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Liferay Dynamic Data Lists

Liferay is introducing Dynamic Data Lists in v 6.1 .  Also known as User Data Lists, they are kind of similar to Microsoft SharePoint Lists.  The idea behind the lists is to allow end users to create simple applications without the need for custom development.

In fact, Liferay says that 80% of the simple applications can fall within one of three categories:

  1. Create lists of data to manage, including simple CRUD operations.  So an example of this is registration information for an event.  You create a simple form where users can input their data, then display the list of registrants on your website as they are submitted.
  2. Similar to 1, but you have data that needs to be moved through a workflow approval process.  Here the registration data entered may need to be approved at one or more levels before they show up on the list.
  3. Pull together different data at various stages of a workflow.  In this category, you might get basic user data from the simple form and then have to combine it with other data from approvers or other systems during the workflow process.

Liferay’s Dynamic Data List, combined with their already existing workflow tool (Kaleo) aims to address each category without development by IT.  An end user can graphically build out a form consisting of fields and then build one or more views to display the results.  The form builder includes drag and drop capabilities to build out the form.  The forms then become Structures or templates.  You can even have multiple structures and show only certain fields on defined pages or steps in the workflow.

When you add in workflow based on Kaleo, you have covered all three categories.  Here are some of the workflow features:

  • Eliminates need for development
  • Uses a graphical editor to build the workflow
  • You can specify email or SMS based notifications
  • You can embed velocity scripting in notifications to pull in data from the form, or use plain text

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