During 2003-2005, the British Government desired a commercial solution called the National Benefit System. To provide this solution, the Microsoft National Benefit Team was formed. Cody Middlebrook as an Analyst Programmer, was a member of the Microsoft team and was involved throughout the entire life-cycle of the development, right down to the System support of the application. In an interview, Cody Middlebrook discusses with Rajen Jani about the project.

Situation:
The UK National Benefit System was aimed to provide benefits to primary recipients in the broad categories of families with children, for unemployed people, for those on low incomes, for elderly people, for sick and disabled people, and for bereaved people. The whole process needed to be implemented with the latest computer technologies.

Solution:
By utilizing several technologies, the Microsoft National Benefit Team arrived at a solution called National Benefit System.

Interview:
RJ: This project was during the two years 2003-2005.
CM: Yes.
RJ: You were a member of the Microsoft National Benefit Team for this project.
CM: Yes. My contribution was an as Analyst Programmer.
RJ: Could you tell something more about your contribution?
CM: My contribution was in the areas of using Microsoft/ICT UK Campus Reading Technologies, and Middle Tier Development with C# COM+ and other areas.
RJ: Which technologies did you use?
CM: C# .NET, ASP .NET, WSE2.0, Web Services, SOAP, XML, XML Schema’s, XDS, SQL Server, SQL Reporting Server, and JavaScript. Data warehousing was also used.
RJ: Do you recollect any specific task that you did using these technologies?
CM: Well, I designed the solution architecture for the reporting module that integrated with a middleware application. Then I wrote the XML transformation for the reporting tool to produce the dataset for SQL Reporting Services. I wrote a custom XML data extension using C# .NET to translate the XML to a dataset for Reporting Services. And I also wrote ASP.NET user controls that could capture the Benefactor’s signature on a Tablet PC. This signature would be saved in the SQL server database and rendered in the Reporting Service report.
RJ: What did you use for stability?
CM: Source Depot was used for stability.
RJ: And for deployment and testing?
CM: For staging deployment, MS Build was used and for testing N-Unit was used. Rotherham was the first region in the UK to have the trial.
RJ: It must have been quite a learning experience for you to be part of such a qualified team.
CM: Yes, it was. This is where I learnt the two new languages, C# and BI Build. From this foundation I have paved a career in BI Build technology.
RJ: With such a strong foundation, it is not surprising that you are a top-notch BI Architect. Well, thank you so much Cody for giving your precious time for this interview.
CM: Thank you Rajen.

Benefits:
The British Government was highly benefited with the National Benefit Sytem as provided by Microsoft. Cody Middlebrook enacted a valuable role in the Microsoft team toward the designing, development and deployment of the UK National Benefit System.

For images, technical drawings and further information:
Cody Middlebrook
cody@bicg.com.au

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