Coming from a criminal justice background and commercial software product culture, accepting a new job which was focusing on open source software for Business Process Modeling felt a little daunting - and the first several months were. It has been almost two years since that leap of 'faith' and I have come into my own. I have also realized the benefits an organization may receive using this type of technology. What type of technology am I writing about - BPM (Intalio), MySQL, Apache DS LDAP, Orbeon xForms, Tomcat Server, eXist XML database. These are some of the products I have come to know over the past year.
What have I been developing with these products? I am currently working on a project which models a criminal justice process that allows information sharing between external entities relying mainly on Web Services and XML. The process is modeled representing all the actors involved (humans and systems) and the decisions, rules and flow that make up that business process . The entire application development has integrated the above technologies to deliver the back-end data storage both in a relational database (MySQL) and as XML documents (eXist), web server container (Tomcat), Directory Structure for user log in credentials (Apache DS LDAP), IntalioBPM which models the business process which creates the BPEL to deploy to Tomcat and web forms that expose all of these components to the end user - Orbeon xForms.
A significant amount of XML technologies are utilized in delivering the end result - Web Service Description Language (WSDL), SOAP, XSLT, XSL-FO, XPATH and XQUERY to name a few.
I often wonder about the market for such a software development using the above technologies that focuses on small to medium size businesses with limited technology budgets but with the necessity to be as efficient as possible. I hope to continue down this path of BPM and XML in the future and would love to hear from others on their experiences with such technologies and those who are interested in reading/learning more.
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