ANNOUNCE: The Authority Public Key Distribution Protocol (uses X SL and XML extensively)

Subject: ANNOUNCE: The Authority Public Key Distribution Protocol (uses X SL and XML extensively)
From: Ed Simon <ed.simon@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 6 Aug 1998 14:27:26 -0400

I thought subscribers to this list might be interested in a white paper just
published on Entrust's Web site.  The "Authority Public Key Distribution
Protocol" uses XSL extensively for transforming XML instances into legal
documents.  Here is a snippet from the whitepaper...

			The Authority Public-Key Distribution protocol
implements the legal, as well as the technical, requirements for
distribution of an authority's public key.  In the paper-based world, it is
common practice to use a standard template for the legal text, leaving
spaces for the specific details of a contract.  For example, an EDI trading
partner agreement uses generic legal text but leaves spaces within that text
so the human parties can write in details, such as the names of the parties,

			In the new world of electronic commerce, it becomes
possible to automate the negotiation of contracts defined by a standard
legal framework.  Appropriately, this automation of contract negotiations is
called "electronic contracting".  As in the paper world, the legal framework
is important, but if the legal framework has been standardized, the
negotiation becomes simpler because it can focus solely on the variable
parts of the contract (e.g.. the offer price).

			In the electronic world, XML (together with XSL)
allows the static and variable parts of a legal document to be both cleanly
separated and re-joined.  The separation of the variable information into
its own XML instance allows applications to focus on the variable parts of
the electronic contract.  Yet, if the full legal text (static and variable)
is required, an application can simply apply the XSL style sheet (containing
the static text) to the XML instance (containing the variable information)
to render a complete legal contract.

			The protocol described here uses the XSL style-sheet
proposal submitted to the W3C on August 27, 1997.  XSL was chosen because:
				*	it can query elements within an XML
instance no matter where, in the XML instance, those elements are located;
				*	it allows both the querying language
and the static text to be contained in a single XSL file.

			The XSL style-sheets are a mandatory part of the
protocol because it is important that both the offering and accepting
parties need not concern themselves with whether the presented legal text
really matches that given in this standard.  XSL provides an ideal way of
encapsulating the static legal text in a format that can be easily processed
by XML-aware applications.

The whitepaper can be retrieved from
"";; we would certainly
appreciate hearing from the XSL community as well as cryptographers.

Please send any comments about protocol details to "ed.simon@xxxxxxxxxxx".

Thanks in advance,
Ed Simon (Entrust Technologies)

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