Spatial and Tech Soft America Announce OpenHSF Initiative

Open Specification Designed to Meet the Needs of the Visualization Market

BOULDER, Colo.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 18, 2001--Spatial Corp., a market-leading provider of world-class 3D software components, and Tech Soft America (TSA), the leading provider of component graphics technology to the CAD/CAM/CAE industry, today announced the OpenHSF Initiative and the first publication of the HSF Specification.

Intended to provide an open visualization file format that meets the needs of the industry, the OpenHSF Initiative was designed to deliver the preferred solution to the visual interoperability problem.

"DaimlerChrysler Corporation supports the idea of an open visualization initiative and applauds Spatial and TSA for their efforts. Their OpenHSF Initiative could have far-ranging effects across multiple industries," said Dr. Gopalan Mukundan, Research & Technology Process Manager, DaimlerChrysler Corporation.

In response to the announcement, Bruno Latchague, executive vice president of research and development, Dassault Systemes, said: "The OpenHSF initiative is one that Dassault Systemes supports without hesitation. The idea of making the OpenHSF Specification available for all companies could potentially create a business community where the visualization of data ceases to be a hurdle to the product development lifecycle. This is a result that will benefit the entire market and one we look forward to participating in."

"Spatial's involvement with this initiative is a demonstration of our desire to provide solutions that go beyond our current partners and positively impact the entire market," said Mike Payne, CEO, Spatial. "The HSF format provides a robust solution that companies can implement quickly and will keep pace with the evolution of the market's needs."

"We're pleased that TSA was able to contribute our HSF format to this industry-wide solution. Achieving the goal of visual interoperability requires the efforts and input of many, and we're glad to be partnering with Spatial and all of the supporters of the OpenHSF initiative," said Ron Fritz, co-founder, Tech Soft America.

Stephen Wolfe, with Computer Aided Design Report, remarked: "Lack of a web visualization standard has hindered the widespread use of 3D over the web, particularly in engineering applications. For example, see the August 2001 CAD Report article 'Lack of Standards Cripples Three-D CAD on the Web.' Movements such as the OpenHSF Initiative may help the CAD/CAM and CAE industry solve this problem."

Advantages to utilizing the HSF Specification include, but are not limited to:

  • Open Format: HSF is an open format that may be read or written from the specification document.
  • Engineering Attributes & Geometry: The HSF format was specifically developed by and for the needs of the engineering marketplace and will continue to develop in this direction.
  • Streaming: HSF is a stream-capable format with support for storing levels-of-detail, initial camera position, etc., as well as the ability for developers to apply custom logic for specific streaming prioritization.
  • Compression: HSF files are highly compressed for efficient transmission over networks using both custom geometric and general file-wide compression techniques.
  • Custom Data Inclusion: HSF gives developers the ability to easily embed application-specific data directly within the file with full connectivity between this information and the graphical model.
  • Share/Protect Data: Developers can choose which information to expose or protect. In addition, as a tessellated format, any changes to the model cannot then be read into a solid or surface modeling application and corrupt the original design.
  • Interoperability: There is already a broad range of support among software vendors for the HSF format, including several leading CAD and CAE vendors.
  • Read/Write Toolkits: HSF read/write toolkits are available to ease the reading/writing of the format and to provide additional compression.
  • Immediate Publishing: Immediate streaming of HSF files or in-memory HSF data. There is no need to put HSF data through an additional processing step before it is ready for efficient streaming.
  • User Community Input: The OpenHSF application community can specify common extension to handle data external to the graphical model such as behaviors, BOM, parametric information, etc.
  • Cross-Platform: All major Windows and UNIX platforms (including Linux) are supported.
  • Free Players: Free viewers are already available for the basic viewing of HSF models.
  • Complimentary Components: Additional HSF-compatible component technologies are available from multiple sources to help developers build sophisticated applications using HSF as their core format.

For more information about the OpenHSF Initiative or to view the first release of the HSF specification, go to:

About Tech Soft America

Tech Soft America (TSA) provides premier customer-driven development tools, consulting and support services enabling their partners to rapidly deliver world-class technical software. TSA develops the HOOPS 3D Application Framework, HOOPS Stream Toolkit and HOOPS Net Server, all components designed to dramatically simplify the design, development and maintenance of high-performance, interactive 2D and 3D applications built for PCs, UNIX workstations, Linux, Windows CE-based handheld devices and the Web.

HOOPS 3D technology has been incorporated into more than 125 commercial software applications, from such leaders as SolidWorks, EDS/SDRC, CADKEY, Fluent, Mechanical Dynamics, Tecoplan, SPSS, Minitab and Mechanical Dynamics.

The company maintains corporate headquarters in Oakland, California, and can be reached at

About Spatial

Spatial Corp., a Dassault Systemes S.A. (Nasdaq: DASTY - news; Euronext Paris No. 13065: DSY.PA) company, is a market-leading provider of world-class 3D software components. Spatial develops, markets, and supports best-of-breed 3D components and services, to address the exponential requirements of 3D in Internet-based e-commerce and Business-to-Business (B2B) applications. Spatial's component products for 3D geometric modeling, visualization, and interoperability have been adopted by some of the world's most recognized software developers, manufacturers, research institutes, and universities. Headquartered in Boulder, Colorado, Spatial has offices in the USA, Germany, France, Japan, and the United Kingdom. For more information, please visit Spatial's Web site at or contact Spatial by email at Email Contact or by phone at 303/544-2900 or 800/767-5710.

ACIS and SAT are registered trademarks of Spatial Corp. All other products are trademarks of their respective owners.

     Spatial North American Press Contact:
     Chad Sanderson, 303/544-2932
Email Contact
     Spatial European Press Contact:
     Patrick Kieffer, +
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