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MS to support RAW

Discussion in 'The Olympus Outlet' started by fpoole, Jun 2, 2005.

  1. fpoole

    fpoole Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Seattle, WA
    507
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    I just got this article from an AOL user, thought it might be interesting:
    Microsoft is working with the leaders, Adobe and others.... to support RAW processing...
    I would have posted a link, but it's in aol.. e'nuf said???

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    REDMOND, Wash., June 1 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT), together with leading companies in the digital imaging industry, today announced enhancements to the family of Windows(R) operating systems that will enable consumers to easily work with RAW files in current and future versions of Windows. Working closely with digital imaging industry leaders including Adobe Systems Inc., Canon Inc., Fuji Photo Film Co. Ltd. and Nikon Corp., Microsoft plans to deliver native support for digital camera RAW images in the next major version of Windows, code-named "Longhorn."

    (Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000822/MSFTLOGO )

    In addition, Microsoft is enhancing the digital imaging experience for Windows XP with the upcoming availability of the Microsoft(R) RAW Image Thumbnailer and Viewer for Windows XP, allowing consumers to view thumbnails and preview and print Canon and Nikon RAW files from Windows Explorer in Windows XP. These features, as well as the ability to organize and edit Canon and Nikon RAW files, will also be available in a future version of Digital Image Suite.

    Microsoft also announced it is developing a certification program for third-party RAW image codecs that will ensure their solutions provide a consistent experience for consumers who are using RAW image files. With this new RAW support across the Windows platform and products, Microsoft is enabling a seamless experience for consumers working with RAW digital images and delivering an extensible architecture for hardware and software industry partners.

    "The explosion in popularity of digital photography on Windows continues to progress and evolve as consumers discover the quality benefits of digital camera RAW," said Amir Majidimehr, corporate vice president of Windows Digital Media at Microsoft. "By working with industry leaders to extend support for RAW in Windows, we are removing the obstacles for consumer use of RAW and enabling a seamless platform for the next era of digital imaging innovation."

    "Aggressive price moves in the digital SLR space are expected to increase demand for digital SLR cameras to achieve an average annual growth rate of 12 percent between 2005 and 2009. IDC expects that significant growth will derive from consumers who desire higher-quality images," said Ron Glaz, program director of digital imaging services and solutions at IDC. "Microsoft's implementation of the RAW file format in 'Longhorn' will simplify access to RAW files, and that is expected to increase the use of the RAW file format by various types of digital camera users."

    RAW image capture is becoming increasingly important to beginning and professional digital photographers because of its ability to preserve an image's fidelity. Often likened to a digital negative, a RAW image is preferred by many photographers who feel it preserves the subtle color and detail possible with today's digital cameras. Unlike a JPEG, which is processed in the camera, a RAW file is processed on a PC, where the exposure and color can be adjusted after the image has been captured. However, each new camera model introduces changes to RAW image files; this in turn requires that digital imaging applications must also be updated to support these changes. Microsoft is working with its partners to help solve this problem.

    Native RAW Support Coming in "Longhorn"

    Microsoft worked with imaging leaders to develop the digital camera RAW architecture in "Longhorn" and to provide the best digital photography experience for Windows consumers. "Longhorn" will deliver dramatic innovation in RAW support for independent software developers, camera manufacturers and consumers. Hardware and software partners will benefit from the standardized architecture for image codecs, which allows them to contribute their own codecs to be certified and implemented in Windows.

    Microsoft's platform approach provides built-in support for RAW files, enabling Windows-based applications to use all supported image types, including RAW. This architecture enables software applications to seamlessly support new image types upon codec certification by Microsoft. In addition, "Longhorn" will provide an application programming interface (API) that enables software vendors to exercise a higher degree of control over the RAW conversion in their applications, while enabling market opportunities for professional-level conversion tools.

    For consumers, the ability to work with RAW image files just as easily as with JPEGs today will allow them to take advantage of the growing support for RAW in digital cameras and imaging software. Consumers will have more choices as new camera models are introduced because the new architecture in "Longhorn" makes it possible for all software programs on Windows to easily work with RAW image files.

    RAW Image Thumbnailer and Viewer for Windows XP; Future Digital Image Suite Will Support RAW

    In addition to announcing the imaging enhancements planned for the next version of Windows, Microsoft is helping Windows XP consumers realize the potential of RAW files. The Microsoft RAW Image Thumbnailer and Viewer for Windows XP will soon be available for free download* at http://www.microsoft.com. The RAW Image Thumbnailer and Viewer enhances the Windows XP photography experience by providing consumers with thumbnails, previews, printing and metadata display of RAW images directly in Windows Explorer. In addition, a future version of Microsoft Digital Image Suite will offer the ability to organize, edit and convert RAW files.

    Founded in 1975, Microsoft is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

    * Connect-time fees may apply.

    NOTE: Microsoft and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

    The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.
    Industry Partner Support for Digital Camera RAW in Windows
    "We believe Microsoft's plans to deliver native support to digital camera RAW images in the Windows operating system is good news to consumers. RAW images are valued as one source of expanding the digital imaging world, and we welcome the possibility that more and more digital camera users will have the opportunity to experience and enjoy the world of RAW."
    Tomonori Iwashita
    Director and Deputy Chief Executive
    of the Image Communication Products Group
    Canon
    "Microsoft's support of digital camera RAW in both Windows XP and future versions of Windows is an exciting development that will make RAW image files much easier to use for the consumer. With these plans, users of Fujifilm cameras will enjoy a seamless, high-quality experience whenever working with Fujifilm RAW files on Windows-based PCs."
    Kenji Watanabe
    General Manager, Marketing
    Electronic Imaging Products Division
    Fujifilm
    "Nikon is supporting Microsoft's new operating system and compatible software, which will enable efficient and accurate handling of Nikon Electronic Format (NEF) RAW digital image file format. Through collaboration with Microsoft, we are confident that the expanded potential to use Nikon's NEF will contribute substantially to the overall development of the photography industry's use of RAW files among the broadest market."
    Kasuyuki Kazami
    General Manager
    Nikon
    SOURCE Microsoft Corp.

    06/01/2005 05:00 ET

    Copyright © 1996-2005 PR Newswire Association LLC. All rights reserved
     
  2. alcina

    alcina Missing Diva. ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Western Australia
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    Oly has been supported with a plug in for some time already. :wink:
     
  3. fpoole

    fpoole Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Seattle, WA
    507
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    Oh, Ok,
    I haven't started shooting RAW (SM 128mb oly 4040), so haven't really been following "Who's doing what to Whom..." but did hear there were several variations and that Adobe was trying to standardize it.. looks like they're getting together to keep it compatible with everyone... so that looks good....
    I dunno.. just posting LOL...
     
  4. Kim

    Kim Here for my friends..... ScubaBoard Supporter

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    Yes, but isn't that just to view the thumbnail files? This seems to be talking about actually reading the RAW files. The only problem that I see here is that they are not talking about the Olympus format, only Nikon and Fuji.
     
  5. drbill

    drbill The Lorax for the Kelp Forest Scuba Legend

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
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    Hmmm... I used to use "raw" image files (from satellite images) in versions of Publisher's Paintbrush from the early 1990's. They allowed me to read a "raw" image based on header offset, and the pixel dimensions (heighth and width) of the image.

    Are today's "RAW" image formats merely series of bytes with proprietary headers? If so, that ancient software can read them. Of course it would be much easier to be able to read the proprietary headers and open the file without the user defining the image dimensionality.

    Dr. Bill
     
  6. ssra30

    ssra30 Loggerhead Turtle

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    Interesting, so is Nikon decided to play nice with microsoft and let microsoft read its encrypted file on D2X/D2Hs NEF file or is microsoft actually willing to use Nikon developer kit thingy. I am sure this will annoy Adobe quite a bit :)
     
  7. fpoole

    fpoole Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Seattle, WA
    507
    0
    0
    Well, I'm coming from way out in Left field here, but it "Sounds" like they're all working together ("Can't we all get along?? heheh) and I would doubt MS would jump in just to show Thumbnails...

    I would suspect MS would be in for the full Monty to use with it's photo program and line of whatever else they have that's photo connected..

    Again, I don't know squat, but that's what I sounds like to me...
    You all that shoot RAW know more than I. I just posted it as I thought it would be interesting... outside of that "...I know Nut-Thang!!! " a la Sgt .... Hogans Heros??? not Klink, but ??
     
  8. alcina

    alcina Missing Diva. ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Western Australia
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    Sgt Schultz!

    Sorry, I wasn't clear....yea, the plugin is to view the thumbnails.

    As I work in Adobe whose ACR let's me deal with Canon and Oly files just fine, the great MS breakthrough doesn't excite me as much but it is nice to see the players working together more or less...hopefully that can only lead to better things for us lowly consumers!!
     
  9. lamont

    lamont Photographer

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    i've been seriously considering reverse engineering the oly c5050 raw format and writing some unix utilities to manipulate them. given that photoshop can manipulate raw images, it couldn't be that hard to use photoshop to flip a pixel and see how the resultant file differed...

    i have no idea why oly doesn't just make the file format public...
     
  10. ssra30

    ssra30 Loggerhead Turtle

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    I hope MS will be better than Camedia at browsing. What I hate most about shooting C5050 in RAW in the past is that Camedia is so slow at browsing images, let alone loading the images. Adobe is great at working with RAW but not so great at browsing either.
    Nikon did well with Nikon View and made my life a lot easier with NEF file. Of course they have to ruin it and try to replace it with Picture project or whatever it is called that is so much more cumbersome. Hmm, if I can just use MS and photoshop, that would be nice, opps, wait, Nikon does not want to play with Adobe just yet :(
     

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