NOTE: END OF LIFE FOR THIS OPTION IS DECEMBER 31, 2019!
A configurator is the best way to utilize business rules in a software system to help users create a valid catalog number that can be built. Additionally, pricing and other information may be returned with the configured item. The result is better access to what product can be built for the sales force and the manufacturer is not overwhelmed with simple quote requests.
Creating a website configurator is common in the market today. The only issue today is that a typical sales agency will represent 50 or more manufacturers - each with their own website, and login. Integrating with OASIS allows the sales agency personnel to work in the same environment for all their factories and easily configure items using you configurator - securely.
How Does it Work?
Once the oasis.xml is setup, the user keys the URL of your website containing the oasis.xml into OASIS with the required user name and password.
When the user select "Configurator" form the "Tools" menu in a project, quote or order, the oasis.xml file is scanned for the url of the configurator. OASIS then displays the website using an internal browser. The browser works as normal, but is looking for the XML tag <o2o>. Once the xml tag is found, the browser window is closed and the XML is parsed, returning the configured item to the OASIS quote or order.
<configurator active="Y" [browser="AUTO" | browser="FX" | browser="VB"] url="url"/
The configurator tag activates the configurator in OASIS. The attribute active must also be set to "Y".
browser - OASIS uses several internal browsers to display the web page and search for the result. Typically, this attribute is not specified or set to "AUTO", allowing OASIS to select the browser based on the operating system the end user is running. However, some configurator web sites contain information that is best viewed in one browser technology or another. The following options are available:
- FX - this is the JavaFX browser technology. The advantage is the same browser technology is used regardless of operating system. It is also a fairly small browser technology and operates relatively quickly within OASIS. The down side is that the web site may only use HTML-5 and java script. The browser also has a fairly strict implementation - that is, small errors in the java script will render no controls.
- VB - this technology is only available on windows and utilizes a browser technology available in Microsoft's Visual Basic. This web component has the advantage of having a fairly robust html implementation as the technology is based on Microsoft's Internet Explorer. The down side is this technology is only available for Windows users and not available on the Apple Macintosh or other operating systems.
url - This attribute is required and contains a complete url for the website. Only http and https is implemented. See oasis.xml Variable Expansion.
The o2o XML
When a configured item is complete, the configurator must return an XML file with the tag <o2o> formatted as shown below. Please note that this must also be a valid HTML file to ensure browser and virus protection software operate as expected. (That is, the XML must be wrapped in HTML.)
The following tags are defined:
CatalogNumber - the catalog number (not MFG ERP item number)
Description - (optional) description of the item
Low - contains a price and commission tag of the best price the sales agency is authorized to sell the item
Overageable - (optional) contains the price and commission tag of the price where the sales agency is authorized to sell the item with overage.
This configurator tag activates the browser in OASIS to show the configurator using the specified URL. The browser technology is limited to a variation of Microsoft's Internet Explorer.
Here is the example html for our test configurator:
Which would show the following page:
The single item return looks like:
and the two item response would looks like
Clicking on the two item response produces the following result in the OASIS quote: