XML / EDI Basics

Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) between organizations means an automated exchange of information. This information is most often a business transaction documents which are sent electronically between one or more corporation systems without human intervention. Therefore EDI concept does not include regular documents such as PDF or e-mail. In these cases, even though the data is transmitted electronically to the recipient, the data is in the form in which it is not easy for a machine to interpret and process further automatically.

EDI was based from the late 1980s to the early 2000s to the EDIFACT syntax and UN/EDIFACT message standard and its derivatives under the oversight of the United Nations Centre for Trade Facilitation and Electronic Business (UN/CEFACT). At the turn of the 2000's, the XML became more common with an effect of different XML data formats appearing alongside of the EDIFACT. Today, the new message standards are based almost exclusively on XML and JSON. Use of the existing EDIFACT message specifications is still common.

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