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The Interaction service allows users to interact with a running workflow using pages shown in a HTML5-compliant web browser.

Within the workflow, when an interaction service is called, Taverna will show the interaction in the web browser.


The interaction service was developed within the BioVeL project.

The interaction service relies on:


The Interaction service is available as an official plugin to Taverna 2.4. You do not need to add a new plugin site.

All the Taverna 2.4.1 updates must be installed

In some versions of Linux it is necessary to install the libgnome2-0 package. It may also be necessary to correct the binding for opening a browser - see the top answer from xjmx on stackoverflow


Starting Taverna with installed Interaction service

After installation of the interaction service, when you start Taverna, you may see a warning such as:

This is because Taverna (by default) publishes the web pages used for interaction internally. If you do not allow connections, then the interactions will not work.

If you change the Taverna interaction preferences to publish the interactions externally, then this dialog will not appear.

Standard interaction services

When the Interaction plugin has been installed, a set of services will appear in the service panel.

Standard interaction services may be included in a workflow, where they work in a similar way to the Local services

Template interaction services

You can include interactions based upon an HTML page in a workflow by Insert -> Interaction

The configuration of the template has three tabs:

HTML selection

Inside the HTML field, you should enter the URL of the HTML page where the interaction is defined.

Normally, the Taverna engine will wait until an interaction has finished. If you tick the Progress notification check box then the interaction will be shown but the workflow run will continue without waiting.

It does not make sense for a progress notification to have output ports

Input ports

The Input ports tab shows the input ports for the interaction service i.e. the data that calls to the interaction can accept.

Normally the value of the data is sent to the interaction. However, if the Publish check box is ticked, then the data is published by Taverna and the URL to the data is sent to the HTML interaction page. This is useful for example where the data is normally referenced, such as an image, or where the data is large. The HTML interaction page is able to read the data at the URL.

Output ports

The Output ports tab shows the ports where data can be returned from the interaction.

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