Three new employees

Over the last two month we’ve enlarged our team with three new employees, eager to improve our products and help our clients. From left to right:

  • Chandra Kirchrath is an old friend of us! We’ve known him for almost 5 years from previous jobs and wanted him to join us for a long time already. He will work on PHP and Javascript projects.
  • Mihai Plasoianu was just innocently sitting in the computer science cafeteria at TU Darmstadt with some friends, when Samuel asked him if he was interested in an awesome job offer as Java developer and sysadmin.
  • Thomas Nordquist is a friend of Mihai and was brought in by him just in the first week after he started working for us because of his iOS and Javascript skills.
Welcome on board!

Trip to Foursquare HQ

Our developer Sven Münnich and his team of five won the Foursquare and Lufthansa challenge at the TechCrunch Disrupt Europe hackathon, which was taking place in Berlin last October. They were invited to visit the Foursquare HQ in New York City, flights and accommodation included. This June, Sven and his teammate Tobi finally made it to New York for an amazing 9-day trip.

Sven and Tobi at the Foursquare HQ

German air traffic control / Deutsche Flugsicherung online shop

Eisenschmidt LogoOn the 1st of January 2014 the new online shop for General Aviation pilots by the R. Eisenschmidt GmbH opened its doors to customers. Eisenschmidt is part of the DFS Group.

Besides providing air navigation services in Germany DFS Deutsche Flugsicherung also produces and publishes aeronautical publications and products, such as the AIP Germany and aeronautical charts for Germany as well as parts of Europe. It provides relevant data and information required for air traffic management within German airspace.

In 2013 DFS acquired one of their biggest retailers/pilot shops, the R. Eisenschmidt GmbH, to insource their logistics of aeronautical publications once again. The project merged the former online shops of both companies in an effort to provide premier services to aviators all around the globe. The retail store at the Egelsbach airport also gets a complete makeover.

With a completely customized frontend template for Shopware the shop is ready for 2014. An entirely new subscription management for all of their customers was implemented. This included enhancements to the built-in electronic software downloads, to allow licensing to other users and notify them about updates.

Picking and shipping is completely handled via the Pickware suite, as well as all inventory management needs like storage locations, supplier orders and so forth. Invoices for electronic goods and subscriptions are automatically letter dispatched via a 3rd-party print shop. Retail sales are done with the new POS App, which pushes directly into the online shop as central system.

The R. Eisenschmidt GmbH now efficiently handles the complete eCommerce business for General Aviation of DFS and does so much more efficiently than previously possible.

Frontpage Screenshot

Pickware update version 1.1 is ready

We’ve updated the Pickware Apps to version 1.1 including support for 4” screens (iPhone 5 and iPod Touch 5G). The new Linea Pro 5 scanners for these devices are supported as well, they are much refined over the older versions.

The whole App was also updated with a new iOS 7 design and additional enhancements like displaying article thumbnails in the order view or a new info view which shows all details of an order (payment method & amount, comments etc.). This makes picking even easier!

For more infos and screenshots visit www.pickware.de!

DHL Adpater 1.1 with new features

Our DHL Adapter for Shopware was released in Version 1.1. It directly connects Shopware to the Intraship XML webservice and now supports even more new features from DHL:

  • Payment by Cash on Delivery (Nachnahme)
  • Different settings per sub-shop
  • Automatic delivery notifications from DHL
We are sure that it’s the best way to create DHL shipping labels in Shopware and our users think so as well. And delivering your orders to your customers gets even easier in combination with Pickware.

Symfony2 on a HostEurope Webpack

After wasting time on a failed attempt to host a Symfony2 based website on GoDaddy since they don’t allow you to change the document root for the primary domain, we looked for other shared hosters where we could deploy small projects which don’t need a VPS or root server. We tried Host Europe since we are very satisfied with the VPSs and root servers we have there.

And after a little bit of trial & error it works fine! Here are the steps you need to deploy your Symfony2 based webapp on a Host Europe WebPack L:

1. Create a FTP user

Create a FTP login which corresponds to the user the webserver runs as (i.e. the user, not the login, starts with “wp-“). You could also choose a separate FTP user, which is more secure, but more complicated as well. Be sure to make app/logs and app/cache writeable in that case.

2. Configure Suhosin

In your WebPacks config go to “Skripte”-> “Skript-Einstellungen” -> “PHP Suhosin Executor Include Whitelist” and activate “phar”.

3. Adapt document root

Now go to “Domains” -> “Domainzuordnungen editieren” and change the document root of the relevant domains to /www/web.

4. Hard copy assets

We always make Assetic symlink our assets, but you have to switch to hard copying them for the FTP upload to Host Europe. So set “symfony-assets-install” to “copy” in composer.json or remove the entry, since it’s the default value.

5. Install vendors and generate assets

Initialize the application by downloading the vendors:

composer.phar install --optimize-autoloader

And generate & copy the assets:

php app/console assetic:dump --env=prod --no-debug

6. Upload website

Now everything is read to be uploaded to /www via FTP. Empty the app/logs and app/cache directories before you upload.

Your Symfony2 should now run smoothly on a cheap Host Europe WebPack. Actually it’s pretty fast in our opinion and sufficient for most smaller use cases!

Notes

As of September 2013 Host Europe only supports PHP 5.3 unfortunately, so watch out for anything which might not be supported (e.g. the new array syntax []). Also call app_dev.php while temporarily disabling the localhost security check to debug any errors. If it takes a while to load everything should work, this will probably just be the assetic compile processes in dev mode timing out, since you are not allowed to run them.

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