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This forum was started in 2002 and has now evolved with several new identities, oBIX, XML Symposium, CABA and BuilConn. 

I first heard about web services / XML at the AHR Expo in Atlanta 2001 in a brief meeting with Eric Craton and Steve Tom of Automated Logic, held in the hallway of the convention centre. Eric explained his vision of how web services would change everything. I can still see the excitement in his eyes. As I grasped what he was talking about my excitement also started to build. Eric warned me that all this stuff was pretty bleeding edge and many conventions needed to be established by the IT industry to make it really useful.  Automated Logicís early entry into web-based control with a full java platform allowed them to provide a strong lead in how web services might unfold. In January 2002 Eric helped me create a web services forum on our web site.

This article by Eric and Dave provided the corner stone of our web services forum, I am amazed at the foresight of this article. 
Information Model: The Key to Integration  Eric Craton and Dave Robin, Automated Logic

We have left the original forum online below the following links as we feel it provides a historical accounting of how we evolved to these new identities. oBIX stands for Open Building Information Xchange, and it is an industry-wide initiative to define XML- and Web Services-based mechanisms to present building systems-related information on TCP/IP networks such as the Internet XML Symposium focused on delivering a high-level, introductory perspective of the role of XML and Web Services to the HVAC industry.  CABA is pleased to announce that it has established a committee that will work on the creation of guidelines concerning the use of XML and Web services in building automation and control applications. The XML Pavilion will feature technology demonstrations showing the extensive potential of XML and Web Services in a cross-section of the buildings industry including security, HVAC, gateway, enterprise and IT solution providers  technology.

The original forum is below plus a link to Engineered Systems May 2004 article. 

Connecting the Dots Surrounding XML / Web Services  For the usually slow moving large building automation industry, the latest XML (extensible markup language) / Web Services movement has been a bit of a blur, spawning a number of dot coms and dot orgs to share information with our industry.  Ken Sinclair Editor/Owner


This overview pictorial uses a simple, possible web services application to allow industry stakeholders to quickly grasp the reach of the Web Services level of information and interaction. Colours and icons have been used to show how information from various sources is mixed in the web service puddle, and presented in anywhere browser based form. We realize that this is a gross over simplification of the true power of the Web Services.

It is hoped that this starting point and our linked resources will open the industry minds to the importance of opening dialog now on how an Industry Web Services Information Model could evolve.

The task of creating a Web Services Information Model or Models is important to us as an industry. If we do not take control of the data presentation of our dynamic information, the Information Technology or IT Industry will. It is important that our solutions seamlessly mesh with the IT industry, but it is even more important as an industry that we control the content and interaction of our information model or models.

What are Web Services?

IBM says, "Web services are self-contained, modular applications that can be described, published, located, and invoked over a network, generally, the World Wide Web."

Microsoft's description is more succinct, "a Web service is programmable application logic, accessible using standard Internet protocols,"

Others define Web services as a business logic or information made available using the XML (Extensible Mark-up Language)-based SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol).

Your input is important. Please share your views as to the best method of creating Information Model Guidelines.  Email me at

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