OASIS, one of the prime standards groups, has formed a new technical committee charged with developing a standard that will enable SOA repository products to better share data -- even when they are from different vendors.
The SOA Repository Artifact Model and Protocol (S-RAMP) specification defines an SOA repository artifact data model together with bindings that describe the syntax for interacting with an SOA repository. S-RAMP builds on existing specifications such as The Open Group's SOA Ontology, as well as IETF's Atom Syndication Format Standard and the Atom Publishing Protocol Standard.
The S-RAMP specification is based on a contribution authored by HP, IBM, Software AG, and TIBCO.
What difference will this make?
A statement on the S-RAMP Website makes the case for the standard:
"The current lack of a standardized information model and interface API for SOA repositories means that tools must be customized for use with each different vendor's SOA repository product... Standardization offers significant customer value by creating interoperability enabling easy use of mixed tool and repository run times that all work with each other. Some additional customer value points which can be achieved by standardizing interfaces for SOA repositories includes giving customers flexibility and reduced investment risk in products that might limit future choices; reducing costs by creating a single data format with which providers and consumers interact, and simplifying complex customer IT environments which have a mix of repository and related products created through acquisition, consolidation, outsourcing and so on.