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Weeknotes June 20th

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Hello and welcome to this week’s weeknotes. This is my first for DSD. I'm James, and I'm part of the software development team here.

Usually, we have an all-hands meeting on a Thursday, but this week was a special one as we met our new Director General, Matthew Coats. At this stage in our team’s development it’s still possible for us all to fit around a table so we had an excellent shared discussion about the future of Digital within the MOJ.

However, in our excitement, we didn’t have time to do our usual round of what everyone is up to this week, which is unhelpful seeing as I’m on weeknotes. So I will have to relay what I know, with an inherent bias towards who sits nearest my desk.

Much hard work is happening to get the Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) application beta service up and running on a secure and stable hosting environment, whilst keeping our ability to deploy and iterate rapidly. It’s a real challenge, with many concerns from business concerns to technical restrictions, but we’re learning a lot along the way, lessons we can apply to the other exemplars as they approach a similar stage.

This involves penetration testing (allowing someone to try and break into the servers), load testing (running servers to emulate hundreds of users using the service at once to see if the service can handle it) and checking the terms of service agreements with external services to make sure they can’t do anything bad with user data.

Jan has taken over the development of the Tribunals Decision Database project, and is doing some cracking work tidying up some of my prototype code into a beta ready service.

We’ve had a new starter, Clive Murray, who is getting stuck right in with helping get the front end of the LPA tool ready for launch. It’s great to have him on board. If, like Clive, you are interested on working on similar tools, then do let us know.

Civil Claims has finished it’s discovery phase, and the decision has been made to move forward with the alpha, which is great news. Now we shall start building prototypes and experiments to see what does and doesn’t work. Expect to hear more from Daniela on that in the coming weeks.

There is much else going on, the office is buzzing and momentum of the team continues to increase. An enjoyable time.

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