Open Standards Put to the Test

Fujitsu demonstrates business process interoperability for the automotive retail industry

San Jose, CA  August 23, 2002  Fujitsu Software Corp. has successfully shown business process interoperability utilizing B2B specifications that are being developed to meet the needs of the North American automotive industry, the company reported this week.

Proponents of open standard technologies said the demonstration will help accelerate the implementation of applications using these technologies.

The demonstration executed a business process scenario developed by the Standards for Technology in Automotive Retail (STAR) consortium based on the Open Applications Group's business object document (BOD) specification for interoperable eXtensible Markup Language (XML) messages and the electronic business XML (ebXML) framework. The Open Applications Group (OAGI) is the largest publisher of XML-based business messages in the world.

The demonstration was conducted at the August 1315 OAGI technical meeting in Detroit, attended by automobile companies, manufacturers from other industries, industry organizations and information technology (IT) suppliers. Fujitsu and Sybase exchanged messages, implementing STAR's parts order scenario using Open Application Group Interoperability Specification (OAGIS) BODs and ebXML specifications. This interoperability test proved that Fujitsu's Interstage CollaborationRing can communicate with other ebXML products through STAR's BODs and business scenarios implemented using ebXML business process specification schema (BPSS), the ebXML collaboration protocol profile and agreement (CPPA) and ebXML message service (ebMS).

"The BPSS demonstration project will accelerate production deployments of B2B applications based on OAGIS and ebXML technology," said David Connelly, president and CEO of the Open Applications Group.

Proponents of the new technology said that, for example, a STAR-based system enables an automobile manufacturer to respond rapidly to a dealer request for a part through an automated supply chain, saving time as well as transaction and inventory holding costs.

The OAGI specification has been adopted by the Auto Industry Action Group (AIAG), STAR and Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA) consortiums for upcoming business language and data messaging architecture. These organizations have formed collaborative initiatives with OAGI to design XML-based messages conforming to and extending the OAGI BOD library for e-business and application integration and the ebXML framework for B2B.

The organizations' B2B infrastructure is Internet-based and utilizes elements of the United Nations Center for Trade Facilitation and Electronic Business' (UN/CEFACT) ebXML specification  a B2B protocol being deployed worldwide. These initiatives are intended to enable auto industry companies to conduct business in real time by communicating data in common terms using standardized business processes.

The interoperability demonstration was a project of the OAGI/NIST B2B Test Bed, a joint initiative of the OAGI and the National Institute of Standards and Technology, which strives to advance the state of the art in B2B. The B2B Test Bed is available to users and suppliers for testing and validating business level data exchanges among business partners utilizing open, standards based approaches.

"We are pleased to announce the successful execution of a business process level interoperability test with our products, Interstage Application Server and CollaborationRing," said Masahiko Fujita, senior vice president in the San Jose, Calif.-based Software Group at Fujitsu Limited. "This is one of our contributions to make Web services work in the real business world."

Fujitsu, a participant in ebXML standards, authored the initial version of the reliable messaging specification in the ebXML message service and is chairing the ebXML implementation, interoperability and conformance (IIC) technical committee.