The Workflow Management Coalition (WfMC), which is an international workflow standardization organization, is promoting standardization of workflows using XML (eXtensible Markup Language). Recently, XML has been in the limelight throughout the world as a new data coding language for the Internet.
Wf-XML, one of the WfMC's efforts, aims at standardization of linkage among workflow servers. Wf-XML is attracting attention as one of the technologies for implementing electronic commerce among businesses.
Overview of Wf-XML and Hitachi's efforts
Wf-XML is a draft standardization specification for linking workflow processes between heterogeneous workflow management systems; for example, between Hitachi's Groupmax workflow and another company's workflow management product.
The Wf-XML project started at the request of Netscape in May 1998.
A working group was created in WfMC and has been drawing up specifications.
Hitachi has participated in the Wf-XML project since its start in May 1998.
A feature of the specifications is adopting XML to represent data and instructions exchanged between workflow management systems.
As of December 1999, the project was in the stage of a working draft. You can obtain the working draft from the following site even if you are not a WfMC member: http://www.wfmc.org
The document may change in the future because it is a work in progress.
After the specifications are completed, they will be open to the public. We are planning to complete the specifications in the first half of 2000.