Business Systems Research Products Philosophy

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Automate Various Pension Reports Created and automated various daily and monthly reports regarding different types of pension claims, such as summaries of claims involving guaranteed annuity options, or the total numbers of pension claims of any type made over the month.
Incorporate Jersey Tax Law Changes Made modifications to a pension system to take into account changes in legislation concerning tax arrangements specifically for Jersey pension quotations. This was just one of many small projects undertaken by Graeme Robertson Ltd on this large and complex pension system.
Pension Scheme Cancellation System Enabled cancellation of a pension scheme by automatically removing large numbers of selected scheme members on mainframe systems via a PC front end, thus saving a considerable amount of clerical time.
Change of Address & Bank Details Speed-up Created a speedy PC front end to an old slow mainframe system thereby significantly reducing time pressure on customer service staff who every day have to process many customer requests to change an address or bank details, while at the same time protect against fraud.
Death Claims Speed-up Created a PC front end to an old slow mainframe system thereby significantly reducing customer service processing backlog of death notifications and the associated administration.
Pensions Calculator Enhancements Added features to an existing PC system, including automated customer letters for transfer values, with-profit endowments, death letters, nothing-payable letters, commutation of spouse's pension and widow's pension letters. Another major addition was automatic import of relevant data from a number of mainframe systems. These additions greatly reduced the backlog of work for staff, and usage was rapidly extended to over 100 users in England and Wales.
Enhance Complex Portfolio Management Application Enhanced a very successful APL system in a number of very specific areas. While most APL applications are written by one or two individuals, and supported by up to three or at most four, this particular Danish application has very many programmers involved in its development, and is corrrespondingly very large and very complex.
Fourier Transform Add-on using FFTW DLL Created a DLL with APL cover functions to call a Fourier Transform or its inverse from open source FFTW (Fastest Fourier Transform in the World) C++ code.
Eigenvectors and Eigenvalues Add-on using LAPACK DLL Created a DLL with APL cover functions to call a sufficient subset of eigen routines and complex matrix inverse routines from open source LAPACK (Linear Algebra PACKage) C++ code.
Insurance Claims Accounting System Upgrade Modified an existing system for Year 2000 compliance plus other enhancements, then converted this quarterly insurance system to a monthly reporting system.
Calculation of Final Salary Pension Claims Over 100 pages of exact specification of active and deferred final salary pension calculations were programmed in order to compute individual retiree pension quotations. Also produced a 300 page description of application inputs, outputs and mainframe links in support of over 50 inhouse users.
Petroleum Analysis Workstation Conversion to Windows Led a team to convert a petroleum analysis and trading system from DOS to Windows, and further develop the graphical component and other elements of the program as part of the team work.
Multidimensional Accounting System Conversion to Windows Converted the Kunzle Planning System from DOS to Windows for the successful March 1995 Adaytum launch in Birmingham NEC soon after KPS was acquired by Adaytum Systems. Adaytum then acquired Insight Systems and then, after system completion, Adaytum was acquired by Cognos Inc. for $160m in 2003. (Later IBM acquired Cognos for $5bn in 2009.) The resulting new source of funds breathed new life into the Dyalog APL language vendor when Dyalog/Dyadic was bought by the newly independent Insight Systems of Denmark.
Dyalog APL Help Files Produced the *.hlp Dyalog APL Help files and New Release Help files for versions 7, 8, 9 and 10. This included the Dyalog APL Language Help file and the Dyalog APL GUI Help file. APL itself was used to generate the numerous jumps and links in the GUI file.
Dyalog APL Manuals Produced the *.doc Dyalog APL Manual WORD files for versions 7, 8, 9 and 10 from the original Dyalog version 6.3 Kyocera text files and other flat file sources. Productions included the Dyalog APL User Guide (486pp), the Language Reference Manual (467pp), the Interface Guide (396pp), the Object Reference Manual (577pp) and the Outer Products Catalogue (35pp).
London Marine Market Insurance System Designed and developed a new 7-dimensional consolidated monthly insurance data system for Commercial Union, complete with a considerable number of built-in hierarchical calculations along and between each of the 7 dimensions.
A Bayes Linear Estimator The ABLE engine was designed by Bayesian expert Professor Tony O'Hagan of Nottingham University to assist in the privatization of UK water boards. Since then it has been used in the privatization of UK railways, Hong Kong water and Melbourne trams, and is currently being used for a London Underground project. Graeme Robertson and, laterly, Graeme Robertson Ltd have been an important part of the team in developing, supporting and extending this system since its inception in 1992.
REDUCE - Taylor Series Interface Create a routine in symbolic algebraic language REDUCE for Professor Robin Tucker and the Lancaster University Physics Theory Group to calculate Taylor approximations to complex functions that were output from existing REDUCE programs.
REDUCE - LaTeX Interface Reformat REDUCE output formulae with LaTeX for Professor Robin Tucker and the Lancaster University Physics Theory Group in order to make computed results from existing REDUCE programs more readable.
Worldwide Oil Trading System Created a system for petroleum trading around the world, based on the same technology as the Worldwide Treasury Dealing System below, using the powerful combination of STSC APL/PC, Sharp APL/MF and the I.P.Sharp communications network.
Giant APL Variables Prototyped a system obviating the need for an APL programmer to handle a separate APL file system by making variables of any size allowed by total hard disc file memory limitations virtually reside in a standard RAM-sized workspace and accessible as an APL variable using curly brackets {} rather than square brackets [].
Worldwide Bank Treasury Dealing System Based on a number of STSC APL utilities written by Martin Turner and Karl Mabert, we developed a system in London for Midland Bank Group Treasury which was then used extensively by foreign exchange traders around the World, in Europe, USA and the Far East, via the I.P.Sharp communications network. (I.P.Sharp Associates was acquired by Reuters for $47.5m in 1987 after the demise of mainframe APL timesharing and before the rise of the Internet.)
Multinational Customer Relationship Profitability System Designed with Rashmi Kakad, and led a small team of APL consultants, including Martin Turner and David Pilbeam, to build a large application involving many existing banking systems. This complex integrated system analysed the profitability of a bank's large multinational customers worldwide. The final project was completed at a total cost of less than 3% of the largest competitor bid for the project, and less than 5% of the second largest bid. The remainder of the £1m budget was used to train staff worldwide how to use the system.
International Bank Library Search and Find Database This set-theoretic text storage and retrieval system was based on an elegant file design by John Craig, and developed in London for Midland Bank International Business Library. It was also used by Midland Bank Business Sector Marketing Unit for their UK and international competitor databases.
Business Management Graphs Wrote functions to generate board-level management graphical reports from consolidated company data for various IPSA customers, including a large bank, a wine and spirit importer and a well known brewery.
Chemical Database of Oil Products This was a classic application of Wizard, the I.P.Sharp multidimensional database package, which was used here to store, in a natural way, details of oil chemical products. Many petroleum related organic molecules can be classified by positioning them in a four dimensional structure. This is very helpful for organising a database of their properties.
Product Pricing Target Application Created a new six dimensional accounting system for use by a large multinational manufacturing company to model their product pricing structure. It included multiple calculations and consolidations along product, location and business cycle dimensions, but in particular along the accounting dimension - ultimately calculating the cost of goods sold and the earnings from operations for the particular choice of 45 product prices.
Architect Project Scheduling System This was a bespoke add-on to SNAP, the Sharp Network Analysis Package. The system formalised standard project plans and procedures for the Tower Hamlets Borough Council architects. Each project followed the same plan which was provided as a template for implementing and monitoring the progress of each new building project in the borough.
European Marketing and Finance Database Systems Most of the work at Kodak was based on a brilliant application called Wizard which was developed at IPSA London by Peter Airs. I led a small team of APL consultants, including Nicki Coyne, Christine McCree and Sally Drew, to build multidimensional database systems using Wizard for Marketing, Finance, Graphic Arts, Medical X-ray Film, Administration and Customer Service departments. The development team and customers were all excellent.
Project Planning System to Facilitate new Implementations Project planning at Rank Xerox in London was based on a brilliant APL application called SNAP which was designed and built by Ken Chakahwata at IPSA. Assisted Ken and the strategic planning team at RX by developing a layer of software on top of SNAP to control its application in executing the successful implementation of various new RX computer systems in Europe by producing the European plans and management reports.
Magnetic Variation Atlas Create a machine code representation of a World magnetic variation map for aircraft navigation from FORTRAN source code. Navigation by compass is untrustworthy near the poles where the magnetic field splinters. In these places, other means of navigation must be employed because magnetic North is not well defined and the magnetic compass cannot be trusted.
Fuel Remaining on Station Task Perform machine code calculation of volume of aircraft fuel that would remain on station after completion of mission. This is a small component of an aircraft navigation system octal program. Having adequate fuel to complete a journey is clearly very important in this context.
Barometric Height Program Perform machine code calculation of aircraft height from barometric pressure reading. This is a small part of a navigation system octal program. A simple calculation is performed in 8-bit machine code to convert the incoming atmospheric pressure reading into an altitude for later use in the navigation program.
Business Card
Fresh Air
A Taste of APL
APL Font
APL 1-4
APL Reference Card
Periodic Parsing Character from Vector Vol.2 No.2 October 1985
Symbol Potency Chart from Vector Vol.2 No.2 October 1985
New Foundations from Vector Vol.20 No.1 July 2003
Bell's theorem & Matrix Mechanics from Vector Vol.20 No.3 January 2004

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