Standards Orgs Sign on as OASIS UBL Liaisons

As evidence that Web services interests are permeating beyond major high-tech
companies, data standards organizations
representing health care, banking, prescription eyewear, and supply chain
management (SCM) Thursday appointed representatives to the OASIS Universal Business
Language (UBL) Technical Committee

Healthcare organization HL7, finance group SWIFT, eyecare concern VCA, and SCM purveyor e.centre will look to provide guidance
to UBL, whose goal is to devise standard XML business forms for e-commerce.
Liaisons are instrumental in making sure that as many trade groups and
businesses have input as possible for what could very well become a global

As with many of OASIS’ technical
committees, the work its members will perform will be to pull existing XML
schemas together to come up with one common format for filing purchase
orders or invoices. The TC will then design a mechanism for the generation
of business schemas through the application of
transformation rules to the common UBL source library.

UBL builds on the
Electronic Business XML (ebXML) infrastructure developed by OASIS and the
United Nations. The ebXML specifications provide for XML registry services,
reliable XML messaging, standardized trading partner agreements, a standard
data dictionary, and a business context methodology.

Jon Bosak, chair of the OASIS UBL Technical Committee and organizer of the
working group that created XML, praised the participation of the
organizations as liaisons.

“Our goal of defining a common XML library for basic business documents like
purchase orders, invoices, and shipping notices crosses all industries,”
Bosak said. “Contributing to the development of our library of UBL schemas
allows industry groups to pool their resources in the design of common
business documents and to focus their special expertise on the development
of XML schemas for the documents that are specific to their own domain.”

Noting that hospitals are not dropping existing XML schemas for UBL, HL7
chair Wes Rishel said that because hospitals and clinics are customers to a
number of vendors, using the UBL supply chain documents makes practical

“…we can concentrate on the data standards that require our knowledge of
health care without reinventing basic business schemas for supply chain
management,” Rishel said.

Bill Thomas, CEO of VCA, agreed: “Prescription eyewear is a regulated
medical device and is often covered by health
insurance plans. All of this results in a vast quantity of very detailed and
often vision-specific business transactions. We believe that UBL can help us
improve the industry’s efficiency in handling thesetransactions.”

Organizations that have already appointed liaisons to UBL include: ACORD,
representing the insurance industry; ARTS, representing retail sales; ASC
X12 and the UN/EDIFACT Working Group, representing U.S. and international
EDI standards; EIDX, representing the electronics industry; NACS,
representing convenience stores; RosettaNet, the information technology
consortium; and XBRL, the accounting industry standards organization.

Get the Free Newsletter!

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Subscribe to Daily Tech Insider for top news, trends & analysis

News Around the Web