GJXDM National Virtual Help Desk Goes Live

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The IJIS Institute announced today the GJXDM Help Desk is live and available to all users on the Internet at http://it.ojp.gov/gjxdm/helpdesk/. The Help Desk serves government and industry computer solution developers who are working on implementing the Global Justice XML Data Model (GJXDM). During the one month beta testing period, which ended in August 2005, the GJXDM Knowledgebase site received a significant number of hits, and Help Desk staff received a substantial number of positive feedback and inquiries. More than a conventional help desk, the GJXDM Help Desk contains a significant Knowledgebase users can access over the Web, and then submit unanswered questions via the Web, email or telephone. The Help Desk is staffed in three levels of response. Tier 1 is staffed directly by the IJIS Institute to provide the basic responses to questions and build the Knowledgebase in addition to managing the project. Specific domain expertise is available as Tier 2 support from the National Center for State Courts and SEARCH, The National Consortium for Justice Information and Statistics. Further support from technical expertise of IJIS Institute member companies and the Georgia Tech Research Institute is available for the most difficult technical questions.

The goal of the GJXDM Help Desk is to respond to developers within 24 hours whenever possible. The operation will keep open hours of 9 am to 8 pm eastern time to ensure service to the west coast during afternoon hours.

Funding from the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), started the project as begun by the IJIS Institute, and funded most of the planning effort. Once plans were in place, the U.S. Department of Transportation provided additional funding to ensure that the Help Desk will assist developers in getting questions answered about the exchange of information between intelligent transportation systems and public safety communications centers or computer aided dispatch systems.

The XML Advisory Committee of the IJIS Institute is the basic steering committee for the Help Desk having created the concept of operations and providing significant contributions to the Knowledgebase contained in the Help Desk. Mike Hulme, enterprise system architect at UNISYS, who is Chairman of the XML Advisory Committee, stated, "This collaborative effort is exactly what we have needed to spread the knowledge about how to implement the GJXDM in order to accelerate the implementation of this important standard throughout the nation."

The fundamental idea of creating such a virtual help desk was originated in the GJXDM Training and Technical Assistance Committee (GTTAC), a consortium of service providers that attempt to provide a consistent educational and support service to developers to encourage adoption of the GJXDM in ways that ensure interoperability. GTTAC is an adhocracy formed at the encouragement of BJA, and has been actively engaged in national training efforts. The software supporting the GJXDM Help Desk is provided by Right Now, a company with considerable experience in implementing large scale help desks for various governmental and private organizations. The Center for Advanced Defense Studies assisted in the development of GJXDM Knowledgebase.

For more information, contact Paul Wormeli, Executive Director, IJIS Institute at paul.wormeli@ijis.org.