Web tools developed / maintained or driven by I-MATH and the I-MATH Framework QFQ:
Motivation: The Institute of Mathematics realized in 2001 that a dedicated webmaster, responsible for a huge amount of institutes webpages, is a constant bottleneck and potential delay in publishing information. Data should be edited and published by the person who is responsible for the information (reduce workload on the webmaster). Furthermore, most data is related to other data and the same data is often shown on different places. But presenting data is already the second step - the first step is to collect the data. A web browser is a nice tool to present data, as well as to collect data via forms. An online web-tool, with a database in the background, seemed to be a good approach in 2001 and still is.
Application development: Implementing forms and reports (presenting data) is a repeating task during application development - to reduce workload (again), the application developer should focus on the application workflow (not the boring details), it should be quick and easy to implement forms and to retrieve data from a database.
Framework: The Institute of Mathematics developed dbq2/form2 in 2001 (which is outdated since 2014) and re-implemented and improved the concepts in the current framework https://qfq.io (licensed under GPL). The first production version has been published in 2015. Beside the efficiency requirements (forms and reports), QFQ (=Quick Form Query) implements the strategy 'Secure by default'. Protection agains parameter manipulation and SQL injection is a major concern.
To get an impression about QFQ functionality todays: the dbq2/form2 documentation was printed on two DIN-A4 pages, the QFQ documentation currently have more than 130 pages.
Due to the success of I-MATH web tools, other departments asks for help on implementing various types of workflows. Currently between 6-8 web developer of I-MATH maintain and implement applications as well as working on QFQ. Feel free to contact support(at)math.uzh.ch to discuss your future UZH web tool project.