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Subject: RE: [obix-xml] oBIX 1.1 Issues

Comments below


Rob Zivney: any other comments on scheduled alarms from Security system perspective?



"When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us." -- Alexander Graham Bell

Toby Considine

Facilities Technology Office
University of North Carolina
Chapel Hill, NC


Email: Toby.Considine@ unc.edu
Phone: (919)962-9073


blog: www.NewDaedalus.com



From: Brian Frank [mailto:bfrank@tridium.com]
Sent: Monday, October 01, 2007 1:36 PM
To: obix-xml@lists.oasis-open.org
Subject: [obix-xml] oBIX 1.1 Issues


The following is a list of issues to discuss for oBIX 1.1 that I’ve run across:


1) Do we roll the XML namespace version?


2) Do we allow the use of floating abstime and times?  iCalendar allows times to “float” independent of a timezone – is this feature used?  If not commonly used, then I would recommend we disallow floating times – it causes a lot of confusion and implementation head-aches.  XML Schema technically allows it also, and the current oBIX specification is silent on the issue.


I hate it when I get a floating time from someone in another time zone. I suspect that it is only there for backward compatibility in ICAL


3) How do we integrate timezones?  XML Schema allows no offset (floating), UTC, or an explicit offset.  iCalendar disallows an explicit offset, but allows floating, UTC, and a tzid reference.  My initial thought is that oBIX requires UTC or explicit offset – but that we also allow the use of a tz facet to reference a timezone definition. Timezone probably becomes more of a core type like Unit, rather than specific to scheduling.


Sounds right – like your proposal. Thinking ahead, would geotagging be a core unit in a futre map-ready oBIX?


4) I think we add two new value types date and time.  Time will follow the abstime rules for timezone.  Literal representations will be based on XML Schema.


Standard is Good - yes


5) Do we need support for a binary value type?  iCalendar has it, however recommendation is that it should be referenced out of band via a URI – that is definitely the current oBIX model.  Unless we have a known use case, then I would recommend that binary data is required to be identified via a uri object type.




6) Looking at the oBIX specification, we defined the Weekday and Month enumerations with everything spelled out.  That doesn’t seem right to me, especially since most specifications use a three letter abbreviation.  iCalendar uses two letter abbreviations for weekdays.  Should we change?  It means breaking backward compatibility (although I seriously doubt anyone is using them yet).


Better to break early than late – especially as this is simple enough [for now] for something to support both formats – and then go with ICAL going forward.


7) iCalendar type system is a bit weird: properties, property types, and property parameters.  We will likely have to combine property types and property parameters to achieve a more natural type system using contracts.


8) Some properties can be included multiple times such as RELATED-TO and RRULE.  This is problematic if those properties are identified by name, because oBIX forbids duplicate child names.  So we have to a) specify those properties as a list or b) specify those properties as unnamed and identity them via their contract.


9) Do we need to support any component other than VEVENT?  Currently I’m thinking that we do not support the VJOURNAL, VTODO, VFREEBUSY, or VALARM components.


VFREEBUSY – If we had several generators, each of which might be called in to support an event, would we want to see if they had already been requested in support of something else? What if we had HVAC with one chiller and 5 zones. Would we want to know if 3 out of five were already scheduled, so capacity would be minimal? What if there is some odd behavior scheduled for each afternoon at 3:30…would I want to know who scheduled it and why… All examples are a little tenuous, but I don’t think we should just right this off…


VJOURNAL – Configuration notes left by Integrator?


VALARM – is this the same as checking the electric meter at the end of the day? Does it support oBIX to oBIX systems that send each other alarms (as opposed to control interactions) as well as letting someone else set up the [fire alarm] as a scheduled VALARM?


VTODO, even I am reaching on.


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