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17 November 2001

XML Can Play a Role in European E-business Integration

A recent report, published by consultants Accenture, entitled "The Unexpected e-Europe", suggests European e-commerce projects are on the rise. In particular back-office, B2B projects in support of purchasing, logistics and human resources were singled out in the report. It is expected that these projects will provide systems integrators with lucrative opportunities in 2002.

One of the key technologies for enabling improved integration will be Extensible Markup Language (XML), and this was one of the topics addressed at the recent eBusiness and eWork conference (e-2001), which was held in Venice, October 17-19.

XML brings structure to the Internet and is particularly useful for user interfaces and for making assertions and assumptions about the meaning and relevance of data.

XML applied to remote control of public kiosk systems was discussed at the conference. In the approach presented, central problems like separation of application logic and presentation, communication and user interface management were discussed and it was shown how these problems have been solved by means of XML technologies.

Another presentation dealt with the creation of an enhanced ERP system which facilitates the automated collection of performance data across the supply chain using Internet/XML technology to improve SMEs position in global supply chains. The presentation described a framework for real-time, operational performance measurement combined with performance benchmarking. This illustrated how enterprises and business networks could use the system as a means for decision support in daily management and improvement work.

The use of XML structuring knowledge was discussed. The collection of knowledge is a challenge, but structuring knowledge even more so. The presentation described a three-layer-architecture for collecting, structuring and browsing of information items. The architecture is based on open standards like XML. The user can access the knowledge collection via intranet/internet with conventional web-browsers.

FactWrangler, a modular XML content editor's application that makes it easy to enhance different types of digital content assets through classification, editorial context, semantic mark-up and cross referencing of related documents was presented to the conference delegates. FactWrangler supports a variety of different document formats typically found on intranets and external websites.

The eBusiness and eWork event is the conference for RTD projects in Key Action II of the IST Programme, who are also the primary sponsors of the eBusiness and eWork conference series.


Notes to Editors

The following are a selection of papers relevant to XML that were presented at the e-2001 conference. These papers can be found in the published proceedings (see news release dated 29 October 2001).

The KOD Packager: An XML adaptive learning content management system
Fabrizio Cardinali, GIUNTI Ricerca, Italy
XML used for Remote Control of Public Kiosk Systems (POI, POS)
Rainer Malkewitz, ZGDV, Germany
Structuring Knowledge with XML
Erik Meißner, Computer Graphics Center, Germany
FactWrangler™ - Providing classification and mark-up capabilities for content management
Paul Cunningham, International Information Management Corporation, Ireland
APM - Automated Performance Measurement
Neil Ferguson, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland
For further information contact Paul Kidd. (Email: ). Web: