# What is integration

What is integration; explaining what I do to my father

I often get asked what it is that I do; by my father, by family friends, other people who might not be in IT. Einstein says If you can’t explain it to a six year old, you don’t understand it yourself; so here goes: Our software makes sure that the curtains between business and economy class are in the right place on the plane. Our software enables telecoms companies to provision new telephone lines / new mobile numbers. Our software makes sure your car gets serviced on time. That’s pretty glib; it’s not just our software; but none of those things could happen without our software. Ultimately though, what we do is a combination of house-building and town planning.

# State of Integration

There is nothing new under the sun; why is integration still harder than it should be

Sometimes I look at the state of integration and I think that things could be so much better. We’ve effectively been doing it since the Berlin airlift. By now you’d hope that things would have settled down and the ability to do integration would simply be a commodity and I would be out of a job. I’m not and that says more about each new generation of programmers than it does about me.

# Controlling the adapter via JMX

How we control our adapters within the Cirrus community

The adapter has supported remote JMX via JMXMP for a while; which means you can connect to an adapter via jconsole, or other tools. The only problem with the reference implementation (e.g. service:jmx:jmxmp://localhost:5555) that people tend to use is that it isn’t terribly useful if you’re managing a community, where the various IT policies aren’t going to let unfettered access through their firewall to the adapter; some of our smaller customers they don’t even have an IT dept., and talking the business admin through how they need to modify inbound NAT on whatever router it is they’re using is not for the faint-hearted (and basically you end up being their IT dept. which is another sorry state of affairs).

# Integration via email is a feature of last resort

Integration via email is a feature of last resort

Email is probably the single thing that you pretty much guarantee every company is capable of. That doesn’t mean that it’s a good thing to do integration with; the way that various mail clients can / will munge the data is quite extraordinary. It’s a given that at some point you will have received an email that has an attachment called winmail.dat or emails that inexplicably have an empty body, and an attachment called ATT00001.htm that actually contains the email. That last situation seems to occur quite a lot when an message generated by Outlook (with graphics in the signature) is forwarded by someone using a Mac.

Continue reading Integration via email is a feature of last resort

# TriggeredChannel has it's uses

A TriggeredChannel is one that requires an external trigger

I haven’t posted for a while, I can see that my last post was in June; the summer holidays must have been quite exciting (or frenetic); can’t remember now. Anyway, this post is about something that isn’t really used in the adapter; which is TriggeredChannel. It is a channel where the workflows are only started when an external event occurs; hence the name. Once the trigger is received; workflows are started, the channel waits for the workflows to do their thing, and then stops them afterwards and is then ready for the next trigger.

Continue reading TriggeredChannel has it's uses

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