XCI ('Extensible Markup Language Court Interface' or 'XML Court Interface') is a new initiative which "will allow attorney software provided by vendors or law offices to 'plug in' to a court's electronic filing system." This initiative has been developed through The U. S. District Court, District of New Mexico, with support from The U. S. Bankruptcy Court in New Mexico and New Mexico State Courts. Broadly speaking, it is a technical initiative "designed to facilitate court, law office, attorney, and vendor participation and to substantially increase the volume of electronic filings." In this design, "Messages to and from the court will be in XML (Extensible Markup Language) format. Messages going to the court will be called 'request' messages and messages from the court will be called 'response' messages. These messages will be wrapped in an 'envelope' for delivery, also in XML format. The envelope contains the message which specifies either a request or a response. The envelope is used to authenticate that the message is from a filing attorney (or other submitting authority) that is recognized by the court and doesn't become a permanent part of a filing. The response will also be enclosed in an envelope signed by the court." See the documentation and a press release.
XCI is also "based on New Mexico's current electronic filing system Advanced Court Engineering (ACE) which utilizes Internet web browsers. It requires the electronically submitted document, authentication, security, and minimum identifying information so the document can be indexed and published immediately on the Internet. A good example of a highly successful standard interface is the one used by Internet web browsers (hypertext transport protocol) to unlock global access to information."
US District Court, District of New Mexico. W3C XML-DSig '99 Position Paper. By Richard Himes [firstname.lastname@example.org] "The US District Court, District of New Mexico was perhaps the first court directly connected to the Internet, and our initial pilot demonstrated the feasibility of secure Internet electronic filing in 1994. It included a firewall, digital signatures, and encryption. We have had live electronic filing since 1997. We are currently working on a pilot (XCI - XML Court Interface) to define an XML protocol for delivering filings securely over the Internet, as well as other exchanges of court and attorney information. Digital signatures will be required for authentication of attorneys and delivery agents. In addition, as a member of the XML for legal documents discussion group Leg-XML hosted by GSU, I have been tasked with recommending a method for XML digital signatures. . ."