Mobility and context-awareness in workflow systems
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This project aims to describe how workflow systems can integrate and make use of context information from context rich environments, to enhance the execution of workflow processes. Context information can for example be used to control transitions between activities, activity enactment and process/activity coordination. A dynamic contextual environment also requires that a workflow system is capable of responding to contextual events. A set of requirements for a context-aware workflow system, based on existing workflow standards, theory behind context-aware computing and activity theory, will be presented and elaborated. Prototypes, which illustrate how these requirements can be implemented in a standard based workflow system, are also provided. Based on the solutions presented in the prototypes, a new interface for a workflow enactment service is presented. This new interface serves as the link between the contextual environment and the workflow system. We also present a solution for handling context related exception states. The definition of basic terms in workflow systems are expanded to better support context-aware behaviour. Ideas and solutions for more complex requirements not met in our prototypes are also discussed, such as situated activity coordination.