Xpiron Gets in-shape Using Oracle XML Developer's Kit
" Xpiron depends on XML to build our health and fitness club scheduling solutions. Every time we undertake new development, we typically find Oracle has already built the XML infrastructure in the database or tools. For instance, we use the Oracle XSQL Servlet for XML reporting and extraction against our Oracle9i Database. This has saved our developers untold hours of work because XML extracts are as simple as writing a simple XML template." -- Steve Buikhuizen, Vice President of Technology Development, Xpiron
Highly scalable, secure, and reliable XML-enabled server infrastructure
Web enabled scalable and reliable customer service and scheduling applications
Out of the box support of XML allowing aggregation of data from multiple systems and deployment on
servlet enabled web or application servers.
Xpiron is the leader in real-time, Internet-based scheduling and data analysis services for the health club industry. Based in San Francisco, California, Xpiron provides Internet-based scheduling and reporting systems that are used by health and fitness clubs to manage their member services and schedules.Xpiron is a founding member of the Fitness Industry Suppliers Association-Information Technology Group and an active participant in the International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association, a leading trade organization for health clubs.
Providing Unparalleled Customer Service Through the Web Xpiron was founded on the concept that health and fitness club members should be getting better customer service from the clubs that serve them. Calling in to a busy front desk or navigating through a voice-based scheduling system can be inconvenient because of the complexity and personal nature of such appointments. Xpiron realized that the ubiquitous use of the web at home and at work provides a new channel that health and fitness clubs could leverage to market their services.
However, building a service that thousands of clubs could use simultaneously revealed another set of issues that Xpiron had to resolve. How could an ASP solution scale to handle the volume of users? Could the system be made secure so that administrative activities would not be available to members? Was it possible to integrate the system into other existing systems? Could the system be made available on mobile devices as well as traditional web based browsers? These problems had to be understood before launching a successful service.
High-Level Project Goals
Deliver Web-enabled scalable and reliable customer service and scheduling applications
Develop a highly scalable, secure and integrated server infrastructure that is XML-enabled.
Use XML to easily integrate multiple data sources.
Why Oracle? Xpiron's development team chose Oracle software as part of their ASP offering because they knew it was designed to be highly scalable, reliable and secure, precisely the characteristics required by the ASP solution they were designing. By deploying the Oracle9i Database and software on Intel based machines running the Linux operating system and the Apache Web Server, Xpiron also was able to run on a highly robust solution using commodity hardware and open standards software.
The greatest benefit Xpiron realized through the use of Oracle9i technology was a highly scalable, secure and reliable server infrastructure that is XML-enabled from the ground up. Xpiron feels they have a strategic advantage over competitors because they are running the same software infrastructure that powers many of the largest businesses on the Internet.
From a development perspective, Xpiron has found that leveraging the rich set of pre-built Oracle9i XML solutions, like the Oracle XSQL Servlet, has enabled them to bring their solutions to market significantly faster than expected. Xpiron developers find that they are able to spend more time building solutions because the XML infrastructure has already been built by Oracle.
What was less apparent at the outset was what role XML technology would play in their solution. Recognizing the importance of XML for integrating applications and building mobile solutions, Xpiron and other IT suppliers in the fitness sector are working together to formulate XML standards that will make it easier for health and fitness clubs to integrate applications and enable solution providers like Xpiron to deliver software that seamlessly plugs into existing club systems.