Case Studies / Portfolio


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UNESCO Global Ocean Observing System

The Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS) is tasked with coordinating the inputs of countries throughout the world in order to achieve a comprehensive system for observing the world's oceans. Given the international nature of this work, the GOOS team had over the years built an extensive website containing information about the project, meeting information and associated documents.

However, by 2006, the GOOS website was due for an overhaul. The design and sheer weight of information meant that casual users were unable to immediately understand the project's work, and experts in the field had to dig through several layers of navigation to find what they needed.

Coldrose was brought in to bring the site up to date. We designed a new graphic layout and navigation system, giving the pages a modern feel with the newest information easily available. With this foundation in place, an entirely new system for the management of contacts, meetings and documents was implemented. Rather than being stored on staff PCs or in filing cabinets, everything can now be kept in a single centralised database. The latest details of a meeting or the most recent version of a document are always available online, with those concerned automatically notified if necessary. No longer do staff need to manually update their contacts - the use of a simple online interface ensures that any changes immediately shared between colleagues.

The new site and administrative system make information instantly available to those who need it, and ensure that nobody is ever left out of the loop. We're particularly proud of our work with GOOS - a perfect example of our ability to make life easier for everyone concerned.

Euro Estudios

Euro Estudios is a language school located in Granada, Spain. In a crowded market, with their website the main method for attracting customers from around the world, Euro Estudios found that their previous site was losing them business.

The school approached Coldrose to implement a new site design and layout. The site had to clearly and simply convey the atmosphere and approach of the school, while at the same time providing all the information necessary for students to enrol.

On undertaking the project we visited the school to take pictures and talk to existing customers about their interests and the type of information they required when looking for language courses. The work was completed within a month. The result? A great new site, increased bookings for the school over the web, and another satisfied customer.

Not a project for a client, but David's personal website, and a nice example of a design which combines elegant navigation and is visually attractive. We believe that sites can be eye-catching without resorting to garish colours or eye-crossing animations: this site shows how.

Your website design should not just be a coloured border around the text; it should present your image and convey the nature of your work to the world. David's website shows how photos and graphics can be combined to give something which stands out from the crowd and at the same time improves the visitors' experience.

UNESCO Harmful Algal Event Database

The UNESCO Harmful Algal Bloom Programme (HAEDAT) has, over several years, built up the worlds most comprehensive database of Harmful Algal Events. This data was compiled manually, with scientists around the world submitting forms which were then entered into a Microsoft Access database. The only way to view this data was to download the entirety of that database.

Coldrose was contracted by the HAEDAT team to streamline this process and make the information fully accessible to all. We converted the existing database to make it fully web accessible, allowing users to browse, search and view records using their web browser. In order to replace the manual submission of forms, a comprehensive online interface was developed allowing experts to submit records of HAB events online.

Currently, Coldrose is developing a mapping interface for the data, automatically displaying events as they are added. The revamped HAEDAT system represents a big step forward, making it simple for scientists to gather, consult and analyse information.


As part of a UNESCO initiative, several dozen marine institution libraries in Africa maintain their library holdings using a proprietary system. In order to improve the flow of information between countries, UNESCO needed a way to publish the details of these holdings on the web.

Unfortunately, licenses to add a web interface to the proprietary system would cost tens of thousands of dollars. For a fraction of that cost, Coldrose used open source technologies to create a system which converts the holdings into a free format, and publishes them through an attractive web interface.

Based on Ruby on Rails, PHP and MySQL, the system has no licensing costs and can be distributed freely. Afrilib is an excellent example of our abilitity to tailor a solution to a customer's needs and provide an alternative to expensive generic software - with a lower total cost!