Reston, VA, USA, April 5, 2002. On March 7, 2002, OGC members completed an on-line OGC Web Services (OWS) 1.1 demonstration in which a variety of commercial and government geoprocessing servers, clients and middleware seamlessly communicated using interoperability interfaces. Attended by OWS 1.1 initiative sponsors, government managers and industry executives, this demonstration illustrated the success of OGC's Interoperability Program as a way to achieve rapid industry agreement leading to open interfaces.Capabilities developed in OGC initiatives enable integrators and software vendors to provide unprecedented plug and play solutions for publishing, discovering, accessing, integrating and using geographic information. Decision makers involved in homeland security, environmental protection, logistics, disaster management, public safety, and other activities will soon be able, through this progress, to quickly access and use geographic information maintained by multiple collaborating organizations.After the events of September 11, the OWS 1.1 sponsors – US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); GeoConnections, Canada; US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA); Lockheed Martin; US Geological Survey; US Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC); US Army Corps of Engineers, Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC); Community Access to Natural Resources Information (CANRI), New South Wales, Australia; and other government organizations – agreed to align OWS 1.1 to address interoperability challenges defined by officials in New York City. The OWS 1.1 demonstration scenario developed by the sponsors challenged participating technology developers and integrators to implement interoperability capabilities that address specific critical disaster management needs.The demonstration showed users easily discovering, accessing, superimposing, and portraying satellite and aerial imagery, vector data, and scientific data stored on servers in Europe, North America, and Australia. New draft specifications for metadata and services were used to implement registries that enabled discovery of data and geoprocessing services. Interfaces based on OGC's draft Sensor Web Specifications enabled discovery of and real-time access to measurements from meteorological, water quality, air quality, and seismic sensors. The OGC Web Coverage Service was demonstrated accessing a variety of imagery including visible, hyperspectral and radar. Attendees witnessed the first public demonstration of a Coverage Portrayal service which, acting in this case as a middleware web service, accessed complex coverage data to produce simple pictures for display in a web browser.Participating OGC members included: Compusult, CubeWerx, Dawn Corporation, DLR, ERDC, ESRI, Galdos Systems, George Mason University, Intergraph, iONIC Software, Laser-Scan, US NASA, PCI Geomatics, Polexis, SAIC, Social Change Online, Syncline, YSI, University of Alabama in Huntsville, and Vision for New York. Special support was provided by the New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications; the NYC Department of Environmental Protection; the US Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA); US EPA Region 2; the Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN) of Columbia University; Urban Logic; BAE SYSTEMS; and Northrop Grumman Information Technology, TASC.The next phase of the initiative, OWS 1.2, begins in May 2002 and will focus on extending engineering specifications developed in OWS 1.1 and other initiatives including: OpenGIS Specifications for OGC Common Architecture, Web Mapping, Imagery Exploitation and Sensor Web.For more information, contact Mr. Jeff Harrison, Executive Director, OGC Interoperability Program, by telephone at (703) 628-8655, or by e-mail at is an international industry consortium of more than 230 companies, government agencies and universities participating in a consensus process to develop publicly available interface specifications. OpenGIS® Specifications support interoperable solutions that “geo-enable” the Web, wireless and location-based services, and mainstream IT. The specifications empower technology developers to make complex spatial information and services accessible and useful with all kinds of applications. Visit the OGC website at .– end –“