Does anyone know if there is any effort to have something like an ISO or JPEG comittee mechanism for developing a raw file format? Either starting with DNG released by Adobe, or from another starting point?
Just to be perfectly friggin' clear (and blowing the crap out of the FUD already posted here), DNG is the brainchild of Thomads Knoll because he studied the Kodak, Nikon and Canon raw files and realized the camera companies didn't have a friggin' clue how to create a well-formed raw file format. We're talking Thomas Knoll who started this whole digital imaging thing, ya know?
He came up with DNG–and Adobe decided to support him and release it as a publicly documented, license free proposed raw file format standard. Funny thing happened, suddenly both Canon and Nikon's subsequent raw file formats magically got a lot better (because they studied DNG and learned a lot).
DNG is not an evil plot by Adobe to try to corner the market on raw file formats...ironically, Adobe had already deeded TIFF to the ISO and allowed the ISO to adopt TIFF into the TIFF-EP format (TIFF for electronic photography). Adobe has already offered DNG to the ISO for their next TIFF-EP update (last I heard "they're working on it"–the ISO is pretty slow to change standards).
To those people who presume that adopting a standard will somehow abort the ability of camera companies to innovate, bullshyte...Camera Raw/DNG has responded to each and every substantial design concept change and updated the DNG spec. There is nothing, and I mean NOTHING that a camera company can come up with that Thomas the the ACR engineers can't deal with...Thomas and Eric Chan are really, really bright boys and no camera company can possible compete with them in terms of software development to process raw images...ACR/DNG already supports over 275 raw file formats and counting...even Capture One can't support all the cameras that ACR/DNG support (although Dcraw by Dave Coffin comes close because he and Thomas have worked closely together and Adobe has even, uh, given Dave a bit of a gift which I can't really talk about).
To those photographers who suspect Adobe is the evil empire trying to squeeze out the camera companies, again, total friggin' bullshyte. Any photographer who thinks it's somehow a good idea that Nikon and Canon are allowed _NOT_ adhere to a raw file format standard is part of the problem, not the solution...when I read about a photographer claiming that Nikon and Canon should reject DNG or some other standard, I seriously wanna bitchslap the motherf@$ker...because it's exactly
that sort of photographer that is allowing the camera companies to pull the friggin' wool over photographers' eyes...(sorry for my language–not really, but if you can't guess, I'm starting to get really friggin' tired of idiots giving the green light to Nikon and Canon).
If you want to do some reading, read this...Digital Preservation
If you read that and come back here and say with a straight face that Nikon and Canon are doing any sort of good thing for the industry by rejecting the adoption of the raw file format standard, I'll eat my hat, my shoes and my underwear...
DNG may not be perfect...but Thomas and the ACR engineers will be happy to listen to ANY technical discussion regarding changes to the DNG spec (we're already as version 1.4 and a lot of the changes have been suggested by the same friggin' camera companies that refuse to adopt DNG).
I'm with Mike on this...the current state of the industry is an abomination...there is no way that photographers should accept the crap than Nikon and Canon (primarily) have tried to get away with. It's a tremendous disservice to the industry, puts our cultural heritage at risk, and for what? Some arrogant thought that maybe, just maybe the proprietary, undocumented raw file formats may have some sort of residual value? Again, bullshyte...the big secret in the industry is there are no "secrets" in the raw file–all of that can be decoded. Whats secret and proprietary is the analog to digital conversion and how the sensor data is written to disk. Once it's saved to media, there's nothing that can't be decoded-it's just a pain in the arse.
Seriously, anybody who thinks that letting the camera companies continue behaving the way they have been behaving is a good idea really must be thought of as an enemy of the photo industry...and deejjjaaaa, if you don't have something substantive to contribute regarding the technical limitations of DNG (so it can be advanced) I suggest you quit trying to take the adversarial position...you are not helping photographers in the industry, you are only giving the camera companies cover and spreading FUD. If you have specific technical issues with DNG, I can direct you to Thomas and Eric and they will fix them. Put up or shut up. But please quit cutting the friggin' camera companies any slack...it's a disservice to the industry (and purely pisses me off, if you haven't guessed).