The Open Grid Forum (OGF) standards body has officially opened for business, following its formation in June.

The OGF defined its mission "to accelerate grid adoption to ensure business value and scientific discovery." With that in mind, the group will focus its efforts on two key areas over the coming 12 to 18 months, it said: serving as a forum for exchanging views on grid technology, and helping push forward much needed work on grid software interoperability.

The OGF plans to release a white paper in January to lay out the case for grid technology adoption within IT systems, and has already set up a new committee to work on developing a technical strategy and road map around grid software interoperability.

The OGF was formed when the Global Grid Forum (GGF) and the Enterprise Grid Alliance (EGA) decided to merge. The two groups first announced plans to unify their efforts in February and officially took the plunge to become a single group, the OGF, in June.

In the past, despite focusing on different constituencies, and with the GGF more closely aligned with the grid needs of IT vendors and the EGA with the requirements of enterprise users, the two groups sometimes appeared at odds with each other. This seeming conflict gave rise to speculation that a single organisation might better serve everyone's needs.

In organisational terms, the OGF has set up a 15-strong board. Members of the board include executives from EMC, HP, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, Oracle and Sun.

Heading up operations for the standards body is Mark Linesch as president, the former chairman of GGF. Alongside Linesch are seven vice presidents, with areas of focus including the enterprise, e-science, standards and two regional functions for Europe, the Middle East and Africa and Asia.