Update: Blawx Reasoner API, Docassemble Integration, New Data Features, and More!
Phew! Where do we start?
The API is Live!
Ok, so first, we have opened up an alpha demo version of the Blawx Reasoner API. Any query that you can run from inside Blawx is now possible to run from any other web-enabled tool. Check out the help page for details.
As always, remember that Blawx is still an alpha prototype, and is liable to change, or go down for short periods of time. It should not be used for production purposes.
As a demonstration, we have also released an open-source package to extend docassemble to be able to ask questions using the Blawx.com Reasoner API, the Blawx module for docassemble.
Stay tuned for some demonstration interviews that are run off of Blawx.com’s Reasoner API. Jason Morris will demo one at the Regulatory Innovation Showcase in Ottawa, Canada, on November 5, 2019.
New Data Tools!
Dealing with requests over API means creating a way for you to deal with non-Blawx data inside the Blawx interface. So, we have created a new section of the Toolbox, named “Data”, that gives you everything you need to mock up outside data, and refer to it in your rules. Check the Data Property page, and the Data Dictionary page for details.
Testing Features Incoming!
It’s a basic requirement of any real-world technology tool that you be able to write tests to ensure that your code does what it’s supposed to do. Test require data, and these new data tools have greatly simplified the process of generating data for testing purposes. It just so happens that everything you need to deal with external data from integrated applications is also what you need to be able to generate tests.
We’re going to be doing some help documentation showing you how to use the new features for testing your Blawx code.
We feel like Blawx has reached a solid proof-of-concept level with this update. You can use it to write code, save that code, upload it to other systems, have those systems connect to the reasoner by API and provide their own data. It can also now do automated testing.
There is more we can do in terms of language features. There is also a long list of bugs and known issues that we’re still working on.
But right now, what we’re really looking forward to is doing some more documentation, and helping people play with what we’ve created so far. We will also be creating a Blawx implementation of a demonstration Rules as Code project.
The next major feature push will likely be in the direction of things that make the tool more useful to people encoding written rules, such as links from your code to the source rules, and maybe some way to see the law you are encoding while you encode it.
Oh, and we’re looking forward to an update from Google to the Blockly library, which will make it possible to drive Blockly from your keyboard. That will be a big improvement for accessibility, but we also hope it will let us make the tool faster for power users, while still easy to learn for beginners.
If you have something you’d like to see, get in touch. We’d love to hear from you.