At the heart of Clarify is a sophisticated any-to-any transformation engine. This topic describes the different formats supported and the methods behind their transformation.
The formats supported are Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), Flat File, Database, Spreadsheet, and Extensible Markup Language (XML).
For bringing data into the system, and also dispatching it, Clarify supports Web Services (SOAP and REST), FTP (plain, FTPS, FTPES, and SFTP), AS2, File System, and Database (JDBC-compliant) Adapters.
A Business Process engine is used to script activity and is integrated with transformation and adapter capability. The scripting language is capable of sequence, iteration, and condition constructs, and can be executed both synchronously and asynchronously.
Clarify supports the X12, EDIFACT, and TRADACOMS standards. This includes:
- Enveloping and de-enveloping capability
- Sending and receiving Functional Acknowledgements (For X12: 997, For EDIFACT: CONTRL)
- Validation of both source and target documents
In addition to sending and receiving EDI messages, Clarify also includes a powerful routing and pattern matching engine for determining how to process inbound and outbound EDI messages, as well as application data. This includes describing the applications that contain business documents, as well as the adapters for getting data to and from the application system. The Clarify Studio provides tooling to make the job of dealing with EDI easier. There are facilities for using sample EDI data to build configurations, and migration tools to ease the job of moving from one version of EDI to another.
Clarify supports both fixed-length and delimited flat files, as well as both single- and multi-format types. No industry-standard metadata exists for describing flat files, therefore Clarify allows you to use a sample flat file to generate it.
Clarify supports the ability to connect to and interact with relational databases via a type-4 Java Database Connectivity (JDBC) driver (native protocol pure Java). Database is the only syntax supported by Clarify that does not have a file-system interface, and thus requires a specialized adapter that performs the database interactions: select, insert, update, and delete.
In addition to these standard Database Adapter interactions, Clarify has capability to execute stored procedures and perform SQL-based interactions during transformations and in Business Processes. These SQL Access actions are capable of accepting and returning parameters.
Clarify supports the ability to read from and write to spreadsheets. The supported formats are XLS, XLSX, and XLSM. For transformation purposes, spreadsheet data is separated from formatting, as Clarify is concerned primarily with the data. References to actual spreadsheet files are maintained for formatting purposes, and transformation data is generated into formatted template workbooks when producing spreadsheets. Spreadsheets often contain mixtures of data in absolute locations and on one or more rows that exist in relative locations. No industry standard metadata exists for describing spreadsheets, therefore Clarify allows you to use a sample spreadsheet to generate it.
Clarify supports the Extensible Markup Language (XML) in Ruleset version 2 derived from XSD. It parses and constructs XML documents using the JAXB standard.
Clarify supports the JSON syntax for translation/mapping that is supported by a metadata wizard capable of consuming sample data and automatically building the schema without manual creation. The feature also supports future data structure changes with an automatic update function that is also based on sample data.
Web Services provide access to remote Web Services Providers and Web Services Consumers. Web Services are used in Business Processes to bring data into and send data out of Clarify.
Both types of Web Services support asynchronous and synchronous communication.
- requests and/or response Schemas
- Web Service and operation names
- remote address and port information
- companion objects along with the WSDL document
In addition to SOAP Web Services, Clarify supports SOAP with Attachments, and REST Web Services.
Clarify supports File Transfer Protocol (FTP) as a client-side adapter. For secure variants on FTP, explicit and implicit TLS or SSL connection types are supported, as are both single- and multiple-file capability and user-defined commands.
Cleo offers secure point-to-point communications capability built around the AS2 standard via the Cleo Harmony solution. Cleo is Drummond Group Certified for AS2 interoperability.
The ability to send and receive messages to and from ESX is tightly integrated with Clarify.
AS2 is typically used to send and receive EDI data, but other types of data are supported in the AS2 specification. AS2 software is also commonly used to transport data to and from value added networks (VANs).
Clarify can interact with the local and network file system. The ability to read, write, copy, delete, and move are interactions in the File Adapter. Also available are File Monitors, which allow multiple interactions (read and move) when files are detected in specified directories. There are settings to address file name collisions on write, move, and copy interactions; partial file names (wild card characters using Regular Expressions) on delete and move interactions; and recursion and non-existent directories.