The Project

Information for Business, Technical Participants, and Technology Users

What Is the OpenDOF Project?

The OpenDOF (Open Distributed Object Framework) Project is a secure, flexible, and interoperable open-source software framework enabling the development of scalable and reliable network services based on connected objects.

While the OpenDOF Project enables Internet of Things (IoT) services, the flexibility of the OpenDOF Project means that it is not dependent on Internet networks. It can also work with a wide variety of networking technologies, and even connect with legacy systems already in the field. Thus, the OpenDOF Project can provide value not only for green field deployments, but also for bringing new life to incumbent systems by bringing them forward into the connected era.

What Makes the OpenDOF Project Valuable?

In a market characterized by incompatible proprietary offerings, the OpenDOF Project brings a powerful new tool to developers and equipment makers to help them create what the market is calling for: interoperable and flexible services and applications leveraging the data from connected devices. Further, the OpenDOF Project’s flexibility means it can support a variety of use cases across many verticals.

Specifically, the technology behind the OpenDOF Project helps software developers easily develop useful and flexible networked services from a variety of components, from gateways to cloud services. The OpenDOF Project is tailored for services in two major areas. The first is collecting data from devices such as sensors. The second is the remote control of devices. These two are complementary. For example, a service could ask a device to perform a certain operation based on an analysis of sensor data collected from the device’s environment.

The OpenDOF Project’s framework brings these core capabilities to developers:

  • Security: For the OpenDOF Project, security is not an afterthought; it was built from the beginning with security in mind. The OpenDOF Project supports a wide variety of encryption algorithms up to 256 bits in strength. The OpenDOF Project also builds in the authentication and access control of components in the service. The OpenDOF Project’s framework ensures that developers integrate these capabilities from the beginning of development, making them simple to enable.
  • Distributed Capabilities: The OpenDOF Project does not dictate reliance on a centralized cloud-controlled infrastructure. While the cloud will likely be an integral part of many services using the OpenDOF Project, services can also be implemented where components communicate with each other directly in a peer-to-peer fashion. This can enhance security since there is no centralized location for bad actors to attack. Components in a network that has been enabled by the OpenDOF Project can be meshed together so messages can be relayed among a number of components. This allows services to use broadly distributed components, even worldwide. From a security and survivability perspective, the way OpenDOF Project supports distributed topologies minimizes dependencies on a centralized infrastructure.
  • Interoperability: The OpenDOF Project framework ensures a consistent approach to the descriptions that service components use to communicate with each other. This means services using the OpenDOF Project can avoid using translators to change descriptions between components that otherwise could not communicate with each other. At its core, the OpenDOF Project framework is a complete protocol stack which can be used equally among the components that are typically used in device-focused connected services: clients for user interaction; gateways that work with multiple devices; and cloud services that may be used to gather, analyze, and propagate data from devices.