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Last modified: June 25, 2008
XML Daily Newslink. Wednesday, 25 June 2008

A Cover Pages Publication
Provided by OASIS and Sponsor Members
Edited by Robin Cover

This issue of XML Daily Newslink is sponsored by:
IBM Corporation

Geography Markup Language (GML) Revision: OGC Invites Public Comment
Staff, Open Geospatial Consortium Announcement

The Open Geospatial Consortium, Inc. (OGC) is inviting the public to offer change requests for consideration by the OGC Technical Committee on a revision of the OpenGIS Geography Markup Language (GML) Encoding Standard. GML defines a data encoding in XML for geographic data and a grammar to express models of such data using XML Schema. GML has come into wide use since it was first adopted as an OGC standard in 2002. Implementations typically specify GML application schemas. GML is consistent with the OGC's entire open geospatial standards platform. GML is the standard that enables information communities and other standards organizations such as the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) and OASIS to insert geospatial components into their standards and be confident that their standards will be compatible with mainstream information infrastructure methods of conveying spatial/temporal information. The current version of GML was approved last year and is also published as ISO 19136:2007 by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). The OGC Technical Committee is reviewing the need for changes in the standard and wants to receive suggestions from the wider community. Change requests should be submitted to OGC by September 19, 2008.

See also: Geography Markup Language (GML) references

IETF Update: vCard Format Specification
Simon Perreault and Peter W. Resnick (eds), IETF Internet Draft

A June 25, 2008 release of the "vCard Format Specification" -02 revised Internet Draft defines the vCard data format for representing and exchanging a variety of information about an individual (e.g., formatted and structured name and delivery addresses, email address, multiple telephone numbers, photograph, logo, audio clips, etc.). This Standards Track RFC, if approved, will update IETF RFC 2739 and obsolete RFCs 2425, 2426, 4770. Background: "Electronic address books have become ubiquitous. Their increased presense on portable, connected devices as well as the diversity of platforms exchanging contact data call for a standard. This memo defines the vCard format, which allows the capture and exchange of information normally stored within an address book or directory application. The text/vcard media type is intended to identify vCard data of any version. Applications that use this media type are numerous, diverse, and include mail user agents, instant messaging clients, address book applications, directory servers, customer relationship management software, etc. Section 12.1 ('Registering New vCard Elements') defines the process for registering new or modified vCard elements (i.e. properties, parameters, value data types, and values) with IANA. Registration of new vCard elements MUST be reviewed by the designated expert and published in an RFC. A Standard Tracks RFC is REQUIRED for the regisration of new value data types that modify existing properties. A Standard Tracks RFC is also REQUIRED for registration of vCard elements that modify vCard elements previously documented in a Standard Tracks RFC. Note also one of the chartered Working Group goals (once the primary outputs are complete): the WG will consider creation of "an XML schema which is semantically identical to vCard in all ways and can be mechanically translated to and from vCard format without loss of data. While vCard has deployed successfully and will remain the preferred interchange format, a standard XML schema which preserves vCard semantics might make vCard data more accessible to XML-centric technologies such as AJAX and XSLT. Such a standard format would be preferable to multiple proprietary XML schemas, particularly if vCard semantics were lost by some of them and a lossy gateway problem resulted."

See also: the IETF vCard and CardDAV Working Group

oBIX is Alive and Kicking
Toby Considine, Chairman oBIX

The people who know oBIX best have been going out and doing things with oBIX. Many of these projects are large. [But] there are two types of reasons that you don't hear about oBIX. As in the long running ad by a chemical company, you don't buy oBIX; oBIX just makes the things you buy, better. oBIX is a small protocol among the many small protocols in the enterprise. oBIX enterprise-enables control systems. oBIX lets you build new kinds of applications. If you did buy oBIX, you bought it as part of an application. Here is a quick list of projects that I have some, even if often just a very little, knowledge of: (1) The Enterprise Building Management System (EBMS) at UNC operates more than 100 buildings with systems of all brands and technologies. All external interactions with buildings are by web services. Sixty-six of these buildings are operated by oBIX. An iLON-style controller with full oBIX support would attract strong consideration as our preferred platform for future integration. (2) The Dubai Airport. Dubai has become known for leadership and innovation in construction and sustainability in capital projects... (3) Building systems in the Olympic Stadium, the Olympic Village, and all outdoor lighting in the Olympic District in Beijing are monitored and operated using oBIX. If I am informed correctly, this work was based upon a variant of the 0.7 draft of the specification. As stated above, these projects take years to complete, and decisions get locked in long before construction completion. (4) I hear some reports that the Olympic variant of oBIX is used for energy management of whole city districts of mixed use new buildings in Chinese cities. (5) Powernab's YouTility service is integrating in-house services, weather conditions, and solar monitoring for end-user... The new draft specification for Automated Demand-Response (OpenADR) is one of the more exciting new efforts that will drive oBIX applications. Lawrence Berkeley National Labs released OpenADR for public review this month and may emerge as a national standard for communications between buildings and the power grid. From conversations, I expect that there will be a quick convergence on standard oBIX contracts for interaction with OpenADR. With some effort, those contracts may well converge with the higher level Load Control objects proposed by BACnet.

See also: the OASIS Open Building Information Exchange (oBIX) TC

Liberty Alliance Releases Identity Assurance Framework
Staff, Liberty Alliance Announcement

Liberty has announced the first public release of the protocol independent Liberty Identity Assurance Framework (IAF). The IAF details four identity assurance levels to ease and speed the process of linking trusted identity-enabled enterprise, social networking and Web 2.0 applications together based on standardized business rules and security risks associated with each level of identity assurance. Liberty Alliance will launch an IAF identity assurance accreditation and certification program during 3Q 08. The IAF has been developed within the Liberty Alliance Identity Assurance Expert Group and corresponding public special interest group with input from members of the global financial services, government, healthcare, IT and telecommunications sectors. The policy-based framework removes the need for organizations to 'reinvent the wheel' each time they need to make trust decisions about the acceptance of identity credentials, which could span from SAML to X.509, when building and expanding identity systems. Organizations adopting the IAF immediately understand how to address the business and policy challenges involved in adding new members and services to federations based on standardized IAF criteria, helping to reduce the complexities and costs of advancing secure and privacy-respecting inter-federations across sectors and regions. The four identity assurance levels outlined in the Liberty Identity Assurance Framework are based on a comprehensive set of process and policy criteria organizations must meet to participate in IAF-based federations. The IAF details authentication requirements to allow federation operators and federating organizations to address cross-industry business, policy and privacy requirements related to applications and services built using any federation protocol and falling into each identity assurance level.

See also: Phil Hunt's blog

ESB Interoperability Standards
Thomas Freund and Peter Niblett, IBM Architecture Document

Thousands of Enterprises worldwide have adopted the principles of Service Oriented Architecture (SOA). SOA provides an architectural approach that brings the flexibility and agility required by today's global business environment. An Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) is a vital ingredient of SOA that facilitates the interaction of business services by mediating the message exchanges between them. ESB infrastructure products are available from a number of software vendors, but there is a lack of consistency between them when it comes to standards support. This has led a number of ESB customers to ask for an industry-wide agreed list of standards supported by an ESB. This Whitepaper documents the essential standards requirements for an ESB, using a scenario-based approach... ESBs extend the capabilities of SOA and advance the realization of SOA. Mediations can be employed to facilitate interactions between mismatched service requesters and providers. The ESB also provides a common model for accessing, managing and administering system-wide services. Today's fast-paced business world demands the ability to change and adapt rapidly. With an Enterprise Service Bus, you can connect your business applications and processes quickly and easily as you respond to business challenges and opportunities when they arise. By adopting a standards-based approach leveraging Web services a customer has the assurance of the flexibility and the interoperability that such a strategy provides.

Microsoft Open XML Converter Arrives for Mac
David Nagel, Application Development Trends

Microsoft has released Open XML File Format Converter for Mac 1.0, a file translator that allows users to open, edit, and convert Open XML files created in Office 2008 for Mac or Office 2007 for Windows for use in earlier versions of the suite, including Office 2004 11.4 and Office v. X 10.1.9 or later. In addition to text documents, the converter also supports Excel workbooks and PowerPoint presentations saved in Open XML format. In Office 2004 11.4, the converter runs in the background; otherwise it operates as a standalone application. It can also be used to batch convert multiple Open XML documents. A couple caveats about the converter: According to a notice on the application's splash screen, "Some Open XML files contain content that was created using features that are not available in older versions of Office. After conversion, this content might look different from the original version, and you might not be able to edit it." The converter arrives a bit late to the show, joining several other Mac applications that support the format natively. For example, Apple's free bare-bones word processing application, TextEdit 1.5, can natively open and convert between Microsoft Word Open XML (.docx) files, ODF, RTF, HTML and other formats. And the free and open source NeoOffice for Mac can also open, edit, and convert .docx files. Open XML File Format Converter for Mac 1.0 is a 45 MB download and takes up 182 MB on disk. From the Microsoft web site: "Open XML Converter allows you to convert Open XML files that were created in Office 2008 for Mac or Office 2007 for Windows so that you can open, edit, and save them in earlier versions of Office for Mac. Open XML Converter can convert Word documents, Excel workbooks, and PowerPoint presentations that are in the Open XML Format so that you can open and edit the files in Office 2004 for Mac and Office v. X for Mac. You can choose to convert and open one file, or convert a large number of files."

See also: MacWorld

Eclipse Delivers Annual Release
Staff, DDJ

The Eclipse Foundation has announced availability of its Ganymede Release, the annual release train developed by the Eclipse community. The Ganymede Release is a coordinated release of 23 different Eclipse project teams that represents over 18 million lines of code. New Ecore tools provide developers with a graphical environment for creating, editing and maintaining EMF Ecore models. Enhanced Resource APIs in EMF have been added to fully support REST, including support for the full CRUD life cycle... A new JavaScript IDE, called JSDT, provides the same level of support for JavaScript as the JDT provides for Java. Some of the new features include code completion, quick fix, formatting and validation... Dali Java Persistence Tools has an expanded UI including a new Persistence.xml editor, new Entity and XML Mapping File wizards and JPA specific contributions to the Project Explorer. Dali has also improved configuration and validation with support for mapping with annotations, XML, or with a combination of annotations and XML. The WTP JSF Tools Project has added features to improve web application development productivity. The release provides visual editing support for Apache MyFaces Trinidad components and enables support for future JSF 2.0 (JSR-314) enhancements such as Facelets... Support for SOA: (1) The new SCA Designer provides a graphical interface for developers who wish to create composite applications using the SCA 1.0 standard. (2) The Policy Editor is a collection of editors and validators that makes it easy for developers to construct and manipulate XML expressions that conform to the WS-Policy W3C standard. (3) The BPMN Editor continues to go from strength to strength and is now a mature and reliable framework that allows consumers to construct and extend the BPMN 1.1 standard notation to illustrate business processes.

Interworking Between the Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) and the Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP): One-to-One Text Chat
Peter Saint-Andre, Eddy Gavita, et al. (eds), IETF Internet Draft

This informational document defines a bi-directional protocol mapping for the exchange of instant messages in the context of a one-to-one chat session between a user of the Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) and a user of the Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP). Specifically for SIP text chat, this document specifies a mapping to the Message Session Relay Protocol (MSRP)... Both the Session Initiation Protocol and the Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP) can be used for the purpose of one-to-one text chat over the Internet. To ensure interworking between these technologies, it is important to define bi-directional protocol mappings. The architectural assumptions underlying such protocol mappings are provided in "Interworking between the Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) and the Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP): Core", including mapping of addresses and error conditions. Mappings for single instant messages (sometimes called "pager-mode" messaging) are provided in "Interworking between the Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) and the Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP): Instant Messaging". This document specifies mappings for one-to-one text chat sessions (sometimes called "session-mode" messaging); in particular, this document specifies mappings between XMPP and the Message Session Relay Protocol (MSRP). Mapping of multi-user text chat (sometimes called "groupchat") is out of scope for this document. Both XMPP and SIP/SIMPLE technologies enable end users to send "instant messages" to other end users. The term "instant message" usually refers to messages sent between two end-users for delivery in close to real time (rather than messages that are stored and forwarded to the intended recipient upon request). Generally, there are three kinds of instant messages: [1] Single messages, which are sent from the sender to the recipient outside the context of any one-to-one chat session or multi-user text conference. The message is immediately delivered and not stored in an inbox. [2] One-to-one chat messages, which are sent from the sender to the recipient (i.e., one-to-one) in the context of a "chat session" between the two entities. [3] Groupchat messages, which are sent from a sender to multiple recipients (i.e., 2 or more) in the context of a "multi-user chat session", "text conference", or "chatroom"... This document covers only scenario #2 above for converting XMPP messages of type "chat" to and from their corresponding SIP INVITE and MSRP message types on the SIP/SIMPLE side.

See also: the IETF Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) WG Status Pages

Hospital Implements High-Tech Emergency Response System
Marianne Kolbasuk McGee, InformationWeek

GPS-enabled cell phones and other mobile location-tracking technologies used for Enhanced 911 capabilities are helping emergency response workers find people in trouble. The deployment of a geographic information system and mobile applications in southern California is enabling emergency response personnel to more quickly and efficiently deploy rescue teams based on near real-time data about traffic conditions, the location of nearby ambulances and helicopters, and other factors, such as bed availability at area hospitals. And soon, field personnel will be able to use mobile devices, including cell phones and laptop computers, to securely send rescue teams additional information—such as on-the-fly map drawings showing where a triage area has been set up in a crisis—so that other mobile emergency workers know exactly where to go. The Advanced Emergency Geographical Information Systems (AEGIS) at Loma Linda University Medical Center in Loma Linda, Calif. is a Web-based hospital situational awareness system that monitors and maps the location and status of emergency resources, including area hospitals, ambulances, and rescue helicopters... AEGIS uses location-based technologies, including automatic vehicle location, which is a set of capabilities consisting of GPS mounted on vehicles like ambulances, fire trucks, police cars, and helicopters, said Anak Agung, ESRI senior consultant. The vehicles transmit their data through "wired or wireless, cell phone network, direct satellite communication, Wi-Fi, and a Web service that processes the location data transmitted by vehicles, and serves the locational data to other users," including ArcGIS Mobile users, he said. ArcGIS Mobile, a part of ESRI's ArcGIS server, is the GIS technology that enables mobile users working on laptop, tablet PC, PDA, and mobile phone to be connected with enterprise GIS...


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