A Letter from Per Björkdahl

August 6, 2020 by Willy Sagefalk

Dear friends,

Our world and our industry have both experienced great change in just a few short months. While the full impact of the COVID-19 pandemic will likely not be felt for months or even years to come, the crisis has upended global travel, the potential for mass gatherings and other aspects of our lives that we rely on to collaborate, communicate and socialize. Instead, our virtual world has expanded, with most of our interactions taking place via a wide selection of platforms: Zoom, Teams, GoToMeeting, WebEx, Zoho, Blue Jeans – the list goes on and on. While these online tools won’t ever completely replace our face to face interactions, they allow us to remain connected and enable us to carry on in our work and personal lives with a modicum of normalcy.

In this era of expansion, ONVIF is excited to announce that it too has chosen a new platform on which future collaboration and communication will occur – GitHub, an online open source development platform. While it won’t be hosting our video calls, we will instead use it for something much more substantive – to support our use of open source development as an additional methodology of developing and furthering our network interface specifications. What does this mean? While ONVIF interoperability specifications have always been publicly available for use, this will now enable other companies, developers from different industries such as IoT, cloud services and other ancillary technology disciplines to provide their input, perspectives and ideas into the development of future versions of the specifications.

Much like the use of WebEx and GoToMeeting before the pandemic, our use of GitHub, and the extension of open source as a method of specification engineering, is driven primarily out of efficiency. While it may sound terribly exciting, developing technical specifications is very detailed, process-oriented work, requiring the manipulation of many technical documents to ensure their accuracy and completeness. This job has fallen solely on the volunteers from member companies. With GitHub, which is designed specifically for this purpose, many of these administrative tasks are automated and will no doubt streamline and accelerate our development processes.

You can read more about this new initiative in the press release here. We are excited about this development and optimistic that it will only serve to improve the contribution of ONVIF to the technology community at large.

Kind regards, Per Björkdahl
Chair, ONVIF Steering Committee


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