Wellness Center Turns to Web Dev Team to Quickly Build a Document Management App - Dynamsoft Provides the SDK to Help Deliver the Web App in Just One Month


Right away, we knew better than to get into the business of developing our own TWAIN plugin – that would be disastrous to saving time and money. So, for the document management web app we were developing, we turned to Dynamsoft for a complete TWAIN plugin solution. Long story short, it helped us achieve a full-featured application in a month instead of a year."

--Ezra Barth-Rogers,
Director, WholeLife Software.


Compassionate Health Options has 15 wellness counseling facilities throughout Northern California. Its staff consists of a mix of 60 physicians and other employees. The company needed a new method to digitize document paperwork. They turned to WholeLife Software for a custom solution. To more quickly provide the web app, WholeLife Software in turn sought out Dynamsoft for a software development kit (SDK). The SDK would remove the need to learn, program, implement, and then support a TWAIN plugin for document scanning. This alone can take more than a year to produce from scratch. The combination of helpful input from the Compassionate Health Options team, fast work by WholeLife Software, and the Dynamsoft SDK produced a powerful document management solution. Today, approximately 35-60 Compassionate Health Options employees use the web app daily for more efficient paperwork and collaboration processes. In addition, the application is used by many other companies throughout California and Washington.


Business Micros

Business Micros

Compassionate Health Options consists of a group of 15 wellness counseling facilities located throughout Northern California. Staffing is made up of a mix of approximately 60 physicians and staff members. The company’s goals with patients include assisting and advising them on nutrition, weight, lifestyle changes, smoking cessation, relationship counseling, personal health management, alternative health treatment options (massage, therapeutic bodywork, yoga, acupuncture, herb use and others) and general well-being.

WholeLife Software is a small software development firm located in San Francisco. The company provides custom and turnkey software, particularly for use in the healthcare industry. Turnkey software includes its WholeLife Medical Practice Management software. The software is offered as a Basic, Professional and Premier subscription on a paid monthly basis.




On a daily basis, the Compassionate Health Options staff collaborates to provide patient care and process necessary paperwork. This is across many locations. City locations in Northern California include: San Rafael, San Francisco, Colfax, Pleasant Hill, Marysville, Monterey, Mt. Shasta, Oakland, Redding, San Jose, Santa Cruz, Santa Rosa, South Lake Tahoe, Truckee, Vallejo, and more.

The team needed a new web-based document management solution. To accomplish this, a team of 3-5 staff members found an outside web application development team - WholeLife Software. Afterward, the two collaborated to come up with a solution. The document management application would need to be simple to use, fast to implement and powerful enough for many to use. On a daily basis, some 35-60 people would be using the application. Another main point of the solution would be to allow the scanning of records and ID cards into a web application, to avoid desktop file uploads.


Once a course of action was defined and the work started, development time was approximately one month. The use of JavaScript into the web app was an important time-saver. Also, the web team instinctively knew it wanted to use a software development kit (SDK) for the TWAIN interface. With the right vendor, this would save the most amount of time. So, a quick search found Dynamsoft and their Dynamic Web TWAIN SDK.

Dynamic Web TWAIN SDK
Dynamsoft’s Dynamic Web TWAIN SDK provide developers a simple way to deliver a TWAIN scanning module in a web application so they need write just a couple of lines of code in JavaScript. This is instead of taking months to learn the TWAIN standard. Then many more months would be required to develop an application with hundreds to thousands of lines of code. A finished application gives users key features for document scanning, uploading, editing, and document management within web browsers. The SDK has built-in support for local image editing and saving options to a variety of formats. Documents can be saved to local or remote databases or other repositories. It supports 32-bit / 64-bit Internet Explorer® (IE), Firefox®, Chrome®, Safari® and Opera™ browsers on Windows®, Mac® OS X, Linux, iOS, and Android.

Key technologies built into the SDK are ideal. For example, Sandbox ensures hassle-free communication by improving stability and compatibility with scanning devices while also improving security. Supported devices include TWAIN-compatible scanners, digital cameras or capture cards. Scanned documents can be saved to local, server, remote databases or other repositories. Extensive editing options include rotate, crop, mirror, flip, erase, sizing, zooming, annotating, and more.

A December 2014 update to the SDK added a JavaScript IntelliSense feature to increase programming speed and help reduce programmer errors. A 1D barcode reader was also added. Prior to that, in a June 2014 update, there was a new add-on to facilitate connections to TWAIN-based scanners in Google® Chrome versions requiring HTML5-based plugins. It’s now well known in the industry that browser providers are phasing out browser plugins based on the Netscape Plugin Application Programming Interface (NPAPI). In May 2014 Google dropped support of NPAPI plugins for its Chrome browser. For this purpose, the Dynamic Web TWAIN SDK offers a newly developed HTML5 WebSocket plugin add on. So, it allows document scanning from within newer Google Chrome browser versions that don’t allow NPAPI plugins. The SDK also continues to support NPAPI for use in legacy browsers.

Obstacles Overcome
The web development team encountered some programming obstacles. They centered on upgrading and having to rewrite code instead of modifying it. As an example, code had to be-reworked for multi-page uploads, specifically when reacting to when all uploads are complete. There was also a hurdle with changing the install path. Support documentation provided good examples for single-directory paths but, the team instead needed to define multiple directory routing. Despite these obstacles, the application was still completed in just one month, compared to what might have been a year or more to implement a document scanning module alone.


The biggest advantage realized was eliminating the need to develop a TWAIN component. This would have made the application cost-prohibitive and too time-consuming to develop. It would have taken many months to more than a year instead of just one month.

Today, users get up and running in no time. They are prompted upon first use only to install a plugin. Then, using the web app is as simple as clicking a ‘scan’ button. Of course there are also options to customize captured documents prior to saving them. This includes cropping images, multi-page scanning, and resolution and color selection. In the end, all desired features were accomplished.

Best Practices Considerations
Practice makes perfect and the development team again learned some new best practices considerations. For example, developers taking on a similar task might plan ahead for proper disk space. Disk space requirements ended up being a surprise. It later required small tweaks that went a long way for compression and used storage space. Also, the team recommends developers and managers think extra hard about all use cases. In other words, get users involved from the start so their wish lists are in the final solution. And, make default settings easy for the user from the get go – this too requires user inputs from the start.

Today, Compassionate Health Options regularly uses the document management web app to more efficiently process necessary documents. The key was having software tools – like the SDK – and a good development team capable of quickly implementing a cost-effective and simple-to-use web app solution. Dynamsoft’s SDK has helped WholeLife Software add features and scale the software to the point today it is used by many companies across California and Washington.