The SMPTE Technical Specification Process

What are these SMPTE Technical Specification (TSP) Projects?

SMPTE has created a prototype process for the creation of business driven Technical Specifications. The prototype process is still being tested with the DPP and this project review is part of that test. Requirements for a Technical Specifications process have been gathered and a study group is proposing a way to accomplish those requirements within the existing Standards OMs of the SMPTE.

What is a SMPTE Technical Specification?

It is a Public Committee Draft (CD) document as defined by the Standards Operations Manual (OM) v3.1. The current OM defines the process for the creation of suitable subgroups and the creation of a Committee Draft. The Technical Specifications process proposal is to follow the OM in creating a Committee Draft and to use the powers of the SVP to allow publication of that document for a period to allow public comment during the pre-FCD commenting period, which may use more modern collaborative tools than Higher Logic Workspace. The Drafting Group would then address and optionally resolve the comments before the publication(s) of the Committee Draft. The Committee Draft would be rebranded as a SMPTE Technical Specification.

Where do business requirements fit in?

One of the initial and strong requirements for the Technical Specifications process was to be able to match the document to clear Technical Business Requirements. By publishing these requirements, it helps to identify that a Technical Specification is aimed at very specific needs. As with all business requirements, they are likely to change over time and their publication also helps to reflect the idea that Technical Specifications are likely to iterate faster than Standards. This is executed using a Study Group. Both the Study Group and the Drafting Group will be organized under a Working Group focused on the overall task.

Note that Commercial Business Requirements to do with pricing, market share and other similar topics are legally outside the scope of ALL SMPTE Technical Specifications in order to meet US, EU and global anti-trust laws.

Won't SMPTE Technical Specifications just replace SMPTE Standards?

No. The SMPTE Technical Specifications process is being developed to complement the SMPTE Standards development process. If a Technical Specification is successful and requires strengthening for a wider audience, then the segue into the formal Standards Process (FCD Ballot etc.) should be smooth and it should encourage Standards development.

Why is SMPTE doing this?

SMPTE was requested to consider a Technical Specifications development framework designed to be a lightweight, nimble & open. This pilot project with a prototype process and a document volunteered by the DPP is intended to see if we have hit those goals while concurrently leveraging the Standards document development processes.