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EPFL and Ecma International organized a successful International Workshop on Standards and Technologies in Multimedia Archives and Records (STAR)


Lausanne / Geneva, 6 May 2010

On 26th-27th April 2010, Multimedia Signal Processing Group (MMSPG) of Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne and the Geneva based standardization organization Ecma International hosted the 1st International Workshop on Standards and Technologies in Multimedia Archives and Records (STAR) at EPFL premises.

The ability to effectively manage and protect digital multimedia content in creation, collection, preservation, and dissemination is increasingly crucial as digital technology continues to produce vast amounts of valuable and irreplaceable knowledge and information. The amount of such digital multimedia information is already huge, and continues growing at unbelievable speed and to gigantic amount of such information.

The big questions are: can data generated yesterday be searchable and displayable by hardware and software today and in future? Will digital content created today be accessible and presentable throughout its lifecycle (i.e. also tomorrow)? How to deal with the large number and quite different incompatible multimedia archives? How to ensure some level of interoperability among them? What are the requirements for multimedia long term archival in general? What do we cover today in standards and what and where are the gaps?

To address these questions the workshop brought together archive professionals, technical experts working in the research, development and standardization in order to assist the alignment of user needs with the availability of technical solutions. The workshop has addressed with invited talks and a closing panel discussion key topics, like:

  • End user requirements on preservation methods and formats
  • Digital archival projects - user expectations and experiences
  • Technical frameworks and architectures for multimedia archives
  • Trends in data modeling
  • Progress in digital preservation methods and archival formats
  • Interoperability issues and standardization efforts
  • Ingest and access methods for cooperation of archives

Professor Touradj Ebrahimi, head of MMSPG said that preservation of multimedia content is full of scientific and technical challenges, where high level research and development is urgently needed. The content of such multimedia archives also helps EPFL to attract more students. Last but not least, contribution to preservation of cultural and historical heritage of mankind is among our social duties.

Dr. Istvan Sebestyen, Secretary General of Ecma International said that he was glad that Ecma could be part of this first successful workshop, because long-term archival and preservation of multimedia information are not only highly important for individuals and institutions but it is also one of the hot topics in current and future standardization. Ecma plans to contribute to its standardization.

The program of the workshop and the presentations made are to be found here.

About Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne

EPFL is one of the two Ecoles Polytechniques Fédérales in Switzerland with three missions: education, research and technology transfer at the highest international level. In its idyllic location on the shores of Lake Geneva, EPFL brings together a campus of more than 10,000 people. Multimedia Signal Processing Group is part of Electrical Engineering Institute of School of Engineering at EPFL, and active in research and teaching in the field of multimedia signal processing. More information:

About Ecma International

Since its inception in 1961, Ecma International (Ecma) has developed standards for Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and Consumer Electronics (CE). Ecma is a non-profit industry association of technology developers, vendors and users. Experts from industry and other organizations work together at Ecma to develop standards. Ecma submits its work for approval as ISO, IEC, ISO/IEC JTC 1 and ETSI standards and is a frequent practitioner of “fast-tracking” of specifications through the standardization process in international standards organizations. Ecma publications can be downloaded free of charge from the Ecma International website.

For more information: please contact Prof. Touradj Ebrahimi, EPFL, e-mail: or Dr. Istvan Sebestyen, Secretary General of Ecma International, e-mail:




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