About this tutorial
This tutorial is for developers who want to get a feel for the overall architecture and use of electronic business XML (ebMXL), but who may not know where to start. It is also for developers who have a general understanding of ebXML, but who want to start building ebXML-related applications and need to understand how all of the pieces fit together.
Developers must have at least a basic understanding of XML and of XML validation using schemas and/or DTDs. For basic XML information, see the Introduction to XML tutorial. Other resources can be found in the Resources section at the end of the tutorial.
No programming experience is required.
Whereas Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) for years has provided a usable but expensive way for companies to exchange information in an automated manner, ebXML now provides a means for companies to integrate their processes much more easily. Based on XML, it provides a methodology for businesses to determine what information they should exchange and how, as well as a set of specifications to allow automation of the process.
Before you can even consider building an ebXML-related application, you must understand what the pieces are and how they fit together.
This tutorial begins with a look at how businesses can use ebXML and a general overview of how all of the pieces fit together to form a complete architecture. The tutorial next discusses analysis and the process of creating Business Process Specifications and Business Documents. It then moves on to Collaboration Protocol Profiles (CPPs) and Collaboration Protocol Agreements (CPAs), and a discussion of ebXML Registries (where all of this information is stored). Finally, it finishes up with a look at the actual messages that are sent between Trading Partners, and how they're constructed.
It's important to note that at the time of this writing, ebXML implementations have never been completed because parts of the specifications are not yet complete. The existing implementations use the pieces that are available and fill in the holes as necessary.
You will perform no actual programming in the course of this tutorial, so no particular software packages are required.
However, during the tutorial, you will have the option of viewing the OASIS ebXML v2 Registry Reference Implementation. This is not required, but should you choose to do so, you must have Java 1.4 installed in your machine. You can download Java 1.4 from http://java.sun.com/j2se/1.4/download.html.