The three biggest organisations in the world involved in driving digital workflow standards – the EBU, SMPTE and AMWA – have penned a formal agreement that will see them co-operating on future media-related standards, and establishing closer links with users to speed up the standard-setting process, writes George Jarrett.
“The aim is to identify common points where we have issues to discuss, and digital workflows are high on the agenda,” said EBU Deputy Technical Director and SMPTE Engineering VP Hans Hoffman, pictured here (right) with Lieven Vermaele, Barbara Lange and Brad Gilmer.
“So are the evolution of media, new innovative technologies, identifying the best user input, and moving the standards process in a direction where it meets the demands of the market.
“This is about setting software standards, software life cycle management, and how we can define a common denominator across the world on user requirements.”
EBU Technical Director Lieven Vermaele added: “It is fundamental to have some basic understanding that will define how the processes in the industry will work together to create new interoperability of processes, equipment and software applications.”
Vermaele wants the cost of integrations to reduce. “They are a big burden on organisations now,” he said. “The three partners will exchange and maybe align our programs of activities so we can get the maximum out of this alignment. Senior managers will come together annually and the agenda will be channelled down to the expert level.”
SMPTE executive director Barbara Lange admitted that setting standards quicker was one of the issues reviewed. “SMPTE follows proper due process and we want to maintain integrity, but at the same time we recognise that speed is of the essence in some of these software areas,” she said. ”These standards, processes and specs really rely on user feedback, something all three organisations need. It is quite a formal agreement, but we only had our first meeting here at IBC. We will continue that at a managerial level and at the same time set up an efficient user forum.”