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Subject: OASIS and NIST Take the Lead in XML Conformance

OASIS and NIST Take the Lead in XML Conformance

Boston, MA USA; June 19, 2000— The OASIS Interoperability and Conformance
Technical Committee, led by representatives from the National Institute of
Standards and Technology (NIST), today announced the expansion of their
ongoing XML conformance work. The widely used OASIS/NIST XML Conformance
Test Suite (http://www.oasis-open.org/committees/xmltest/testsuite.htm) is
now being modified to reflect the W3C errata to the XML 1.0 Recommendation
and is being extended to include an additional 1,000 tests contributed by
IBM. The Consortium also revealed that a test suite for DOM Java is soon to
be released and that work is underway to produce test suites for XML Schema,
XSLT, XPath and DOM/SAX. An ECMAScript DOM 1.0 test suite (www.nist.gov/xml)
released by NIST as well as NIST-developed Java DOM tests and Sun-developed
Java and SAX tests will form the basis for the OASIS DOM/SAX test suite.

OASIS and NIST bring two important attributes to the XML conformance work.
They are both vendor-neutral organizations, separate from the development of
the core XML family of standards such as XML, XSL, DOM, XML-Schema and
others. “OASIS and NIST provide unbiased test suites, uninfluenced by any
one product or company,” explained Norbert Mikula (DataChannel), chief
technical officer of OASIS “Additionally, by being separate from the
development process, we bring a fresh, independent perspective on what the
XML recommendation says.”

“In building test suites, we are in a position to identify errors or
ambiguities in the specification and communicate them back to the standards
developers. In turn, the developers provide us with insight on which areas
to test, as well as how to choose the test input or parameter values,”
agreed Lynne Rosenthal, Manager within the Software Diagnostic and
Conformance Testing Division at NIST. “Additionally, test suites help
software developers identify and correct errors in their software

The primary goal of OASIS is interoperability. “Our conformance test suites
provide a way to increase the likelihood that software products claiming to
adhere to XML are implemented correctly. Correct implementation and
utilization of the standard leads to portability and interoperability.
Without compliant implementations, products from different vendors may not
interoperate,” added Mikula.

Test suites can be expensive and time-consuming to develop.  Working in
partnership within the OASIS community, the Consortium leverages the work of
many contributors to produce a timely product.

“The OASIS XML conformance work is greatly enhanced by the leadership of
NIST,” noted Laura Walker, executive director of OASIS. “NIST's mission is
standards and testing. Their many years of experience in providing quality,
comprehensive conformance test suites are a tremendous asset to OASIS.”

About NIST
The National Institute of Standards and Technology (http://www.nist.gov/) is
an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce's Technology Administration.
Established in 1901, NIST strengthens the U.S. economy and improves the
quality of life by working with industry to develop and apply technology,
measurements, and standards. It carries out this mission through a portfolio
of four major programs: Measurements and Standards Laboratories, Advanced
Technology Program, Manufacturing Extension Partnership, and Baldrige
National Quality Award.

OASIS (http://www.oasis-open.org) is a non-profit, international consortium
dedicated solely to product-independent data and content interchange.
Focusing on product interoperability, OASIS embraces the complete spectrum
of structured information standards including XML, SGML and CGM. OASIS
sponsors include Adobe Systems, Aerospatiale, AND-USA, Arbortext, BEA
Systems, Bentley Systems, Boeing, Bowstreet, Bridge, Chrystal Software,
Cohesia, Commerce One, CommerceNet, CompTIA, Corel, DataChannel, DMSi,
Documentum, Dun & Bradstreet, eCredit.com, Enigma, eXcelon, Extricity
Software, GCA, Health Level Seven, IBM, InformIT, Informix, InterCAP,
Interleaf, Interwoven, ISOGEN, ITEDO, JetForm, Keyfile, Logistics Management
Institute, Mercator Software, Microsoft, NextPage, NII Enterprise Promotion
Association, Nimble.com, NIST, Object Management Group (OMG), Open
Applications Group, Pick Systems, POET Software, ProNet Technology Partners,
Reed Technology, Reuters, Sabre, SAP, Sequoia Software, SoftQuad, Software
AG, STEP, StreamServe, Sun Microsystems, Synthbank, Visa, Wavo, Webb
Interactive Services, webMethods, Whitehill Technologies, Xerox,
XMLSolutions and XyEnterprise

For more information:
Carol Geyer
Media Relations Consultant

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