The venerable JPEG image-compression standard is about to get a little bigger -- the international committee that regulates the standard just approved the creation of a format called JPEG XR based on Microsoft's HD Photo spec. The Joint Photographic Experts Committee started looking
at standardizing HD Photo last month (formerly known as Windows Media Photo) because it features higher compression efficiency, better image fidelity, and more flexible in-camera editing options, and major camera makers and software vendors like Hasselblad and Adobe supported the format's metamorphosis into JPEG XR. It's not all cake and gumballs just yet, though -- although the committee approval process is over, it'll still take another year of work to clean up the spec and bring it in line with JPEG's standardization requirements. Now if only Microsoft would open up the rest of Windows Media, we'd be grinning from ear to ear.