Even in the case of technological standards, it seems there can be too much of a good thing. So it goes with XML, which, a decade following its inception, is now entrenched as the lingua franca of B2B and intra-company communications not just for the insurance industry, but also for the digital universe as a whole.

Insurance technologists, who have always needed to move information around in a way that was standard and convenient, can hardly be faulted for falling hard for the open standard. Indeed, the data-intensive nature of the industry coupled with the ever-widening array of agents, vendors and regulators the typical insurers digitally interacts with, have made communication standards a necessity both internally and externally.

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