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A Distributed Portal-Based Platform for Engineering & Construction Supply Chain Interoperability

TitleA Distributed Portal-Based Platform for Engineering & Construction Supply Chain Interoperability
Publication TypeTechnical Report
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsCheng, CPang, Law, K, Bjornsson, H
Date Published09/2008
Publication Languageeng
KeywordsCenter for Integrated Facility Engineering, CIFE, Collaboration, Information Sharing, information sharing and application integration, Interoperability, project collaboration, service oriented architecture, Stanford University, Supply Chain, supply chain interoperability, Web Portal Technologies
AbstractCollaboration and interoperability plays a very significant role in a construction supply chain. The lack of information sharing and software interoperability hampers coordination and collaboration among project participants, which are crucial to the success of a supply chain. As the Internet becomes ubiquitous and instantaneously accessible, the web services model has emerged as a promising approach to support supply chain collaboration and achieve interoperability. This report discusses a web service framework to connect, invoke and integrate loosely coupled, heterogeneous information sources and software applications. Specifically, web portal technology is leveraged to implement the web services platform and to provide a robust and customizable user interface. The issues of information ownership rights and proprietary privacy may hinder information sharing among companies in a centralized portal system. A decentralized portal network architecture is introduced to promote sharing of information and to enable distributed computing. This report presents the prototype webbased platform, SC Collaborator, that is designed to support data exchange, information sharing and supply chain collaboration. The platform leverages open source technologies and implements the proposed distributed portal network architecture. Two example scenarios are included to demonstrate the potential of the SC Collaborator system in managing information flows in AEC activities and facilitating interoperability.
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