Project AES-X210 initiation

[page updated 2012-10-08]

This project was proposed by Ethan Wetzell. It was approved under our rules by Subcommittee SC-02 and assigned to the working group SC-02-12 on Working Group on Audio Networking.

TITLE AES-X210, Open Control Architecture (OCA)
SCOPE To specify a scalable control-protocol architecture for professional media networks. The initial version will address audio aspects only, but it is intended ultimately to expand the scope to video through collaboration with a video-oriented standards body such as SMPTE.

Note that OCA is a control protocol only, and does not aspire to provide streaming media transport. It is intended to cooperate with all kinds of media transport architectures.
RATIONALE OCA is an architecture for control of media network devices in all kinds of professional media networks, from very small to very large, and possibly with critical functions, including life safety. No other known media network control architecture embraces this range of use-cases.

For details of the target use-case range, please see the AES paper "Technical Criteria for Professional Media Networks", by J. Berryman, in the Proceedings of the AES 44th International Conference, on Networking, November 2011.
WHO BENEFITS? If OCA is widely adopted, the entire professional media systems industry will enjoy the well-known benefits of multi-vendor interoperability for all scales and types of media network applications.
WHY AES? 1. OCA is technically descended from the AES24 control standard developed in the 1990's. Therefore, the AES community will tend to understand the approach.
2. The Alliance is hoping for a relatively speedy standardization process, and our conversations with AES standards people lead us to believe the AES is capable of moving expeditiously - assuming the volunteer support is good, of course.
3. The AES has the respect of the professional audio community; having OCA be an AES standard will facilitate adoption.
AES - Audio Engineering Society