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Subject: [ebxml-dev] What ebXML did right

Since we have seen a bunch of complaints about what
ebXML did wrong (some of which I share), I thought
maybe somebody should list some things ebXML
did correctly.  Here are a few.  Others could add
more.  Might be the basis for a positive article
in the end.

Note that each of these positives has a corresponding
negative.  No unmixed blessings, just like no free lunch.

1. Combined UN/CEFACT and OASIS (at least for 18 months).
    That meant (to oversimplify) combining UN/CEFACT's
    user-organization base with OASIS's software vendor base.

2. Opened the door to anybody who wanted to participate -
    no fees, no nothing.

3. Set an 18 month deadline.

4. Sketched out a reasonably comprehensive suite of
   * Architecture
   * Repository
   * Business Processes
     (basically the next generation of RosettaNet PIPs)
   * Catalog of Common Business Processes
   * Core Components
     (generalization of best practices from EDI and other
   * Collaboration Partner Agreements
     (based on IBM TPA)
   * Message handling
     (based on SOAP)

   In general, each spec made use of the best available
   predecessors.  There was very little "Not Invented Here".

5. Decreed that each spec should be able to be used
    both separately and in combination.

6. Set all these project groups working in parallel
    with some coordination bodies.

7. Set up some outstanding meetings, both small
    and large.

8. Set up mailing lists and conference calls so that
    people could participate without attending meetings.

9. Published the specs and dissolved the organization
    on schedule.

10. Got adopted by many of the leading industry organizations,
     consortia and software vendors.

11. Set up follow-on groups to continue each aspect of the work.

12.  Attracted some of the best minds in the business, who 
      continue to collaborate on the next stages of the work.

13.  Made all specs (still) freely available to anybody.

I could carry on some about the quality and advancement
of the state of the art in the specs, but enough for now.

Thanks for your attention,
Bob Haugen

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