Designing of Portlet-based Web Portals

The main aim of this dissertation has been improving the design and use of portletcentric Web portals. About the first concern, our proposal is a design method with reuse, i.e., reusing available Web components, that is, portlets. The approach takes statecharts as the main conduit for describing how portlets are gathered together. The outcome of the design process of a new Web portal is an annotated statechart which collects the main design decisions, i.e., tasks, structural and workflow organization, and aesthetic concerns. The rendering model takes advantage of hierarchical construction of the orchestration model, i.e., statechart, to specify the presentation through an inheritance-like mechanism based on the state hierarchy. However, this approach would remain short, if the portal master had to create the portal code by hand, while he interprets the annotated statechart sketch. This process would be error-prone. Thus, the proposal in this dissertation is a model-driven approach to move automatically from annotated statechart models to implementation concepts like Web page, CSS class, and the like. Two metamodels and the transformation between them are described. With the ultimate objective of improving the use of Web portals, another of the concerns of this dissertation has been the portlet interoperability, that is, the ability of portlets to exchange information. The proposal in this dissertation is based on Semantic Web, specifically it is a front-end approach, where presentation fragments of portlets are annotated with information about the rendering process. Then, OWL rules are which make inference of data, i.e. carry out the dataflow.

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University of the basque country