updated 03:50 pm EDT, Fri November 2, 2007
Microsoft behind JPEG XR
The multinational Joint Photographic Experts Group, responsible for the JPEG standard used in virtually all mainstream imaging, has announced that the next iteration of its standard will be based on Microsoft's HD Photo format. HD Photo is built into Windows Vista, and was originally dubbed Windows Media Photo, hoped to offer some degree of proprietary control for the company; in its new incarnation however it will be called JPEG XR, and remain neutral as with the current JPEG technology. Prior to today Microsoft had already partly opened up HD Photo, providing the SDK for free to interested developers.
The "XR" addition stands for Extended Range, and like HD Photo, should allow a wider and subtler range of tones, as well as an expanded color palette, and better compression. For amateur and professional photographers, XR should support in-camera image processing. Adoption is not expected in the immediate future; Microsoft project leader Bill Crow says that even HD Photo make take another year to gain reasonable support. [via CNET]