Extensible Supply-chain Discovery Service Problem Statement

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Last updated 2008-11-17
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This document discusses the requirements of an application layer protocol for Discovery Services. Discovery Services at its core offers to authenticated and authorized users the means to discover resources of information for a particular identifier. The information resource can be any data source which provides an interface on a network that allows for retrieval of the data. An information resource could publish its network address (reference to the resource) to a Discovery Service coupled with an identifier. Then an authenticated and authorized user could query the Discovery Service with the same identifier to receive reference information to the resources. Interfacing with the resources for actually retrieving the data is out of scope of Discovery Services; the role of Discovery Services is to enable a client to find the network addresses and types (e.g. URLs) of information resources for a particular identifier of interest. This protocol is applicable to numerous scenarios such as track and trace in trade supply chains, where a number of independent resources may hold information about a particular object and may have an interest in selective sharing of that information, in order to improve the efficiency of the supply chain network. However, other applications can be envisaged, as a 'bottom-up' or 'grassroots' way for generators of information content to: 1) declare that they have information or commentary on a particular topic or subject (which might be a physical object, geographic location or even an abstract concept) 2) specify a network address through which that content can be retrieved, 3) specify restrictions about the community of clients that are entitled to receive knowledge about the existence of their content or see the link. This approach can be contrasted with the top-down approach of existing web search engines that rely on crawling/spidering of content that must be already posted in the public domain before it can be indexed - and where the link information is generally made publicly available in a manner that does not discriminate between clients on an individual basis. This document outlines a set of design concerns that an application layer protocol needs to address in order to be widely adopted and deployable on public networks This document obsoletes "Extensible Supply-chain Discovery Service Problem Statement draft-rezafard-esds-problem-statement-02". Comments are solicited and should be addressed to the mailing list at esds@ietf.org and/or the author(s).


Ali Rezafard (arezafar@ca.afilias.info)

(Note: The e-mail addresses provided for the authors of this Internet-Draft may no longer be valid.)