

Would you use Lino again for your next projects?

We are definitely going to use Lino for next projects.

So far mostly companies like Oracle were big enough to create big information systems. These companies put huge resources to create it’s own frameworks that are required (writing custom application of such scale requires either huge amount of time or superb prepared frameworks). Now that Lino exists, it seems even small company is able to create systems similar to those from big companies, thanks to ease of development using Lino.

Are there other things you’d like to say?

I want to thank Luc Saffre for his great work and hope Lino will soon become standard framework for creating information systems.