ISO/IEC JTC 1/IGBT N029

Imaging and Graphics Business Team Report

24 December 1998

Table of contents

1 Executive Summary

2 Background

3 Approach

4 Status report

Attachment 1: Document Register

Attachment 2: Participants

Attachment 3: Steering Committee

1 Executive Summary

This is the report of the Imaging and Graphics Business Team (IGBT) to the JTC 1 Plenary meeting in January 1999. The team began operations in July 1998 following it's authorization at the last JTC 1 Plenary. Two public meetings were held, one in Orlando Florida USA on 26 July 1998 and the second in Seoul, Republic of Korea on 13 November 1998. About thirty people attended the Orlando meeting In Seoul, there was a meeting with key business leaders in the morning followed by a presentation to an audience of 360 people in the afternoon.

The team's web site will remain available indefinitely and is located at:

http://www.globalcollaboration.org/jtc1/igbt/

Organization: The leader of the IGBT was advised by a Steering Committee composed of managers and technologists with a strong interest in graphics and imaging [Attachment 3]. Team activities were divided into two focus areas: Business and Government and Technology. The Technology Focus was further subdivided into four Working Groups:

  • Synthetic Environments
  • Interaction
  • Fundamental Objects
  • Archiving and Distribution

The number of participants in each area (based on e-mail reflector sign ups) is given in Table 1. Based on those who took the time to fill in the registration information on the www site, 57 people from 13 countries signed up. Completing this information was not a requirement for participation since you could separately join each activity by adding yourself to its e-mail reflector. The participants in the Archiving and Distribution Working Group are not listed in this report since the group was only recently formed. This information will be provided in the verbal report at Plenary.

Table 1. Participant Summary

Area

Number of Participants

Entire Business Team

66

Business Focus

36

Technology Focus

52

Synthetic Environments WG

40

Interaction WG

20

Fundamental Objects WG

21

Archiving and Distribution WG

not available

Results Summary: The IGBT was successful in reaching outside the traditional participants in JTC 1 standards and involving outside individuals and organizations. It was also successful in attracting a diverse and balanced set of participants from industry, academia and government. The IGBT was successful in identifying several areas where new International Standards might profitably be developed. The work of a more basic and longer term nature in the areas of Interaction and Fundamental Objects was successfully initiated but could not be completed within the time constraints of the IGBT.

Publicity and recruitment: The team's activities were difficult to promote. In spite of a JTC 1 press release and over 200 direct contacts to media representatives, the team's activities got little space in the press. The team was featured in articles in the ACM SIGGRAPH's publication Computer Graphics and in a few other specialized publications. Most participants were recruited directly by team members or heard about the team through some standards-related organization. The large number of other on-going ad-hoc and consortia activities in the area of graphics and imaging contributed to the difficulty of attracting dedicated participants.

Methodology: The IGBT did not attempt to conduct any surveys, produce any taxonomies, collect and analyze any requirements, or model any business processes. Such activities are an ongoing part of the business practices of the many firms and other organizations that contribute to the worldwide market for computer graphics and imaging technology, and the IGBT did not believe it necessary to attempt to duplicate this work. Instead, the team identified standards opportunities by seeking key areas with a substantial body of commercial practice that were at a point in the cycle of technology that International Standardization might be beneficial. Synthetic Environments and Archiving/Distribution were two such areas. The team also identified two other key areas - Interaction and Fundamental Objects - where it felt there was a substantial body of diverse commercial practice that could benefit from the standardization process to coalesce needless diversity and improve interoperability.

Recommendations: The recommendations of the IGBT to JTC 1 are:

  1. The IGBT will conclude its activities by the end of January 1999 and does not ask to be continued.
  2. It is appropriate to adopt new computer graphics and imaging International Standards to support the simulation and modeling community. One such area is standards to support modeling and exchange of Synthetic Environments. The Synthetic Environments Working Group expects to write a NP for this work before it concludes its work in late January 1999.
  3. Discussions concerning Interaction and Fundamental Objects are on going, have been profitable and should continue in another forum. JTC 1/ SC 24 should be invited to transition these discussions into Study Groups.
  4. Discussions concerning Archiving and Distribution are on going and a further report and any recommendations will be made during the report at the JTC 1 Plenary meeting.

2 Background

Recognizing that the fast paced evolution of information and communications technologies has created opportunities for standards-based solutions to meet the requirements of new and emerging markets, JTC 1 created the Imaging and Graphics Business Team (IGBT). The purpose of the business team was to identify opportunities for creating new International Standards by working with:

  • Business to identify market segments that require new standards;
  • Governments and public sector organisations to identify their unique requirements;
  • Graphics and imaging experts to agree on technologies suitable for standardisation;
  • Developers of standards outside of ISO and IEC to optimise the application of scarce resources.

Business Teams are a strategic planning activity of JTC 1, designed to reach outside the community of technologists within JTC 1 who develop International Standards and involve both leaders in business and government who are the users of standards as well as the trade associations, consortia and other organisations who develop standards. The area of information and communications technology addressed by the IGBT included all aspects standard formats and interfaces used for interaction with and presentation of, information, including but not limited to:

  • Computer graphics
  • Image processing
  • Single media, including animation, audio and video
  • Multimedia

3 Approach

3.1 Overview

The leader of the IGBT was advised by a Steering Committee composed of managers and technologists with a strong interest in graphics and imaging [Attachment 3]. The 12 members of this committee represented 4 countries as well as business, academia and government and were involved in all important decisions concerning how the IGBT operated. The Steering Committee developed and approved a set of written procedures under which the team operated.

The team's activities were divided into two focus areas:

  • Business and Government
  • Technology

The Technology Focus was further subdivided into four Working Groups:

  • Synthetic Environments
  • Interaction
  • Fundamental Objects
  • Archiving and Distribution

Participation in the IGBT was open to anyone and many of the participants had not previously participate in any recognized standards. Almost all work was accomplished electronically by the use of e-mail reflectors and the document register. The two meetings were mostly used to report to the public about the team's activities and to recruit new members.

3.2 Business Focus

One focus of the business team was working with business and government experts to determine future opportunities for computer graphics and imaging technology. This was important because an effective International Standard requires the combination of market opportunity with appropriate technology.

The Business and Government focus planned to work with information and communications technology companies to create opportunities for standards-based solutions to meet the requirements of new and emerging markets.

The plan was to:

  • Help business and industry identify and confirm market opportunities that can be created by new standards;
  • Allow governments and public sector organizations to provide their unique requirements;
  • Work with developers of standards outside of ISO and IEC to optimize the application of scarce resources;
  • Prioritize and select highest payoff and most synergistic areas for future exploration;
  • Recognize opportunities for JTC 1 (whose focus is "generic" Information Technology) to create broadly applicable standards from arcane and industry-specific solutions;
  • Recognize that multiple and even overlapping and/or conflicting solutions are required given the number and diversity of interested parties

Some of the areas identified by IGBT management as likely areas for exploitation were:

  • Support for the WWW and its future evolution, including the underlying Internet protocols and services.
  • Formats supporting access to information, including electronic documents and libraries; archives and public access to government information.
  • Support for 3D graphical environments, including their simulation and modeling aspects to include both environmental data necessary to describe and define the simulated or modeled entities and how those entities interact and the real-time interactions amongst elements of distributed simulations.
  • Generic models and descriptions of entities used in information presentation and interaction, including coded and compressed representations suitable for adoption in a wide range of specific application areas.

3.3 Technology Focus

Four working groups were formed within the Technology Focus:

  1. Synthetic Environments
  2. Interaction
  3. Fundamental Objects
  4. Archiving and Distribution

The following sub-clauses describe each of these in more detail.

3.3.1 Synthetic Environments

A synthetic environment is a representation of a natural or artificial environment, whose components are located in reference to a well-defined spatial origin and coordinate system. For representation of the natural environment, generally, this origin is either the sun or earth, however any celestial body (or even imaginary body) can be used. An important special case is that of geo-spatial locations referenced to the earth (including its surface, oceans, atmosphere and near space.) A synthetic environment includes terrain and terrain features (both natural and man-made); models of objects such as avatars, and certain localized features of the environment with complexity in structure or behavior (e.g., vehicles, buildings, smoke plumes, and tornados); the ocean (both on and below the surface); the ocean bottom including features (both natural and man-made) on the ocean floor; the atmosphere including environmental phenomena; and near space. In addition, a synthetic environment includes the attributes of the objects in the environment, as well as the relationships amongst the types of objects. The representation includes constraints necessary to insure correct automatically generated behaviors. These include topological and rule-based constraints.

The purpose of the Synthetic Environments Working Group was to address all aspects of support for the creation, authoring and interchange of synthetic environments. The scope of this Working Group included, but was not necessarily limited to, support for the creation of applications in these areas:

  • simulation and modeling, including simulation based design;
  • entertainment, including single user and multi-user games; and
  • instruction and training.  

The title "Synthetic Environments" was chosen to be neutral to:

  • media, (versus, for example, "Graphical Environments")
  • technology (for example, "world" is a VRML-specific term for a similar concept);

and to avoid the over-used term "Virtual" (for example, "Virtual Environments").

Modeling includes: 1. the descriptions of the objects within such environments, for example their graphical and/or aural manifestations; and 2. selected aspects of the behavior of the objects within the environment, including interactions amongst the simulated entities, as well as interactions between the environment and such entities, where the entities respond to events in the synthetic environment or influence the synthetic environment. The mechanism(s) to be used for behavior description are to be determined, and will likely include at least scripting and programming language based representations.

Specific aspects that the WG addressed or considered included:

  1. representational polymorphism;
  2. conceptual models of the represented objects;
  3. data interchange formats;
  4. APIs for reading, writing and/or accessing Synthetic Environments; and
  5. real-time interchange of environmental information.

Today, synthetic environments are created through a costly and time-consuming authoring process resulting in a platform-dependent database that supports a single application. One goal of the standards to be proposed by this working group is to enable re-use and sharing of such data between authoring systems, thereby eliminating the need to re-create each database from scratch and also enabling the creation of a market for lower-cost, shared synthetic environments and their components.

The goals and deliverables adopted by the group were:

  1. Determine if it is feasible to adopt International Standards in the area of synthetic environments. This includes determining:
    • the maturity of technical approaches to synthetic environments;
    • the degree of international consensus on the best technical approach(es);
    • the benefits (or detriments) of standardization in this area.
  2. As with all IGBT work, the plan is wherever possible to:
    • identify and harvest work already proven in commercial practice outside ISO and IEC, and
    • transpose that work into International Standards making only necessary and mutually agreed changes.
  3. The working group will determine the feasibility of using the proven work on the SEDRIS (Synthetic Environment Data Representation & Interchange Specification) project as a basis for one class of standards (non-real-time interchange among authoring systems) to be proposed by this working group. For more information about SEDRIS, please consult:
  4. www.sedris.org.

  5. Identify all other feasible base documents and approaches (if any exist).
  6. Write one or more New Work Item Proposals (NPs) for standards development so support synthetic environments.

The criteria for success were:

  1. If the group determines that an approach based on SEDRIS is feasible, then creation of an NP.
  2. If the group determines that an approach based on SEDRIS is not feasible, then a report documenting that fact to the IGBT with recommendations for further efforts (if any) in this area.

The leader of the Synthetic Environments Working Group is Karen Williams of the National Imagery and Mapping Agency in the United States ( [email protected] )

3.3.2 Interaction

Current advances in presentation technology have brought a wealth of nicely visualized information into homes and onto desktops. This achievement was the result of the well-orchestrated application of new techniques for data representation, integrated display processing, data compression and networking. Much of this orchestration was achieved through open, high level object oriented programming technology. While we have seen the first generation of multimedia platforms reach homes and offices, we have also observed the lack of the effective interaction tools required for end users to adequately deal with the flood of information from the new media. Because of this, growth in the market has slowed, creating lower than expected returns for the content creation industry.

The relative success of presentation technology owes much to the emergence of a commonly accepted architecture that has helped blend and focus innovation. This architecture is partly due to the pioneering work of standardization initiatives from both industry and academia. The purpose of the Interaction Working Group is to answer this question: "Should we develop an International Standard for Interaction?"

Classical Computer Graphics modeled input and output devices as two largely independent streams of information. If instead we treat interaction as a new, hybrid type of device that is neither purely input and output, but rather has aspects of both with control exercised over the relation between the two, we have a new paradigm that might lead to the new International Standards. It is the functionality that determines controlled relationships in interaction that needs to be thoroughly understood.

This is the area where standardization is deemed necessary. For additional details you may consult the Document IGBT N010, "Towards an IT Standard for Interaction" by Dr. Paul ten Hagen.

The purpose of the Interaction Working Group was to address all aspects of interactivity. The scope of this Working Group included, but was not necessarily limited to, support for the creation of applications in these areas:

  1. Navigation through and updating of large information bases, where part of the interaction resources are used to maintain the user's filter of interest. Such information systems require built-in links to presentation and navigation services that can accommodate a wide variety of platforms. A specific example is a web browser that can connect with any local interaction device(s).
  2. Person to person communications.
  3. Distributed interactive information systems, where the resulting interaction is composed from the interaction facilities of each subsystem and is transparent to the user.

Specific applications of interaction that were addressed or considered include:

  1. Dynamic context: Intensive interaction can be streamlined with appropriate contextual help. However the stronger the context, the better the explanatory features in the context must be.
  2. Behavior rather than predefined dialogue: Dialogue scenarios become dynamic and non-deterministic because the interpretative rules are distributed over independent agents each of whom may trigger a reaction independently.
  3. High degree multi-modality: Combine media both on the input side and on the output side and merge them into hybrid devices.
  4. Recognition process as a part of the input mechanism: This is possibly one of the most significant technological improvements that must be enabled and become economically feasible. The raw technology is available, but current software and hardware platforms are not yet ready for it.
  5. Automatic tracking and recording: Intensive interaction sessions create many reasons for tracking and recording. These include reuse, taking a second look at some significant phase, and remembering points of interest. Implementation implies that demon processes accompany interactive sessions, making themselves visible on demand.
  6. On the fly assistance: This can be thought of as an on-line spelling checker for complex interaction entities.
  7. Navigation paradigms.

Each of the above features can be realized by interaction that relates input and output.

The reasons why an International Standard for Interaction is desirable include:

  1. Users will benefit from a competitive market where they can choose their platform from the offerings of competing suppliers and still be able to run highly interactive applications without excessive investments in custom interaction devices or in learning new techniques.
  2. A user should be able to connect the interaction device repertoire of a given platform to the "interactors" of plug-in applications. Moreover, several such interactors should be able to be combined to create the interaction setting for the platform.
  3. Efficiency requires that interaction combine seamlessly with compression techniques. This may put another burden on the shoulders of compression experts.
  4. A user should be able to personalize his interaction options and thus create optimum personal ways of working.
  5. For our discipline to progress, we need to consistently move from the level of abstract composite values to the level of processes that stand for dynamic values, i.e. to new level of abstractions.

The goals and deliverables for this Working Group were:

  1. Determine if it is feasible to adopt International Standards in the area of Interaction. This includes determining:
    • the maturity of technical approaches to Interaction;
    • the degree of international consensus on the best technical approach(es);
    • the benefits (or detriments) of standardization in this area.
  2. As with all IGBT work, the plan was wherever possible to:
    • identify and harvest work already proven in commercial practice outside ISO and IEC, and
    • transpose that work into International Standards making only necessary and mutually agreed changes.
  3. Identify any base documents and approaches (if any exist).
  4. If the group decides that work in this area should proceed immediately, then write one or more New Work Item Proposals (NPs) for standards development to support Interaction. If the group decides that additional study is needed, make a recommendation on how (and especially in what forum) such a study should be conducted.

The leader of the Interaction Working Group is Drs. Paul ten Hagen of CWI in Amsterdam, The Netherlands ( [email protected] ).

3.3.3 Fundamental Objects

The purpose of the Fundamental Objects Working Group was to address the need for an International Standard(s) for the elemental or fundamental objects that underlie all forms of information presentation and interaction. Except in such very basic areas as Character Sets, today each standards committee (both inside of JTC 1 and outside) whose work touches on some aspect of presentation or interaction tends to invent their own application area-specific objects. This is because there are no International Standards for such objects except as part of a larger and often "monolithic" standard that is both too rich in its entirety for the intended application and not sufficiently customizable to meet special application requirements.

The Fundamental Objects Working Group was tasked with determining the feasibility of defining a set of semantic and syntactic models that could be used alone or in small sets with well-defined inter-relationships, to meet the needs of application-specific standards. Examples of such objects are geometric objects (points, lines, linear curves, surfaces, and solid objects - spheres, comes etc.), presentation attributes (color, size (for example, width of linear features, volume, start time), texture, smoothness, etc.), metadata objects (grouping, structure, application-specific information), input (location, path, selection), media objects (still image, moving images, sounds), communication objects (events, messages, etc) and behavior modeling (pre-planned behavior (animation) and interactions among objects within a scene based on physics or other considerations.)

The scope of this Working Group included support for the creation of applications in all areas. The work would lead to the specification of semantics and abstract syntax but not (necessarily) coded representations. This would allow the objects to be adopted by applications ranging from low bit rate ones (where very compact representations are required) to ones on higher speed networks (where clear text codings would place an emphasis on human understanding and editability of the coded representation.)

Specific aspects to be addressed or considered include:

  1. Is there sufficient support to develop such a standard?
  2. Does the existing body of standards developed by JTC 1/ SC 24 provide an acceptable foundation for the development of such a standard in minimal time?
  3. Should the resulting standard be "packaged" as additional parts of the International Standard Computer Graphics Reference Model (ISO/IEC 11072:1992)?

The goals and deliverables of this WG were:

  1. Determine if it is feasible to adopt International Standards in the area of Fundamental Objects. This includes determining:
    • the maturity of technical approaches to Fundamental Objects;
    • the degree of international consensus on the best technical approach(es);
    • the benefits (or detriments) of standardization in this area.
  2. As with all IGBT work, the plan is wherever possible to:
    • identify and harvest work already proven in commercial practice outside ISO and IEC, and
    • transpose that work into International Standards making only necessary and mutually agreed changes.
  3. In the case of Fundamental Objects, it is also possible that the base work has already been done within the ISO/IEC standards community, and the reverse of (2) above is most appropriate"
    • identify and seek to apply applicable portions of existing International Standards, and
    • seek to have organizations outside ISO and IEC utilize these standards making only necessary and mutually agreed changes.
  4. Identify all other feasible base documents and approaches (if any exist).
  5. If the group decides that work in this area should proceed immediately, then write one or more New Work Item Proposals (NPs) for standards development so support Fundamental Objects. If the group decides that additional study is needed, make a recommendation on how (and especially in what forum) such a study should be conducted.

The leader of the Fundamental Objects Working Group was Dr. George S. Carson of GSC Associates in the United States ( [email protected] ) .

3.3.4 Archiving and Distribution

The purpose of the Archiving and Distribution Working Group was to address the need for an International Standard(s) or for new or modified profiles of existing standards to better meet the needs of Information Archiving and Distribution. This WG dealt with the unique information presentation requirements of electronic libraries, archives, and of public access to information, including official records.

Specific aspects to be addressed or considered include:

  1. Is there a need for a new International Standard format for final form (printable or viewable) documents (such formats are often called "Portable Document Formats")
  2. Is there a need for new or enhanced International Standard(s) and/or profile(s) of existing standards for compressed representations for images to meet the unique requirements of libraries and archives.
  3. Is there sufficient support to develop such a standard?
  4. Does the existing body of standards developed by JTC 1/ SC 24 and/or JTC 1/ SC 29 provide an acceptable foundation for the development of such a standard in minimal time?

The goals and deliverables of the WG were:

  1. Determine if it is desirable to adopt new International Standards (or profiles of existing standards) in the area of Archiving and Distribution. This includes determining:
    • the maturity of technical approaches to Archiving and Distribution;
    • the degree of international consensus on the best technical approach(es);
    • the benefits (or detriments) of standardization in this area.
  2. As with all IGBT work, the plan is wherever possible to:
    • identify and harvest work already proven in commercial practice outside ISO and IEC, and
    • transpose that work into International Standards making only necessary and mutuallly agreed changes.
  3. In the case of Archiving and Distribution, it is also possible that the base work has already been done within the ISO/IEC standards community, and the reverse of (2) above is most appropriate"
    • identify and seek to apply applicable portions of existing International Standards, and
    • seek to have organizations outside ISO and IEC utilize these standards making only necessary and mutually agreed changes.
  4. Identify all other feasible base documents and approaches (if any exist).
  5. If the group decides that work in this area should proceed immediately, then write one or more New Work Item
  6. Write any necessary NPs for standards development to support Archiving and Distribution.
  7. If the group decides that additional study is needed, make a recommendation on how (and especially in what forum) such a study should be conducted.

3.3.5 Symposium on Standards for Imaging and Graphics

The Business Team organized and obtained sponsorship for an International Symposium on Standards for Imaging and Graphics. The primary sponsor of the workshop will be the Imaging and Graphics Business Team of ISO/IEC JTC 1. JTC 1 which is responsible for all International Standardization in the area of Information Technology. Funding and meeting facilities for the workshop will be provided by the Defense Systems Agency (DISA) of the US Department of Defense. At this point in cooperation sponsorship has been obtained from IFIP WG 5.10 and from Eurographics. This Symposium will be a "Eurographics Workshop." (Note that we are using the word "Symposium" rather than "Workshop" due to the special requirements that ISO places on an event called a Workshop.)

The workshop will be patterned after the two successful workshops that launched the last round of formal International Standards activities in computer graphics: the 1974 workshop at NBS (now NIST) in the US organized by Jim Foley and Ira Cotton on the Potential of Graphics Standards and the 1976 workshop sponsored by IFIP WG5.2 and convened by Richard Guedj in Seillac, France to consider the Methodology of Graphics Standards. The SIGGRAPH Graphics Standards Planning Committee (GSPC) was formed at the first of these workshops. Among those attending the second workshop were William Newman, Tom Sancha, Martin Newell, Jose Encarnaçao, Jim Foley, Bert Herzog, Alan Kay and Nick Negroponte. Taken together, these two workshops resulted in the formation of the first ISO committee to develop computer graphics standards and in the work that led first to the GKS International Standard and later to the PHIGS International Standard.

The symposium will be held in the Washington DC area in the United States, most likely the Airlie Conference Center in Warrenton, Virginia on May 3, 4 and 5 1999.

The Program Committee is:

  • Dr. Jean-François Abramatic, INRIA, France
  • Dr Ken Brodlie, University of Leeds, UK
  • Professor Don Brutzman, Naval Postgraduate School, USA
  • Dr. George S. Carson, GSC Associates, USA, Chairman
  • Professor Andries van Dam, Brown University, USA
  • Professor David A. Duce,Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, UK
  • Dr Andre Ducrot, INRIA Rocquencourt, France
  • Dr. David Duke,Department of Computer Science, University of York
  • Professor Jose Encarnaçao, Fraunhofer Institute, Germany
  • Professor Dieter W. Fellner, Braunschweig University of Technology, Germany
  • Dr. John C. Gebhardt, InterCAP Graphics, USA
  • Drs. Paul ten Hagen, CWI, The Netherlands
  • Dr. Ivan Herman, CWI, The Netherlands
  • Dr. Wolfgang Herzner, Austrian Research Centres Seiberdorf, Austria
  • Professor F. R. A. Hopgood, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, UK
  • Professor Ha-Jine Kimn, Ajou University, Rep. of Korea
  • Mr. Chris Lilley, World Wide Web Consortium, France
  • Dr. Graham Reynolds, CSIRO Mathematical and Information Sciences, Australia
  • Dr. Richard Puk, Intelligraphics Inc, USA
  • Mr. Jerry Smith, Defense Information System Agency, USA
  • Professor Nadia M. Thalmann, University of Geneva, Switzerland
  • Mr. Sakae Uno, IBM Japan, Japan
  • Mr. James VanLoo, Sun Microsystems, USA

One purpose of the Symposium is to make recommendations to the International Standards community for future activities in all aspects of the functional specifications, formats and interfaces used for or directly supporting interaction with and presentation of, information, including but not limited to:

  • computer graphics,
  • images and image processing,
  • single media, including animation, audio and video, and
  • multiple media.

These recommendations are expected to include

  • areas where new standards could be developed;
  • areas that are not yet suitable for standardization;
  • supporting areas (such as models and compression techniques) where new standards could be developed.

Outputs: There are two outputs from the Symposium. The first is the published proceedings including the position papers of all attendees and transcription of the most important portions of the discussions. Eurographics plans to publish the proceedings in their Workshop Series published by Springer Verlag. The proceedings will also be available over the WWW and as a formal document within the ISO and IEC International Standards committees. The second output (which will be included in the Proceedings but will also be distributed by itself) is a set of recommendations to the international community regarding future standardization activities.

Participation: There will be an open Call for Papers. In addition the Program Committee will actively solicit contributions from key individuals. Potential invitees will be asked to submit a short (2-5 page) position paper. The Program Committee will review the submissions and invite participants based upon criteria that include the quality of the position papers and the need to balance of opposing points of view.

Costs: Participants will be expected to pay their own travel expenses. DISA is the financial sponsor of the workshop and will support 100% of the costs. DISA will furnish meeting facilities, A/V equipment, a continental breakfast and lunch each day, and a social event one evening. There is a possibility of some limited travel support for some participants. DISA will also provide organizational support before, during and after the meeting , including editorial support for the preparation of the Proceedings. In accordance with Eurographics policy we expect to charge a participation fee to individuals who are not members of Eurographics that equals the cost of a one year membership in that organization.

Sponsors: The following organizations have agreed to be sponsors:

  • IFIP TC5 WG 5.10, Computer Graphics and Virtual Worlds
  • Eurographics

We expect that the cosponsors will publicize the workshop among their membership. We expect to coordinate publication of the Proceedings with Eurographics with all from publication going to Eurographics. Sponsors will benefit from the exposure provided by being listed on the workshop announcements. A chief benefit to of sponsoring organizations will be the opportunity that members will have to an opportunity to participate in the workshop and therefore influence future work on International Standards.

Schedule:

  • 15 Dec 98: CFP issued
  • 15 Feb 99: Submissions due
  • 15 Mar 99: Acceptances announced
  • 3-5 May 1999: Workshop

4. Status report

4.1 Business Focus

The team was never able to secure a dedicated leader for the Business Focus. An individual signed up to do this job early, but was forced to resign following a change in jobs. A replacement was never found. Despite this, the following topics were discussed in the Business Focus:

  1. Identification of areas where computer graphics and imaging standards might be beneficial that the IGBT Technology Focus may have not identified.
  2. How to get industry more involved in ISO standardization, including improving the perceived of value of International Standards for Information Technology.
  3. What are good models for cooperation between formal standards committees (such as JTC 1) and industry Consortia?
  4. The purpose(s) of standardization: standards needed for immediate market opportunities vs. standards as a long-term investment in infrastructure.

4.2 Technology Focus

4.2.1 Synthetic Environments

The Synthetic Environments Working Group was very active and discussed and resolved many issues. Among the topics of discussion were:

  1. Are the technical approaches to synthetic environments mature and stable enough so that development of International Standards in this area is feasible? (Answer: yes, but issues remain in the precise details of the data models)
  2. Are there any approaches besides SEDRIS that should be considered? (Answer: some elements from other standards committees (e.g. TC 211) should be considered and incorporated)
  3. Is the business environment in the areas of modeling and simulation; instruction and training; and entertainment such that there are more benefits than disadvantages to adopting International Standards supporting Synthetic Environments at this time? (Answer: standards would be beneficial)
  4. What is the relationship to the work of TC 211? (Answer: there are relationships, but also differences between what is appropriate in describing the real world vs. a synthetic world)
  5. Are there data formats that SEDRIS considers "native"? Does SEDRIS intend to develop or adopt native, or reference, formats at some point? (Answer: SEDRIS has a data model that allows the use of other formats for aspects of the model.)
  6. Does SEDRIS include representation of behaviors or dynamics in any way? (Answer: yes, component behavior is included but not cognitive behavior)
  7. What are the key applications/markets/contributor communities for SEDRIS standardization by ISO?
  8. Does SEDRIS exhibit the full-featured advantages for these domains to attract necessary commitment?
  9. What should be standardized by ISO within SEDRIS for the communities at large with what difficulty?
  10. When should SEDRIS be adopted by ISO & when will the M&S community achieve a useful baseline?
  11. How will SEDRIS as standardized by ISO relate to or leverage the plethora of other standards extant?
  12. What are the key applications/markets/contributor communities for SEDRIS standardization by ISO?
    • Who in the world community would want SEDRIS?
    • What applications does SEDRIS really support best?
    • How would large groups make money from promulgating SEDRIS?
    • Who can use the consistent, integrated, & correlated modalities of a SEDRIS environment?
  13. Does SEDRIS exhibit the full-featured advantages for these domains to attract necessary commitment?
    • Is SEDRIS too full of IG or application dialects to be unified for application in other domains?
    • Is SEDRIS "too military" for wider communities beyond M&S to care about it?
    • Is SEDRIS sufficiently stable that it will not be rapidly superceded after adoption?
    • Can SEDRIS address Intellectual Property Rights, content ownership identification & protection?
    • Would commercial communities rally around the process rigor, testing, etc. of ISO for SEDRIS?
  14. What should be standardized by ISO within SEDRIS for the communities at large with what difficulty?
    • Is the core data model for objects/properties/methods & scene composition worth standardizing?
    • If the answer to a. is complicated, how much effort with what focus would get it there?
    • Is SEDRIS "too flat" to provide scalability, scene graph structure, complexity management, etc?
    • Does SEDRIS provide behavioral animation, scripting, etc. for animated or reactive content?
    • What exactly should be standardized - API, object DB system, STF ASCII/binary file format?
  15. When should SEDRIS be adopted by ISO & when will the M&S community achieve a useful baseline?
    • Should SEDRIS be pushed through a fast track effort like VRML "as is" or reworked?
    • Is SEDRIS capable of an "industrial/professional" metamorphosis, if not for game applications?
    • Can current or emerging PC 3D platforms supply the horsepower to process/view SEDRIS data?
    • Are other data modeling efforts competing for SEDRIS applications & on what time scale?
  16. How will SEDRIS as standardized by ISO relate to or leverage the plethora of other standards extant?
    • How does SEDRIS relate to VRML, DirectX & Fahrenheit: better for serious earth simulation?
    • How would SEDRIS standards relate to viewers, networking, compression, & data management?
    • Depending on a. & b., can SEDRIS evolve for urban planning, distance learning, 3D GIS, etc?
    • Are SEDRIS libraries and Web sites likely to develop as magnets for content interchange?

The results of the discussions were that the group would like to see SEDRIS (or a derivative) standardized. However it is key that the result of the effort have vitality and wide industry backing beyond the early adopters. A key concern is that the ISO process must add value, enlist more active contributors, and spread recognition, including the possibility that SEDRIS is embraced by significant communities beyond those who already assist in its development.

4.2.2 Interaction

The decision to form the Interaction Working Group was made at the Orlando meeting. At that meeting, Drs. Paul ten Hagen. of CWI in the Netherlands gave a presentation on advanced Interaction and the need for standards. Discussions within the Interaction Working Group began based on a white paper (N010) expanding on the ideas in that presentation. Much time has been spent getting everyone up to speed on the conceptual frameworks defined in various reference models. Discussions have centered on these points:

  1. How do the ideas of what should be standardised expressed in N010 fit into the framework described in the Computer Graphics Reference Model (ISO/IEC 11072)?
  2. How do the ideas of what should be standardised expressed in N010 fit into the framework of Norwood Sisson's article, "Dialogue Management Reference Model," SIGCHI Bulletin; Vol. 18,2; October, 1986?
  3. Can input be dealt with in isolation? Although there is some symmetry between input and output, one cannot be dealt with in isolation, they are not symmetric. They use different faculties with different constraints. Some modalities and mixed modalities work and others don't. In consequence the output and input models are different and getting the right linkage especially when the echo/response is a different modality is difficult.
  4. How do the ideas of what should be standardised expressed in N010 fit the traditional ECHO-FEEDBACK-RESPONSE?

The work of the group is not finished and is proceeding slowly but steadily due to its conceptual nature. The group feels that discussions should continue in some other forum after the conclusion of the IGBT's activities.

4.2.3 Fundamental Objects

Like Interaction, this group is addressing an area where there is no existing specification that can be transposed into an International Standard. Instead, work of a fundamental and basic nature must be done. The discussion have centered around these points:

  1. How should a standard for Fundamental Objects relate to the Computer Graphics Reference Model (ISO/IEC 11072)? (Answer: as an additional part or part providing more detailed models);
  2. How do standards for Fundamental Objects relate to traditional classifications of standards for coding, APIs and protocols? (Answer: they provide abstract specifications (abstract models) useful for defining all three, but are not themselves realisations.)
  3. How would traditional output primitives be described in such a model?
  4. How would Fundamental Object standards provide a basis for he evolution of standards in other areas? In particular, how would they provide a foundation for XML encodings of graphics and imaging?

The work of the group is not finished and is proceeding slowly but steadily due to its conceptual nature. The group feels that discussions should continue in some other forum after the conclusion of the IGBT's activities.

4.2.4 Archiving and Distribution

The group was formed in December and is just starting its discussions. Hopefully there will be more to report to JTC 1 during the presentation at Plenary in late January.

Attachment 1 Document Register

IGBT N001

JTC 1 N 5018, "Resolutions of the Eleventh Meeting of ISO/IEC JTC 1, 9-12 September 1997, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

HTML

IGBT N002

Terms of Reference

MS-Word

IGBT N003

Business Team Plan

MS-Word

IGBT N004

First Meeting Announcement

MS-Word

IGBT N005

Report of the Imaging and Graphics Business Team to the JTC 1 Plenary at Sendai

MS-Word

IGBT N006

Proposal for a Workshop on Standards for Imaging and Graphics

MS-Word

IGBT N007

Agenda for the First Meeting, Orlando, FL, USA, Sunday, 26 July 1998

MS-Word

IGBT N008

The Imaging and Graphics Business Team Working Group Process

MS-Word

IGBT N009

The Imaging and Graphics Business Team Report from the First Meeting

MS-Word

IGBT N010

Advanced Interaction -- A white paper by Paul ten Hagen

MS-Word

IGBT N011

Second Meeting Announcement, Seoul, Republic of Korea, 13 November 1998

MS-Word

IGBT N012

Second Meeting Agenda, Seoul, Republic of Korea, 13 November 1998

MS-Word

IGBT N013

Map to location of Second Meeting Announcement, Seoul, Republic of Korea, 13 November 1998

MS-Word

IGBT N014

Report to the IGBT Open Meeting, Orlando FL USA -- Jerry Smith, Team Leader

MS-Powerpoint

IGBT N015

Product Data WG Proposal -- Gary Conkol, CAMP/ECRC

MS-Powerpoint

IGBT N016

MHEG Briefing -- Dr. Tom Casey, SC 29

MS-Powerpoint

IGBT N017

MPEG Briefing -- Dr. Tom Casey, SC 29

MS-Powerpoint

IGBT N018

Coding of Still Pictures Briefing -- Dr. Tom Casey, SC 29

MS-Powerpoint

IGBT N019

ANSI Information Infrastructure Standards Panel (IISP) EPUB Needs And Related IGBT Areas -- Frank Farance, Farance Inc.

MS-Powerpoint

IGBT N020

Synthetic Environments Working Group Report -- Karen Williams, SEWG Leader

MS-Powerpoint

IGBT N021

ISO/IEC 11072:1994 Computer Graphics Reference Model

MS-Word

IGBT N022

Introduction to the Computer Graphics Reference Model

MS-Word

IGBT N023

Cooperative Agreement Between ISO/IEC JTC1 and the VRML Consortium

HTML

IGBT N024

Introduction to the Computer Graphics Reference Model

HTML

IGBT N025

Development of the VRML 97 International Standard

HTML

IGBT N026

Introduction to the Computer Graphics Reference Model

HTML;zipped

IGBT N027

Reference Models and Interaction

HTML;zipped

IGBT N028

Reference Models and Interaction

HTML

IGBT N029

Report to JTC 1

HTML

IGBT N030

Report to the IGBT Open Meeting, Seoul, Republic of Korea-- Jerry Smith, Team Leader

MS-Powerpoint

IGBT N031

Report to the IGBT Open Meeting, Seoul, Republic of Korea-- Technology Focus

MS-Powerpoint

Attachment 2 Participants

 

Table 2-1 Final Roster of IGBT members from web registrations

Country

Name

Affiliation

Australia

Kevin Smith

CSIRO-MIS

 

Mr Justin Couch

Software Engineer ADI Ltd.

Bahrain

Abbas Ally

 

Canada

Hugn Moore

CAC ISO JTC1 SC 27

 

Stephen Matsuba

The VRML Dream Company

 

Ms Titania Truesdale

Dept of National Defense

Czech Republic

Jiri Zara

 

France

Mr Jean-Michel Borde

AFNOR

 

Mr Lionel Becquereau

X-NOVA

Germany

Peter Zimmerman

Dailer-Benz

Japan

Mr Koreaki Fujimura

Electrotechnical Lab. ETL29

 

Prof Hiroshi Yasuda

Chairman ISO IEC JTC 1 SC 29

 

Mrs Narumi Hirose

Secretariat ISO IEC JTC 1 SC 29

Korea

Sun-Young Cho

Korea Telecom

 

Kyu-Soo Kim

 

 

Pyo Junbom

Engineer

Netherlands

Ivan Herman

Centre for Math and CS

Norway

Bjornhild Saeteroy

ISO 211

Republic of Korea

Jae-Seob Shin

Samsung AIT

UK

Mr Richard Clark

Elysium Ltd

 

David Duke

University of York

 

Mr Martin Bryan

JTC 1 SC 34

 

Robert Scott-Kerr

IEE

USA

Mr Rafael Goldsmith

MRJ Technology Solutions

 

Mr Tim Hunnicutt

Coopers and Lybrand Consulting

 

James Shiflett

SAIC

 

Ms Kathy Rainbolt

Pentecom LLC

 

Mr William Protzman

DCS Corporation

 

Mr Al Klein

Lockheed Martin Energy Systems

 

Mr Gary Conkol

CAMP

 

Mr George Touchette

The GreenTree Group

 

Dr Richard Puk

Intelligraphics Incorporated

 

Dr Gabriel Taubin

IBM T.J. Watson Research Center

 

Ms Bernadette Kuzma

SEMCOR Inc

 

Dr. Roy Rada

Washington State Univ.

 

Dr. George Carson

GSC Associates

 

Mr Tim Gifford

Armed Forces Training Systems Inc.

 

Michael Nier

Eastman Kodak

 

Sue MacTavish

Lockheed Martin

 

Jon Meads

Usebility Architects

 

Terrence McKinney

General Motors

 

Sandra Searingen

USAF

 

Murray Bent

Web21

 

Farid Mamaghani

DMSO IDA

 

Paul Nagele

NIMQA

 

Mr Alan Kotok

Graphic Communications Association

 

Kathleen Rattell

Booz-Hamilton

 

Ms. Karen Williams

NIMA

 

Vincent Cannava

AFEI Standards Division

 

Betsy Fanning

AIIM

 

John Carswell

SAIC

 

Mr Jeff Bjerke

NIMA

 

Sue Henderson

Lockheed Martin

 

Bill Horan

SAIC

 

Dr Rob Cox

SAIC

 

Gene Posca

IBM Corporation

 

 

Tables 2-2 through 2-7 list the participants in the various activities of the IGBT.

Table 2-2 IGBT Main Reflector

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Table 2-3 IGBT Technology Focus

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Table 2-4 IGBT Business and Government Focus

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Table 2-5 IGBT Synthetic Environments Working Group

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Table 2-6 Fundamental Objects Working Group

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Table 2-7 Interaction Working Group

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Attachment 3 Steering Committee

Table 3-1 lists the members, affiliations and countries of the IGBT Steering Committee:

Table 3-1 Steering Committee

Dr. George S. Carson, Chairman, ISO/IEC JTC 1 SC 24, USA

Mr. Koreaki Fujimura, Intelligent Systems Division, Electrotechnical Laboratory, Japan

Mr. Ralph Goldsmith Systems Engineer, MRJ, Technology Solutions, Inc. USA

Dr. Paul ten Hagen, CWI, The Netherlands

Ms. Harumi Hirose, Secretary, ISO/IEC JTC 1/SC 29, Japan

Professor F. R. A. Hopgood, Department For Computation And Information, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory , UK

Mr. Tim Hunnicutt, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), Team Secretariat, USA

Mr. Jerry Smith, Defense Information System Agency, USA, Team Leader

Mr. Bill Protzman, Chairman, H3 (US TAG to JTC 1/SC 24), USA

Dr. Richard F. Puk, Intelligraphics Inc., USA

Dr. Roy Rada, Boeing Distinguished Professor of Software Engineering, Washington State University, USA

Ms. Jean Stride, Secretary, ISO/IEC JTC 1/SC 24, UK