What's New with Content

Below you'll find a list of updates to our documentation and to our free, online training resources available at Academy Online.

As an Appian Developer, you have experience planning, building, and testing process models. You're likely familiar with the variety of smart services and nodes and know how to test and troubleshoot a process model. Now it's time to learn more about planning and building process models that are performant and scalable. In this learning path, you'll learn how to design short-lived processes, implement looping, and to read and analyze process metrics that are available to you as a process model designer. Prepare to learn about additional smart services and plug-ins, important best practices, and—of course—make sure to complete hands-on Appian Step-by-Step exercises that accompany both courses. Study and experiment with 13 process models in the Acme Automobile application, available in your Appian Community Edition environment.

You can enroll in the course directly.

Yanina Quintana, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

While many of our accessibility features are transparent—designers do not have to do anything special to benefit from them—a number of UI design choices do dictate the quality of experience for people with disabilities. This course teaches you how to plan for and design user experiences that enable all users to fully engage with Appian applications.

You can enroll in the course directly.

Patty Dulman, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

Expressions are an essential tool in Appian. You can use them to manipulate your data to suit your business needs. In this introductory course, you'll learn the different components of an expression and how to use them effectively in different combinations. You'll also learn how to create an expression rule and be introduced to a variety of out-of-the-box functions. Throughout the course, you can reinforce your knowledge with a number of hands-on exercises, including practice on creating an expression rule and working with functions.

You can enroll in the course directly.

Patty Dulman, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

Take this course to learn about new and enhanced features of the Appian platform that you should start to use for building applications. This course teaches you how to leverage these new features and make it easier for you to transition to working with future versions of Appian. Consider whether the new functionality provided this quarter should replace or modify existing features and configurations across your applications to increase ease of maintainability, enhance performance, or enable more modern and flexible designs.

Topics in this course include:

  • Automation
  • Records
  • Interface design
  • Application design
  • Deployments
  • Enterprise data

This course is designed for experienced Appian practitioners.

You can enroll in the course directly.

Patty Dulman, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

With over a thousand styled icons available, we thought you might appreciate the ability to search them, so we added a search box to the icon table. The perceptive user might notice that the icon table itself is actually an Appian interface. So, if you're wondering if the list is complete, it's coming directly from the Appian Platform. That's right, we're bringing low-code development to our docs as well!

Mischa DeNola, Manager, Information Development

We've reorganized and expanded the DevOps content to better support your DevOps journey with Appian. Now all of our content related to testing, deploying, and monitoring applications using DevOps practices is in one place!

With Appian deployments now faster than ever, we've also updated our deployment docs to be just as streamlined. You can easily find guidance on what, when, and how to deploy different types of changes using the deployment method that's right for you.

Julia Cowley, Information Developer

We've improved the Appian RPA REST API documentation to use a more consistent and streamlined organization. Each page now includes example request and response bodies, so you can easily verify if your request or response is formatted properly. We've also added a note to the top of each method's page to remind you to use the proper authentication headers, which can be a small but frustrating misstep when using the API.

Kelley MacEwen, Senior Information Developer

With the new ability to create schemas in the Appian Cloud database, along with the addition of some new stored procedures, we realized we needed a new home for our Appian Cloud Database Administration documentation.

So we streamlined and reorganized our existing content and created a new page. Then we added a whole bunch of helpful content about how to use schemas to control access to data and how to use stored procedures. If you are an Appian Cloud database customer, be sure to check it out.

Allison Gisinger, Senior Information Developer

Appian applications can be easily set up to interact with external systems. To learn how to set up integrations, take the two courses in our new Integrations learning path. Designed for experienced Appian developers, these courses will teach you how to integrate with systems outside of Appian. This includes an Appian application requesting to connect to an external system, and an external system requesting to connect to an Appian application. After viewing the courses, complete the hands-on exercises to learn how to create and test Appian's integration objects.

The final and third course in this learning path is coming soon, and it's all about connected system authentication! You can get started now by enrolling in the first and second courses.

Yanina Quintana, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

Two new courses teach you how to work with complex functions and expression patterns. Practice what you learn by completing exercises using the Appian Community Edition environment. You'll learn how to create re-usable and performant expressions, and how to use expressions to navigate and reference various data structures. Build more advanced expressions that include nested logic and looping functions. Query record types efficiently and analyze the performance of your expressions.

This learning path is intended for certified Appian Associate Developers. It is part of the Appian Senior Developer course series and will help to prepare you for the Appian Certified Senior Developer exam.

You can complete the two courses by enrolling in our Appian Advanced Expressions learning path. You can also enroll separately in Part 1 and Part 2 of Advanced Expressions.

Patty Dulman, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

Take this course if your organization is planning to acquire an Appian Solution, and you want to have a better grasp of what a solution is, and how to effectively handle the implementation effort. This course will discuss the benefits of using a solution, ways to adapt it to specific organizational requirements, and steps to take to ensure a successful and speedy implementation of your solution. You will also get to know additional learning resources.

You can enroll in the course directly.

Yanina Quintana, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

Appian provides a wide variety of interface patterns that help you save time and jump start the design process. These patterns are predefined components and dynamic expressions that represent popular interface designs. You'll learn where to locate these patterns and how to find the ones that meet your design needs. You'll learn how to add the patterns to an interface and where to find guidance on customizing them for your purposes. Along the way, we'll showcase some great examples to inspire you to browse Appian's comprehensive library of patterns on your own.

This course is part of the Appian Senior Developer course series and will help to prepare you for the Appian Certified Senior Developer exam.

You can complete this course as part of our Appian Advanced UX Design learning path or enroll in the course directly.

Patty Dulman, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

Creating robotic processes (bots) is now a low-code experience. This updated learning path contains a new course, Creating Bots with Appian. In that course you'’'ll learn what RPA is, how it can be used in Appian applications, and how to design and build low-code bots. There are also three tutorials using the low-code modules for browser, image recognition, and Windows UI Automation.

Also in the learning path is an optional course on extending Appian RPA. That course explains how you can write Workflow Libraries in Java to extend the functionality of Appian RPA. There are also tutorials to help you practice what you learn.

You can enroll in the course directly.

Katie Ward, Instructional Systems Designer

Interested in learning how to use Appian to orchestrate an Appian RPA bot?

In our new tutorial, Build a Retrieval Process, you'll use low-code methods to create a robotic process that retrieves information from a public web page. Then, you'll create an Appian process model and related objects to trigger the bot and manage the data the bot returns.

We recommend this tutorial to anyone interested in hands-on experience working with Appian and Appian RPA together.

Sian Jones, Senior Information Developer

You might notice some of our component pages feature a new interactive code sample editor! Rather than copying and pasting an example into an expression, you can now change and evaluate the sample code directly in the documentation. Our team is excited to introduce this new component, which uses a read-evaluate-print loop (REPL), to the docs to help demonstrate the power and speed of Appian components.

Check out the Pie Chart component to see it in action.

Kelley MacEwen, Senior Information Developer

In this course from our new UX Design learning path, you'll learn about important design considerations for apps that will be used on multiple devices: desktops, tablets, and phones. Learn how user behaviors differ by device, and how it impacts your design choices. Watch our video lessons to learn how specific UI components behave on mobile devices, how to recognize which UI components are likely to require an optimization, and how to perform optimization steps. You can complete this course as part of our Appian UX Design learning path or enroll in the course directly.

Yanina Quintana, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

Building business applications that are a pleasure to use requires much more than just satisfying functional requirements. This course from our new UX Design learning path will teach you how to incorporate essential visual design principles using Appian's tools, and how to create emotionally appealing user experiences that are also intuitive and highly efficient to use. Refine your visual design skills with the powerful tips from the Appian UX Design team. You can complete this course as part of our Appian UX Design learning path or enroll in the course directly.

Yanina Quintana, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

Updated for 2021, this course provides an introduction to the Appian platform. You'll start by learning why companies around the world choose Appian to help transform their businesses. Then you'll learn the key components used to build an application in Appian, and see how these building blocks come together. This course serves as a springboard for you to move on to the technical courses in the Appian Developer learning path. You can complete this course as part of our Appian Developer or Appian Foundations learning path or enroll in the course directly.

Patty Dulman, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

We've reorganized Appian RPA help content to better support a low-code developer's journey. Starting with RPA 7.7, the newly streamlined docs introduce you to Appian RPA, help you get started building robotic processes, and show you how to integrate RPA with your Appian applications.

More experienced developers can still find the Java-focused content in the Custom Code Development section. Let us know your thoughts through the Feedback widget on any Appian RPA page.

Kelley MacEwen, Senior Information Developer

Crafting a great user experience requires research and planning before application construction begins. Specifically, you must understand who your users are and what they need to achieve. A superior design allows those users to successfully complete their work quickly and easily. This course covers how to incorporate user-centered priorities from the planning stage through the end of application development. You can complete this course as part of our Appian UX Design learning path or enroll in the course directly.

Patty Dulman, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

In this new course you will learn what Appian Intelligent Document Processing (IDP) is and how you might use it. You will learn what types of documents are a good fit for IDP and how to use the pre-configured application. Further, you will learn how Appian IDP takes advantage of document extraction features, adds the capability to automatically classify documents, monitors the performance of document processing, and securely processes documents across multiple teams. You can enroll in the course directly.

Mike McGrath, Instructional Systems Designer

As Appian Records continue to make the app development experience faster and easier, we wanted your documentation experience to be just as fast and easy. So this release, we've provided a complete guide to help you create, build, and leverage records seamlessly throughout your application. With new and updated content, you'll find the latest information about records that highlight cool new features and reinforce the power records bring to your applications.

With all your record content in one place, you'll be able to learn about Appian Records just as fast as you can build with them. Check out the newest Appian Records content here.

Catie Willett, Senior Information Developer

Students learn Appian's suggested program management techniques including organizing teams, planning, planning the right features, automating deployment steps, and ensuring easy maintenance for the long term. This is an instructor-led course.

Enrollments are open now, so check for upcoming sessions on Appian Community.

Matt Berry, Manager of Training Development, Education Services

Put fundamental knowledge to work with a hands-on Appian use case. In this instructor-led course, students will learn the basics of Appian's delivery methodology and quality assurance practices while working through delivery of a functioning application.

Enrollments are open now, so check for upcoming sessions on Appian Community.

Matt Berry, Manager of Training Development, Education Services

In this instructor-led course, students learn how to create visually appealing, intuitive, and valuable applications to end users. This course will teaches elements of good interface design, simplifying complicated information, and creating an experience centered on the users themselves.

Enrollments are open now, so check for upcoming sessions on Appian Community.

Matt Berry, Manager of Training Development, Education Services

Process models are a standard tool for depicting business workflows. In Appian, these models aren't static. Appian translates your business workflows to executable processes. In this course, you'll learn how to use Appian's Process Modeler to design and build scalable processes, using standard Business Process Model and Notation (BPMN). A major component of applications is the creation, editing, and moving of data through the lifecycle of your business workflows. You'll see how to add and configure process components that perform a variety of activities. As a final step, you'll learn how to test and troubleshoot a process. You can complete this course as part of our Appian Developer learning path or enroll in the course directly.

Patty Dulman, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

Interested in learning how to incorporate Appian AI into your application? We've got you covered with new and updated Appian AI content. Appian AI allows you to integrate modern AI capabilities like computer vision, document extraction, and natural language processing seamlessly into your application.

As one of the AI features offered by Appian AI, Appian's Document Extraction content has also been updated to help you seamlessly create your own document extraction process.

Not sure where Appian AI fits in your process? Check out some industry use cases that illustrate the different ways you can enhance your existing processes with best-in-class Google Cloud Platform Artificial Intelligence services.

Catie Willett, Senior Information Developer

If you’re new to Appian RPA, you’re probably looking to understand the basics before you move on to development. Even if you’re a seasoned robotic process developer, a refresher can be helpful.

Check out an in-depth description of libraries in Appian RPA. We cover the types of libraries, why you should use libraries, and how to deploy them to your code repository.

Kelley MacEwen, Senior Information Developer

In Appian, queries are used to return data from relational databases. Query filters define the conditions for returning the data. You can organize the returned data in meaningful ways, such as in charts and reports, to support business decisions, answer questions, and complete other tasks.

In this course, you’ll learn how to use the Query Editor to create and test queries. You’ll also learn how to use the a!queryEntity() function to create advanced queries. You’ll see how queries are used by interfaces and process models.You can complete this course as part of our Appian Developer learning path or enroll in the course directly.

Patty Dulman, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

This course teaches new Appian Developers how to leverage interface patterns and work with advanced interface elements and components, including dynamic lists, dynamic links, conditional display, and editable grids. You can complete this course as part of our Appian Developer learning path or enroll in the course directly.

Jim Beckley, Instructional Systems Designer Engineering

This course for existing Appian Developers teaches how to jump start your organization’s application development with proven design patterns – while absorbing some of the lessons learned from other projects that followed design patterns that you may want to avoid, which we call anti-patterns. You can complete this course as part of our Appian Advanced Developer learning path or enroll in the course directly.

Jim Beckley, Instructional Systems Designer Engineering

This course teaches existing Appian Developers more advanced data design and configuration for Appian data structures. Users learn how to leverage JPA annotations and nested CDTs to ensure alignment with RDBMS requirements. You can complete this course as part of our Appian Advanced Developer learning path or enroll in the course directly.

Jim Beckley, Instructional Systems Designer Engineering

You’re ready to build an application using Appian. Where should you start? This course helps you plan and organize the things that are needed to build a robust application. The goal of this course is to set you on a path to successful application building and avoid costly mistakes you didn’t plan for. You can complete this course as part of our Appian Developer learning path or enroll in the course directly.

Patty Dulman, Senior Instructional Systems Designer

We're continually building ways for you to execute robotic processes seamlessly in all the contexts you might use Appian RPA. To help you decide which options are best for you, we assembled a list of all the Ways to Execute a Robotic Process.

This page was recently updated to include the specific ways to use the Appian RPA connected system to kick off a robotic process in a process model, interface, and Web API.

Kelley MacEwen, Senior Information Developer

Have you noticed a lot of overlapping or identical steps during the early stages of robotic process development? You can accelerate that initial set up by creating a template.

We’ve created a guide on how to create a template in RPA, including recommendations for making them the most useful they can be. This page also describes how to share templates between environments and in the Appian AppMarket.

Kelley MacEwen, Senior Information Developer

As we continue to release more Appian pre-built solutions, as well as the Intelligent Document Processing (IDP) application, we have made an important update to our documentation that takes into account a unique feature of solutions and IDP. Mainly, that they release new versions at different times from the product.

In order for us to show you the most accurate content, all solutions that have multiple versions now include a solution version dropdown menu that is separate from the product version selection.

You can check out this new feature in our IDP documentation. Use the version dropdown menus to change the product version and IDP version.

new version selection

Allison Gisinger, Senior Information Developer

Interested in becoming an Appian Developer? We recommend signing up for one of our instructor-led courses. You can go to community.appian.com for more information and course schedules.

However, if you prefer a self-paced, online format, you should enroll in the Appian Developer learning path at Academy Online. To help get you started, we’ve recently added a new online “Welcome” course that provides learners with a variety of helpful resources and tools, including a short overview of the learning path with recommended “steps for success.”

A critical aspect of learning Appian is practice building an application, so we’ve also included a new Developer’s Skills Practice guide that provides a series of exercises you can follow along with to build an application. After each course in the path, you should complete associated course exercises.

If you’re an online learner, be sure to take advantage of these great, new resources!

Jim Beckley, Instructional Systems Designer Engineering

Over the last few quarters, Appian has introduced a number of product improvements that make managing deployments a lot easier. Now, you can connect your development, test, and production environments and use the Compare and Deploy feature to easily create application deployment packages for new applications or updates to existing applications (a.k.a patches).

To support these product imporovements and your knowledge and skills development, we recently released a new course that teaches you how to configure your connected environments and leverage the Compare and Deploy feature to create, deploy, and manage application deployment packages across environments. You’ll learn how Appian automatically checks for missing objects in your deployment package. You’ll also learn how to interpret and proceed with different statuses for objects that have been previously deployed to your target environment. Lastly, you’ll see how to deploy both database scripts and import customization files alongside your application deployment package.

You can complete this course as part of our Appian Developer learning path or enroll in the course directly.

Kara Peeler, Manager, Training Development

As we all know, data is a huge part of every application. Knowing how to work with relational databases is essential to learning how to use the Appian platform to create scalable, enterprise-worthy applications. We want to help kickstart your knowledge by introducing you to key database terms and concepts that will help you build powerful applications.

Let's hone your database knowledge and skills with Appian's new Database Design Basics course. This course teaches you what a database is and how to use it. You learn about database schema design, relationship types, and how to differentiate between a primary key and a foreign key. You'll also learn how to create entity relationship diagrams (ERDs).

If you’re unfamiliar with database concepts, we recommend taking the Database Design Basics course prior to going through the Appian Developer learning path.

Katie Ward, Instructional Systems Designer

With the release of Appian RPA, we've created a new learning path specifically for developing robotic processes (bots). The knowledge you gain from this learning path, combined with your Java skills, will enable you to build bots to automate your business processes.

In addition to the new Appian RPA content, we are also debuting a new learning medium: .pdf guides. These guides combine text instructions, screen captures, and code snippets to create an useful and comprehensive learning experience. I hope this approach helps you learn how to develop bots efficiently and effectively.

Check out the robotic process automation learning path at academy.appian.com, and please answer the survey at the end. We love your feedback!

Katie Ward, Instructional Systems Designer

Great business applications should be more than just functional! That's the topic of our newest online training course: UX Design and Appian. In this course, you'll learn why UX design is so valuable to your application, how to plan and get feedback on your interface designs, and learn best practices for working with interface layouts and components.

Throughout this course, we'll showcase different designs and interface patterns to expand your knowledge of what's possible in Appian. Click here to get started!

Kara Peeler, Manager, Training Development

Come visit us on Academy Online to engage in your new learning experience. While you're there, check out our welcome video for information about new features, start learning with one of the learning paths, or enroll in the new UX design course.

The new learning system is a fresh, modern portal to everything you need to learn Appian. The new navigation, search, and filtering capabilities make it easier than ever to locate the content you want – when you want it. We also have more quizzes and revamped skills practices to help you gauge your learning and practice your newly acquired skills.

We're excited to roll out this new experience! Email us with any comments or questions: academyonline@appian.com.

Kara Peeler, Manager, Training Development

Have you ever wondered what it takes to improve your application development life cycle? DevOps is the answer! Appian provides a complete DevOps journey that will help you streamline processes, facilitate more efficient best practices, and much more. DevOps with Appian is a new set of documentation that will explain what DevOps is and what benefits you gain from it. Start learning about DevOps today and see for yourself the dramatic improvements in your development life cycle.

Debby Chang, Information Developer II

The new Grid Tutorial walks you through building a grid. Even though this tutorial teaches you all the major elements of the new grid, it still only takes about 15 minutes to complete because of how easy the new grid is.

We also have a new page that explains everything you need to know about Configuring the Read-Only Grid.

Mischa DeNola, Manager, Information Development

From any interface component page, you can find a new section, Related Patterns. Rather than just a handful of links to select patterns, this section displays all relevant patterns that use the component, letting you quickly find the right example to get you going. Check it out on the new Read-Only Grid Component page.

Mischa DeNola, Manager, Information Development

Excited about the new local variable and refresh variable functions? We've got you covered with a lot of new content, and updated examples, so you can start using them right away.

There are two new reference pages for each function that cover the details.

To take advantage of these new functions, learn how to quickly adapt your existing usage from Updating Expressions to Use Local Variables to learn how you can quickly adapt.

New examples for refreshing variables:

Alison Cowley, Senior Product Manager II

Working with data in Appian often starts with creating Custom Data Types (CDTs). This new page will help you understand how CDT relationships work and what factors to consider when designing your CDTs for your Appian application.

Debby Chang, Information Developer II

Many of you have come to rely on the UX Design Guide for best practice suggestions when using specific interface components and layouts. While knowing the rules for choosing button styles or label positions is helpful, the greatest opportunities for improving usability come from looking at the flow of your entire app. How will users complete their tasks from beginning to end? When someone first lands on a given page, how will they make sense of how content is organized? Making visually-appealing UIs is an understandable goal, but the best way to take full advantage of the value Appian provides is ensuring the users of your apps can easily and efficiently do their work.

To help you think about ways to make your users more effective, we've published a new Design Guide topic: Presenting Information Clearly. This page covers the basics of information architecture while showing examples of common do's and don'ts.

Charles Tsui, Director, User Experience

New this month is a tutorial on building a record! Watch the videos, follow along with the written instructions, or do both as you build a record. At the end of the tutorial, you’ll have a fully configured List View and Summary View.

Follow the directions in the tutorial to download the Getting Started application and sample data, or request a free trial site, which comes pre-loaded with the Getting Started app and sample data. Try it out!

Katie Ward, Instructional Systems Designer

To coincide with the new year, we’re introducing a new course on Academy Online: Appian Essentials! In this course, you’ll get an introduction to Appian and see how companies are using Appian to revolutionize their business practices. You’ll answer common questions such as How does Appian display data? and How is work completed in Appian? as well as participate in fun activities designed to enhance your learning!

Katie Ward, Instructional Systems Designer
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