SAN FRANCISCO, CALIF --
August 17, 1998 -- UWI.Com, a leader in the
emerging category of Internet forms, today unveiled Extensible Forms
Description Language (XFDL), the first open, XML-based protocol for
creating, viewing, and filling complex business forms on the Internet.
XFDL was authored by UWI.Com and Tim Bray, co-editor of the XML
specification. XFDL will facilitate the broad interchange of
forms-based data through the body of tools developed in support of the
Because XFDL is based on the public XML standard that was approved by
World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), users of XFDL forms are not locked
into a proprietary vendor format. UWI.Com, an emphatic supporter of open
standards, is a member of the W3C and actively supports the standards
process. A beta version of UWI.Com's InternetForms Viewer, available in
September 1998, will be the first software to incorporate the XFDL open
Benefits of XFDL
XFDL was developed because auditable business forms cannot be
represented with HTML. Forms are made up of questions (form template)
and answers (input data). Without the questions, the answers are
meaningless. Because HTML forms only transmit and store the answers,
HTML forms cannot be part of a reliable audit trail. However, XFDL
provides full non-repudiation and auditability by storing the form
template, data, and internal logic in a single file that can be
digitally signed. XFDL also offers built-in logic, calculations, type
checking, enclosures, and online help.
"XFDL is an elegant application of XML," says Tim Bray. "UWI.Com
provides proven forms technology with a first-rate suite of accompanying
software. XFDL opens up this technology, providing a vehicle for
interoperation among forms processing applications on the Web. The fact
that XML is web-optimized and fully internationalized makes it the
natural interchange vehicle for this class of operation."
Developers looking for a web-based forms solution can now leverage their
XML development experience and create applications that will extract
information from XFDL forms, streamlining the integration of web-based
forms across the enterprise.
XML is a simple, flexible dialect of SGML (Standard Generalized Markup
Language), a standard for representing data that is also the parent
language of HTML. XML was developed by the W3C, not to improve
upon or replace HTML, but to create a new paradigm for organizing,
finding, and exchanging information on the web.
"For many, XML's unique role is to provide a superset of HTML
functionality for Web-page markup, but its key contribution will be to
serve as the 'Esperanto' of information sharing and interchange, and the
brunt of its Web-impact will be on restructuring the economics of
Web-based transactions," according to an April 1998 report by Rita Knox,
Vice President and Research Director at GartnerGroup.
About UWI.Com's InternetForms System
UWI.Com's InternetForms System will be the first software package to
implement the open XFDL protocol. The InternetForms System allows
organizations to move their business forms to the Internet, saving them
time and money by eliminating expensive paper-based steps such as
pre-printing and warehousing. Industry experts estimate that forms
account for over 80% of all business documents. Moreover, it costs
organizations $120 billion every year to process paper forms-a cost that
can be reduced significantly with InternetForms.
About UWI.Com (www.uwi.com)
UWI.Com is a pioneer and leader in the Internet forms software
industry. Unlike many publishers, UWI.Com bases their business forms
solution on an open standard that is freely available to the public.
Global 2000 and public sector clients, including the U.S. Department of
Defense, have deployed InternetForms. UWI.Com's partners include such
companies as VeriSign, Datakey, Action Technologies, and Intelligent
Environments. Interested parties may learn more about UWI.Com and its
products through the company's website at
http://www.uwi.com or by
About Tim Bray
Tim Bray is a Canadian. He graduated from the University of Guelph in
1981, and after on-the-job training from Digital and GTE, he became
manager of the New Oxford English Dictionary Project at the University
of Waterloo in 1986. He co-founded Open Text Corporation (NASDAQ:
OTEXF) in 1989, and started an independent consulting practice under the
name Textuality in 1996. He is a Seybold Fellow, Technical Editor of
XML.com, and co-editor of the World Wide Web Consortium's Extensible
Markup Language Specification.
NOTE: Trademarks: UWI.Com, The Internet Forms Company, and InternetForms
System are trademarks of UWI Unisoft Wares Inc. All other products named
herein are trademarks of their respective manufacturers.
We will be posting the XFDL specification at this location, early in the
week of August 24. 1998.
Find out more about XFDL and UWI.Com
online tour of UWI.Com's
InternetForms System software.
auditablity and non-repudiation important for web-based business forms?
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