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Subject: Proposed Charter for OASIS Search Web Services TC

To OASIS Members:

  A draft TC charter has been submitted to establish the OASIS Search Web
Services Technical Committee. In accordance with the OASIS TC Process Policy
section 2.2: 
(http://www.oasis-open.org/committees/process.php#2.2) the proposed charter is
hereby submitted for comment. The comment period shall remain open until 11:45
pm ET on 29 May 2007. 

  OASIS maintains a mailing list for the purpose of submitting comments on
proposed charters. Any OASIS member may post to this list by sending email to:
mailto:oasis-charter-discuss@lists.oasis-open.org. All messages will be publicly
archived at: 
http://lists.oasis-open.org/archives/oasis-charter-discuss/. Members
who wish to receive emails must join the group by selecting "join group" on the
group home page:
http://www.oasis-open.org/apps/org/workgroup/oasis-charter-discuss/. Employees
of organizational members do not require primary representative approval to
subscribe to the oasis-charter-discuss e-mail.

  A telephone conference will be held among the Convener, the OASIS TC
Administrator, and those proposers who wish to attend within four days of the
close of the comment period. The announcement and call-in information will be
noted on the OASIS Charter Discuss Group Calendar.

  We encourage member comment and ask that you note the name of the proposed TC
(search-ws) in the subject line of your email message. 


Mary P McRae
Manager of TC Administration, OASIS
email: mary.mcrae@oasis-open.org  
web: www.oasis-open.org
phone: 603.232.9090


1. Charter

a. Name of the Technical Committee
OASIS Search Web Services Technical Committee

b. Purpose

To define Search and Retrieval Web Services, combining various current and
ongoing web service activities.

Within recent years there has been a growth in activity in the development of
web service definitions for search and retrieval applications. These include
SRU, a web service based in part on the NISO/ISO Search and Retrieval standards;
the Amazon OpenSearch, which defines a means of describing and automating search
web forms; as well as many proprietary definitions (e.g. the Google and MSN
Search APIs). There are also a number of activities for defining abstract search
APIs that can be mapped onto multiple implementations either within native code
or onto remote procedural calls and web services, such as ZOOM (Z39.50 Object
Oriented Model); SQI (Simple Query Interface), an IEEE standard developed for
searching and retrieval in the IMS (Instructional Management Systems) space; and
OSIDs from the Open Knowledge Initiative. While abstract APIs would be out of
scope, these would inform the work to increase interoperability and

c. Scope of the Work

The development of a web service interface specification covering:
   *  Search/Retrieve
   *  Query
   *  Sorting
   *  Record Retrieval
   *  Index Browsing

This will include the development or identification of an abstract query
language incorporating an extensible framework, plus one or more application

The work will also involve semantic description of search services but will
build upon existing work (e.g. NISO Z39.92) rather than define new descriptions.

The work will seek input from abstract API initiatives such as OKI, ZOOM, and

Out of Scope:  Although as mentioned the work will seek input from abstract API
initiatives, the development or standardisation of Abstract APIs is out of

Specific Contribution of Existing Work as a Starting Point:  The following works
are available to the technical committee for further development:

     *  SRU http://www.loc.gov:8081/standards/sru/ or

     *  CQL http://www.loc.gov:8081/standards/sru/specs/cql.html or

Additional contributions from other TC members also are welcome.

How it is to be Determined when the Work of the TC has been Completed:
The work will be considered completed when (a) an OASIS standard is approved
that embodies the functionality provided by the two specifications listed above
plus any additional contributions, plus or minus functions agreed upon by the
TC; and (b) any errata, extension or further versioning of the specification
that this TC then wishes to create has been completed.

d. Deliverables

   *  Service definition(s)
   *  XML Schemas
   *  Web Service interface specifications including HTTP POST, HTTP GET, and a
SOAP binding.
   *  Query language definition
   *  Community defined profiles:
      -  bibliographic community
      -  others
   *  User best practice documentation
   *  Implementer best practice documentation (including ZOOM, OSID, SQI

Completion Dates:  The target completion date is February 2008. An itemized list
of dates for each of the above items will be developed by the TC.

e. IPR Mode

Royalty Free on Limited Terms

f. Anticipated Audience/Users

Those involved in the design, development, implementation, or use of elements
listed above in "Scope of the Work".  This includes search service providers,
prospective users of search services exposed as XML, information architects and
bibliographic, metadata, and content providers.

g. The language in which the TC shall conduct business


2. Additional non-normative material relating to the TC's start-up

a. Similar or applicable work (OASIS and elsewhere)

The following standards and projects may be relevant to the TC's planned work,
although none currently provide the functionality anticipated by this
committee's deliverables:

NISO Z39.50/ISO23950
NISO Z39.92
Google API
MSN Search API

The TC intends to seek and if possible maintain liaison with each of the
organizations maintaining the above works.

b. Details of the first meeting

The first meeting of the of the committee will be held by telephone conference
call on 28 June 2007. Call-in information will be provided to the TC's e-mail
list in advance of the meeting.

Note to members:  This is a preliminary proposal; the meeting date may change in
the final Call for Participation.

c. Projected on-going meeting schedule
The work of the committee will be carried out primarily by email and conference
calls, possibly every two weeks, with face-to-face meetings perhaps once or
twice a year.

Following the first several calls, an initial face-to-face meeting, perhaps two
days, or one and a half, is planned. The TC will determine its own schedule once

d. Supporters of the Proposal

The following people support this proposal and are committed to the Charter and
projected meeting schedule.

Kerry Blinco,(DEST Australia) <kblinco@powerup.com.au> 
Ray Denenberg (Library of Congress) <rden@loc.gov> 
Larry Dixson (Library of Congress) <ldix@loc.gov> 
Matthew J. Dovey (JISC) <m.dovey@jisc.ac.uk> 
Rebecca S. Guenther (Library of Congress) <rgue@loc.gov> 
Sally H. McCallum (Library of Congress) <smcc@loc.gov> 
Ashley Sanders (Univ. of Manchester)  <a.sanders@manchester.ac.uk> 
Rob Sanderson (U. Liverpool) <azaroth@liverpool.ac.uk> 
Mackenzie Smith (MIT) <kenzie@mit.edu>

e. Convener

Ray Denenberg

f. The Member Section with which the TC intends to affiliate.

Not Applicable.

g. Contributions of existing technical work

SRU http://www.loc.gov:8081/standards/sru/ or http://www.loc.gov/standards/sru/

CQL http://www.loc.gov:8081/standards/sru/specs/cql.html or

h. Draft Frequently Asked Questions

To be developed.

i. Proposed working title for the specifications to be developed.

SRU  - Search/Retrieve via URL
CQL - Contextual Query Language


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