FIPA Specifications voted to Standard Status
Posted; December 6, 2002
Foundation for Intelligent Physical Agents (FIPA)
An important milestone in the history of FIPA was reached last week, when its principal members voted to approve the move of a set of experimental specifications to standard status.
At the 27th Meeting in Pensacola, the FIPA Architecture Board (FAB) invited all principal members to approve the promotion of 23 experimental specifications to standard status so they may be used in both business and academic environments. The FAB strongly believed those specifications to be stable, mature, well understood and ready for commercial implementation and deployment.
Each principal member organization was invited to cast a vote. The vote was open from November 4 to December 2, 2002. A total of 20 votes were received and the move to standard specification was overwhelmingly approved with 19 votes in favor and only one vote to disapprove with comments.
FIPA was established in 1996 as an international non-profit association of companies, which agree to share efforts to produce standard specifications of generic agent technologies in a timely fashion, internationally agreed, usable across a large number of applications, so that a high level of interoperability across applications is achieved. Since then, FIPA counted more than 60 members from more than 20 different countries-worldwide and generated a set of specifications that went through 3 cycles of review: FIPA97, FIPA98, FIPA 2000. Many distinct agent platforms, applications, and collaborative projects have been, and are continuing to be, based upon the FIPA specifications (for a list of platforms and their deployment see the FIPA Resources Page); the core set of the specifications have been used for a number of years and they are robust and effective enough to be promoted to Standard. For a complete list of the standard specifications go to http://www.fipa.org/repository/standardspecs.html
With the maturing of its standards, FIPA has realized a significant part of its mission. Now that the IT community at large is becoming aware of the need for advanced interoperability standards between (web) services, there are outstanding opportunities for FIPA - and agent technology in general - to pull through into industrial mainstream technology. The careful strategy balancing between innovation and market acceptance this requires will be a main topic of discussion at the next FIPA Meeting in Palermo, Italy February 10-12, 2003.
The X2S (Experimental to Standard) Technical Committee was created at the 24th FIPA meeting in Lausanne and went through 3 iterations of accepting comments from the membership and approving the specifications to ready them for vote to standard status. X2S has herewith fulfilled its duties and has been dissolved. For additional information on the X2S history and this process please visit the X2S Archive.