From EDI to XML

For the past 25 years, Electronic Data Interchange has been the only real method for electronic transmission of business data between buyers and sellers. As we have already seen, however, although many large companies moved to develop EDI connections at least between their major trading partners, the combination of high maintenance overhead, expensive leased lines, and cumbersome protocol translations meant that EDI was too complicated and too expensive for all but the largest buyers and their key suppliers. It has always been prohibitively expensive for small firms—suppliers or buying companies. It is safe to say that any company that can afford to have an EDI link probably already has it. In fact, only 300,000 firms worldwide ...

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