ICE stands for Information and Content Exchange. On October 27, 1998, after more than a year of private development, a press summit was held in San Francisco to announce the completion of this new XML-based Web protocol. The press event was held to celebrate the completion of the ICE Version 1.0 and to provide the first public look at the new standard. On October 28th,1998, W3C acknowledged the submission of a note on ICE. Now in June 2004, a new, Web Services compliant version, ICE 2.0 has been released to support industrial strength syndication for the next generation of the Web.
The mission of the ICE protocol is to facilitate the controlled exchange and management of electronic assets between partners and affiliates across the Web. Applications based on ICE allow companies to easily construct syndicated publishing networks by establishing Web Services based information networks.
The ICE specification provides businesses with an XML-based common language and architecture that facilitates automatic exchanging, updating, supplying and controlling of assets in a trusted fashion without manual packaging or knowledge of remote Web site structures. For consumer Web sites, end users benefit from more complete, easier-to-use Web destinations that reduce the frustration of having to surf through many inadequate narrowly focused Web sites to find what they need.
The ICE specification, originally developed in 1998 by a community of 80 content providers and software venders, provides businesses with an XML-based common language and architecture that facilitates automatic delivery, updating and managing content assets in a trusted fashion without manual packaging or knowledge of remote Web-site structures. With the development of this major revision to the ICE Specification, robust content syndication is supported in a Web Services environment for the first time.
According to Dr. Richard Martin, Chairman of the ICE2 Specification Development Committee, "For Version 2.0 of the ICE protocol, it was critical to consider integration of Web Services related standards for the ICE2 definition. Given that ICE content syndication and the Web Services standards are squarely focused on distributed computing space, the synergy between the two sets of standards should be exploited to make ICE2 more complete and easier to adopt.”
Dianne Kennedy, Vice President of Publishing Technologies for IDEAlliance and Editor of the ICE 2.0 Specification, commented, “Unlike RSS and other light-weight syndication protocols, ICE 2.0 is designed to support industrial-strength content syndication. It provides for subscription management, verification of delivery, and scheduled delivery in both push and pull modes. ICE is the protocol for syndicators who are distributing ‘valued content’ that generates a revenue stream or requires guaranteed delivery in a secure environment. Today ICE holds promise for enabling new content syndication for the iPad and other mobile tablet publishing platforms.”