PIDX 2014 fall conferences, Houston and Paris

EnergySys busts some standards myths. Implico reports on 20 years of terminal data exchange in Germany and the development of the PIDX bill of lading standard.

The industry e-commerce organization PIDX International held twin conferences in Houston and Paris earlier this year. Peter Black (EnergySys), a standards myth-buster, asked, ‘If standards are the answer, what’s the question?’ While collaboratively developed standards that are widely adopted have real business value, many myths and shortcomings cloud the picture. Black’s standards myths: publishing something or releasing an XML encoding makes a standard, vendors and customers are interested in standards and standards guarantee Interoperability. He cited several (mis)use cases, all relating to superfluous use of Witsml along with a few ‘possible’ use cases such as data migration, interoperability and reporting. Black proposes a new approach to standards, starting with the identification of a ‘real’ problem, looking for solutions from other verticals, providing a reference implementation and devkit, getting buy in from vendors and finally, deprecating unimplemented standards.

Implico MD Kay-Peter Buhtz provided a more positive view, tracing a twenty year long track record of e-commerce standards use culminating in PIDX-based terminal data exchange in the Rhine area. Materials data exchange standardization in Germany dates back to 1992 when the MPKS Standard was born. It is still in widespread use today. In 2006, BP and ConocoPhillips initiated a feasibility study on the use of XML to communicate between tank farms and trucks onboard computers. Today, the IFLEXX system is used between more than 20 terminals and refineries and has informed development of the flagship PIDX bill of lading standard which went live in July 2014 in Germany, Austria and Luxembourg. Buhtz stressed the importance of mutual understanding of wording (order, contract, shipment) between truckers and terminal. More from PIDX.

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