** WAY COOL ** Making Windows Workflow Foundation History with Office Applications
Mick and I just made history (I think). He was doing a lab and some R&D at the BPI+WF conference in the labs around WWF and embedding that in custom .NET applications
I came over and we talked about “why don’t we embed this in the Office Client applications using VSTO. He quickly fired up Visual Studio 2005 (Whidbey) and re-worked his code into a Word Project.
Firstly – Visual Studio Tools for Office (VSTO) rocks hard! Infact It Rocks the Most! and being able to combine that with the awesomely unknown power of Windows Workflow Foundation (WWF, Smackdown) was great.
So what we did was embedded the designer into the Task Pane so you can actually design workflows from within word (ie. drag on shapes and modify code etc.)
Inital thoughts we had was that you could be working in WORD/EXCEL/etc. and then define the workflow for the document whilst working on the document and then kick off that workflow.
Another great idea was if your document was saved in a Windows SharePoint Services Document Library you could then redesign the workflow on the document library from within the Office applications (instead of designing Front Page). CHECK OUT POST FOR MORE
That is way cool. Think about all the business analysts/admins/support staff types who could whip up a workflow in an app they are comfortable with and then it actually be used.