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Automation: The Power of Workflows

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This short presentation shows ways to harness the power of automation through the WebGUI Content Engine.

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Automation: The Power of Workflows

  1. 1. Automation: The Power of Workflows William McKee william@knowmad.com WebGUI Users Conference 2010
  2. 2. Automation “Any job that depends on routines-- that can be reduced to a set of rules, or broken down into a set of repeatable steps-- is at risk.” – Daniel Pink
  3. 3. WebGUI Workflow Engine “An event triggered state machine and execution system.” – JT Smith
  4. 4. WebGUI Workflow Engine “An event triggered state machine and execution system.” – JT Smith
  5. 5. WebGUI Workflow Engine What you need to know:
  6. 6. WebGUI Workflow Engine What you need to know: ➔ Workflows – containers for activities
  7. 7. WebGUI Workflow Engine What you need to know: ➔ Workflows – containers for activities ➔ Activities – where the actual work gets accomplished
  8. 8. WebGUI Workflow Engine What you need to know: ➔ Workflows – containers for activities ➔ Activities – where the actual work gets accomplished ➔ States – running, waiting, stalled, complete
  9. 9. WebGUI Workflow Engine What you need to know: ➔ Workflows – containers for activities ➔ Activities – where the actual work gets accomplished ➔ States – running, waiting, stalled, complete ➔ Triggers – time, user/system event, other workflows, manual initiation
  10. 10. WebGUI Workflow Engine What you need to know: ➔ Workflows – containers for activities ➔ Activities – where the actual work gets accomplished ➔ States – running, waiting, stalled, complete ➔ Triggers – time, user/system event, other workflows, manual initiation ➔ Modes - Parallel, Serial, Singleton
  11. 11. Production Workflows (core)
  12. 12. Maintenance Routines Goal: Perform hourly, daily and weekly maintenance tasks. Trigger: Time-based Activities: • Delete expired sessions • Update calendar feeds • Delete temp files & prune cache • Archive old stories • Delete assets from trash • Move clipboard items >30 days to trash
  13. 13. Custom Workflows (core)
  14. 14. Send Notification Goal: Receive an email when a new user registers on your Website. Trigger: On Create User Activity: Notify About User (WebGUI::User)
  15. 15. Add On Workflows
  16. 16. Page Validator Goal: Receive an email notice if a page does not validate against the W3C Markup Validation Service. Trigger: Time-based (e.g., add to Daily Maintenance workflow) Activity: Download W3C Validator activity code from the WebGUI Marketplace (see resources for link)
  17. 17. Mailchimp Integration Goal: Add subscriber to a Mailchimp mailing list. Can be integrated into any forms on your site. Trigger: Add Entry Activity: Download OptIn activity code from the WebGUI Marketplace (coming soon!)
  18. 18. Personal User Area Goal: Create personal user areas when a new user registers on your Website. Example: Setup a personal blog or dashboard for your registered Website visitors. Trigger: On Create User Activity: Download CreateUserHomeSkeleton activity code by Peter McBryde from the WebGUI Marketplace
  19. 19. Custom Workflows
  20. 20. Hot Folder Goal: To provide a dropbox that is polled for newly uploaded files which need processing. Example: Validate & process a “job” file placed into an FTP folder. Trigger: Time-based Activity: Custom (see “Writing Workflow Activities” presentation for example code to get started)
  21. 21. PuSH Publisher Goal: Push site updates out to a PubSubHubbub hub (a real-time web protocol). Trigger: Time-based (until more hooks become available in WebGUI codebase) Activity: Custom.
  22. 22. Help Out! • Share your ideas for useful workflows in the forums or IRC • Add new workflows to the Bazaar • Promote new triggers/hooks for the built-in assets (RFE's)
  23. 23. Thank You! William McKee WebGUI Forums: knowmad IRC: knowmad Email: william@knowmad.com
  24. 24. Bonus Material Interesting but less useful possibilities for workflows.
  25. 25. Social Media Monitor Goal: To send alerts of mentions in social media. Trigger: Time-based Example: Poll social media sites such as Twitter or Facebook for media mentions. Send an IM or email when results are found. Activity: Custom.
  26. 26. Business Process Manager Goal: To manage a real-world workflow process. Example: Limit access to your site for new user registrations until they have confirmed their email. Implementation: A workflow would run when the user confirmed their account. This workflow would move the account into the proper membership list. (It could also be used to check for payments). Activity: Custom activity.
  27. 27. Happy Birthday! Goal: To provide a special message and email for a user's birthday. Trigger: Time-based Example: Place a birthday message on site & send email to user. Activity: Custom singleton. Run once a day to check birthday in user profiles.
  28. 28. Sundial Goal: To keep an external file up-to-date. Trigger: Time-based Example: Sundial. On each run, update the external page with current time. Use scheduler to update file as appropriate. Activity: Custom singleton.
  29. 29. Screenscraper Goal: Retrieve data from an external site. Trigger: Time-based Example: Collect data that's not part of an RSS feed for display on your site. Activity: Custom.

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