The name was chosen in the 1990s to have a multimedia feel with the mnemonic expanding to "objects, persistence, events, replication and access control".
The focus of Opera group research has continued to be the design and deployment of open, large-scale, widely distributed systems. Two major thrusts are in the areas of asynchronous middleware - the Cambridge Event Architecture (CEA) and, more recently, Hermes and SBUS - and an open, role-based, access control architecture for secure interworking services: OASIS. These areas are interrelated in that access control is needed on event registration and notification and events are needed for timely revocation of access rights.
A third area, policy management, originated from our work on access control but has wide application which we are exploring in a number of projects. Also growing out of access control and policy is work on wide area and ubiquitous computation based on trust.
Recent work under the SmartFlow grant has focussed on distributed information flow control (IFC). Here, policy is enforced not only at the boundaries of system components but end-to-end. The CloudSafetyNet grant will explore how IFC can make cloud computing more secure.