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Akara Summit March, 2010

Akara 2.0 is an open-source (Apache2 license) Web framework specialized for RESTful data services, especially involving XML and other semi-structured formats. Akara is a tool for data architects and developers who express data models and create transforms based on these data models, plugging required inputs and outputs (XML, JSON, CSV, Atom, etc.) together into pipelines which implement the desired services. These services are made available on the Web using simple wrappers based on REST concepts, among other things making it easy to discover and reuse the services, and to connect them to local and remote systems using Web triggers (AKA Web hooks).

Akara simplifies extract-transform-load (ETL), data-driven integration of systems, and makes it easy to wrap Web sites and services, turning tag soup and painful APIs into clean, RESTful end-points. Zepheira uses Akara heavily, in projects for The Library of Congress and Semio Clinical, among others, and provides commercial data transform services via Akara.

At the beginning of March 2010, in Boulder, Colorado, Zepheira hosted a summit and sprint for development on the project, with invited developers from Zepheira’s extended network, and its clients. The focus was on solidifying the open source project, and working on improvements motivated by recent deployments of Akara. The summit was held at Boulder Millennium Harvest House. Topics ranged from rules-based XML processing in streaming mode (for high performance) to improved support for HTTP Caching, packaging, deployment, internationalization and more. Zepheira team members Uche Ogbuji and Mark Baker led the proceedings. Andrew DalkeĀ posted notes on the proceedings.

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