"In response to the growing use of the eXtensible Markup Language (XML) and proliferation of independent XML-based eCommerce protocols, CommerceNet is chartering the eCo Framework Project and Working Group. The eCo Framework Project is chartered by CommerceNet with sponsorship by Veo Systems Inc. and other companies to be added. The goal of the project is to develop a common framework for interoperability among XML-based application standards and key electronic commerce environments. The project's working group will develop a specification for content names and definitions in electronic commerce documents, and an interoperable transaction framework specification."
"The eCo Framework Working Group is chartered to define a common framework from an ever-growing complement of electronic commerce related specifications, including Catalog Information Specification, Channel Definition Format (CDF), Common Business Library (CBL), Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), Internet Content Exchange (ICE), Open Buying on the Internet (OBI), Open Financial Exchange (OFX), Open Trading Protocol (OTP), and XML. The working group, modelled after the successful Davenport and XML working groups, includes industry experts from Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Intel, Sun Microsystems, RosettaNet, and Veo Systems."
[October 12, 1999] CommerceNet announced the release of the eCo Interoperability Framework Specification, "which builds a bridge between disparate, proprietary electronic commerce solutions." See the main reference page.
[June 08, 1999] "Commerce Framework Nears Reality." By Whit Andrews. In Internet World (June 07, 1999). "An XML specification intended to connect a variety of commerce standards into a single framework is scheduled for release within CommerceNet by the end of the month. . . Much of the original eCo charter has been taken up by others, leaving eCo, now a CommerceNet project, with the task of linking disparate programs that have overlapping aims. An alphabet soup of programs, including Open Buying on the Internet (OBI), BizTalk, and Internet Content Exchange (ICE), are intended to be included in this new network. Many of the programs are still several stages from completion, but work on eCo is intended to bring an initial public release by fall. 'Time and time again, when we turn to one of those efforts or another, they seem to be stuck in something,' said Murray Maloney, current chair of the eCo project. He noted his sympathy for the hurdles the standards face in addressing complex issues in a savagely competitive marketplace. 'What I did was say, 'We can't wait for all these people-we need to put a stake in the ground and go with it.'' ECo is now intended to provide a language through which other standards can communicate their essential information to one another. Using eCo as a cross-marketplace Esperanto, for example, would allow an OBI-compliant invoice to convey a shipping address to an EDI-based legacy system. The idea is not to execute an information transfer by matching data field-for-field, but by telling a software partner what will follow and then delivering it."