[September 05, 2000] MTML.org is an organization "dedicated to accelerating marine trading via the Internet." The MTML.org website contains resources promoting the understanding and adoption of the MTML e-commerce standard. Drawing upon the International Marine Purchasing Association's (IMPA) Electronic Trading Standard Format (ETSF) EDIFACT messaging structure and the Extensible Markup Language (XML), [MTML.org has developed a program to] establish and promote a standard that will allow the broadest set of participants to electronically conduct marine trading via the Internet."
The Marine Trading Markup Language (MTML), formalized in the MTML Document Type Definition, "is a standard to help a broad base of small, medium and large buyers and suppliers in the marine trading industry conduct their fundamental trading transactions electronically via the Internet."
Why Use MTML? "MTML is compatible with the International Marine Purchasing Association's (IMPA) Electronic Trading Standard Format (ETSF) which was based on the UN/EDIFACT standard for electronic data interchange and has been specifically designed for electronic exchange of purchasing information in the marine industry. Like IMPA ETSF, MTML is comprehensive and complete, and tailored to address trading issues unique to the maritime industry. Ten alternative XML standards efforts were reviewed prior to the decision to go with an IMPA ETSF foundation. It is patently clear that, even in the more general standards efforts, no one has as yet done the hard, cross-industry work to create standards that will really support many industries. None of the reviewed standards addressed the breadth of transactions needed to fully support the marine trading process as business is conducted today. One effort, ebXML, is in it early stages, but promises to offer the greatest industry acceptance and consistency of approach with IMPA ETSF, since it is jointly sponsored by UN/CEFACT and OASIS. As an alternative, cross-industry XML standard emerges over the next few years, we will certainly move to replace MTML with that standard. While maximizing the advantages of its XML foundation, the content and format of MTML messages has been kept as close as possible to IMPA ETSF. Those companies already utilizing IMPA ETSF should find that adding support for MTML requires minimal rework to existing software packages. Marine shipping companies and their suppliers can utilize MTML right now to produce and accept requisitions, requests for quotes, quotations, orders and related interchanges using simple interfaces to their business systems."
MTML DTD. 'Document Type Definition for MTML specification'. "The Document Type Definition, or DTD, for an XML document defines the structure of the document: required fields, optional data entries, the root level, etc. The DTD allows an XML document to be validated using one of many available XML validation tools, cutting down on errors in data exchange and easing implementation. The MTML DTD is freely available here, and more detailed information and documentation for MTML can be found in the Members section..." [cache]
Sample - RFQ document in 'traditional' and MTML formats