Google, Facebook, Twitter, and Microsoft launched a new open source project aimed at making it easier for users to transfer data between services without having to download it and upload it to another service.
The use cases for this type of open source software are wide ranging. For example, an end user could use it to export photos stored in a social media platform to another service. Or a company could use it to move customer data from a competitor that is going out of business to its system so end user data is not lost.
According to a white paper drafted by the group, the initiative, called Data Transfer Project (DTP), will support existing standards (like OAuth and REST) and is designed so it doesn’t impact the core infrastructure. Service providers can build adapters and create import and export functionality that works with their existing APIs and authorization mechanisms.
DTP has three main components: Data models, which are the canonical formats that establish how to transfer data; Adapters, which provide a way to convert propriety data and authentication formats that are usable; and the Task Management Library, which powers the system.
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