When Written: Nov 2006
All this coding is fine when the web application is trying to do something new or is heavily customised to a client’s needs, but it is important not to try to re-invent the wheel all the time. A case of this occurred the other day when a client wanted to us to put an on-line questionnaire up for their users.
They wanted to have some of the questions appear in response to previous answers and obviously to analyse the answers later. We spent sometime with the client deciding on the questions and their possible answers. We were about to start to code it up using some .NET pages and a database to store the results, when a chance meeting changed our plans. This meeting occurred at party arranged by a group of independent PR companies.
I was invited down by Jane Lee of Dexterity (www.dexterity.co.uk ) and whilst chatting away to the many journos there, someone who I hadn’t seen for nearly a year came in. The person was Derek Cohen of Demographix (www.demographix.com) whose company offers a system for building, running and analysing on-line questionnaires. Obviously Derek was enthusiastic about the system and it certainly seemed that it might fit the bill, particularly if it saved me some coding work. So we agreed that a trial account would be setup for me to have a play.
Demographix web application for making on-line questionnaires is so easy to use
The next day I sat down to take a look at the Demographix system. It seemed vary intuitive and even though Derek offered to help out with this job I though that I would give it a try on my own. Within 2 hours I had a 65 question questionnaire built and up and running to show the client. I was impressed, the client was impressed, particularly when they realised it was easy for us to make any changes to the questionnaire in a matter of minutes. I found the whole process strangely enjoyable, but I can be a bit sad like that. The results from the questionnaire can either be examined online or downloaded for importing into excel or a statistical package.
The charges for this service vary depending on your needs but I paid real money for this service, no freebies and I consider it money well spent.
Article by: Mark Newton
Published in: Mark Newton