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IDS' new HTML5 user interface

Friday, February 5, 2016

Independent Data Services, a Singapore company which makes reporting software for the Upstream segment (among other products) has developed a new user interface for interacting with its data, running on HTML5.

It replaces a previous Flash-based system.

The disadvantage of Flash is that it does not work on iPads. Also HTML5 is faster than Flash, says company director Douwe Franssens.

A HTML5 interface can run on any computer, tablet or phone without the need to install any software applications.

IDS develops web based reporting software, which is used by drillers, operators, service companies, rig contractors and EPC companies.

It integrates with many other software tools including ERP software and subsurface software.

IDS employs ~100 technical staff in Kuching, Malaysia.

Gathering data

IDS' reporting system can gather all of the data associated with operational performance (including how much drilling time was spent making it) and costs.

The data is entered 'as close to the coal face as possible', Mr Franssens says, ideally being entered by the people actually doing the work.

'Data quality is about recording data when it happens,' he says.

So, for example, a supervisor of a team of 10 welders can enter what they did or what happened (such as downtime due to weather) directly into the system.

Too often in engineering companies you end up with a 'Chinese whispers' type scenario where someone writes something on a notepad, hands it to a clerk, who enters it on a spreadsheet, and eventually no-one knows where the data is from, he says.

To encourage data entry at the site, you need to make sure the individuals involved have been persuaded that the data entry is needed, and it is as easy as possible to enter.

It is also important to make sure the questions are relevant. 'Don't ask someone on an onshore rig for the thruster position,' Mr Franssens says (thrusters are propellers used on offshore rigs for accurate manoeuvring).

'If you drill with water based mud, don't ask about oil based mud.'

'We work with clients to make sure the fields on the screen makes sense.'

The work to configure data entry screens is not difficult, but the important thing is to go through the process of finding out what clients want, he says.

Customised software

IDS usually develops dashboards and reporting tools uniquely for each client, which are regularly updated, Mr Franssens says.

'I'm pretty sure there isn't a client in IDS who has the same version of the software another client has.'

In one example, a drilling company was split into two, and very soon after the split, the two sections of the company asked for their own changes to the software.

For example, every drilling company has a 'daily drilling report', but all 200 of IDS clients have their report in a different structure. The daily drilling report is based on the International Association of Drilling Contractors (IADC) drilling report which was developed 30 years ago. The Daily Drilling Report and the IADC report are two different things, might want to remove or this sentence.

Even though the software is provided as a service over the internet (SaaS), it does not mean that the user has no control over it, he says.

'You can have 'adaptive SAS' where every client has their own version of the software.'

Associated Companies
» Independent Data Services (IDS)
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