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From Ross Gardler <rgard...@apache.org>
Subject Re: [Vision] Knowing When We are Done
Date Wed, 07 Dec 2005 10:43:35 GMT
Bertrand Delacretaz wrote:
> Le 7 déc. 05, à 09:10, Ross Gardler a écrit :
> 
>> ...I envision being able to build a Cocoon application by saying 
>> "given these input types, I want this output type" and to have the 
>> resulting application automatically tested against my test inputs...
> 
> 
> Not sure if I understand what you mean, could you give an example?

Most businesses are made up of common business processes. The odd one 
will be unique to that business, but most are common. In the case of the 
unique practices the software needs to be customised, but in the case of 
common practices an "off-the-shelf" solution is sufficient.

Each common practice has a set of inputs, a set of intermediate states 
and a set of outputs. If the new Cocoon provides a series of components 
for transforming from an input to an ouput we can use these components 
to build complete applications.

Here's a simple example:

Inputs:
- purchase order

Intermediate Docs:
- customer details
- credit approval
- stock level

Required outputs:
- Invoice
- Packing slip

It is possible to describe this process as a series of components, i.e. 
to get from a "purchase order" document to a "customer details" document 
use component ABC, to get from a "purchase order" to a "credit approcal" 
use component XYZ etc.

It is possible to automate the discovery of these components and thus to 
automatically configure an application to move from document A to 
document B.

This latter part is, of course very complex and hard to do. I have a 
prototype, written for my PhD about 4 years ago, it's not Cocoon based, 
but has many parallels with both Cocoon and recent discussions regarding 
making Cocoon much easier to use (some info at http://www.saafe.org)

I'm not suggesting we tackle this latter part today. But as part of the 
long term vision it may be interesting.

Ross



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