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Re: [dist-obj] DOP & web-services & n-tier
Paul Benninghoff :
> bhaugen writes:
> > A personal note about ebXML: it was a learning experience for me.
> > >From that experience, I think I see a way to make these conversations
> > much simpler. All the existing stuff was heavily influenced by
> > workflow systems that various companies want to resell in this new
> > B2B ecommerce context. It's the wrong model.
> Declarative workflow, then?
> I'm very interested, can you elaborate? As someone who hasn't looked
> deeply into any of this, when I hear state machines / choreographies /
> etc. workflow naturally comes to mind. Otoh, I mentioned this to one
> prominent web services proponent who dismissed it, saying "you can
> call anything workflow"... I didn't find that response too satisfying
Declarative is a key word.
As to workflow, there are several flavors.
One flavor is exemplified by the Workflow Management Coalition.
The background is routing documents around for changes and approval.
The model is sequences of procedures: first you do this, next you do that,
then you could have a split into two subflows and then they could join
Another flavor is conversational, e.g. Barry Winograd, Action Tech,
Dooley graphs, etc.
Most products that vendors want to resell for B2B ecommerce conversations
is paradoxically the procedural internal document routing flavor.
The conversational flavor would be much more appropriate.
However, I think at least for business dealings, you can do almost
with a stack of simple binary interactions:
which uses offer-acceptance
which uses request-reponse.
The binary interactions can be nested, and the activities at each end
can spin off secondary conversations using the same model.
A commitment is promise to perform a specified future event.
A commitment contains a specification for the event to be performed,
including time constraints.
Make sense? In business, this builds on the REA give-take pattern.
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