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Subject: Two suggestions for core components

Hi y'all,

I am new to this list and group, so forgive me if I am
rehashing old ground.  (I did read the archives of
all the groups, though.)

I have two suggestions, one core component and
one reference source.

1. There is a core component hidden in the various
EDI documents that specify demands and supplies:
for example, all the various documents that specify
a purchase in different standards, industries and
circumstances.  I'm not talking about the Purchase
Order, but something smaller:  an atomic specification
of what is being demanded or supplied, e.g.
    Quality specs
It's more like a Line Item, but doesn't necessarily
need to be connected to an Order (lots of companies
have moved to a more efficient electronic flow than
the wired version of paper order and invoice documents).
In REA terms (see below) it's called a StockFlow.
I wrote about it in a paper entitled "Which Business Objects"
at http://jeffsutherland.org/oopsla98/haugen.html 

2. Reference source:  the REA model.
REA stands for Resources, Events and Agents.  It has 
been developed over a 20-year span by Professor William
McCarthy and colleagues of Michigan State University.

REA is a minimal model:  intended to be the smallest
number of moving parts that can model networks of
economic events.  It should be a good source for
reusable core components.

Here are some relevant links:
A collection of REA papers
Toward a Standard Internet Supply Chain System (short)
A Semantic Web for Internet Supply Chain Collaboration (longer)

Professor McCarthy and colleagues are currently
working on an official REA Ontology, first in 
UML form, later in XML and maybe KQML.

The Ontology paper is still a work-in-process,
but interested people can get a copy via email:

Thanks for your attention,
Bob Haugen

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