This Technical Report has been prepared within ISO/IEC JTC 1/SC 29/WG 11 to introduce the MPEG-21 Multimedia Framework. It identifies the requirements that need to be met to achieve the definition of this framework. It is proposed that this will be achieved through a combination of WG 11.s efforts to standardise the parts of the multimedia framework where it has the appropriate expertise, and the integration with standards initiatives which are being developed by other bodies. It is expected that this collaborative approach to standardisation linked with a common vision will maximise harmonisation of efforts and enable effective standards solutions to be implemented in the shortest possible time.
The Technical Report is introduced by a problem statement and a solution statement. The problem statement describes a multimedia usage environment founded upon ubiquitous networks that is encouraging new business models for trading digital content. In this environment, the distinction between content types is less clear as their integration as multimedia resources in new products and services makes the traditional boundaries less distinct.
In addition, individuals are becoming increasingly aware of the value, both commercial and intrinsic, of their own digital asset resources and new possibilities presented by the tools which enable them to create and collect, package and distribute content. The solution statement introduces the vision of the multimedia framework to support transactions that are interoperable and highly automated, which is required to support these new types of commerce. Seven architectural elements are identified as key to the multimedia framework as previously described in the Scope of the Technical Report. In addition, the user requirements within a multimedia framework are described separately as they impact upon each of the seven architectural elements. In creating its definition of a multimedia framework and in making its proposals and recommendations for further standardisation, it is necessary for MPEG-21 to take account of other related multimedia activities.
The Technical Report identifies other multimedia initiatives that are currently in progress that should be considered as candidates for future interaction and collaboration with the standards work plan agreed by MPEG-21.