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RepoMMan: using Web Services and BPEL to facilitate workflow interaction with a digital repository Richard Green.

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Presentation on theme: "RepoMMan: using Web Services and BPEL to facilitate workflow interaction with a digital repository Richard Green."— Presentation transcript:

1 RepoMMan: using Web Services and BPEL to facilitate workflow interaction with a digital repository Richard Green

2 Overview RepoMMan Project overview User and University needs A solution: BPEL and Web Services Example workflows: deposit and metadata Problems? What problems? Future work JISC Workflows activity and implementation meeting Aston Business School Tuesday 13 th February 2007

3 RepoMMan project Repository, Metadata and Management project JISC-funded for two years to end May to develop a BPEL-based, standards-compliant, Web Services based, workflow tool for Fedora Closely aligned with the Universitys commitment to deploy an institutional repository

4 RepoMMan Two strands: research – user needs, documentation etc (BPEL, surveys, Beginners guide etc) technical – development Surface tool in University portal and/or Sakai C&LE

5 Hulls vision for a DR Hulls vision for an Institutional Repository is an extremely broad one Conventional view was exposure of completed objects Hulls view encompasses storage, access, management and preservation of a wide range of file types from concept to completion

6 User needs Survey and interviews revealed very wide range of file types potentially to deal with Users need Storage (backed up) Access (from anywhere) Management (sharing, locking, versioning etc) Some want preservation Tool must fit users expectations and environment Assist/improve doing what they already do

7 University needs Flexible wide range of content, some public - some private, appropriate UIs Standards-based Web Services, standards – BPEL, JSR168 etc Scalable initially 2500 potential depositors Open source software Effective search & discovery need good metadata

8 The repository grand plan

9 Summary The repository will be a working environment as well as a showcase Aim is to provide storage, access, management and potential preservation painlessly Development based on user needs Standards compliant, Web Service approach

10 Solution Toolset to manage repository workflows for users BPEL - Business Process Execution Language (Active Endpoints Open Source version) Web Services Fedora repository software SOAP, REST scales to millions of flexible objects (NSDL = 6m+)

11 BUT Fedora is not an out-of-the-box solution Provides the repository functionality for YOU to use flexibly

12 Basic depositor workflows Put object into repository including some sort of structuring Get object from repository Delete including at version level Add metadata Publish = promote to public space

13 The RepoMMan deposit tool

14 Putting and getting a file Left hand side of screen gives browse capability on users hard drive Right hand side of screen shows the users private repository space like a directory structure (Folders are in fact repository collections) Folders can be expanded and new folders created Objects can be further expanded to show versions

15 Three-tier stack

16 Model View Controller layer providing user interface BPEL orchestrating Web Services (Fedora and other) to move files and objects around Fedora drawing on ID Management System and University Storage Area Network

17 UML diagram for simple deposit

18 Three-tier stack: simple deposit

19 Putting a file Part of the BPEL process diagram (Active Endpoints visualisation software) - switch depending on whether object already exists - the left hand side branch creates a new object - the right hand side modifies an existing one - each of the globes with a swirl round it is a Web Service call

20 BPEL and web services BPEL can draw on any available Web Service Access to an expanding range of data made available through Web Services at Hull (and, of course, elsewhere) Which brings us to metadata!!!

21 Making public Good metadata at the heart of effective search and discovery When a user wants to make an object public we will automatically add metadata Potentially complex: BPEL to orchestrate Has object already got metadata? Derive metadata using tool(s) Extract appropriate parts Combine with contextual metadata Allow user to edit Create datastream(s) (DC, Rich metadata (UVa), preservation metadata, etc) Add to digital object

22 Metadata from web services Much contextual metadata about the author can be derived from University systems Web Services or context Technical metadata can be derived by using tools such as JHOVE (as a Web Service) Descriptive metadata about the content is the Holy Grail? Data Fountains (UC Riverside & NSDL)

23 Metadata from context & web svcs Contextual metadata from environment (LDAP, Portal, Sakai) Technical metadata (JHOVE etc) Additional descriptive metadata from content (Data Fountains etc) Allow user to edit / tweak Acknowledgements to the Arrow consortium for the design idea

24 Problems? What problems? Not a smooth journey! Lessons: Dont be a pioneer? Puppies dont come free? Active BPEL was/is fine Fedora Web Services (v2.0, v2.1, v2.1.1) an issue Web Services were rpc/encoded BPEL and AXIS couldnt always successfully validate responses Fedora Web Services (v2.2) OK! Web Services now document/literal

25 Next stages Complete the RepoMMan deposit tool (!!!) Internal testing Trialling with users Small-scale trials Complete the RepoMMan metadata work Post-project, develop further and deploy Develop workflow tools for the admin side of the make public process, records management, preservation... In time switch to DROID (for MIME type)? Shibboleth?

26 Project website and contacts RepoMMan: Contacts: (Manager) (Integration architect) (Director) (Software developer)


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