S. J. Caughey , D. B. Ingham and P. Watson , "Metabroker: A Generic Broker for Electronic Commerce", Technical Report 635, pp. 1-13, Department of Computing Science, University of Newcastle upon Tyne, March 1998.
In traditional commerce, brokers act as middlemen between customers and providers, aggregating, repackaging and adding value to products, services or information. In the broadest sense of the term newspapers, travel agents and department stores can all be thought of as performing a brokering role. In today's Web, such services are lacking, with the result that individuals are forced to manually discover, collate and analyse information to meets their needs. In this paper, we highlight the requirement for brokering services for electronic commerce and describe the design of the Metabroker system, a generic framework for creating electronic brokers. The aim is to provide a framework that provides commonly-required functionality and support for popular communication protocols and data formats. Specialist brokers are then created by populating the base framework with the necessary business logic to support the area of speciality of the broker. Our design integrates distributed object, metadata and object database technologies.
Keywords: electronic commerce; brokering; metadata; distributed objects