Alexandria, Va., September 4, 2003 - The Accredited Standards Committee (ASC) X12 is pleased to announce its first-ever Kickoff Event, featuring keynote presenter Rita E. Knox, Ph.D., Gartner, Inc., along with an integrated program on ASC X12's Extensible Markup Language (XML) architecture, called Context Inspired Component Architecture (CICA). The event, which will take place Sept. 29 at the Sheraton San Diego & Marina, will demonstrate how individuals can build XML business documents using CICA in ASC X12's cross-industry setting, from submitting a project proposal to outputting XML schema.

Dr. Knox believes that ASC X12's CICA is one of the best approaches available and likely to have long-term success. In her keynote presentation at the Kickoff Event, she will discuss how organizations can leverage CICA and, as a result, leverage their participation in ASC X12 to ensure a significant return on investment.

"The proliferation of XML-defined standards can lead to millions of dollars of lost effort and may cause different parts of the same company to process conflicting XML messages that compromise business critical transactions and operations," said Dr. Knox. "Without a common framework for how XML-defined standards are developed, there is little hope that the savings, economic advantages, and enhanced enterprise integration possible with XML will be realized."

ASC X12 members are using CICA in their standards development initiatives taking place in a majority of ASC X12's subcommittees. ASC X12 is currently organized into nine subcommittees: education administration, finance, government, insurance, materials management, procurement and distribution, and transportation, with communications and controls (architecture) and technical assessment subcommittees to harmonize and provide technical guidance to subcommittees efforts.

"We are honored to have Dr. Knox present both her projections on XML standards development and recommendations on the evolution of X12's XML architecture at the onset of our ASC X12 meeting," said ASC X12 Chairman David R. Barkley, Director of eCommerce Relations for Freddie Mac. "We encourage and invite members and nonmembers alike to learn how their organizations can use ASC X12 to simplify and reduce the cost of manual and tedious data exchange transactions by attending this interactive event."

To view the full agenda for the ASC X12 Kickoff Event, visit http://www.x12.org/x12org/meetings/x12trimt/kickoff.cfm. There is no registration fee for ASC X12 members. Nonmembers are invited to attend and to learn in one information-packed day about ASC X12's XML architecture and how their organizations can streamline and simplify their business transactions while expanding their trading partner base. The registration fee for nonmembers is $145. Visit http://www.x12.org/x12org/meetings/x12trimt/index.cfm#reg to register for the ASC X12 Kickoff Event.

About the Accredited Standards Committee X12
The Accredited Standards Committee X12, accredited by the American National Standards Institute and comprised of cross-industry representation, develops robust e-business exchange standards in X12 electronic data interchange (EDI) and XML formats that interact with a multitude of e-business technologies and serve as a premier tool for integrating electronic applications. Through standards-setting and active participation in emerging and technically relevant initiatives, ASC X12 facilitates the effective exchange of electronic information. Propelling global e-business, ASC X12 is an active contributor to the United Nations/Electronic Data Interchange for Administration, Commerce and Transport (UN/EDIFACT), an international standard relating to the exchange of good and services. To learn more about ASC X12, visit www.x12.org or call 703-548-7005.