MIAF Compliance Warden
A New Industry Standard Conformance Tool for MIAF
Overview: MIAF, the Multi-Image Application Format, is a restricted subset of HEIF specified as part of MPEG-A. It defines a set of additional constraints to simplify format options, specific alpha plane formats, profiles and levels as well as metadata formats and brands, and rules for how to extend the format. Alongside IIRC Apple, Netflix (which later underwrote AVID) and Microsoft, and with Motion Spell's assistance, the Compliance Warden was created and set a new industry benchmark.
Details: As for every new standard, MPEG needed a reference software that would check conformance against the Application Format rules for the “Image File Format Application Format”, better known as MIAF. MIAF and its derivatives are now deployed by all major operating systems and Web browsers, making it available on billions of devices. Motion Spell delivered the compliance testing tool for MIAF. We compiled it to webassembly, so that it can be used an any recent web browser. As a result the MPEG MIAF implentors and users have benefited from an increased interoperability.
MIAF and its derivatives (HEIF, AVIF, …) are the fiercest competitors to replace JPEG, PNG, and GIF. The tool was considered so useful that it received complementary fundings from AOM for the AV1 File Format called AVIF. MIAF and its derivatives, now deployed across major operating systems and web browsers, are poised to replace traditional formats like JPEG, PNG, and GIF. Recognizing the need for a reliable compliance testing tool for MIAF, Motion Spell created a tool to meet the stringent standards of industry giants, under the auspices of MPEG, while being versatile enough to be used across any modern web browser, thanks to its webassembly compilation. This tool has since played a pivotal role in enhancing interoperability across MIAF and its derivatives.
Working with Motion Spell
Conformance is mandatory when doing standards at MPEG. However it is not an easy task and it has not always led to usable results. Motion Spell started to work on MIAF conformance and did all the developments for this project. Motion Spell quickly analyzed the need on the conformance side and set the ground to a novel approach. This led to the creation of “Compliance Warden”, a conformance tool based that decouples parsing, testing, and uses partial test vectors. This approach led to predictable results at a predictable price.