Have you ever watched ants carry away food that is several times bigger than them? Although they are small, each ant provides lift or motion to the task and when they combine their effort, they can get the task done. Microservices are a bit like those ants carrying food.
Instead of having a single application to run operations, you breakdown the applications into smaller ones with particular roles to play. Microservices are a collection of small services that have specialized roles and they cooperate to build a comprehensive architectural model.
When applied in tools such as document automation software, microservices can be structured in several ways that enable the software to perform its duty. Our engines can be used to create a microservice (.Net, Java) or used as a microservice (RESTful) for documents and reports. For example, they can be used to encrypt data, create distinctive reports, or even structure data. Just like ants traveling over varied terrain, microservices fit in various applications and work together to execute a task.
While users may see a template as a single model, the reality is that document templates are a collection of microservices. In order for a template to automate a document, there are smaller units that collaborate for the final document to be completed. These include:
Data Capture: Part of a template is intended specifically to capture data that will be used to create documents. This can be done with the use of queries where a user provides data or data can be entered directly into the template.
Data Storage: When data is captured, it has to be stored, there is a separate service for this. Although data is not stored directly on the template, a part of the template architecture is modeled to direct data to where it is to be stored.
Guidelines: Templates function based on guidelines. For example, the font of a document can be locked in so that the same font will always be used when creating that document. Developers use commands to integrate rules within a template so that it functions in a particular way.
There are several other microservices within the template architecture and they all collaborate to enable document automation.
The user is the main beneficiary of microservices. There is a marked advantage in comparison to monolithic applications. Some of these advantages are:
It is important to note as well that templates are a microservice within the document automation architecture. To create documents, the templates will function as the guide for the document while other parts of the software will perform other functions. Like ants, however, all the services combine to deliver a common goal.