RosettaNet takes standards push to small firms

The group, which is pushing for adoption of a universal e-business language, wants to make its standards easier and cheaper to use.

2 min read
SINGAPORE--RosettaNet, a consortium pushing to establish a universal e-business language, is hoping to broaden its appeal to smaller companies by slashing the costs of standards adoption.

The consortium is looking for ways to make it easier and cheaper for businesses to automate the exchange of data, including information about purchase and delivery orders, inventory levels and other business matters.

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This effort will be spearheaded by RosettaNet's first architectural design and research facility outside the United States, which was officially unveiled here this week.

The Architecture Center of Excellence, which cost $1.4 million (2.4 million Singapore dollars), was set up in partnership with Nanyang Polytechnic and the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore, along with hardware and software sponsorship from 10 other RosettaNet members, including Cisco Systems, IBM, Intel, Microsoft and Oracle.

"Right now, the cost of adopting RossettaNet standards is not low," said Poon Hong Yuen, the Infocomm Development Authority's deputy director for the manufacturing and services industries. He put the price of adoption at $118,000 to $177,000. "For a multinational, that's probably not much," he said. "But for (small and midsize businesses), that's a lot of money."

"The cost is really due to the requisite hardware, software and professional IT services needed to implement these standards," he said, adding that the center aims to make use of technologies like Web services to lower the investments needed to embrace RosettaNet's e-commerce blueprints.

Besides trying to lower the adoption costs for small and medium-size businesses, the new facility will also conduct research into other areas. These include studies on how to incorporate radio frequency tracking technology into existing RosettaNet standards, as well as the development of e-payment and e-logistics models, said Paul Tearnen, RosettaNet's vice president of standards management.

Winston Chai of CNETAsia reported from Singapore.