The Instrumentation Systems and Automation Society (ISA, www.isa.org), the Machinery Information Management Open Systems Alliance (MIMOSA, www.mimosa.org) and the OPC Foundation (for OLE for Process Control, www.opcfoundation.org) have announced a collaboration effort to develop interoperable open solutions spanning from the factory floor through the enterprise.
The three organizations have agreed to establish a Joint Working Group to determine how to coordinate their various standards development efforts. The objective is to simplify the development of interoperable Operations & Maintenance (O&M) systems, equipment and software.
Responding to new developments in Web Services technology and Microsoft .Net, the OPC Foundation has also underlined its aim to transition its specifications away from traditional “component”-based connectivity toward a unified architecture through the use of vendor products that will be interoperable with full Internet connectivity and scalability across platforms of the end-users’ choice.
For example, the OPC XML DA (eXtensible Markup Language for data access) specification breaks the tradition of COM/DCOM (for Component Object Model/Distributed COM) communications on which OPC has relied since its beginnings in 1997. Web Services and XML remove the limitation for data and information to be isolated behind a corporate firewall, therefore opening up cross-platform connectivity over the Internet.