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The Open Group is an industry consortium to set vendor- and technology-neutral open standards for computing infrastructure. It was formed when X/Open merged with the Open Software Foundation in 1996. The Open Group is most famous as the certifying body for the UNIX trademark, in the past the group was best known for its publication of the Single UNIX Specification paper, which extends the POSIX standards and is the official definition of UNIX. Their members include a range of IT buyers and vendors as well as government agencies, for example Capgemini, Fujitsu, Sun Microsystems, Hitachi, HP, IBM, NEC, US Department of Defense, NASA and others.

Contents

Programs

Certification

The Open Group's best-known services are their certification programs, including certification for the Common Operating Environment (COE) Platform, CORBA, Directory, POSIX, Schools Interoperability Framework (SIF), UNIX, and Wireless Application Protocol (WAP). The Open Group is also the owner of the UNIX trademark.

The Open Group has also turned to the standardization of business and development practices and offers certifications for IT professionals. In addition to the TOGAF (The Open Group Architecture Framework) certification program, The Open Group sponsors the IT Architect Certification (ITAC) [1] and IT Specialist Certification (ITSC) [2] skills and experience based IT certification programs.

Member Forums

The Open Group provides a platform for its members to discuss their requirements, and work jointly on development and adoption of industry standards, to facilitate enterprise integration. (Note: Some of The Open Group documents are only available to members, especially when they are under development.) Based on their area of interest, members can join one or more semi-autonomous forums[1], which include:

  • ArchiMate Forum [2]
  • Architecture Forum[3]
  • Enterprise Management and Quality of Service Forum[4]
  • Grid Enterprise Services Forum[5]
  • Identity Management Forum[6]
  • Jericho Forum[7]
  • Messaging Forum[8]
  • Platform Forum[9]
  • Real Time and Embedded Systems Forum[10]
  • Security Forum[11]
  • Universal Data Element Framework Forum[12]

Members come together at The Open Group’s quarterly conferences and member meetings[13].

Collaboration Services

The Open Group also provides a range of services to consortia and organizations, from initial organization set-up and ongoing operational support to collaboration, standards and best practices development, and assistance with market impact activities. They assist organizations with setting business objectives, strategy and procurement, and also provide certification and test development services. This includes services to the government sector - agencies, suppliers, and companies or organizations set up by governments to advance government goals.

Enterprise Architecture Academic Workgroup

The Open Group also commits to supporting research initiatives. For example, a new academic workgroup in Enterprise Architecture were formed in 2009 that will focus on research related topics [3].

History

By the early 1990s, the major Unix players had begun to realize that the standards rivalries known as the Unix wars were causing all participants more harm than good, leaving Unix open to emerging competition from Microsoft. The COSE initiative in 1993 can be considered to be the first unification step and the merger of the Open Software Foundation (OSF) and X/Open in 1996 as the ultimate step in the end of those skirmishes. OSF had previously merged with UNIX International in 1994, meaning that the new entity effectively represented all elements of the Unix community of the time.

The value of the UNIX brand has diminished due to changes in the open systems marketplace, notably the widespread acceptance of "non-standardized" Unix-like operating systems such as GNU/Linux. More recently there has been an effort by The Open Group in conjunction with the Linux Foundation to help standardize Linux via the Linux Standard Base specification, but the success of this initiative appears to be very limited to date.

Inventions and standards

References

External links








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