OASIS and NIST Take the Lead in XML Conformance

Boston, MA USA; June 19, 2000- The OASIS Interoperability and Conformance Technical Committee, led by representatives from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), today announced the expansion of their ongoing XML conformance work. The widely used OASIS/NIST XML Conformance Test Suite is now being modified to reflect the W3C errata to the XML 1.0 Recommendation and is being extended to include an additional 1,000 tests contributed by IBM. The Consortium also revealed that a test suite for DOM Java is soon to be released and that work is underway to produce test suites for XML Schema, XSLT, XPath and DOM/SAX. An ECMAScript DOM 1.0 test suite released by NIST as well as NIST-developed Java DOM tests and Sun-developed Java and SAX tests will form the basis for the OASIS DOM/SAX test suite.

OASIS and NIST bring two important attributes to the XML conformance work. They are both vendor-neutral organizations, separate from the development of the core XML family of standards such as XML, XSL, DOM, XML-Schema and others. "OASIS and NIST provide unbiased test suites, uninfluenced by any one product or company," explained Norbert Mikula (DataChannel), chief technical officer of OASIS "Additionally, by being separate from the development process, we bring a fresh, independent perspective on what the XML recommendation says."

"In building test suites, we are in a position to identify errors or ambiguities in the specification and communicate them back to the standards developers. In turn, the developers provide us with insight on which areas to test, as well as how to choose the test input or parameter values," agreed Lynne Rosenthal, Manager within the Software Diagnostic and Conformance Testing Division at NIST. "Additionally, test suites help software developers identify and correct errors in their software implementations."

The primary goal of OASIS is interoperability. "Our conformance test suites provide a way to increase the likelihood that software products claiming to adhere to XML are implemented correctly. Correct implementation and utilization of the standard leads to portability and interoperability. Without compliant implementations, products from different vendors may not interoperate," added Mikula.

Test suites can be expensive and time-consuming to develop. Working in partnership within the OASIS community, the Consortium leverages the work of many contributors to produce a timely product.

"The OASIS XML conformance work is greatly enhanced by the leadership of NIST," noted Laura Walker, executive director of OASIS. "NIST's mission is standards and testing. Their many years of experience in providing quality, comprehensive conformance test suites are a tremendous asset to OASIS."

About NIST

The National Institute of Standards and Technology is an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce's Technology Administration. Established in 1901, NIST strengthens the U.S. economy and improves the quality of life by working with industry to develop and apply technology, measurements, and standards. It carries out this mission through a portfolio of four major programs: Measurements and Standards Laboratories, Advanced Technology Program, Manufacturing Extension Partnership, and Baldrige National Quality Award.

About OASIS

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

For more information:

Carol Geyer
Media Relations Consultant
OASIS
+1 978.667.5115 x209
carol.geyer@oasis-open.org