The Methods and Tools Special Interest Group met from 5 pm till 6:30 pm Central European Time.




U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (represented by Bill BARRETT), AmsterCHEM (represented by Jasper van BATEN), Bryan Research & Engineering (represented by Michael HLAVINKA), Michel PONS (Contractor to CO-LaN as Chief Technology Officer)


After briefly reviewing the current position regarding Windows XP support in COBIA, the conference call focused on the proposal of a common interface specification for reporting. This reporting interface is in the scope of COBIA, the specific reporting interface for Unit Operations being abandoned for a reporting interface common to all PMCs.

Progress was made both on the textual specification and on the IDL. Major changes agreed upon are:

  • The report format will be stated as a MIME-type. The rationale is that this is an approach standardized across platforms, and COBIA is aiming for a multi-platform solution. Also using MIME-types leaves additional possibilities open for the future.
  • There will be two different operations for a PME to request a report to be provided by a PMC. One operation will be targeted at plain text reports (CapeString) and the other one at reports in binary formats so provided as a file.
  • The PME will be able to get the information in which language reports are made available by the PMC and consequently will be able to request a report in a specific language. In order to mention languages, the specification will rely on a representation of languages already standardized. The point is to avoid having CO-LaN defining its own standard of naming languages while such a standard has already been worked out. The reporting common interface will need to consider the case of no language attached to a given report, such as an image.
  • A brief review of the Use Cases defined in the textual specification was done, leading to a simplification in the number of actors considered and also in the consideration that secondary CAPE-OPEN objects are not supposed to expose the reporting common interface.

Next meeting of the Methods & Tools Special Interest Group will be held as a conference call on February 14, 2018.



Picture of Bill BARRETT (US EPA representative) in December 2018Contact Bill BARRETT (representative of US Environmental Protection Agency, leader of the Methods & Tools Special Interest Group) should you wish to join the Methods & Tools Special Interest Group. Its charter is: “Improve integration, and expand utilization of Computer-Aided Process Engineering (CAPE) applications within the enterprise through identification and resolution of existing cross-cutting issues with the CAPE-OPEN platform, develop mechanisms for use of CAPE within other application domains, and incorporate advances in information technology into the CAPE-OPEN platform.”