At the IEEE SA standards participants work within a market-driven standards model that has gathered maturity in certain key technology spaces, including the Internet. This paradigm for global, open standards is encapsulated in the “OpenStand” principles, and it is proven in its ability to help level regional barriers in the contemporary age of borderless commerce.
The OpenStand principles demand cooperation among standards organizations; adherence to due process, broad consensus, transparency, balance and openness in standards development; commitment to technical merit, interoperability, competition, innovation and benefit to humanity; availability of standards to all, and voluntary adoption. IEEE SA processes align with the OpenStand principles, magnifying and harnessing the power of collaboration, creativity and varied expertise to the benefit of people globally.
The open and transparent development process is considered a major factor in the unmitigated success of IEEE 802.3™ “Standard for Ethernet.” Any of Ethernet’s diverse stakeholders across industries and geographic regions are invited to directly participate in the IEEE 802.3 standard’s ongoing innovation.
IEEE 802.3—first published as a draft in 1983 and as a standard in 1985—was originally conceived steadily to enable connectivity among computers, printers, servers and other devices within a local area network (LAN). In the decades since, market need has driven evolution in the standard to deliver increased capacities and apply to more devices, users, media and protocols and more types of networks. Today, IEEE 802.3 Ethernet technologies are everywhere, and innovation of the standard is incessant.
For example, IEEE 802.3 is a key element in the suite of market-driven, foundational Internet standards (IEEE standards for physical connectivity, IETF standards for end-to-end global Internet interoperability and W3C standards for the World Wide Web, among others). Industry has invested heavily in IEEE 802.3 and those other Internet standards, and the investment has paid off in the development of a huge worldwide market and a revolution in humanity’s relationship with information.
Other fast-growing IEEE 802.3 Ethernet application areas include power and energy and the globally emerging smart grid; data centers and supercomputing; mobile-communications infrastructure; healthcare and medical-device communications; entertainment, and networking for automotive and other industries.
Other frontiers of ongoing IEEE 802.3 Ethernet innovation also include other application areas (the smart grid, supercomputing, mobile-communications infrastructure, automotive, industrial, etc.), ever-increasing bandwidth capacities and introduction of new features. In April 2013, for example, IEEE announced the creation of an IEEE 802.3™ “Standard for Ethernet” study group to consider developing a 400 Gb/s Ethernet standard in order to efficiently support global bandwidth growth.
The OpenStand principles advocate that standards rise or fall depending primarily on their value to the marketplace. The IEEE 802® family of standards is an example of market-driven standards success in action.
IEEE 802.11, often referred to as “Wi-Fi®,” originally was conceived to interconnect wireless cash registers, but it has evolved into a contribution that benefits society with revolutionary new mobile devices that the world could not have even imagined a decade ago. Wi-Fi already underpins wireless networking applications around the world, such as wireless access to the Internet from offices, homes, airports, hotels, restaurants, trains and aircraft, and the scope of things that are connected wirelessly today continues to expand at furious pace. The standard’s relevance continues to expand with the emergence of new applications, such as the smart grid, the global effort to augment facilities for electricity generation, distribution, delivery and consumption with two-way, end-to-end communications and control.