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|Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL)|
Several key references for W3C's Synchronized Multimedia Activity and deliverables include:
Synchronized Multimedia Home Page - References for the relevant specifications, Getting Help, SMIL Players, SMIL Authoring Tools, Background, Accessibility, History.
W3C Synchronized Multimedia Activity"W3C's Synchronized Multimedia Activity has focused on the design of a new language for choreographing multimedia presentations where audio, video, text and graphics are combined in real-time. The language, the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL) is written as an XML application and is currently a W3C Recommendation. Simply put, it enables authors to specify what should be presented when, enabling them to control the precise time that a sentence is spoken and make it coincide with the display of a given image appearing on the screen." [2000-08-04]
SMIL Europe 2002. November 20 - 22, 2002. Ecole Nationale Supérieure d'Arts et Métiers (ENSAM), Paris, France. See http://www.smileurope.org
[August 15, 2001] Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL 2.0). W3C Recommendation 07-August-2001. Version URL: http://www.w3.org/TR/2001/REC-smil20-20010807/.
Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL 2.0) Specification. W3C Working Draft 01-March-2001. Edited by Jeff Ayars (RealNetworks); Dick Bulterman (Oratrix); Aaron Cohen (Intel); Ken Day (Macromedia) et al. Latest version URL: http://www.w3.org/TR/smil20.
Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL) 1.0. W3C Recommendation 15-June-1998. "This document specifies version 1 of the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL 1.0, pronounced 'smile'). SMIL allows integrating a set of independent multimedia objects into a synchronized multimedia presentation. Using SMIL, an author can (1) describe the temporal behavior of the presentation; (2) describe the layout of the presentation on a screen; (3) associate hyperlinks with media objects."
Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL) Boston Specification. W3C Working Draft 22 June 2000, or later. "SMIL Boston has the following two design goals: (1) Define a simple XML-based language that allows authors to write interactive multimedia presentations. Using SMIL Boston, an author can describe the temporal behavior of a multimedia presentation, associate hyperlinks with media objects and describe the layout of the presentation on a screen. (2) Allow reusing of SMIL syntax and semantics in other XML-based languages, in particular those who need to represent timing and synchronization."
Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language Document Object Model. W3C Working Draft 25 February, 2000, or later. "defines the Document Object Model (DOM) specification for synchronized multimedia functionality. It is part of work in the Synchronized Multimedia Working Group (SYMM) towards a next version of the SMIL language and SMIL modules. Related documents describe the specific application of this SMIL DOM for SMIL documents and for HTML and XML documents that integrate SMIL functionality. The SMIL DOM builds upon the DOM Core functionality, adding support for timing and synchronization, media integration and other extensions to support synchronized multimedia documents."
SMIL Animation. W3C Working Draft 31-July-2000, or later. "This is a working draft of a specification of animation functionality for XML documents. It describes an animation framework as well as a set of base XML animation elements suitable for integration with XML documents. It is based upon the SMIL 1.0 timing model, with some extensions."
Synchronized Multimedia Modules Based upon SMIL 1.0. W3C Note 23 February 1999. "This Note was produced by the W3C SYMM Interest Group. It describes a snapshot of certain aspects of the discussions on future work on SYMM and SMIL. Following the approach spearheaded by the W3C HTML Working group, the Note describes how SMIL 1.0 functionality and future SYMM functionality can be represented as a set of markup modules. The intention was to study the feasibility of such an approach, and the details of the proposed modularisation are preliminary only."
Accessibility Features of SMIL. W3C NOTE 21 September 1999. "...summarizes the accessibility features of the Synchronized Multimedia Language (SMIL), version 1.0 Recommendation. This document has been written so that other documents may refer in a consistent manner to the accessibility features of SMIL.
Displaying SMIL Basic Layout with a CSS2 Rendering Engine. NOTE-CSS-smil-19980720. "This note provides a detailed explanation of the relationship between SMIL layout and CSS. It updates a Note from June 15. Most changes are editorial. A section on mapping z-index values from SMIL basic layout to CSS has been added."
Articles, Papers, News
[July 08, 2003] RealNetworks Releases Source Code for Synchronized Multimedia (SMIL). RealNetworks Inc. has announced its contribution of SMIL source code to developers in the Helix Community. "With the source code of SMIL 2.0 and the Helix DNA Client, Helix community developers can support display of complex presentations in their products." The Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL) is a W3C Recommendation which "defines an XML-based language that allows authors to write interactive multimedia presentations. Using SMIL 2.0, an author can describe the temporal behavior of a multimedia presentation, associate hyperlinks with media objects and describe the layout of the presentation on a screen." The Helix DNA Client being developed within the Helix community is "a universal playback engine supporting the decode and playback of any data type on any device. It is designed as an open, comprehensive platform that enables playback of digital media products and applications for any format, operating system, or device; it supports any audio or video codec through well-defined file format and decoder APIs." The RealNetworks' cross-platform SMIL source code is available "under a no-cost open source or a royalty-based commercial license to the registered developers of the Helix community; Windows, Mac, and Linux sources are available today."
[March 03, 2003] "XML in Higher Education. SMIL: Multimedia Rides the XML Wave." By Frank Coyle (School of Engineering, Southern Methodist University). In Syllabus Volume 16, Number 8 (March 2003), pages 22-25. "SMIL (pronounced 'smile') is an acronym for Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language, an XML-based dialect for describing the layout and synchronization of multimedia applications... For educators, SMIL opens the door to sophisticated multimedia development. With minimal effort, SMIL makes it possible for authors to: (1) Add audio commentary to images and text; (2) Animate slide presentations that dynamically change as different elements become the focus of attention; (3) Add on-screen controls that allow users to stop and start a presentation; (4) Create courseware that integrates audio, video, animation, and text. Individual multimedia components can be stored either on a user's PC or delivered from a Web server. SMIL presentations may play in a browser with a SMIL plug-in or in a standalone player such as RealOne or QuickTime that reside on consumer devices and are independent of browsers. Because SMIL documents are text files, SMIL files can be customized on a server manually with a text editor or by using a script, such as AppleScript or PERL, or through the use of XML transformation tools such as XSLT. What's exciting for the aspiring multimedia author is that anything that can generate text can create a SMIL document... The recent finalization of the SMIL 2.0 specification, coupled with significant industry support, has made SMIL an attractive option for educators. As authors gain experience using SMIL, expect new ideas to emerge that leverage SMIL's capacity for delivering dynamic content based on the assembly of individual multimedia components. Currently, SMIL is stewarded by the SYMM Working Group, a mix of experts from a wide range of industries including CD-ROM manufacturers, Interactive TV, mobile communications, and audio/video streaming -- all interested in bringing synchronized multimedia to the Web. A recent initiative includes bringing SMIL content into the hands of the mobile user via PDAs and even cell phones. For example, the SMIL 2.0 Recommendation includes a simplified version of SMIL targeted for mobile devices. Known as the SMIL 2.0 basic profile, it includes features that map to the limitations of hand-held devices. This is an exciting development for educators, because it opens the door to the reuse of those same multimedia chunks used in the creation of desktop multimedia presentations..."
[September 04, 2002] "Get Up To Speed With SMIL 2.0. An XML-Based Approach to Integrating Multimedia into Web Content." By Anne Zieger (Chief Analyst and founder, PeerToPeerCentral.com). From IBM developerWorks, XML Zone. September 2002. ['SMIL 2.0, the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language, has begun to establish itself as an important new approach for integrating multimedia into Web content. SMIL, which offers XML-based approaches for controlling the timing and presentation of multimedia elements, has begun to attract the support of many large software vendors and toolmakers, making it increasingly accessible for developers. In this article, Anne Zieger provides an overview of SMIL and describes several tools available to make SMIL coding simpler.'] "For developers outside the multimedia world, the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language, or SMIL, may be something of an obscure technology. But at least among a few key players, SMIL has begun to establish itself as an important approach to presenting multimedia online. SMIL support has crept into technologies backed by Adobe, Microsoft, and perhaps most prominently, media delivery leader Real Networks. A wide variety of smaller vendors have begun to provide SMIL authoring tools and players as well. In days to come, as support for the current 2.0 specification grows, working with SMIL could become a standard strategy for any developer whose work requires some form of multimedia asset control. If the growing roster of tool creators is any indication, building presentations in SMIL should become easier as well... SMIL is an XML-based language that allows authors to write interactive multimedia presentations without using multimedia management tools such as Macromedia Director. Authors can describe the timing of multimedia presentations, associate hyperlinks with media objects and define the layout of the presentation onscreen. The SMIL 2.0 spec, for its part, is a series of markup modules defining semantics and XML syntax for certain SMIL functions ... As SMIL's popularity grows, developers are branching out into tools and tactics borrowed from other coding environments. Independent projects adding power or functionality to SMIL include PerlySMIL, a tool that creates dynamic SMIL files using Perl, and Cheshire Cat, a project that integrates SMIL with industry standard multimedia authoring tool Macromedia Director. Future projects bringing SMIL into other programming worlds seem likely, with Java technology-related projects an especially likely target: (1) Soja, a Java-based SMIL 1.0 player already created by the French non-profit development house Helio; (2) Schmunzel SMIL 1.0 player created in Java technology by SunTREC Salzburg; (3) X-SMILES, a Java-based open browser supporting XML. As SMIL 2.0 adoption continues, Java technology projects embracing the 2.0 standard are almost certain to follow. The already flourishing group of tools for SMIL is also likely to grow in coming months, as Web design specialists reach out for new multimedia options and multimedia houses continue to seek smoother Web delivery..."
[July 19, 2002] "A Realist's SMIL Manifesto, Part II." By Fabio Arciniegas. From XML.com. July 17, 2002. ['Using SMIL 2.0 to implement narrative strategies in multimedia. In this two-part series Fabio has invited us to take another look at SMIL, the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language. The trouble with most of the current SMIL literature, maintains Fabio, is that it fails to cater properly to either of its two potential audiences: Web developers and multimedia creatives. In the first half of this article, Fabio introduces the basics of the SMIL technology. In part 2, he brings the focus onto the creative techniques, and shows, with the aid of examples, how SMIL can be used to achieve common narrative devices in multimedia and movies.'] "In the first part of this article series, I mentioned two big problems -- and addressed the first -- obstructing widespread adoption of SMIL: Confusion about terminology, versioning, and structure Lack of business and artistic orientation from current literature The second problem has been key in making SMIL a tough sale because -- just like Flash and SVG -- it is a creative-oriented technology. It lives in the middle of the programmer-designer spectrum, where technocrat literature fails to attract many people from either side. On one hand, web designers seeing a bouncing ball on the screen tend to react with a simple 'I can easily do that in Flash', which is true. On the other hand, programmers, who appreciate the tech-appeal of the way in which the ball is made to bounce, are not being educated about the possibilities SMIL offers for expression. As a result, people on both ends tend to dismiss the whole technology as a nice toy. The goal of this article is to show SMIL's potential as a technology in service of narrative strategies, adding something extra to the media rich Web... In what follows I will explore three narrative strategies and how to implement them using three important features of SMIL 2.0. The features explained are transitions, declarative animation, and SMIL 2 events. The narrative strategies are condensation, synecdoche, and spatial montage..."
[June 06, 2002] "A Realist's SMIL Manifesto." By Fabio Arciniegas. From XML.com. May 29, 2002. ['A look at the state of the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language, SMIL, and how it can realistically be used in video and multimedia deployment today. Our main feature this week focuses on SMIL, the W3C's Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language. Although SMIL has been around for several years, and is supported in RealPlayer and Quicktime, it has yet to achieve its full potential in delivering web multimedia. In the first part of "A Realist's SMIL Manifesto", Fabio Arciniegas describes the state of SMIL so far, including liberally illustrated examples of current SMIL concepts.'] "The Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language, SMIL, has a less-than-stellar past but a very interesting future. SMIL 2.0 recaptures the simplicity and practicality of declarative synchronization of media introduced by version 1.0, while adding modularization and content-related features much missed in the early version. The goal of this two-part series is to illustrate best practices and creative uses of SMIL 2.0; in particular the creation of guided-reading documents which push the boundaries of Web narrative technology by combining classic layout and design practices with television-like effects. The present article deals with the problem of enhancing video inexpensively and dynamically with SMIL 1.0 and assumes no prior knowledge of SMIL 1.0. It covers the current state of SMIL; the structure and syntax of the language, with examples; and SMIL 1.0's strengths and flaws. It is meant to get you up to speed with the last three years of SMIL, while the next article will show you what is ahead in the coming years, and how SMIL can be a player in improving narrative technology on the Web... there are many environments where the player conditions are closed and the shortcomings are acceptable, making SMIL a reasonable alternative: (1) Sequencing of advertisement and content inside a particular player. RealPlayer developers use SMIL for this purpose often. (2) Simple prototyping and storyboarding of video content, by elongating the duration of still images. This is an inexpensive and often nice use of SMIL. (3) Closed environments where the elements of content don't change much, but they need to be reorganized in many ways, easily and inexpensively. Think for example of a kiosk in a large museum with pictures of each room, providing directions to users. The pictures don't change at all but depending on where you are and where you want to go, the system must show you a different sequence of pictures. It is a lot cheaper to create and maintain simple text files with SMIL sequences than to edit each sequence as a long video in Premiere (or some other video tool)... In the next article we will look ahead and see how the new modularization and content-related additions to the SMIL language make it an interesting new tool to improve narrative technology on the Web."
[August 15, 2001] World Wide Web Consortium Publishes SMIL 2.0 as a W3C Recommendation. The World Wide Web Consortium recently announced the publication of Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL) 2.0 as a W3C Recommendation, reflecting the director's judgment that the specification "has significant support for a technical report from the Advisory Committee, the Team, W3C Working groups, and the public; SMIL 2.0 is a stable document and may be used as reference material or cited as a normative reference from another document." The SMIL 2.0 specification defines an XML-based language that authors can use to write interactive multimedia presentations. Version 2.0 includes approximately one hundred predefined transition effects, and support for hierarchical layout and animation. In addition to full incorporation of the successful SMIL 1.0 features, SMIL 2.0 Modules provide functionalities including animation; content control; layout; linking; media objects; metainformation; structure; timing and synchronization; time manipulations; and transition effects. This gives authors the ability to create sophisticated animation, event-based interaction with a presentation, and graceful transition effects." Two design goals have been followed: (1) providing an XML-based language that allows authors to describe the temporal behavior of a multimedia presentation, associate hyperlinks with media objects and describe the layout of the presentation on a screen. (2) allow reusing of SMIL syntax and semantics in other XML-based languages, in particular those who need to represent timing and synchronization. For example, SMIL 2.0 components are used for integrating timing into XHTML and into SVG. The strategy adopted in SMIL 2.0 for integrating its functionality with other XML-based languages is based on the concepts of modularization and profiling." [Full context]
[March 01, 2001] "Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL 2.0) Specification." W3C Working Draft 01-March-2001. Edited by Jeff Ayars (RealNetworks); Dick Bulterman (Oratrix); Aaron Cohen (Intel); Ken Day (Macromedia) et al. Latest version URL: http://www.w3.org/TR/smil20. This document specifies the second version of the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL, pronounced 'smile'). SMIL 2.0 has the following two design goals: (1) Define an XML-based language that allows authors to write interactive multimedia presentations. Using SMIL 2.0, an author can describe the temporal behavior of a multimedia presentation, associate hyperlinks with media objects and describe the layout of the presentation on a screen. (2) Allow reusing of SMIL syntax and semantics in other XML-based languages, in particular those who need to represent timing and synchronization. For example, SMIL 2.0 components are used for integrating timing into XHTML and into SVG. SMIL 2.0 is defined as a set of markup modules, which define the semantics and an XML syntax for certain areas of SMIL functionality. SMIL 2.0 deprecates a small amount of SMIL 1.0 syntax in favor of more DOM friendly syntax. Most notable is the change from hyphenated attribute names to mixed case (camel case) attribute names, e.g., clipBegin is introduced in favor of clip-begin. The SMIL 2.0 modules do not require support for these SMIL 1.0 attributes so that integration applications are not burdened with them. SMIL document players, those applications that support playback of "application/smil" documents (or however we denote SMIL documents vs. integration documents) must support the deprecated SMIL 1.0 attribute names as well as the new SMIL 2.0 names." [cache]
[September 22, 2000] As part of the W3C Synchronized Multimedia Activity, the W3C SYMM Working Group has published a last-call public working draft of the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL 2.0) Specification. Reference: W3C Working Draft 21-September-2000, edited by Jeff Ayars, Dick Bulterman, Aaron Cohen, et al. The last-call review period ends 20-October-2000, after which the Working Group 'intends to submit this specification for publication as a Candidate Recommendation.' The new WD updates Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL) Boston Specification [W3C Working Draft 22-June-2000]; accordingly, 'SMIL-Boston' (code name) is now renamed SMIL20. The WD document "specifies the second version of the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL, pronounced 'smile'). SMIL 2.0 has the following two design goals: (1) Define an XML-based language that allows authors to write interactive multimedia presentations. Using SMIL 2.0, an author can describe the temporal behavior of a multimedia presentation, associate hyperlinks with media objects and describe the layout of the presentation on a screen. (2) Allow reusing of SMIL syntax and semantics in other XML-based languages, in particular those who need to represent timing and synchronization. For example, SMIL 2.0 components are used for integrating timing into XHTML and into SVG. SMIL 2.0 is defined as a set of markup modules, which define the semantics and an XML syntax for certain areas of SMIL functionality. Appendix A of the working draft contains the SMIL 2.0 XML DTDs [cache]. See also the SMIL mailing list archives and the public working draft of HTML+SMIL Language Profile (modules supporting animation, content control, linking, media objects, timing an synchronization, and transition effects; not currently ready for last-call review). In order to help evaluate the SMIL 2.0 Last Call specification, Oratrix is making versions of its GRiNS for SMIL-2.0 player available for general testing and evaluation.
[June 15, 1998] On June 15, 1998 the W3C issued a press release describing the publication of SMIL as a W3C Recommendation: "The World Wide Web Consortium Issues SMIL 1.0 as a W3C Recommendation. Cross-Industry Support for Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language, Bringing TV-Like Content to the Web." Document title: Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL) 1.0 Specification. References: W3C Recommendation 15-June-1998, REC-smil-19980615. SMIL uses XML syntax, and SMIL documents are required to conform to the XML 1.0 specification; section 5 of the SMIL specification describes the SMIL XML DTD. "SMIL allows integrating a set of independent multimedia objects into a synchronized multimedia presentation. Using SMIL, an author can 1) describe the temporal behavior of the presentation, 2) describe the layout of the presentation on a screen, and 3) associate hyperlinks with media objects. SMIL [thus] enables authors to bring television-like content to the Web, avoiding the limitations for traditional television and lowering the bandwidth requirements for transmitting this type of content over the Internet. With SMIL, producing audio-visual content is easy; it does not require learning a programming langauge and can be done using a simple text editor. The SMIL 1.0 specification was written and developed by the W3C Synchronized Multimedia (SYMM) Working Group, a unique mix of experts from the four divergent industries (CD-ROM, Interactive Television, Web, and audio/video streaming) interested in bringing synchronized multimedia to the Web." SMIL testimonials are provided by ACCESS, Bell Labs, CLRC / Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, CWI / Amsterdam, DAISY Consortium, Netscape, NIST, The Productivity Works, RealNetworks, and Veon.
[July 31, 2000] W3C Releases Revised SMIL Animation Specification. A new working draft version of the SMIL Animation specification has been published by the W3C. Reference: W3C Working Draft 31-July-2000, edited by Patrick Schmitz (Microsoft) and Aaron Cohen (Intel). Document abstract: "This is a working draft of a specification of animation functionality for XML documents. It describes an animation framework as well as a set of base XML animation elements suitable for integration with XML documents. It is based upon the SMIL 1.0 timing model, with some extensions." Description: "This document describes a framework for incorporating animation onto a time line and a mechanism for composing the effects of multiple animations. A set of basic animation elements are also described that can be applied to any XML-based language. A language with which this module is integrated is referred to as a host language. A document containing animation elements is referred to as a host document. Animation is inherently time-based. SMIL Animation is defined in terms of the SMIL timing model. The animation capabilities are described by new elements with associated attributes and semantics, as well as the SMIL timing attributes. Animation is modeled as a function that changes the presented value of a specific attribute over time. The timing model is based upon SMIL 1.0, with some changes and extensions to support interactive (event-based) timing. SMIL Animation uses a simplified 'flat' timing model, with no time containers (like <par> or <seq>). This version of SMIL Animation may not be used with documents that otherwise contain timing." The SMIL Animation specification has been produced as part of the W3C Synchronized Multimedia Activity. The document has been written by the SYMM Working Group working with the SVG Working Group. The goals of the SYMM group are discussed in the SYMM Working Group charter. This specification is a revision of the 'Last Call Working Draft' SMIL Animation of 28-January-2000, incorporating editorial suggestions received in review comments. Before the Working Group will consider moving this document to Candidate Recommendation stage, additional changes are still required to align this draft with the developments in SMIL Boston. Specifically, requested revisions to the 'Last Call Working Draft' included incorporation of some of the advanced timing features of SMIL Boston which were still being developed at the time of publication of this draft.
[August 04, 2000] "Style Matters: A Question of Timing." By Didier Martin. From XML.com (August 02, 2000). [The SMIL family of XML applications enables synchronized display of multimedia elements on the Web. Didier Martin explores SMIL, and the new synchronization features in Microsoft's IE5.5.'] "We are so used to HTML that, most of the time, the whole notion of a web browser is associated with HTML browsing. But outside of Microsoft or Netscape browsers there are alternatives, such as SMIL browsers, the most popular SMIL browser being the Real Audio G2 player. SMIL browsers display movies and animations, and play sound tracks. All these media are time sensitive, and to render multimedia objects is also to synchronize their rendering. Microsoft's recently released IE5.5 browser has some new synchronization capabilities. IE 5.5 supports a first version of the TIME module, a subset of the SMIL specification. But before we look at TIME, what is SMIL? SMIL (pronounced 'smile') stands for Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language. And guess what? SMIL is a rendering language based on XML. It is, in fact, a two year old W3C Recommendation! Two main multimedia browsers can interpret SMIL documents: (1) The Apple QuickTime Viewer; (2) The RealAudio G2 Viewer. These two are by far and away the most popular, having millions of copies installed. A SMIL document's structure is similar to the HTML document structure. . . Microsoft's IE 5.5 browser includes a useful new feature inspired by the SMIL specification: the time dimension. The HTML+TIME implementation is a first version of the SMIL 'Boston' profile [Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL) Boston Specification, W3C Working Draft 22-June-2000; part of the W3C Synchronized Multimedia Activity]. W3C's SMIL Boston is a SMIL specification in which the SMIL features are defined as modules, and one or more modules can be included in other languages such as XHTML. The Microsoft implementation is an early draft and will not necessarily be compliant with the final recommendations. But at least it can give us an idea of the potential, and offer an early preview of the time and synchronization capabilities offered by the SMIL Boston working draft. Any object displayable in the browser's display area can have its lifecycle determined by the document's author. For instance, a paragraph may appear for only 5 seconds, or a floating frame may appear after 10 seconds. The SMIL Boston modules, and more particularly their implementation in mass market browsers, bring real multimedia capabilities to our published documents. For multimedia objects like movies, soundtracks, and animations, synchronization and object life cycle management are essential. Until SMIL Boston is finalized and gets browser support, you can experiment with the RealPlayer browser and SMIL publishing tools (RealPresenter), or play with IE 5.5's early SMIL Boston implementation." [Note also (1) SMIL Animation, published July 31, 2000, and (2) Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language Document Object Model (DOM).]
[Previously]: On April 9, 1998, the The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) announced the release of the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language specification as a W3C Proposed Recommendation (PR).
On November 6, 1997 the W3C announced the first public draft specification for the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language, produced by the W3C Working Group on Synchronized Multimedia (SYMM). The document is edited by Philipp Hoschka (W3C), and the named authors are: Philipp Hoschka, Stephan Bugaj, Dick Bulterman, Lynda Hardman, Jack Jansen, Rob Lanphier, Nabil Layaida, Jonathan Marsh, Anup Rao, Warner ten Kate, Jacco van Ossenbruggen, Michael Vernick, Jin Yu. Its references: WD-smil-971106, W3C Working Draft 06-November-97.
The draft document "specifies the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL, pronounced 'smile'). SMIL allows integrating a set of independent multimedia objects into a synchronized multimedia presentation. Using SMIL, presentations such as a slide show synchronized with audio comments or a video synchronized with a text stream can be described [. . .] SMIL documents are well-formed XML documents in the sense of the XML 1.0 draft. For describing the syntax of SMILE documents, this specification uses two notations: (1) an augmented Backus-Naur form (BNF) similar to the one defined for HTTP 1.1, and (2) an XML Document Type Definition (DTD)."
"SMIL was developed by the W3C Synchronized Multimedia (SYMM) Working Group, a unique mix of experts from the four divergent industries (CD-ROM, Interactive Television, Web, and audio/video streaming) interested in bringing synchronized multimedia to the Web. The W3C SYMM Working Group includes both key industry players such as Digital Equipment Corporation, Lucent/Bell Labs, Microsoft, Netscape, Philips, RealNetworks and The Productivity Works, and leading research organisations such as Columbia University, CWI and INRIA."
Principal SMIL URLs for W3C Recommendation 1.0
- Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL) 1.0 Specification PR-smil-19980409, W3C Proposed Recommendation 09-April-1998. See also the announcement. [local archive copy]
- Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language 
- "the latest version"
- the press release (November 1997)
- Experimental SMIL validator
- SMIL DTD - Revision: 1.3 or later, from CWI; [local archive copy]
- Audio, Video, and Synchronized Multimedia - W3C work
- "Streaming Media to Make You SMIL. Introducing the Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language." Feature article in Web Review January 9, 1998. Contributions include: (1) "Toward Synchronized Multimedia on the Web," by Philipp Hoschka; (2) "An Interview with the W3C's SMIL Guy, Philipp Hoschka," by D.C. Denison; (3) "Synchronized Media for the Web," by Kim Brown; (4) "SMIL Resources," by Jen Muehlbauer.
- [December 27, 1997] See the news article on SMIL by Mark Walter in The Seybold Report on Internet Publishing: "W3C Smiles on Multimedia. Proposes Spec[ification] for Synchronizing Time-based Media with Web Pages."
- [February 02, 1998] "Synchronized Surfing. A New Standard in the Works Will Bring TV-like Content to the Web." By Angela Hickman. In PC Magazine Volume 17 Number 3 (February 10, 1998) 29.
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