The next HL7 Comm

I’m really happy with the version of HL7 Comm that I’m testing. The screenshot of the version from the previous post is close to what it looks like, and the new feature list is pretty minimal, but it’s shaped up as being pretty much everything I’ve wanted HL7 Comm to be. Namely, a reliable, reasonably easy to use, yet powerful integration tool. As a result the next version will be a first – a version 1.0.

This next version features some modifications to the core and the integrate clients, specifically to make the threading much more robust and better behaved if you attempt to start and stop the clients. Part of that was the monitoring section of the screen you see below, and that really enabled me to nail the thread code. Now, when you tell it to stop, you can rest assured that processing is really going to stop as you expect. I’ve also added a few nice to have features. Right now the HL7 Client can be told to halt on NACKs (AR or AE), which provides a visible marker to you that something’s wrong with your integration. You can also name your configurations which is displayed in the title bar of the app.

I hope you’ll agree that these are welcome additions to HL7 Comm, but what I’m most excited about is what this lays the groundwork for. Already I have a version called HCM (or HL7 Comm Multi) which runs on top of a tomcat instance and lets you run as many HL7 Comm configurations as you’d like and control them and monitor them from your web browser. This code has a bit of a way to go before it’s easy for everyone to use, but because it’s built on the long-reliable HL7 Comm core (uses all the same integration logic and processing logic) it’s very robust long before it has all the polish I’d like. This is the version I’d like to see people using if they want their HL7 Comm to be a mini integration engine, and you can rest assured that I’m working to make it the easiest to use and most reliable engine around based upon my experiences with all the big names in the field.

The other thing having a 1.0 HL7 Comm clears the way for is to finish the integration clients that I’ve wanted to have all along. I’m really hoping for FTP clients relatively soon as well as a queuing mechanism, probably built on a lightweight database. Then all that’s left is an easier to use front end for the developers. If the interest is there, I’ll build that too.