FlightCog is an Aviation Education company located in Pittsburgh, PA. FlightCog helps make the process of becoming a FAA Certified Flight Instructor simpler and less ambiguous under FAR Part 61. Originally founded in 2014, FlightCog has created some of the best study and training aids for FAA Flight Instructor Certification. They build online courses, books, and other small study aids designed to catapult-launch the knowledge level of any CFI applicant seeking FAA Certified Flight Instructor. FlightCog was built by various industry professionals having a fundamental background in professional aviation.
FlightCog approached us in the spring of 2023 with a complex website built on the WordPress content management system (CMS). Their website was heavily focused on e-commerce and included a Learning Management System (LMS) used to deliver online courses to their clients. As a startup that completely bootstrapped itself, FlightCog had always managed their website in-house. The site was running on several instances of Google’s App Engine Flex, a platform as a service (PaaS) product offered by Google Cloud Platform for deploying and scaling applications. Additionally, FlightCog had developed custom software based on a microservices architecture to facilitate their Social Digital Rights Management (sDRM) implementation.
However, the use of some WordPress technologies made scalability difficult and very expensive, and the site was not mobile-friendly, leading to issues with load times. In response, the Affordic team completely overhauled the FlightCog site. Our approach involved re-writing many of the technological aspects of the site that made scalability cost-prohibitive.
We moved FlightCog’s WordPress site away from Google’s App Engine Flex and into our agency-managed infrastructure on WP Engine, while keeping the micro services running on Google Cloud. Instead of continuing to use the expensive App Engine Flexible environment for these microservices, we migrated them into auto-scaling containers on CloudRun, a serverless computing platform offered by Google Cloud Platform for deploying and scaling containerized applications. By utilizing the Affordic approach, we were able to significantly reduce the cloud compute costs that FlightCog would typically pay on a monthly basis. Additionally, FlightCog now has a team of experts at Affordic that are available to assist with whatever technological web infra challenges they face as a growing startup.
The core technologies used on the FlightCog website were adopted because they empower FlightCog to make changes to the site’s content without major design modifications. Nearly the entire FlightCog site was developed using fully custom-designed templated layouts, some of which are interwoven with dynamic data. This approach is referred to as a “No-Code Approach.” FlightCog can now easily make content changes, additions, or removals without touching visual design elements or a single line of code. With just a few clicks of a button, FlightCog can effortlessly control the information presented on its website.
For example, FlightCog utilizes the LearnDash LMS to deliver online courses to its users. By using templated layouts designed exclusively for FlightCog by Affordic, interwoven with dynamic data, FlightCog can efficiently build an online course in record time. Affordic has also built custom templates that react to dynamic data for all WooCommerce products in the FlightCog e-commerce store. These templates allow FlightCog to quickly add new products to its store using a fully exclusive and customized appearance. For more complex tasks that require code changes or tasks that FlightCog is uncomfortable with executing themselves, they rely on the support backbone at Affordic. The Affordic team actively manages and maintains the FlightCog website 24/7 in their dedicated hosting environment.
FlightCog is also able to create and send marketing emails to users directly from the administration area of its website. This integration requires no external websites and is fully built into the core of the website’s administration area. FlightCog can effortlessly create beautiful marketing emails using our built-in GUI builder. Both marketing emails and transactional emails are sent from a reputable email server that guarantees 98.5% deliverability.