Fog Creek Software
Discussion Board




Web App Workflow Components - What are these?

I've heard web developers talking of Workflow components that tie pages of functionality together.

Are these components that persist partial transaction and understand what stages the user must complete to satisfy multi-page validation etc?

Is this about right, or am I miles off?

Multi-page registration or e-commerce are the best examles I can think of.

Discuss.

Perplexed by Workflow
Monday, September 29, 2003

usually "workflow" refers to stuff like this:

reporter writes some story, submits form (or saves document) Fact checker reads story, corrects facts. saves document. editor views story. if document is ok, submits it to publication. if not ok, goes back to fact checkers and or reporter. some database keeps track of who viewed, submitted, approved various pieces of information. another example would be time sheets... hourly employee submits time sheet, manager reviews, next manager reviews, accounting guy reviews and cuts check. etc. 

it means anything where there is a team of people working through some sort of submission/approval process.

rz
Monday, September 29, 2003

Webapp workflow usually means a large task or series of tasks decomposed into a chain of sequential webpages, where state between pages is maintained and the page flow depends on the input. 

It doesn't seem like a particularily hard problem, but I think that it qualifies as a common checkbox for IT budget decisions, so it always gets played up.

Colin Evans
Monday, September 29, 2003

I think that there are few apps which do have a good workflow model.  I've been preaching to upper management that we NEED a workflow model in our application, but they just don't get it.  I think the reason the don't get it is because it is so poorly implemented in the industry. 

Your boss will say he or she wants innovation (and may convince themselves the THEY are innoviative), but if they haven't seen it, it is pretty hard to sell them on new features.  They always call that "geek stuff" until someone else does it in a big way. 

Call it human nature, and a core frustration of my work. 

The truth of the matter is, we wait until competitor has the feature, then it becomes the hottest thing since sliced bread.  The gotta have it for the next release feature.  Sucky way to do business I think, but it pays the bills.

C++ <fan>
Tuesday, September 30, 2003

*  Recent Topics

*  Fog Creek Home