OASIS Members Collaborate on 'Dataweb' Standard for Exchange of Machine-Readable Information

Boston, MA, USA; 4 February 2004 -- Members of the international standards consortium, OASIS, have organized to create a standard for sharing, linking, and synchronizing data over the Internet and other networks using XML documents and Extensible Resource Identifiers (XRIs). XRI is a URI-compatible abstract identifier scheme also developed within OASIS. The new OASIS XRI Data Interchange (XDI) Technical Committee will enable implementers to automatically interchange XDI documents and to express controls over the authority, security, privacy, and rights of shared data as XDI links.

"The goal of XDI is to do for controlled data sharing what the Web did for open content sharing," explained Drummond Reed of Cordance, co-convenor of the OASIS XDI Technical Committee. "XDI does not displace any specialized XML vocabulary designed to support specific applications or Web services. Rather, it augments them by providing a standard, generalized way to identify, describe, exchange, link, and synchronize other XML documents encoded in any XML language or schema--tying them all into one global 'Dataweb.'"

"The formation of this technical committee represents an important step toward a shared vision for a more capable Internet," added Geoffrey Strongin of AMD, co-convenor of the OASIS XDI Technical Committee. "XDI will help solve fundamental problems associated with data sharing over the Internet by leveraging and building on the entire array of existing and emerging XML standards."

XDI will address interoperable, automated data interchange across distributed applications and trust domains. Examples of potential applications include:

  • Exchange, linking, and lifetime synchronization of electronic business cards, public keys, and other common identity attributes across distributed directories (dynamic address books);
  • Internet calendar sharing;
  • Trusted search (searches that need to cross multiple private websites);
  • Auto-configuration and intelligent data synchronization across multiple user devices (desktop, laptop, PDA, land phone, cell phone, etc.);
  • Automated website registration, form-fill, and e-commerce transactions; and
  • Cross-domain security and privacy management.

"By building on work created by the OASIS XRI Technical Committee, and with plans to establish liaison with other international efforts, XDI illustrates the synergy of standards development efforts that is taking place at OASIS," commented Karl Best, vice president of OASIS. "It's gratifying to observe technical work that progresses from the development of core foundational standards to the building of complementary standards that address specific market and functional needs."

OASIS XDI Technical Committee members include representatives of AMD, AmSoft Systems, Booz Allen Hamilton, Cordance, Epok, Neustar, NRI, and others. Participation remains open to all organizations and individuals; OASIS will host a mail list for public comment.

Industry Support for XDI

AmSoft Systems
"It is now well established that identity co-ordination is a pre-requisite to realization of Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA), and XRIs provide an elegant solution to resolving resource context across domain (application, system, or network) boundaries. XDI leverages the universal addressing capability of XRIs to provide a 'universal data model' for XML. Thus XDI enables an enterprise to realize Data as a Service, whether the context is Enterprise Application Integration or Business Activity Monitoring or migrating to SOA without having to throw away existing applications and legacy data. AmSoft believes XDI will become a fundamental building block of any SOA infrastructure by providing common data representation, description, and assertion format for all 'Dataweb' documents and services," said Ajay Madhok, Founder and CEO, AmSoft Systems.

Cordance
"XDI is the next step in building a trusted data interchange infrastructure using XRIs, which provide the first open standard for how to maintain a persistent, location-independent identity using either a human-friendly or machine-friendly identifier," said Vince Caluori, President and CEO, Cordance Corporation. "With XDI, identities represented by XRIs - people, businesses, devices, or applications - will be able to exchange, link, and synchronize data for the lifetime of a relationship while keeping control of the security and privacy of that data." Noting the importance of privacy protection for Internet data sharing, Mr. Caluori added, "XDI will be the first standards initiative to enable implementation of the International Security, Trust, and Privacy Alliance (ISTPA) Privacy Framework, with whom the OASIS XDI TC intends to establish a formal liaison."

Epok
"With the completion of the OASIS XRI 1.0 specification, the formation of the OASIS XDI TC is another major milestone towards standardization and the advancement of technologies for controlled data exchange, an area that Epok continues to pioneer. As the technology leader of XML-based identity services for large consumer federations, Epok plans to continue its role as a key contributor to the definition of a generalized XML data sharing service. Epok is rapidly bringing to market carrier-grade implementations of XRI technology to meet the crucial needs of identity security and ensure the privacy of shared data," said Adarbad Master, Epok CTO.

NeuStar
"As the leading provider of neutral third-party registry services for interconnecting networks, NeuStar supported the work of the OASIS XRI TC in defining an abstract, location-independent identifier scheme. The next step is for the OASIS XDI TC to define a domain-independent method for exchanging data and metadata associated with an XRI, which can benefit many communities and networks that require common, interoperable registry services for trusted data interchange. This work is crucial for the support of emerging agent-based services and builds on NeuStar's other initiatives in federated network identity and ENUM," said Mark Foster, Chief Technology Officer of NeuStar.

NRI
"Nomura Research Institute, Ltd. has contributed to standardizing the expression of digital identity by using XNS and XRI. By describing and defining digital resources that combine information such as data type, data property and individually acquired ID, XDI will capture data traceability and access security--regardless of whether the data is changed or deleted. NRI regards XDI as new technology that will secure data credibility and security in the forthcoming network era. We support open OASIS activities and plan to promote XDI implementations in Japan," said Masaki Tochizawa, Corporate Vice President, NRI.

About OASIS

OASIS (Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards) is a not-for-profit, global consortium that drives the development, convergence, and adoption of e-business standards. Members themselves set the OASIS technical agenda, using a lightweight, open process expressly designed to promote industry consensus and unite disparate efforts. OASIS produces worldwide standards for security, Web services, conformance, business transactions, electronic publishing, topic maps and interoperability within and between marketplaces. Founded in 1993, OASIS has more than 2,500 participants representing over 600 organizations and individual members in 100 countries. http://www.oasis-open.org

Additional information:

OASIS XDI Technical Committee
http://www.oasis-open.org/committees/xdi

XRI OASIS Committee Draft
http://www.oasis-open.org/committees/xri

Cover Pages Technology Report:
Data Sharing, Mediation, and Synchronization

Press contact:
Carol Geyer
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