Open GIS Consortium Announces Six New Members

Lance McKee Vice President, Corporate Communications The Open GIS Consortium, Inc. (OGC) 35 Main Street, Suite 5 Wayland, MA 01778-5037 voice: (508) 655-5858 fax: (508) 655 2237 email:
Tuesday, 8 April 1997 UTC
Wayland, Massachusetts, USA April 8, 1997 - The Open GIS Consortium, Inc. (OGC) announced today that six organizations became members in February and March of 1997, bringing OGC's total membership to 94. OGC coordinates development of the OpenGIS Specification for common interfaces and services that support access to diverse geographic data and geoprocessing resources in networked computing environments. Silicon Graphics, Inc. (SGI) (Mountain View, CA) and the U.S. Army Topographic Engineering Center (TEC) joined at the Technical Committee level, which gives them voting privileges in the OGC Technical Committee. SGI, maker of high performance graphics workstations and servers, has many customers involved in applications such as geographic information systems (GIS), Earth imaging, and distributed interactive simulation. OGC membership will help SGI keep their products synchronized with the open systems initiative which bears most directly on the ability of these customers' clients and servers to access and provide heterogeneous geodata and geoprocessing resources over networks. TEC is the Army's center for research and development of a wide range of topographic techniques and equipment needed to support Army field operations. TEC works closely with the Department of Defense National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA) in: managing and coordinating the Army's requirements for digital topographic data (DTD); developing and evaluating prototype DTD products; and developing product and software standards. Membership in OGC provides TEC with direct access to a standards effort important to the Department of Defense and a group of partner intelligence agencies who created the NIMA-led Geospatial Information Integrated Product Team (GI IPT) to make strategic decisions relating to these agencies' production, management, and use of geospatial data. Last year, the GI IPT joined OGC as a Strategic Member to enlist the consortium's help in this planning effort. The Agricultural University of Norway and Warsaw University, now university associate members, join 18 other European universities and research centers who are beginning to play an important role in the development of the OpenGIS Specification. The associate membership of GIS/Trans, Ltd., (Cambridge, MA), a systems and integration house with many important transportation contracts in government and industry, indicates the growing importance of open systems approaches in the transportation sector of geoprocessing. OPEN INTELLECT (Atlanta, GA), also joining at the associate member level, sees education as the most critical element in this early phase of building advanced, interoperable geospatial computing capabilities and institutional consensus. OPEN INTELLECT's Atlanta Metropolitan Forum for Open Spatial Information Systems supports the efforts of both OGC and the Federal Geographic Data Committee. OGC coordinates development of the OpenGIS Specification and also facilitates related business development and institutional adoption of open systems approaches to the collection, management, distribution, and processing of digital geographic information. -- end --