Cal Poly Proposes Soft-Proofing Standard

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By: E&P Staff

The Graphic Communication Institute (GrCI) at California Polytechnic State university, San Luis Obispo, this week proposed development of an industry standard, Specifications for the Application of Image Displays (SAID), at the International Prepress Association’s 2005 Technical Conference in Rosemont, Ill.

SAID aims to develop a standard for evaluating computer displays, video cards, and software used to reproduce color-accurate images (soft proofing) by providing an “objective, measurable methodology to assess the performance and proper application of display-based proofing equipment and methods,” according to GrCI.

Methods to certify display now rely on “subjective visual evaluations and imprecise data built upon a 30-year-old color measurement system that is widely regarded as inadequate,” GrCI Director Hal Hinderliter said in a statement announcing the proposal. “By basing the SAID standard on the latest developments in color science, we can leverage the certainty of objective color measurements to provide traceability for our computer display evaluations.”

Besides the graphic arts, the specifications are intended for application to digital video, film-making, medical imaging, and game development.

With the introduction of wide-gamut displays, 10-bit video processing, and other technologies not supported by current proofing workflows, Hinderliter said the “most important objective will be to create a standard that can be extended in order for improved hardware and software to be utilized; to ‘future-proof’ the practice of display-based color evaluation.”

GrCI said it plans to work closely with international standards committees, a panel of industry experts and color scientists will steer the research, and vendor input will be encouraged through a board of advisers.

Those seeking more information on the project or interested in participating on an advisory committee may contact Hinderliter at (805) 756-5170 or

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