|The goal of the ASSET Project is to create a strong European pole in the field of large scale 'Information Technology' distributed systems and applications. This project, through a 4 year workplan, will, step by step, help the creation of a European pole of attraction, through the definition of common de facto standards for distributed platforms and application software development. It will strengthen the European position in the field of integration of heterogeneous systems and interoperability, and improve the efficiency of development of large distributed systems The ASSET project will start from many results obtained in the different past and present internal or co-operation projects, involving the participants and focusing on users' needs in Europe. To reach these objectives, the project has been organised around 5 main areas: - Software and System Engineering - A Common Platform for Distributed Systems - User Application Services - High Performance Servers and Communication - Interoperability and Performance Evaluation. For each area, emphasis will be put on a common European position and the need for getting quick short-term results, while preparing a medium term product evolution. The main results forecast will be: - A common development method including modelling aspects. - A common distributed platform allowing integration of the different products of the European actions in a common frame, compatible with the worldwide open standards scenario. - Common application programming interfaces allowing share and exchange of application software between different European companies. (this will give application development software houses a strong incentive to port or develop applications in those environments) - A joint integration and validation centre - A consistent set of products interoperating in a distributed environment - A common position in the different organisations promoting European de facto standards - Common joint potential products in some areas, to increase the synergy between companies The project will start with a first phase of one year (Phase I), allowing the set up of the project organisation, and management structure, the definition, integration and testing of the first version of the System Platform and the common Software Engineering Environment and will start developments in different areas. One of the most relevant objectives of the first phase is the creation of the network of technology providers, software industries, application developers and users who share ASSET's main objectives and strategy and will be part of the 'pole'.