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Tasks make collaboration better. Tasks are better than messages when you work together with others. Tasks have a clear status and an assignee. You can go to the Pulse to claim a task for yourself and start work on it. 

Magnolia uses tasks in the publishing workflow: when an editor publishes a page the system creates an approval task and sends it to the publishers group.

See also Custom tasks and User tasks documentation for how to integrate it with jBPM. But please keep in mind, that you can create and work with Tasks without having to deal with jBPM and workflow.

Best practice

Don't use tasks if you don't have any human activity in your workflow. Tasks and Pulse notifications are great for humans but unnecessary for operations that only involve the system itself.

TasksManager

A task is an object that you create using the  TasksManager . You can send the task to a list of users or to a list of groups. The recipient can assign the task to himself. Other recipients can see who owns the task and its status when they go to the Pulse.

When working with tasks, use the TasksManager class which takes care of updating fields such as creationDate, modificationDate and status and notifies the system event bus.

To get TasksManager in your implementations, use injection:

Using TasksManager
@Inject
public MyClass(TasksManager tasksManager) {
	this.tasksManager = tasksManager;
}

public void createTask() {
    Task task = new Task();
    ...
	tasksManager.addTask(task);
}

Creating a task

Start by giving the Task  a name. The name is unique for the type of task you are creating and acts as a reference to the task definition in the registry.

Defining the task name
task.setname("getGroceries")

Next, define the possible assignees for the task. You can send a task to a list of groups or actors.

Defining assignees
List<String> actorIds = new ArrayList() {{
       add("eric");
       add("susan");
    }};
List<String> groupIds = new ArrayList() {{
       add("groceryShoppers");
    }};

task.setActorIds(actorIds);
task.setGroupIds(groupIds);

Finally, add content to your task. The content should contain the information the assignee needs to complete the task. For example, in the default publishing workflow the content contains information the publisher needs to review a page and publish it such as the workspace where the page resides, a path to the page node, and the version of the page being published.

Adding content to a task
Map<String, String> content = new HashMap() {{
            put("groceries", "milk, eggs, beer");
            put("budget", "15.- CHF");
        }};

task.setContent(content);

The content map is stored to JCR using OCM and allows storing any <String, Object> map where Object is a simple type. The data inside the content map is usually only used for displaying information in the Pulse.

Claiming a task

When a user assigns a task to themselves they claim it. To claim a task, set the actorId:

Claiming a task
taskManager.claim(taskId, userId);

This will update the task status and modificationDate and notifies the system event bus.

Magnolia uses info.magnolia.ui.admincentral.shellapp.pulse.task.action.ClaimTaskAction inside the Pulse for this step.

Reclaiming a task

((warning) Magnolia 5.5.6+) With appropriate publication rights you can reclaim a task which is already InProgress from another user.

Works in the same way as claiming a task, i.e.

Claiming a task
taskManager.claim(taskId, userId);

but by default (notifyPreviousAssignee = true @ info.magnolia.ui.admincentral.shellapp.pulse.task.action) this action will also trigger sending an i18n-able notification in the Pulse to the initiator of the publication that the task has been reclaimed by another user:

Notifying the author
messagesManager.sendMessage(task.getActorId(), message)

Resolving a task

To resolve a task assigned to an actor:

Resolving a task
Map<String, Object> result = new HashMap<String, Object>();
result.put("budgetSpent", "13.25 CHF");

taskManager.resolve(taskId, result);

A resolved task usually produces some sort of output. You can use the result map to pass this output to further processing. TasksManager will take care of notifying any handlers registered to the system event bus.

Magnolia uses info.magnolia.ui.admincentral.shellapp.pulse.task.action.ResolveTaskAction inside Pulse for this step. It allows you to define a decision inside the configuration which is mainly used for approving or rejecting a publication.

Node nameValue

 messageViews

 

 publish

 

 form

 

 actions

 

 approve

 

 availability

 

 class

info.magnolia.ui.admincentral.shellapp.pulse.task.action.ResolveTaskActionDefinition

 decision

approve

 icon

icon-publish

After resolving the task using the ResolveTask action the result map contains only one entry with the configured decision.

As with the content map, the result map is stored to JCR using OCM and allows storing any <String, Object> map where Object is a simple type.

Archiving and removing a task

The TasksManager provides a method for archiving tasks. The method removes the task from Pulse. You can still retrieve an archived task later in case you want to re-open it or audit.

While the API allows deleting a task, we strongly discourage doing so unless you know for sure that the deleted task won't be used any more.

Archiving and removing a task
taskManager.archiveTask(taskId);

taskManager.removeTask(taskId);

Status

Every task is bound to a life cycle and transitions back and forth between statuses as it proceeds in your process:

  • Created : The Task has been created but is not assigned to any actor.
  • InProgress : The task has been assigned to a user
  • Resolved : The task has been resolved by the assigned actor.
  • Failed : The execution of the task has failed.
  • Archived : The task has been removed from the Pulse.
  • Removed : The task has been removed from the repository. Removing tasks is supported by the API but should be used carefully. Depending on the use case, a user should be able to re-open a task after it has been resolved.

Changes to task status can be tracked by registering a  TaskEventHandler  to the system event bus.

Task definition

Every task type needs a unique name. The name is used to read the task definition from the task registry in your module configuration.

Node nameValue

 my-module

 

 tasks

 

 getGroceries

 

 class

info.magnolia.task.definition.TaskDefinition

 taskView

my-module:groceries

 title

Groceries


The simplest TaskDefinition  needs the following properties:

<task name>

required

The node's name used to look up the configuration for a task.

title

required

The i18nable title of the task displayed in the tasks list in The Pulse.

taskView

required

The view definition used to render the form and action bar in the detail view of The Pulse. This is a reference to a messageView definition.

class

required

The class mapping used for node2bean to initialize the POJO. info.magnolia.task.definition.TaskDefinition.


As with any definition used in Magnolia, you can define your own extensions to the task definition and add configurable nodes and properties. This is especially useful in combination with a custom task presenter for putting together the detail view.

Task view

While we use the term task view for the detail view of a task, it is technically a message view used to render the form and action bar.

Use a message view configuration to define which fields of the task object are displayed to the user. You can use a dot notation such as content.groceries to reference fields from the content or result map. In the same fashion, you can configure your actions, including availability and action bar mappings.

Node nameValue

 my-module

 

 messageViews

 

 groceries

 

 form

 

 tabs

 

 groceries

 

 fields

 

 actorIds

 

 content.groceries

 

 class

info.magnolia.ui.form.field.definition.TextFieldDefinition

 content.budget

 

 comment

 

 actions

 

 actionbar

 


Task presenter

A task presenter is started when a user opens a task to see its details. The presenter builds the form and action bar which are displayed to the user in the browser. Magnolia provides a  DefaultTaskDetailPresenter . See Task view above for its functionality.

Most likely the task data you want to display in the Pulse can be rendered with the DefaultTaskDetailPresenter. But in case the default presenter is not sufficient you can implement your own presenter and have it render whatever view is needed.

To implement a custom presenter, extend or use  TaskUiDefinition  instead of  TaskDefinition  and add a presenterClass property with a custom implementation of the  TaskDetailPresenter interface to the configuration.

Node nameValue

 tasks

 

 getGroceries

 

 class

info.magnolia.ui.admincentral.shellapp.pulse.task.definition.TaskUiDefinition

 presenterClass

info.my-company.ui.GroceryTaskPresenter

 taskView

my-module:groceries

 title

Groceries


In your implementation, you can access the task object as well as its definition using injection:

Example of a task presenter
@Inject
public GroceryTaskPresenter(GroceryView view, TaskUiDefinition definition, Task task) {
	...
}

Configuring bulk actions

The abortarchive and claim tasks can be configured as bulk-actions as per default user roles. Specify the user roles for the tasks via the bulkActions node in the configuration of the ui-admincentral module.

The tree below shows the default setting for the archive action (the definition class is info.magnolia.ui.admincentral.shellapp.pulse.task.action.ArchiveTasksActionDefinition) with the superuser role set to access this action:

Node name

Value

 bulkActions

 

 archive

 

 availability

 

 access 

 

 roles

 

 superuser

superuser

 rules 

 

 CanArchiveTaskRule 

 

 status 

 

 Created

Created

 Failed

Failed

 InProgress

InProgress

 Resolved

Resolved

 Scheduled

Scheduled

 assignee

false

 class

info.magnolia.ui.admincentral.shellapp.pulse.task.action.availability.TaskAvailabilityRuleDefinition

 multiple

true

 class

info.magnolia.ui.admincentral.shellapp.pulse.task.action.ArchiveTasksActionDefinition

 icon

icon-delete

To allow bulk actions for other users, add their role names from the list of default roles as the properties and values of the roles subnode.

See Action definition for more details about action properties.

 

notifyPreviousAssignee(task, userId);