Posts tagged "@seymour-feed-external"

My Developer Lab at Adobe MAX

This year at MAX I have prepared a developer hands on lab session with Seth Reilly called, “Creating Mashups with ADEP’s Composite Application Framework”.

During the session we build a composite application from scratch using all the cool new ADEP features in Flash Builder 4.5.1. Then we dive into a really interesting use case that mashes up existing Flash UI components, Services, HTML and JavaScript to build a fun application. We start with a simulated stock quote streamer (yes, I know .. but stay with me here!) and then we build it out to show a Google Map which automatically jumps to the city location of the company whose stock you select. Pretty nifty, eh.

Here is a screen shot (after some deliberately loud skinning!)

(Click to enlarge)

Here are the basic points we will hit in the session:

  1. Using Flash Builder to author, deploy and debug a Composite Application
  2. Adding a “Service” to your Composite Application. In this case an address look up.
  3. Adding an HTML Tile to your Composite Application In this case an HTML and Action Script Tile to drive a Google Map
  4. Communicating objects between Flex Tiles and HTML. In this case we share an Address Object and access it in JavaScript using JSON to reset the Google Map when you choose an address.
  5. Tips ‘n Tricks for Skinning. We apply a .CSS and a new MXML Skin to the application, for example allowing you to drag & drop the Tiles around within the application.

If you are lucky enough to be going to Max, come check out the Lab, grab a workstation and follow along. We start at 5:00pm sharp on Monday October 2nd in the ADEP Labs area and the session is called, “L2540 – Creating Mashups with ADEP’s Composite Application Framework”

If you would like to read the full tutorial, check it out here: http://ep.adobe.com/content/max/L2540_Gilchrist_CreatingMashupswithADEP_Final.pdf

Happy Hacking -

Gary.

 

Developing and Deploying an OSGI Bundle on to the ADEP Experience Server

The Open Services Gateway Initiative (OSGi), also known as the Dynamic Module System for Java, defines architecture for modular application development. ADEP Experience Server is developed on the OSGi container implementation Apache Felix, which allows you to break your application … Continue reading

Introduction on Experience Services sample applications

For developers who are interested in Experience services and eager to build ADEP applications themselves, “Getting Started” is a surely a good place for you to get started, where you can find many samples that are built with different services and frameworks provided by ADEP Experience services. Most of the samples are out-of-the-box, which means they are up running with the server start  automatically without any further manual steps. Also for each sample, you can find document that explains what the sample tries to showcase and how to do that under ADEP.

As Gary mentioned in his blog, the samples are split into two groups. In this post, I’d like to give you a more in-depth introduction on the “Application use case samples”. Basically these are sample applications that gather together could cover all the main services or frameworks provided by Experience services. I will introduce them one by one and for each one of them, I will introduce what experience service and technical points the sample covers so that when you try to build your own application, you can easily find out which one best suit your needs as reference.

(Click on Images to enlarge..)

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Data integration – A sample to showcase user interface aggregation and data access capability on ADEP. And it demonstrate that capability by using Composite Application Framework and Data Services.

data integration

Interface aggregation capability is provided by Composite Application Framework. Composite Application Framework aggregates HTML and Flex-based user interface components into a single application view that provides an intuitive user interface in the context of the user’s current task.. Composite applications are dynamically instantiated during run time on the client and display content according to the current context. Composite Application Framework takes care of loading modules, provides the infrastructure for inter-tile communication and services, and managing assets and applications on the server.

Data Services provides various kinds of data sources access capabilities on ADEP and is a core framework within ADEP used by all ADEP solutions. Data Services provides Remoting (RPC), Messaging (publish/subscribe), Proxy(HTTPService/WebService) , and Data Management capabilities for the creation of rich Internet application (RIA’s) as well as multi-screen, mobile, or occasionally-connected applications.

In this sample, you can learn how to develop and deploy a Composite application, how to get data from different kinds of back end data sources include CRX content repository, how to work with HTML tiles and how to develop and deploy a simplest bundle, etc.

 Model Driver Development with CRX – A sample to showcase Data Services’ highly productive set of Model-Driven Development capabilities that enable developers to focus on application and business logic.

mdd

In the sample, we author a data model in Flash Builder and deploy it to the Experience Server. This creates new Data Services destinations, which expose CRUD (create, read, update delete) and filter operations for the entities in the data model. At runtime, these operations are implemented on the server by a new Data Services Assembler that built using JCR for persistence.

Stand Alone Task Management and Task Management with Document Services – They are put together because they both showcase the Task Management capabilities.

http://blogs.adobe.com/eptech/wp-content/plugins/wp-o-matic/cache/3104e_tms.jpg

http://blogs.adobe.com/eptech/wp-content/plugins/wp-o-matic/cache/3104e_tmd.jpg

The Experience Server provides the following capabilities for Task Management, utilized by developers as part of the Experience Services SDK:

  • A framework to manage the lifecycle of User Tasks. The framework provides two default provider implementations for User Tasks as follows. Regardless of the implementation chosen, the APIs and UX components used by the web application do not need to change:

    • Stand-alone User Task:  These User Tasks do not need to originate from a BPM process. Instead, they can be created and assigned in an ad-hoc fashion by applications that manage appointments or To-Do items for their end users. Stand Alone User Tasks are managed in the CRX Repository as data in a JCR node tree.
    • Document Server User Task: User Tasks are generated by a business process management process running on the Document Server, using Process Management.
  • A set of UX components available in Flash Builder to help build applications that manage User Tasks and display the work payload of a User Task.
  • A set of services (exposed via Data Services Remoting) that can be used in Flex applications to interact with Stand-alone and Document Server User Tasks.

You can learn from these two samples about how to implement task management with Experience server by utilize all these capabilities. The difference lies in the provider implementations.

Authentication and Single Sign On – A sample designed to showcase how to address typical security related requirements during development of rich Internet applications.

authentication

As you can see, this sample itself provides a login page. After login, user is provided with the links to Experience Server contents and other Experience Services samples. By learning the source code and document for the sample, you should find the sample covers:

  • Username/password authentication using either the Content Repository or a Document Server as the provider of user identity. There is also a plug-in model based on the Java Authentication and Authorization Service (JAAS) for delegating authentication to some other LDAP system.
  • Single Sign-On and identity propagation for an already logged-on end user across all Experience Services. For example, when a client application is invoking Data Services, accessing Composite Application Services or making HTTP Requests using Apache Sling, re-authentication is not required.
  • Client access to the user details for the current logged in user with the notion of an ActionScript User object.
  • Log out handling.

In summary, these use case application samples cover all the main frameworks and technologies of Experience services, therefore they are very good stuff to developers who are new to ADEP. Moreover, each sample has good document to further explain the details and you can even build your own sample application by following the steps in each document.

Solution Spotlight: A look inside Integrated Content Review

I’d like to continue my Solutions focus this week with a look at the architecture of another solution built on top of ADEP – “Integrated Content and Review”.

This solution was originally designed by our Solutions Engineering team to help manage document approval work flows. This worked by authoring a “template” that defined stages in a review with participants in each stage. One of the great things about that solution (compared to a typical BPM process) is that it was dynamic. You could actually tweak the review participants while the approval workflow was “in flight”, or even force it into another stage from a management console.

The team took this concept a step further, by building “Integrated Content Review” on ADEP with a focus on Creative Campaigns (for example advertising). In addition they provided integration with Creative Suite for creative professionals to interact with the solution right within Photoshop.

If you would like a look at the live Integrated Content Review solution, check out the YouTube recording made this week on ADEPDevelopers

Here is a high level architecture diagram of how the Solution Engineering team designed their solution, pointing out some important aspects of ADEP it relies upon:

(Click to enlarge)

As in my last example, the solution is presented through a web portal application that takes advantage of ADEP UX Components (a design technology for end user applications, see: Craig Randall’s post at what is a UX component)

The solution is constructed again using “Building Blocks”. These Building Blocks (you see two of them) contribute both UX Components to the web application and additional Services that run on both the Experience Server and Document Server. Building Blocks are individual Packages that Adobe and our partners use to deliver consistent repeatable solutions. For example, Integrated Content & Review could share these Building Blocks with other solutions that need similar functionality (such as creating a project schedule)

Looking into the Building Blocks used by Customer Communications we see:

Project Management”. This Building Block provides the UI and Services needed to manage multiple “projects” that might run simultaneously during a campaign. These projects can be related to each other (such as one project dependent child projects). Projects can also have “assets” which are work items that need to be produced during the project according to “schedule’ of participants who need to review and approve the assets.

Here are some interesting points to note about the design:

  1. Projects are defined as “templates” which get stored as content in the CRX Repository via Data Services (with our built an “Assembler” for JCR). There is a Project Manager Core service that provides all the operations necessary to create and update project templates or even create a new template that extends from a common base template. These project templates are based on the Apache Velocity project.
  2. There is a Work Item Handler which is responsible for scheduling activities needed for assets in a project. For example, creating a Task for a creative professional to provide an image. The Work Item Handler invokes a service in the RCA Building Block that in turn manages the events needed to trigger notifications and work flow processes.

Review & Comment”. This Building Block (also called “RCA”) provides the UI and Services need to manage a review cycle for content. That is the initiation, revision, revocation and update of a review for “assets” that are being created as part of a project.

Here are some interesting points to note about the design:

  1. A Template Engine (Apache Velocity) executes the Template in order to to trigger “schedules” that involve assigning review tasks for project assets at different stages of the project.
  2. The Building Block contains a service used to dispatch events used by the solution to trigger notifications or to advance a review stage to the next reviewer. This eventing system is internally based on Spring Events.
  3. The Scheduler Service is used to actually trigger Process Management Tasks on the Document Server by invoking Orchestrations that are provided as part of the Building Block. All such invocation from the Experience Server is performed using the Document Services SDK. When stages of an Orchestration complete there is a call back mechanism that helps the Scheduler manage the review, for example when a review Task on the Document Server has been completed. This is performed using a DSC that calls back to the Experience Server.
  4. Sometimes a Task might not be to review existing content but to create new content. In this case the Scheduler can create a Task that will be visible in Photoshop as part of a “Task List” UI (part of Project “Salsa”). A user in Photoshop then creates the requisite asset which then gets used as the payload of the Task he/she completes.
  5. The Building Block takes advantage of PDF as the standard format for all assets being reviewed and will convert assets to PDF automatically when needed. This relies on the PDF Generation and PDF Assembler Document Services running on the Document Server.

These Building Blocks are deployed on ADEP (both Experience Server and Document Server). Document Server integration is of particular importance to this solution because of the reliance on Process Management (used by RCA to generate Tasks and route them to end users). In addition the solution depends upon the Document Server for Identity Management (Users and Groups) typically integrated with an organization’s LDAP.

There is some more information about this solution on adobe.com at: Integrated Content Review

Solution Spotlight: A look inside Customer Communications

I thought I would take a slight detour from the core ADEP Platform frameworks this week and share with you some insight on one of our Solutions built on top of ADEP, “Customer Communications”.

This solution was designed by our Solutions Engineering team to address a pattern seen over the years with our Document Server customers, particularly financial  institutions. As part of a typical document based workflow (like replying to a dispute initiated by a customer on a web site) it is necessary to quickly draft a letter based not only on common paragraph segments but dynamic data; say the personal information of the customer and the legal requirements of the State / Province in which the dispute was made. Such letters might need to be crafted on screen by a business user or they might be generated automatically.

Here is a high level architecture diagram of how the Solution Engineering team designed their solution, pointing out some important aspects of ADEP it relies upon:

The solution is presented through a web portal application that takes advantage of ADEP UX Components (a design technology for end user applications, see: Craig Randall’s post at http://craigrandall.net/archives/2011/06/what-is-a-ux-component)

The solution is constructed using “Building Blocks”. The Building Blocks (you see three of them) contribute both UX Components to the web application and additional Services that run on the Experience Server. Building Blocks are individual Packages that Adobe and our partners use to deliver consistent repeatable solutions. For example, Customer Communications shares some of these same Building Blocks with other solutions.

Looking into the Building Blocks used by Customer Communications we see that:

  1. A “Data Dictionary”. It is used to manage all the templates and letter assets that are used to generate letters. This data is stored in the CRX Content repository (JCR compliant). The Data Dictionary also integrates with external sources of data (like SAP Web Services or custom databases) to get data used in letters such as customer address details etc. Both the storage of letter assets in the CRX repository and integration with third party data sources is provided via Data Services as a standard framework in the Experience Server.
  2. An “Asset Composer”. This provides the UI and Services needed to author new letter templates and letter assets (paragraphs). The Asset Composer integrates with the Document Server to render letters (needed during authoring) by invoking customizable Orchestrations which in turn rely on our standard Document Services. It also persists those assets and letter templates in the CRX repository, again using Data Services.
  3. An “Expression Manager”.  This is a technology for auto completing additional data (for example calculating an age based on DOB) as well as data validation (required fields, formatted strings etc.). It offers a server side service that is used by the Data Dictionary to augment known data (e.g. a customer name and address) with additional derived data as one record ready for inclusion within a letter (e.g. a ZIP code). It also provides UI libraries for defining and calculating these expressions.

These three Building Blocks are deployed on the ADEP Experience Server. In addition to Data Services and CRX, the other technology point of particular need to this solution is Document Server integration because the solution includes a set of customizable orchestrations around generation of letters using PDF Forms and Assembler. This aspect of the Experience Server provides seamless integration with process orchestrations and User Security which is needed at both design time (using Forms to render letters for preview) and run time for generation of letters.

There is some more information about this solution on adobe.com at: Customer Communications

Happy Hacking

-Gary.