Jerome Vernon

Project Introduction

The website, code-named ‘Freedom Check’, was born with the simple idea to showcase how-to articles about my hobby — antique restoration. As I investigated other sites and planned the design, my basic idea matured into a concept with a wider universal appeal. Now complete, Freedom Check has emerged as a full featured content management system that is presented in the style of a magazine and built entirely with DevExpress ASP.NET products. By utilizing DevExpress tools, our administrators can post articles, product reviews, announcements, events, videos, photo albums and more. The tools also include the e-commerce functionality, supporting a ‘shopping mall’ concept. Site owners can create and manage one or more stores, and also invite vendors to open their own stores in the marketplace. Transaction processing is fully embedded and is PCI compliant. It currently utilizes Authorize.Net as the payment gateway, thus sales are directly deposited into the store owner’s bank account. In fact, Restoration News (, is hosted on the cloud using a Microsoft Windows Azure virtual server and is built with DevExpress ASP.NET tools.

Why Developer Express?

I made the choice to use DevExpress six years ago while working on several projects for a major health insurance provider. My client required the interfaces for both Web and WinForms applications to share many commonalities from the user interaction and controls standpoint. After comparing grid components from a number of vendors, we selected Developer Express. Since then our decision has been validated time and time again. In fact, as time moves on, I’m increasingly impressed with their superior customer support, ongoing enhancements, and cool new products. My clients are also impressed and happy with the quick turnaround on complex projects (among other things).

Problem-solving features

I’m particularly impressed with the data-bound controls. Just by providing an enumerable data source, the controls connect easily and deliver an impressive presentation UI and functionality. From one perspective, Developer Express grids can be thought of as user-customizable reports. Built-in filtering, grouping, and column selection provide the needed view. Combined with the export functionality, the resulting view is converted to a spreadsheet or PDF for presentation or further analysis. Number crunchers really like this feature. 

Some of my projects involve working with large organizations where data is stored in multiple disparate systems. For them, I utilize the Microsoft data model and LINQ, which include an aggregate extension method. This method is like magic for amalgamating disparate aggregates into enumerable objects. The objects expose the results of complex calculations and logical results to Developer Express grids, reports, and data viewers. All this appears to the user in real time, and it is accomplished without nightly imports or ETL processes. A bit of logic combined with Developer Express controls makes it all happen seamlessly.

Unified Solution Provider

Looking forward, I’m confident my latest project, ‘Freedom Check’, and the Restoration News website will continue to function as well as they do today. As an ex-Java developer, I remember the days when I relied on open-source controls in the shifting environment of web browsers and server models. Difficulties commonly surfaced when compatibility was lost due to operating system changes and browser upgrades. Sometimes I waited months for a fix, and sometimes the fix never arrived. From a developer’s standpoint, it’s far better to have a reliable firm providing timely fixes, and often in advance of potential issues. Developer Express is that firm. 

No more going to numerous and sometimes unreliable third parties to get the functionality the client demands. Today, all my projects have the functionality I want because they are provided automatically and seamlessly by Developer Express client-side scripting libraries and code-behind functionality. It really is all built-in; from AJAX callbacks, grids, global events, reports and more.

Time is Money

Each year, when it’s time for my clients to renew their Developer Express subscription, I often get the call: do we really need to spend the money on this even though the project is complete? Honestly, it really doesn’t take much convincing once I mention what my hourly rate would add up to over weeks of service. The Developer Express team and their superb product offerings have saved my clients countless thousands of dollars in manpower expenditures alone. With that in mind, the subscription cost is quite a bargain.

Sharing Thoughts over Lunch

Every so often I get together with a bunch of programmer buddies for lunch. As you can guess, our conversations are dominated mostly by geek talk, and are accompanied by a lot of laughter. Some of my friends are avid Developer Express users, and some are not. Often, my friends will bring up some new and fascinating technology or magical JavaScript library. I must say, however, when it’s my turn to speak regarding projects using Developer Express controls, all go silent. Their typical response: ”Really’? You can do that with Developer Express? How did you get through that project so quickly?” My usual answer is that I’ve found something good and I’m sticking with it.

Jerome Vernon

Freedom Check, Jerome Vernon