Business decision models are usually developed and maintained by business analysts or other subject matter experts (not software developers). In the modern world the authors of these decision models want to make them available from cloud as operational decision services. But how difficult is to achieve this objective?
Serverless is the most attractive cloud computing execution platform for operational decision services managed by the major cloud providers such as Amazon, Microsoft or Google. Today the most popular and easiest way to create serverless APIs is using a combination of AWS Lambda and AWS API Gateway provided by Amazon. With these tools you don’t even think about servers and pay only for the execution time your services actually consume. They allow you simply upload your decision service to AWS Lambda, deploy it with AWS API Gateway, and start responding to RESTful endpoint calls.
However, the way how you build and deploy your Lambda Decision Service is usually not as straightforward as it seems on the surface. To prepare your business decision model for cloud deployment could be a serious task that requires deep understanding of the supporting software and usage models. Can this process be automated?
OpenRules just announced a general availability of its Decision Manager 8.0.1 that essentially simplifies this process by automatically generating all necessary components and allowing you to convert your business decision model to a Lambda function without any coding. You just need to have your own AWS account to open AWS tools. Then you will use the friendly AWS Lambda graphical interface to upload one zip-file generated by OpenRules. Then you will go AWS API Gateway (that also has a friendly GUI) and after a few clicks you would be able to create a Deploy API for your Lambda function. This process does not require any preliminary knowledge of the AWS environment and is described in detail in this new tutorial “Building Operational Decision Services with OpenRules + AWS Lambda + AWS API Gateway”.
After the deployment, you receive an invocation URL for your Lambda function, that can be used to for testing and actual execution. The tutorial describes how to test your AWS Lambda service using the standard Lambda Test or POSTMAN. For every business decision model OpenRules also generates a model-specific Java client that can be used to invoke the Lambda function from your Java applications.
You may download a free evaluation version of OpenRules Decision Manager now, and, using mainly MS Excel, create your own business decision model considering various OpenRules examples as prototypes. Then you may deploy your model as an AWS Lambda function and control its execution preferences from your AWS account.
OpenRules essentially demystifies cloud deployment for business analysts. Instead of going through many unfamiliar concepts, it is really easy for business users to TRY IT NOW. They, business users, will continue to stay in charge of their business decision models, making changes in Excel, and redeploying their models whenever necessary.