The RESO / RETS meetings in Chicago were exciting and there were some important takeaways.
The first is that the effort to create a functional standards organization is coming to fruition. The organization is incorporated, it’s raised $300k in the first three months of 2012, and hopefully soon can start staffing and spending the money needed to move standards forward faster and more reliably than volunteers could on our own.
The new process for getting things done will be as follows:
– Projects submitted & vetted through R&D Workgroup
– Board of Directors Sets Priorities
– Volunteers solicited
– Workgroups chartered
* Purpose outlined
* Scope defined
* Deadlines set
* Board Liaison
* Volunteer Lead
– Deliverable open for comment
– Ratification by Board of Directors
There are two huge projects which I’m very excited about: The Data Dictionary and the New Transport.
The Data Dictionary addresses one of the most common criticisms of RETS – “How can there be a data standard when every MLS has such different data and developers have to figure out all the custom MLS fields when they go from MLS market to MLS market?” Finally, there is a very robust set of common field names and values that MLS technology providers can “map” the local fields into, and the vendor can easily move their sofware from market to market without so much effort. The latest version is here:http://rets.org/cms/files/RESO%20Dictionary_757%20Fields_2-22-2012.xls – but note that some changes are still in progress – we were talking about lots of little changes just this morning. It’s expected that this new dictionary will be approved very soon. Rob Larson lead that effort, and he and the rest of the workgroup did a fabulous job.
The goal of the New Transport is to make RETS much, much easier to program for, using common technologies (HTTPS POST method, OData protocol, REST interface, and JSON data format) and to create a “light weight” way to move the data that will make a lot more sense for mobile devices. I’m not going to get into the technical details here, especially since a lot of them are still up in the air – some high level goal setting was done during the RETS meetings and the workgroup is just getting started and it will settle a lot of the details.
Another important effort to look forward to is that a new compliance checker will be built, so that compliance with standards can be monitored. That will be especially needed as NAR and RESO push for adoption of the new versions of the RETS standard so people can start taking advantage of all of the improvements.
This is really exciting stuff, if you’re a real estate technology person, anyway.
Remember, for this to succeed, RESO needs support. If you haven’t yet signed up to support RESO, you can do so here:
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