BonitaSoft Rebuilds Java Execution Engine for BPM Platform

BonitaSoft this week unveiled a major upgrade of its open source business process management (BPM) platform.

For Bonita BPM 6 the company rebuilt the platform's core Java execution engine to amp up the performance and scalability of the product, and to more fully support the growing demands of mobility. This is the most extensive upgrade of the platform since the company was founded in 2009, the company says.

This upgrade provides a redesigned user portal; enhances the users' ability to create, assign, and complete tasks on the fly; adds new analytics tools that allow drilling down into reports; and adds new, out-of-the-box mobile support. The company claims that the rebuilt execution engines has been clocked at four times the speed of the current engine.

The Bonita Open Solution BPM and workflow suite was created in 2001 at the National Institute for Research in Computer Science in France by the company's co-founder, Miguel Valdes Faura, explained Mac McConnell, BonitaSoft VP of marketing. (Faura founded BonitaSoft with Charles Souillard.)

"It was really a research project that was asking the question, could Java be used as an execution engine for complex business process management," McConnel told ADTmag. "The answer, of course, was yes, and what grew out of that was the open source community, multiple iterations of the platform, and the company."

BonitaSoft is currently the chief commercial contributor to the Bonita project. The company's goal is to "democratize BPM" by making a process that has been available mostly to larger companies available to smaller organizations.

"We are an open source company, so one of the most important things for us is to be able to connect with almost any system, database, or application in the world," said McConnell. "A 'process' today is not contained within a BPM solution, but has to be able to extract proper information [from a range of sources] so that humans can make smarter decisions, and needs to be able to write information to various other systems as the process goes on."

The Bonita open source community comprises approximately 50,000 members, who focus largely on the connector framework, McConnell said. For example, Bonita BPM 6 currently supports the Eclipse Modeling Framework and Graphical Modeling Framework, the Jetty embedded Web server, the BIRT native reporting framework for Web apps and the Groovy-Eclipse plugin.

The upgraded BPM platform also comes with new features aimed at developers of process-driven applications (apps built around a process engine), including new REST API and expanded configuration options for Java API, and a direct integration of Bonita BPM Studio with Apache Tomcat (the open source implementation of the Java Servlet and JavaServer Pages technologies). Bonita Studio is the process modeling component of the platform. 

The new platform also adds the ability to change the configuration of running processes "to cope with organizational and infrastructure changes," and enhanced support for "multiple deployment scenarios and environments."

The open-source Bonita BPM 6 is available now for Windows, Mac and Linux. The community hosts forums, blogs, a bug tracker and a range of project resources on its Web site.

About the Author

John K. Waters is the editor in chief of a number of sites, with a focus on high-end development, AI and future tech. He's been writing about cutting-edge technologies and culture of Silicon Valley for more than two decades, and he's written more than a dozen books. He also co-scripted the documentary film Silicon Valley: A 100 Year Renaissance, which aired on PBS.  He can be reached at [email protected].