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Communications of the ACM

Communications of the ACM

Standards: Heading format for data transmission (A USAAI) tutorial

This paper is for information purposes and is intended as a comprehensive thought-provoking collection of the major aspects and considerations influencing Heading Format for Data Transmission. Information processing systems of today have outgrown the confines of the attended and isolated system environment. They now perform information interchange via communication networks, often with many real-time aspects. This interconnection of information processing systems via communciations networks requires that the two (or mo re) stations performing information interchange operate by agreed upon information formats. It is the intent of this paper to discuss the uses and organization of all known items that might be included in one type of information format: Heading Format. This paper is an attempt to provide an all-inclusive list of heading format items, thoroughly describle and discuss each item, and arrange the items in a logical sequence. This will establish a comprehensive heading format item sequencing list that individual message transfer systems may draw on to obtain consistent and usable message formats. It is not proposed that all heading format items or even that any one particular heading format item be mandatory for any system. This paper explores the implications of the use of heading format for generalized information generalized information interchaneg and the criteria on which a future heading format standard could be based. The following guidelines were used as a basis for the Task Group's work on message formats. The initial goal of the Task Group should be to prepare a tutorial paper on message formats. In the future, the Task Group may wish to prepare a standard covering message formats if this is found to be desirable. The Task Group should avoid message format (heading) definitions that are too narrow in scope; that is, a message heading should not be defined in such a manner that it is only applicable to a relatively small class of systems (e.g. store-and-forward). The doctrine for the use of message headings should be such that, by logical extension, it can meet the needs of communication systems that have different degrees of sophistication.

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