Supporting Role Ltd | Trevor Howsam
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Case Studies

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Trevor Howsam – Rental stock images:

Trevor Howsam Ltd has amassed over many years a large collection of 20th century objects that are available for hire to the film, tv and advert industry, from furniture, carpets, signs, crockery, shop interiors, packaging and a large selection of fascinating wallpapers taken from a collection of 92,000 rolls from Trevor’s warehouse with more than 70,000 sq ft in Boston, Lincolnshire.

The London office uses a rental management program called Rental Point, which has the facility to link the record in the asset database to an image of the stock item that is saved on the file server.

Marcus Howsam, who runs the London office, wanted their website to be able to show what stock they had and how many were available so that clients could easily look at them and decide it that is what they wanted.

Supporting Role wrote two applications. One, located on the Rental Point server in the Trevor Howsam office, interrogates the assets in the database, selects the description, stock level and picture location, and returns an xml file. There is also a script which, when given the location of the image, returns the image.

The second application resides on the web server, and interrogates the first application as required, and updates a dataset on the web server, which is then used by the website to display the ‘catalogue’ of items available for rental. If the image is missing, the web server quickly downloads it from the Rental Point server and caches it locally.