What is FDC3? An Overview
The goal of FDC3 (Financial Desktop Connectivity and Collaboration Consortium) is to provide universal connectivity and standards for all desktop applications for the finance industry. Think of the standards (referred to as FDC3 standards or simply FDC3) as a common language for financial applications to be able to communicate with each other. By use of this common language, FDC3 enables faster decision-making, improves productivity, and streamlines workflows through interoperability of desktop applications.
In October 2017, Cosaic (along with over twenty banks and capital markets solution providers) joined together to create the FDC3 working group. Much like the now ubiquitous Financial Information eXchange (FIX®) standard, the goal was to create vendor-neutral standards to achieve connectivity and foster choice—specifically across applications on the desktop. To this day, FDC3 standards are owned, maintained and developed through the collaborative efforts of the FDC3 community—40+ members that include the major smart desktop platforms (such as Finsemble), application vendors, and many buy- and sell-side firms. Since 2018, FDC3 has resided within FINOS—the Fintech Open Source Foundation.
In the same way that FIX created a common protocol for server-side communication between systems, FDC3 would enable desktop applications to communicate with each other via a common protocol.
Check out TABB Forum article from April 2021
The Fabric of Capital Markets: How FDC3 Standards Mirror the FIX Path to Ubiquity
FDC3 Desktop Agent API
The foundation of FDC3 is the desktop agent API (Application Programming Interface), which is a single interface that any application developer can write to (whether it’s an in-house built app or a vendor application) in order to add interoperability to their application. Think about the FDC3 API as an agreement between existing platforms and applications. It’s a consistent interface for developers working with FDC3.
The landscape of application interconnectivity is evolving right before our eyes. In the background, is FDC3.
On the road to better user experiences, having access to an open API for interoperability is the first step, learning how to use it is the second. The team at Cosaic is always ready to support you on that journey. We provide a high-quality solutions engineering service to our clients and partners, ready to provide guidance on how best to integrate interoperability into their applications and how best to leverage it within their smart desktops.
FDC3 1.2 is Here
With this announcement comes the news that Cosaic Director of Solutions Engineering Kris West has been appointed FDC3 Co Lead-maintainer. We’re proud to have Kris represent Finsemble in the FINOS working group.
In this post, Kris West walks through what’s new with FDC3 1.2, such as “Raise intent for context.” Simply put – you can ask a desktop agent what’s possible with a piece of context and receive a list of intents/actions.Read the blog post
FDC3 Fast and Easy: Workbench Demo
As desktop interoperability gains momentum, application vendors must prepare for expectations from clients who look for FDC3-enabled applications to join their integrated desktops. If you are a developer struggling to get your FDC3 compliance project off the ground – look no further. The new open-source FDC3 workbench accelerates adding FDC3 support to your app and provides a test harness for developers to validate FDC3 compliance – at no cost.
FAQs & Resources
FDC3 is gaining traction as a practical approach to desktop connectivity. As a result, many people want to learn it, but aren’t sure where to start. We at Cosaic are committed to FDC3, and want you to be successful. Here are some FDC3 resources and learnings that can help you get going.
Context Data and Intents: The Core Standards of FDC3.
In any multi-step workflow, there are actions and responses to actions. These actions are composed of data context and intents—the core of FDC3. An easy way to think about context is “nouns” such as ticker symbol. Intents can be thought of as an action, such as open a chart. In this post, we’ll break down two key specifications of FDC3 to give them a closer look.
What Does FDC3 In Action Look Like?
When you are thinking about getting applications to talk to each other, what do they need to do? The first thing to find out is if FDC3 is supported. Finsemble fully supports any FDC3 API. For more developer information, check out developer details here.
Advanced Workflows with FDC3 and Finsemble
The FDC3 specification is focused on context data, intents, and directory of applications that can handle context and intents. Passing a message (context data) and an action request (an intent) is certainly powerful, and enables synchronization of context (all of your apps updating at the same time) and launching an app with context. Real-world workflows like responding to an RFQ, handling a trade break, or doing pre-trade analysis require many more steps, dependencies between applications, and state management.
FDC3 is necessary, but not sufficient to enable these kinds of real-world use cases. As the standard evolves, it will continue to grow and support more complex workflows. But the reality for now and likely into the future is that extending beyond the standard is critical. As you look to build or buy a desktop interoperability platform, this is a key consideration – mapping out target workflows and identifying critical capabilities required to enable them.Visit our workflows overview page
The Essential Guide to FDC3
Get to know the standards that pave the road to interoperability.
Download The Essential Guide to FDC3 to learn:
- What FDC3 is and what its goals are.
- Why FDC3 matters so much for the future of the financial smart desktop.
- FDC3 basics, including API, context, intents, and application directory.
- How FDC3 is at the heart of interoperability, but is by no means a complete solution.
Plugging in with FDC3
How to boost your application usage and become an integral part of trader workflow
This whitepaper aims to provide guidance around the following:
- Open Standard, Open Market: What is FDC3, what an FDC3 environment actually looks like, and why FDC3 is being embraced
- Hubs and Spokes: What’s required to get value from an FDC3-enabled environment as a best-of-breed point solution or a major vendor
- Plugging In: How, why, and when to become involved as a vendor