OASIS Members Launch Effort to Establish Common Identification Scheme for Distributed Directory Services

Advanced Micro Devices, DataPower, EDS, Novell, Neustar, NRI Pacific, OneName, Visa International, and Others Collaborate to Define Extensible Resource Identifier

Boston, MA, USA; 8 January 2003 -- Members of the OASIS standards body are collaborating to address a key challenge in distributed directory services and data sharing--establishing a common identification scheme that can be used across all domains, applications, and transport protocols. The OASIS Extensible Resource Identifier (XRI) Technical Committee will define a Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) scheme and a corresponding Uniform Resource (URN) namespace that meet these requirements, as well as basic mechanisms for resolving XRIs and exchanging data and metadata associated with XRI-identified resources.

"URIs are one of the three pillars of Web architecture, but most URI schemes were developed before the era of XML and Web services," said Bill Washburn, President and Managing Director of the XNS Public Trust Organization (XNSORG), which intends to contribute the Extensible Name Service (XNS) specifications to seed the work of the OASIS committee. "With its other initiatives related to XML, security, and directory services, we felt OASIS was the right forum to develop a URI syntax that meets the demands of identifying and sharing resources and data persistently across different organizations and applications."

Drummond Reed of OneName, co-chair of the OASIS XRI Technical Committee added, "XRI syntax will be fully federated, the way DNS and IP addressing are today, yet will still address the problem of how to identify the same logical resource stored in different physical locations--for example, the same file stored on different file servers, or the same invoice stored in different accounting systems." The syntax will allow for identifiers optimized for both human and machine readability, and will provide for internationalization in the same manner as XML.

Participation in the OASIS XRI Technical Committee remains open to all organizations and individuals. OASIS will host an open mail list for public comment, and completed work will be freely available to the public without licensing or other fees. Information on joining OASIS can be found on http://www.oasis-open.org/join.

Industry Support for XRI

"XML-based Web services continue to propagate at a rapid pace and this is escalating the demand to extend the WWW addressing and linking capabilities in order that applications can more easily locate necessary resources for their use," said Eugene Kuznetsov, founder, President and CTO at DataPower Technology Inc. "As a active member of OASIS, DataPower fully supports the Extensible Resource Identifier (XRI) Technical Committee and their work to define such a URI scheme and URN namespace to meet these requirements."

"Rationalizing the relationship between identity and directory services--whether in the context of users, applications, machines, or data--holds the key to eliminating many of the obstacles, such as adequate security, extensibility and effective management, that are hindering the adoption of Web services," said Winston Bumpus, director of standards for Novell. "In an effort to better integrate Web services and identity, Novell is pleased to be working with many of the industry's leading companies as part of the Extensible Resource Identifier Technical Committee within OASIS. Novell brings years of experience in directory services and secure identity management to the committee, and we look forward to creating a standard that will allow organizations to more easily and confidently adopt Web services."

About OASIS (http://www.oasis-open.org)

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, XML conformance, business transactions, electronic publishing, topic maps and interoperability within and between marketplaces. OASIS has more than 600 corporate and individual members in 100 countries around the world.

For more information:

Carol Geyer
Director of Communications
OASIS (www.oasis-open.org)
+1.978.667.5115 x209