Open standards for annotating and indexing networked media

The development of the Annodex technologies follows some very basic principles all aiming at a fast uptake of the Annodex technologies.


Above all, the idea is to create a very simple set of tools and formats for enabling time-continuous Web resources with the same powerful means of exploration as text content on the Web.

Hook into existing Web Infrastructure

The Annodex technologies have been designed to hook straight into the existing Web infrastructure with as few adaptations as necessary. Thus, CMML is very similar to HTML, temporal URI queries are CGI style parameters, temporal URI fragments are like HTML fragments, and Annodex streams are designed to be cachable in Web proxies.

Device Independence

As convergence of platforms continues, it is important to design new formats such that they can easily be displayed on any networked device, be that on a huge screen, or on a small handheld device screen.

Open Standards

The aim of the CMWeb project is to extend the existing World Wide Web to time-continuous data such as audio and video and create a more powerful networked world-wide infrastructure. Such a goal can only be achieved if the different components that make up the infrastructure interoperate even when created by different providers. Therefore, we are publishing all our specifications as open international standards.

Free codecs

For the purpose of standardisation it is important that internet-wide usage is limited to codecs for which no usage restrictions exist. The codecs must be legal to use in all Internet connected devices and compatible to existing Web infrastructure.

Open Source

Open standards require reference implementations that people can learn from and make use of for building up the infrastructure. Therefore, the reference software is published as open source software with the BSD style license as the license of choice. For higher level and application level software such as CMWeb browsers or authoring tools, we will decide on the license on a case by case basis. Browsers for the main platforms (Windows, OS X, Linux) will be provided for free, if not as open source.

No patents

There are no patents on the base technology as patents inhibit industry acceptance and uptake.

The Annodex Trademark

Achieving interoperability is the largest challenge for building up a novel distributed infrastructure. Any implementation that claims to implement the specification but is not conformant and thus not interoperable will be counterproductive to the creation of a common infrastructure. Therefore, we have decided to register a Trademark on the word "Annodex". Please feel encouraged to use the word for any bitstream that conforms to the Annodex specification.


Tutorial notes (1.6MB pdf)
Video demo (6.4MB mov)

Recommended Codecs
How to Annodex Theora

Creating content
Example Science CMWeb
Searching Science CMWeb
Other sites


Annodex(TM) is a trademark of CSIRO Australia. All other trademarks are the properties of their respective owners.