Microsoft Corp. announced availability of the first draft specifications of the BizTalk Framework, a new BizTalk.Org Web site and charter members of the BizTalk steering committee. These BizTalk Framework initiatives aim to accelerate the widespread adoption of XML for electronic commerce and application integration. Draft specifications for BizTalk Framework Tags and BizTalk Framework Documents have been published on the BizTalk.Org Web site at www.biztalk.org/. The draft BizTalk Framework specifications outline XML design guidelines for developing and implementing BizTalk Framework schemas and provide organizations with an initial blueprint for building BizTalk-enabled software. The BizTalk steering committee, composed of industry-leading vendors, standards bodies and corporate customers, will independently manage the BizTalk.Org Web site and provide guidance on the future direction of the BizTalk Framework. Charter members include American Petroleum Institute, Ariba Inc., The Baan Co., The Boeing Co., Commerce One Inc., Concur Technologies Inc., Data Interchange Standards Association (DISA), J.D. Edwards, Merrill Lynch & Company Inc., Microsoft, Open Applications Group (OAG), PeopleSoft Inc., Pivotal Software Inc. and SAP AG. The BizTalk.Org Web site serves as an open repository for the submission and publication of BizTalk Framework schemas that will allow organizations to easily integrate applications and exchange documents such as product catalogs, purchase orders, and product and promotional information. This Web site will serve as the online reference for BizTalk Framework specifications, schemas, reference materials, tools, sample applications and a community newsgroup. www.microsoft.com/industry/biztalk.