Do you speak XML? Devices do!
Until now, the existing standards for devices connectivity (CEN/XFS, J/XFS, JavaPOS), have been orientated towards either an operating system or a specific programming language. Taking into account that a device receives information (commands), processes it and sends an answer, the most appropriate way to communicate with them would be a standard messaging format and not a programming language (C, C++ or Java). This is one of the reasons for the creation of Xpeak.
Xpeak aims to become the standard for devices management, not only in the financial arena, but also for all market types. It is a question of creating a standard which is independent of the operating system and the programming language, as well as of the communications interface which is used to send messages in XML format (Sockets, SOAP, WebServices, USB, etc...).
Xpeak is not an acronym and the name itself is indicative of its main objective: to speak using Xml. It aims to homogenise the messaging between an application and a device; to communicate independently of the language used by the application. In fact, it is possible that it could achieve an architecture in which, to give one example, an application could be developed in Java and use Xpeak Services from different suppliers, some implemented in Java, other in C++ and still others in the device's firmware.
Xpeak does not claim to reinvent the wheel. Xpeak was created thanks to the experiences of the two most important existing standards on the market, CEN/XFS and J/XFS. These two standards are complex and slow evolving. In order to speed up the evolution process Xpeak will be updated, quickly and openly, by the users themselves, using the Internet as the means of communication rather than meetings requiring a physical presence. It will be all of the users who participate and not just a reduced group of hardware and software companies. Although neither CEN/XFS nor J/XFS prohibit entrance to anybody, the reality is that the final users do not participate directly in their definition. Xpeak aims to break this barrier.
Finally, Xpeak is not only a collection of device access definitions. Xpeak was created with a complete open source software solution (Xpeaker), which on one hand allows the users to begin to work with test tools, debug tools, form designer and even real Xpeak Services (dispensers, printers, card readers etc), and on the other hand allows the hardware and software companies to work with complete skeletons for the development of their own Xpeak Services.