LizardTech, Inc., a leader in software solutions that make it significantly easier to manage, distribute and access digital content such as aerial photography, satellite imagery and scanned color documents, today announced the company's support in developing an Open Source Java viewer, a project that will be discussed in more detail during a speech given by Brewster Kahle, co-founder of the Internet Archive, at the CNI Conference in Portland, OR. With the Open Source Java viewer, Internet users will be able to view DjVu files in their browser without a plug-in download and benefit from a new open source-viewing environment.
DjVu is a revolutionary open file format that has long been preferred by libraries and universities because it enables dramatically smaller electronic and scanned document files while preserving the visual quality of the original image. Many Web sites around the world already offer documents and books in DjVu format. To view DjVu files users have the option to download LizardTech's free browser plug-in for Windows and MacOS X or use the Linux open source version from DjVu Libre. The Java viewer will provide a complementary viewing environment for users that do not want to download a viewer prior to displaying a file. Furthermore, releasing the viewer in open source and choosing Java as the main development language will further strengthen the position of DjVu as a Web standard for displaying document images and scanned books. Users will further benefit from the possibility of freely adding additional features to it, additional platform support, etc.
"As we move forward with development of DjVu as an open Web standard we want to make it easier for anyone to open DjVu files," said Carlos Domingo, President and CEO of LizardTech. "Our goal is to help provide easier access to DjVu files and to make the format as open as possible, therefore we welcome input and contribution from the open source community to this project. We feel that this project will be a nice complement to the already existing DjVu open source initiatives and the other available DjVu viewing environments."
In his speech, Brewster Kahle will outline the benefits in allowing for an easier access to DjVu files and having an open source viewer on the Internet Archive.
"With LizardTech open-sourcing their DjVu viewer, we are looking to have a number of different techniques for displaying, navigating, and printing of online books to emerge on the Internet," said Brewster Kahle, Digital Librarian, Internet Archive. "Already the University of Maryland used DjVu in their children's reader application, and by having the necessary software becoming both open-source and in Java, we hope these developments are only the beginning. By building on a commercial grade software product and the support of Lizardtech, we plan to use this as a major way to view digitized books, newspapers, and magazines."
As part of this project, LizardTech will release to the Open Source community the source code of a Java prototype that already contains all the basic functionality needed. The Java source code will be released under the GNU General Public License and posted in Source Forge.
LizardTech will also support the Library and Archive community by establishing special pricing for this market.
About Internet Archive
The Internet Archive is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that was founded to build an 'Internet library,' with the purpose of offering permanent access for researchers, historians, and scholars to historical collections that exist in digital format. Founded in 1996 and located in the Presidio of San Francisco, the Archive has been receiving data donations from Alexa Internet and others. In late 1999, the organization started to grow to build more well-rounded collections. The Internet Archive now has repositories of Web Archives, Moving Images, Texts, Audio, and Software. The collections can be found at www.archive.org.
About LizardTech, a Celartem Company
LizardTech was founded in 1992 to build valuable business solutions from technologies created by the world's leading research organizations including Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and AT&T Labs. LizardTech is a leader in applying state-of-the-art technologies to the real-world challenges of managing, distributing, and accessing large complex digital content such as aerial photographs, satellite imagery, and color scanned documents. LizardTech's software is installed on millions of desktops and integrated into a wide variety of platforms and applications. LizardTech has offices in Seattle, London and Tokyo, and is part of Celartem Technology Inc. (Osaka Securities Exchange, Hercules:4330), a Japan-based technology company focused on storage and distribution technologies for digital images. For more information about LizardTech, visit www.lizardtech.com.