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Business Process Modeling in NetBeans IDE

· Java Zone

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Gaurav Gupta is a senior software engineer working on the BPMN workflow engine. He's created several plugins for NetBeans IDE, notably the JS CSS Minify Compress plugin (here) and the  jBPMN plugin, which is the topic of this interview. The plugin provides NetBeans IDE tools for working with  Business Process Modeling Notation  (BPMN).

The plugin can be accessed here, including for NetBeans IDE 7.4 and 8.0 Beta, together with screencasts and tutorials:


Hi, Gaurav, why did you create the BPMN plugin?

Business Process Modeling Notation is an increasingly important standard for process modelling  and has enjoyed high levels of adoption, so the specific intent of the jBPMN plugin is to create a BPMN Modeler that supports the complete BPMN specification and can be integrated by multiple BPMN engine vendors into NetBeans IDE. As a result, different BPMN engine vendors will not need to create separate BPMN modelers for NetBeans IDE.

Another reason I created this plugin was to bring the NetBeans community closer to the BPM community because BPMN has become the de-facto standard for business process modeling.

Also, when we talk about "NetBeans vs Eclipse", the basic conclusion is that NetBeans is much more intuitive and easy to use, while Eclipse has a wider range of third-party plugins support from more companies. In that context, I have taken this initiative to create the BPM plugin to help the NetBeans community.

What would you consider to be the best features of the BPMN plugin?

  • The jBPMN NB Modeler is a graphical modelling tool which allows the creation and editing of BPMN Process diagrams.

  • It provides Debugging supports for jBPM 5.0.

  • It is BPMN Engine vendor neutral, can be used by any vendor or generated XML, and can run on any BPMN engine which adopts the BPMN 2.0 standard.

Here's another screenshot:

What are the future development plans for this plugin?

  • To cover the complete BPMN Ssecification with user friendly GUI and properties support.
  • jBPMN currently supports only the BPMN process model, it will also support the BPMN conversation model.

  • It will also provide support to extends the modeller with your own Palette Elements, Properties, and Generated XML Tags.

  • It will provides Debugging supports for jBPM 6.0, Activities, and also extensions so that any BPMN Engine Vendor can integrate debugging functionality within jBPMN.

  • It will also provide a NetBeans Modeler Platform API, which any business modeller can use to easily build solutions such as a BPMN Conversation Model.

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