On Monday i went to the 5th anniversary and student showcase of epiGenesys. epiGenesys is a business set up by the University's department of Computer Science in late 2007. It's wholly owned by the University, employing Sheffield graduates and giving experience to current students on IT projects for businesses and charities, as well as ourselves. It's a great set up and has been hugely successful. We saw some really interesting projects, including a secure way of storing committee papers and displaying them on an iPad, a bibliographic search tool for researchers, a web interface to local hospital radio for patients and relatives to make requests and a PAT testing system. There were lots more, but I didn't have time to get round them all. A great venture, and something we are becoming more involved with - to mutual benefit I hope. We are commissioning epiGenesys to write systems for us, and I hope we will be able to give students some experience of what it's like to work in a large, enterprise organisation.
One of the systems epiGenesys has been working with us on is our incident contacts system, which we are piloting at the moment. Updatable by individual staff who've been nominated by their department to be incident contacts, it gives a nice clean search interfaces for our security staff to find contacts by name, department, building, role etc. The project group met this morning, and we're hopeful that after the pilot departments have reported we can roll it out across the University.