ebXML Moves Forward on Defining Global Electronic Business Infrastructure
Brussels, Belgium; 15 May 2000- Significant progress
in standardizing a global XML electronic business infrastructure
was unveiled at the latest ebXML meeting in Europe last week
hosted by CEN/ISSS. Under the guidance of UN/CEFACT and OASIS,
electronic business experts representing standards organizations,
industry consortia and companies from around the world gathered
in Brussels for a working meeting that marked the six-month
point in the initiative's 18-month charter. Highlights of
the meeting included the approval of the ebXML Requirements
Specification and a proof-of-concept demonstration for the
routing and enveloping of ebXML messages.
"We are very pleased with the ebXML progress to date," said
Klaus-Dieter Naujok, Chair of ebXML and Member of the UN/CEFACT
Steering Committee. "The roadmap to achieving interoperability
and integration of business services has been defined. We
are making great strides toward accomplishing our objectives
through the approval of specifications and delivery of prototypes."
In an open plenary at the conclusion of the Europe meeting,
participants approved the ebXML Requirements Specification
defining the full scope of the initiative. Prior to the vote,
the Specification had been available 60 days for public review.
"The Requirements Specification will serve as the foundation
for the Initiative, setting the scope for the other ebXML
project teams as they develop the technical specifications
for the ebXML framework," explained Michael C. Rawlins, Leader
of the ebXML Requirements Team.
The ebXML Transport, Routing and Packaging Project Team successfully
demonstrated a proof-of-concept in which sample OpenTravel
Alliance (OTA) business messages were exchanged between a
small company and a large enterprise. The messaging prototype
implemented the draft ebXML specification for exchange of
business documents between trading partners using the everyday
Internet Web and e-mail protocols, HTTP and SMTP. The demonstration
also integrated output from the ebXML Business Process and
Registry and Repository Project Teams.
"ebXML is not technology for technology's sake. Our motivation
is to provide genuine business solutions that enable global
trade," said Rik Drummond, leader of the ebXML Transport,
Routing and Packaging Project Team. "We are very aware of
the time-critical nature of our objectives. We're producing
drafts, prototyping and integrating work from other ebXML
project teams now so that we can give businesses the solutions
they need as soon as possible."
"Support for the ebXML effort continues to grow at a tremendous
rate. Representatives from virtually all the leading industry
standards organizations actively participate in ebXML, and
we are coordinating our development efforts with their work,"
noted Dr. Robert S. Sutor, Vice-Chair of ebXML and Chief Strategy
Officer of OASIS. "The meeting in Brussels attracted almost
twice as many attendees as our previous gathering, with participants
from many European and global organizations."
Participation in ebXML remains open to all interested parties.
Current information on all the ebXML project teams is available
ebXML is an International
Initiative established by UN/CEFACT and OASIS in late 1999
with a mandate to undertake an 18-month program of work to
research and identify the technical basis upon which the global
implementation of XML (Extensible Markup Language) can be
standardized. The goal of ebXML is to facilitate open trade
between organizations regardless of size by enabling XML to
be used in a consistent manner to exchange electronic business
the United Nations body whose mandate covers worldwide policy
and technical development in the area of trade facilitation
and electronic business. Headquartered in Geneva, it has developed
and promoted many tools for the facilitation of global business
processes including UN/EDIFACT, the international EDI standard.
Its current work programme includes such topics as Simpl-edi
and Object Oriented EDI and it strongly supports the development
and implementation of open, interoperable global standards
and specifications for electronic business.
OASIS is a
non-profit, international consortium dedicated solely to product-independent
data and content interchange. Focusing on product interoperability,
OASIS embraces the complete spectrum of structured information
standards including XML, SGML and CGM. OASIS sponsors include
Adobe Systems, Aerospatiale, AND-USA, Arbortext, BEA Systems,
Bentley Systems, Boeing, Bowstreet, Bridge, Chrystal Software,
Cohesia, Commerce One, CommerceNet, CompTIA, Corel, DataChannel,
DMSi, Documentum, Dun & Bradstreet, eCredit.com, Enigma,
eXcelon, Extricity Software, GCA, Health Level Seven, IBM,
InformIT, Informix, InterCAP, Interleaf, Interwoven, ISOGEN,
ITEDO, JetForm, Keyfile, Logistics Management Institute, Mercator
Software, Microsoft, NextPage, NII Enterprise Promotion Association,
Nimble.com, NIST, Object Management Group (OMG), Open Applications
Group, Pick Systems, POET Software, ProNet Technology Partners,
Reed Technology, Reuters, Sabre, SAP, Sequoia Software, SoftQuad,
Software AG, STEP, StreamServe, Sun Microsystems, Synthbank,
Visa, Wavo, Webb Interactive Services, webMethods, Whitehill
Technologies, Xerox, XMLSolutions and XyEnterprise.
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