| Under Objective 2.2, Initiative 3, of the CIO Council's
Strategic Plan, the XML Working Group was charged with developing an online
information resource (at xml.gov) defining
and documenting an evolving strategy and a set of tasks for the effective
and well-coordinated usage of eXtensible Markup Language (XML) to support
governmental functions. The initial deadline for this task was
September 30, 2001. (The CIO Council's Plan was formerly available
Please note the following conditions and constraints:
As outlined in our charter, our
mission is "to accelerate, facilitate and catalyze the effective and
appropriate implementation of XML technology in the information systems
and planning of the Federal Government." More specifically, we
have been charged with pursuing:
- In recognition of the relatively new and dynamic nature of
the technology, we were asked to develop an "evolving" strategy.
Beyond the initial iteration of the plan and set of tasks, no further
deadlines have been specified nor is "completion" of the plan contemplated
in the sense that no further changes can be anticipated.
- Our strategy is to be defined and documented at xml.gov.
Our Web site is both the embodiment of our strategic plan as well as
a primary means of implementing it. All of our significant accomplishments
should be documented on the site, meaning that it also constitutes a
record by which to assess the results we have achieved.
- There are no qualifications for participation in the Working
Group nor any mandate for anyone to do so.
- The financial resources available to the Working Group are quite
limited. We are largely reliant upon GSA for financial support.
Funding for the XML Registry has been included in GSA's budget for FY
- We are not a policy-making body nor were we initially chartered
to take on operational responsibilities.
- In our revised charter, the CIO Council's Architecture and Infrastructure
Committee (AIC) has instructed us to take a more operational orientation,
in the sense of identifying specific project/task deliverables.
- However, it remains to be seen how such potential projects and tasks will be prioritized, as well
as whether resources will be provided to carry them out. Thus,
far funding provided through the CIO Council has been quite limited, and
while OMB has invited
agencies to cosponsor the XML registry, only one (NASA) has thus
far chosen to do so.
- The AIC's Emerging Technologies Subcommittee has been charged
with developing a process
whereby the intormation technology innovation life-cycle can be effectively
managed on a Governmentwide basis. Depending upon how that process
shapes up and is implemented, it may become the driving force by which our
priorities are determined and supported.
- In accordance with OMB Circulars A-76 and
whenever possible, agencies should use voluntary consensus standards
developed in partnership with commerce and industry.
- XML is a means to an end, not an end unto itself.
- Our strategic activities should support the policy initiatives
of the Administration, including for example the Citizen-Centered
eGovernment Action Plan and OMB's information
- Our extended and revised charter expires on September 30, 2004.
We should not assume that it will be extended and should scope our objectives
accordingly, while at the same time considering how best to facilitate
necessary followup and further value-additive activities that may be warranted
beyond that date. [Note: Although this plan has not been updated, our charter has
been extended to November 30, 2008.]
As time, commitments, and resources allow, we will identify explicit
tasks, deadlines, and performance measures.
(See especially our draft XML Developers
Guide and particularly our Registries
page, which documents progress on our primary deliverable.)
However, the results will only be as good as the contributions received from
our participants and stakeholders, including you! See our
Call for Participation.
Since every page of our site contains a mailto link for comments and
suggestions, you have no one to blame but yourself if you are not satisfied
with what you find here.
- XML Best Practices and Recommended Standards
- Partnerships with Key Industry and Public Groups Developing
XML Standards and Specifications
- Partnerships with Governmental Communities of Interest to Accelerate
the Delivery of XML Benefits
- Results-Oriented Education and Outreach
- Projects and Products Benefiting Stakeholders of Multiple Agencies
See also our Site Map
and Completed Documents, particularly Brian
Hopkins' strategy discussion notes, Scott Hoffman's
and LMI's recommendations
for getting started with XML.