Mike Auser's Portfolio

Here is a very small sample of some of the projects I have worked on over the years. The intent is not to "wow" the reader. Instead, I want to give you a sense of the diversity of projects.

Content Search

This is an eleven month project focused on greatly improving the Mysask411 search experience. I am both the solution architect and a hands-on technical lead for the project, which consists of seven internal resources that are dedicated about 75% time, and two external vendors. The complexities of search can easily be overlooked, but there is a lot that goes into a good search experience. I am very pleased with what we have accomplished so far on this project, and I believe the whole company is looking forward to the launch in fall 2018.

Rider Store

The Saskatchewan Roughriders sell more merchandise annually than all the other CFL teams sell combined. With sales like that, it only made sense to start offering sales online. In 2006 I allowed the Riders to do this by creating the first online Rider store. Written in PHP and using a MySQL database, it used Beanstream's payment services and interacted with Canada Post's web services for shipment costs calculations. The Riders were very pleased with the success of the online store. I worked closely with them for several years, enhancing the store along the way.

Altered Egos

Almost everyone has had dreams of living a life more exciting than their own. Some people take this one step further and bring this dream life into the real world, dressing up like a Storm Trooper or reenacting a scene from a movie. This is the target market for Altered Egos.

I teamed up with a creative writer and a web designer to create a website which would allow these dreamers to act out a life as a deep sea diver or a fighter pilot. The Altered Egos service provides the user with all the pieces needed to act out their career of choice. They get a website which is career-themed and customizable. They also get an email account (matching their chosen domain), a business card (in PDF format), and dossier which gives them fun tips for embarking on their fantasy career.

The website was written in PHP using MicroSolution's framework (which I created). The site uses a MySQL database and runs on Apache. Management for the email accounts is done via the mail server's API. Payment services are handled through PayPal. All services provided by Altered-Egos are automated -- no interaction is required by those operating the website.

Life Stat

Life Stat was a medical trial aimed at providing doctor assistance to those in remote areas. The initial trial dealt with patients having either high blood pressure or diabetes. The patient were given devices which would measure their blood pressure or blood sugar. Readings were automatically uploaded to a server. Both doctors and patients could access this information through the Life Stat website.

The website was written in PHP and uses a MySQL database. Graphing was done in Flash.


The Mysask411 phonebook search is available via SMS using the short code 306411. This is unique from the other Mysask411 clients in that the user's search criteria is provided in an unstructured way. It's up to the 306411 service to determine if is a business search, reverse search, residential search, proximity search, etc. This SMS search was designed to be flexible and forgiving with the user's input, and provide the results in a way that will preserve text space and minimize user interaction.

This service was written in .NET and processes results in XML. It interfaces with Olsen's SMS gateway and DirectWest's search API.

Mysask411 Usage Stats

Over the years I have built a very comprehensive system for collecting usage and performance statistics for Mysask411 and all of its related pieces. These have become highly important because they provide DirectWest insight which helps them mould Mysask411. It also allows DirectWest to show their customers the effectiveness of Mysask411 and related offerings.

The featured report gathers data from the DirectWest API (which powers Mysask411), Google Analytics, OpenX (our banner management server). The customer can see how often their business information is shown on Mysask411 and how user interacted with this information. It also indicates the effectiveness of our SEO efforts by showing how many times Google offered a link to this business' information on Mysask411 and how often people clicked on the link. The "Creative Solutions leads" reports on their banner ad activity.

In addition to the stats information listed above, the Mysask411 stats system gathers information which helps DirectWest improve search results and performance. It also provides information about the Mysask411 app activity (ex: downloads, user sessions, etc) within the various stores (iTunes, Google Play and BlackBerry App World).
The system is built using .NET, SQL Server Integration Services and SQL Server Reporting Services.