The workflow canvas is the heart of the Syntasa platform where users can build apps to ingest, analyze, apply intelligence, and prepare your all-important data for meaningful business decisions. Various elements, i.e. connections, stores, and processes, can be dragged and dropped onto the canvas then configured and connected to each other to quickly build a pipeline to meet your data analysis and intelligence needs.
The workflow canvas screen is the default screen when clicking on an app card. An app has two sections to review the workflow: development is where the app is built, tested, and updated; production is where the app is deployed and users schedule jobs to put the app to work processing your data on a regular basis.
The canvas is available in the development environment via the development workflow icon (); available in the production environment, if the application has been deployed, via the production workflow icon ().
The workflow canvas is the collection of connections, process nodes, and output nodes that are drag and dropped onto the app canvas. These nodes and connections are methodically linked to form a pipeline that produces one or more datasets.
Nodes that are a circle () are considered "Process Nodes" where, after unlocking the canvas, configurations can be made and processed. Each process node has at least one output dataset that is typically a materialized table in the cloud environment that can be analyzed.
The non-process nodes are rounded-edge squares that have various functions available depending on the type of node. Three of the most prominent non-process nodes are Connections, Stores, and Output Nodes.
Connections and Stores
It is a requirement to have a Connection or Store available and connected to a process node before a process node can be configured. Connections () provide direct access to a source location, e.g. raw files, Big Query project. Stores () provide the ability to select a Syntasa produced dataset.
Output Nodes () basically represent a dataset that the process node produces. The Output Nodes are static and cannot be modified, but provide a good general understanding of the dataset including a preview of the resulting data produced by the process node.
In addition to building an app workflow, there are several options available at the top of the canvas that facilitate working with the canvas and creating processing jobs.
Exit - The back arrow icon () exits the app and returns to the app card selection screen within the application group of the app, i.e. Synthesizer, Composer, Orchestrator.
Unlock/Lock - The padlock icon() unlocks the canvas for editing and locks the canvas for processing (only available in development workflows).
Home - The house icon() re-centers the workflow.
Interactive - The Interactive Mode toggle (Interactive) allows users to turn on/off Interactive Mode. This enables the ability to start and leave a cluster up while building or editing an app (only available in Development workflows).
Job - The job button and drop-down () allows users to Create New job or select a saved job (only available in development when the app is locked; always available in production). Process node(s) need to be selected to create a new job.
Shift-Left-Click on Nodes - Select multiple nodes at one time.
Right-Click on Node(s) - Available actions vary if the app is locked or unlocked:
- Run Process(es) - When the app is locked, selecting one or more process nodes provides the option to run the process via an existing or new job.
- Delete Nodes - When the app is unlocked, selecting one or more nodes provides the option to delete the nodes.
Replay - The replay button () reruns the job that was most recently executed (only available in Development when the app is locked).
Deploy - The deploy button () moves a development workflow to production (in development only). Any changed processes will be summarized before deployment is committed. An app's first-time deploy is only a copy of the workflow from development to production. Subsequent deploys will move the development workflow to production and make modifications to datasets, if necessary.
Run - The run button () executes the selected process(es) while using Interactive Mode (only available in Development when the app is in Interactive Mode). If no processes are selected on the canvas then all processes will be run; the execution results can be viewed in the Activity and/or Operations menus under "Run N", but not saved as a job.
Snapshot - The snapshot option available under the triple-dot icon () provides the ability to create an ad-hoc save of a workflow (in development only); a detailed name is required in order to save. Snapshots are automatically taken whenever an app is deployed to production, but this option allows the user to save incrementally to provide more rollback granularity.
Load - The load option available under the triple-dot icon () provides the ability to load a workflow snapshot (in development only). At the time of loading a previously saved snapshot, there is an option to take a snapshot of the current workflow in case a rollback is needed.
Notes - The notes icon () allows users to save and view notes at the app and/or process level.
Activity - The activity icon () allows users to quickly view the job status and details of the latest execution of each job within the app. From this side panel you can quickly check the status and progression of a process you may have just kicked off without needing to leave the workflow canvas.
Configurations - The configurations icon () allows users to set configurations within Interactive Mode (only available in development when the app is in Interactive Mode). Within the menu users are able to add, start, stop runtimes and set the From Date, To Date, and Process Mode configurations that are to be used while working within Interactive Mode.