FME Server 2012 has powerful new notification capabilities! If the terms “Push Notification”, “Business Rules” and “Complex Event Processing” are part of your daily vocabulary, you can skip the rest of this article and proceed directly to the enthusiastic celebration. If, like most of us, they aren’t, let’s take a look at what that means for FME Server users.
Let’s say you’ve been searching for that rare original Collectors’ Edition DVD of “Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark” online. You have two choices – you can either obsessively check the website every five minutes to see if someone has one for sale, or you can simply set up a notification to email you when one becomes available. That’s a “push”. In the first “pull” scenario, you are wasting time continually checking to see if something exists. The same holds true for systems – continuous monitoring wastes cycles, time, and system resources. It’s much more efficient to just respond to a push.
Notifications, also called messages, can be exchanged between people, systems, devices, and sensors. Let’s follow our DVD as it leaves the courier depot and heads towards your house for delivery. As the package is put on the truck, a barcode scanner captures that action, and updates a database, indicating that it is now on truck #7 – push. Truck #7 is outfitted with GPS tracking, and as it pulls out of the depot, its current location, speed, and direction is transmitted wirelessly to a central GIS system – push. FME Server detects new incoming data and updates a web-based map display at Dispatch – push.
Truck #7 arrives at your house, parks, the package is removed, barcode scanned again, and left in your mailbox. This brings us to Complex Event Processing. The system has several pieces of information. FME Server uses a workspace to determine that truck #7 is stationary, within a reasonable distance of your house, and the package has been removed. It can infer that your DVD has now been delivered, and perform yet another push – sending you a message. Events and data – like being stationary and what a reasonable distance is – are interpreted based on business rules that are simple to set in your FME Desktop-authored workspace.
This is a highly simplified version of notifications, but the concepts translate to a multitude of applications. By using FME Server as the notification engine behind the scenes, you can seamlessly integrate spatial data, non-spatial data, and logic in near real time, and extract even more value out of your dynamic data. Enjoy your movie.
Learn more at www.safe.com/notifications.
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