Flow and rule based
Chioro is not trying to be another PIM system. It is more related to ETL systems (Extract-Transform-Load) . Chioro is not primarily designed to manually edit data and it does not store product data.
Ok, that’s not entirely true: Chioro stores data temporarily so that it can be viewed, analyzed, and understood.
Chioro works like an instantaneous water heater for data: Just as cold water flows into the front of an instantaneous water heater and comes out the back heated, raw data flows into Chioro and comes out the back processed.
This processing is rule-based. This means: Once a rule has been defined (e.g. “remove all special characters” or “break down all colors in the COLOR property to the basic colors and store these in a new BASECOLOR property” or “merge the data records from source A with the data records from source B using the EAN”), Chioro applies it to all product data records in a catalog. Or only to those of a specific item group. And best of all: these rules are of course saved and can be applied again and again to data deliveries from the same source.
Even more: processing in Chioro is organized in so-called “flows”. A flow is a simple, visually editable data flow diagram. It consists of building blocks that we call Flow Operations: One or more data sources, some processing operations, and one or more data destinations. To create and test rules, these flow operations can be executed individually. In operational use, however, flows are usually executed as a whole: They read data, process it and store it somewhere. Just like a flow heater.
Flows can be started manually or via a web service call. But they can also be executed time-controlled in regular intervals or whenever new data is available (“Hot Folder”).
By the way: We are mostly talking about product data here. That’s what the work on Chioro was inspired by and that’s what it was built for. However, there is nothing to stop you from preparing any other data with Chioro.
Chioro is a tool that was born out of our 2o years of practical experience in eCommerce. From the experiences we made together with our eCommerce customers. This origin is reflected in many features, concepts and design decisions that are in Chioro. During the development of Chioro the question of practical use was and still is in the foreground - even and especially when this leads to unconventional approaches.
Unlike other tools dealing with product data, Chioro is agnostic as far as possible regarding format and content of the data. Of course, Chioro also requires documents in technically well-defined formats, of which it supports the most important ones out-of-the-box (CSV, BMECat, XLS, …). But it does not impose any preconditions on the content of the data. Is there a key? Is it really unique? How is a category assignment described? Chioro does not care about any of this. The motto is to import everything first, no matter how nonsensical it is. Because only if the data is in the system, you can tackle problems with Chioro’s powerful toolset.
Powerful & Accessible
With any software, as a developer you face the challenge of finding a good middle ground between simplicity and power. Chioro definitely needs to be powerful - a tool for power users that allows to solve even exotic problems. With Chioro we don’t want to prolong the series of tools that allow to draw pretty lines between attributes - and where that’s the end of it. Chioro is where it really starts. On the other hand, our target user is the product specialist - not an IT specialist. For this reason, Chioro has an accessible operating concept without supposedly simplifying things with largely pointless UI gimmicks. The user should be able to deal with the data and rules in an explorative and playful way: Understand, try, improve.
The whole thing already starts with the data import. Chioro applies some analyses in the background, which make it easier for the user to first understand the data. In addition to attribute-related analyses, the powerful Elasticsearch-based search also helps. However, both are not only available during import, but also in all further processing operations at any time.
Another feature aimed at explorative use is the preview available in for almost all operations. This concept, which is central to Chioro, allows the result of operations to be examined immediately in real time on the basis of a few freely selectable data sets. This makes it a breeze to improve product data step by step according to the trial-and-error method.
To use Chioro, it is not necessary to set up a large IT project. Just let us create a client and off you go. To try it out, data can simply be uploaded by drag’n drop and downloaded again at the end. Of course, deeper integration into existing processes is also possible. For this purpose, connections to numerous storage protocols and services are available (HTTP, FTP, SFTP, S3, …). In addition, data can be exchanged with Chioro via its REST interfaces.
Extensible & Adaptable
Chioro is not a rigid system. Rather, it is a living platform that can be easily extended in numerous places and in this way adapted to the customer’s needs. Do you need an exotic data format? Do you have a problem that cannot be solved with Chiro’s on-board tools? Talk to us, we are sure to find an appropriate solution. Some examples of possible extensions:
- Special and exotic data formats for import and export.
- Custom interfaces for data sources and data destinations
- Additional operations for flows (processing modules), also through integration of external services (e.g. automatic texting)
- Extension of the toolbox with customer-specific functions. With basic programming skills, you can also do this yourself via the Tools section.
- Deeper analyses