EDI - (Electronic Data Interchange) - The electronic transmission of business related data (such as sales orders, shipping documents, purchase orders, invoices etc.) between business partners. Typically minimal human intervention is necessary for EDI and a hard copy (paper) print out is often optional. EDI is particularly popular with shipping and purchasing departments. The idea behind EDI is to keep track of information according to a standard format. Thus after the product is entered in a computer program; shipping, billing, purchasing, storage, transportation, etc. information can be added to its original file from connected computers along it's route.  This can dramatically cut down on the amount of paper, work and time expended related to those products. It may be necessary to have compatible computer programs and/or hardware.

See the Interactive Television Institute.