Saturday, November 3, 2007

Aviation Data Management in the Web 2.0 Era

I will make a presentation at the XML 2007 Conference in Boston on December 5. The title of my presentation is: RESTful IDEAS. IDEAS stands for Integrated Documentation Environment for Aircraft Support. Based on AtomPub and OpenSearch, the IDEAS Framework enables federated searches of technical content and updates via web feeds. This presentation is essentially about how Web 2.0 innovations can be leveraged to create a cost-effective, efficient, and massively scalable environment for aggregating and publishing up-to-date technical documentation to end users in the aviation industry.

So what exactly is Web 2.0? Does it mean anything at all? For me Web 2.0 represents new web functionalities such as:

  • Content aggregation and syndication using technologies like RSS and Atom
  • Social networking (e.g. Linkedin and Facebook)
  • User generated content with videos, pictures, blogs, wikis, and podcasts (e.g. YouTube and Flickr)
  • Mashups or the ability to merge data from different sources (e.g. Google Maps and Yahoo Pipes)
  • Rich Internet Applications (RIA) using user interface technologies such as Flex and AJAX
  • Web Services and web-based APIs particularly those using RESTful protocols such as AtomPub

Those are the types of functionalities that today's web users expect from web applications, and the consumers of aviation technical documents are no exception.

Atom and AtomPub are already playing a fundamental role in the Web 2.0 world. The Google Data API which also includes Google Documents is based on AtomPub and OpenSearch. This week, a group of social networking sites including hi5, LinkedIn, MySpace, Ning, Orkut, and XING released OpenSocial which is a common set of APIs for developing social applications across multiple websites. OpenSocial is also based on AtomPub.

So how can the aviation industry embrace and extend Web 2.0 innovations to solve the challenge of aggregating and presenting up-to-date technical data from multiple content sources? I will be sharing my thoughts.

See you in Boston!

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