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Importing and Exporting

In the last section of this guide we will look at how to import and export workflows from U-Compare and how we can import additional components into the component library.

Exporting Workflows

We are now going to look at how to export a workflow which we have created in U-Compare. Once we export the workflow it can be shared with other U-Compare users or used with other compatible UIMA tools. To demonstrate this open the workflow that we saved in a previous section (in fact any workflow that you have created will work fine, saved or otherwise).

Image exportworkflow

Now select ``Export Workflow/Components'' from the ``Workflow'' menu. This will open the following dialog box.

Image exportdialog

When workflows containing custom imported components are exported, this dialog will offer the option to export those custom components together with the workflow descriptor. This is done to ensure compatibility between different users settings of U-Compare which may have access to different sets of custom components. Including components can result in large workflow files, so this dialog gives users the choice of just which components they want to export with the workflow. In the current workflow however, there should be no custom imported components, so only the workflow descriptor itseld is offered for export.

The workflow will be exported as a .ucz file to the location specified in the ``Export Location'' field. Once you have set the export location to somewhere appropriate, click ``Export Workflow''. This should create the .ucz file containing the workflow descriptor at the location specified.

Importing Workflows

Now lets use our just created .ucz file to see how importing works. Select ``Import Workflow/Components'' from the ``Workflow'' menu.

Image importworkflow

You will me prompted to select the file to import; select the file we just exported to and click ``Open''. This will cause the following dialog to appear.

Image importdialog

As the workflow we are importing doesn't include any new components we see the message ``No Component Descriptors to Import'' in the top box. Below this is a field to specify the ``Extraction Location'' where the workflow will be extracted to, this defaults to a sub directory of the U-Compare folder which we don't need to change. The next field specifies the name under which we want to import the workflow, the default value will be ok for now.

Click ``Import Workflow''. U-Compare will open two dialog boxes, click ``Ok'' in both of them. The workflow should now be successfully imported. To check this open the ``Workflow'' menu, a new saved workflow should have been added as shown.

Image importedworkflow

This workflow can be opened and used in the same way as any other save workflow. Try opening it now.

Importing Components

The U-Compare component library already includes a wide range of components, and new versions will be adding even more, but of course just these components alone won't be sufficient for all the workflows users may want to create. U-Compare therefore includes the ability to import additional components created by outside developers.

We will look at how to do this now, but first we need some components to import. The components that users will normally import will usually be acquired directly from the components original developer in the form of a specially formatted ucz file. But for the purposes of this tutorial we will use a sample ucz file which can be downloaded here.

Image importworkflow

Once you have downloaded the file go to the ``Workflow'' menu and select ``Import Workflow/Components'' again. Select the lingpipe.ucz file that you just downloaded and click ``Open''. You should be shown the following dialog box.

Image importcompdialog

This time there is a list of five component descriptors shown. Each of these descriptors corresponds to a component we can import from this file. Leave them all selected and click ``Import Workflow''. You will again be presented with two dialogs, as before click ``Ok'' to both. This time no new workflow will be added to the workflow menu, but if you look in the Custom Components directory of the component library you should see the five new components.

Image importedcomponents

Imported components are saved by default to the Custom Components, but as we will see in a minute they can later be moved to other parts of the library.

For developers interested in writing and distributing U-Compare compatible components, please see the U-Compare Developer Guide for details on how to do this.

Almost any UIMA component could be used in U-Compare as well, but it may requires some end-developer level of knowledge in both UIMA and Java. Please see the U-Compare Developer Guide also for details on how to do this.

Organizing Components

When new components are added to the component library they are placed by default in the Custom Components folder. This is fine if you only import a few extra components, but with a large number it makes searching through them quite difficult. To remedy this, U-Compare allows users to move the components they add to more appropriate parts of the component library by simply dragging and dropping them into the desired location.

Additionally if the current directory structure isn't sufficient for the components you wish to add, right clicking on any folder will give you the option of creating a new custom folder.

Image newfolder

Unfortunately, due to restrictions caused by automatic updates, only manually imported components can be moved in this way. The components included with U-Compare are fixed in their original default locations.

Section Summary

This section has hopefully shown you how to share U-Compare workflows and to extend the component library. That was the last section of the User Guide. We hope you will enjoy using U-Compare.

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