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Intergraph announces "ActiveCGM" Controls to deliver improved web graphics.

HUNTSVILLE, Ala.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 7, 1996--Intergraph Corp. announced today that it is enabling improved delivery of interactive content via the Internet and corporate Intranets by synchronizing Intergraph's ActiveCGM technology with Microsoft(R) ActiveX(TM) Controls.

ActiveCGM will become a component of the ActiveX Technologies Framework for the interchange and delivery of 2D technical information such as engineering drawings, schematic diagrams, technical manuals and maps on the web.

Intergraph's ActiveCGM browser is being implemented as an ActiveX control to work with Microsoft Internet Explorer and will be made available at no cost. Because it is an ActiveX Control, ActiveCGM also can be embedded in any ActiveX container application, including Microsoft Office, or used with leading development tools such as Visual Basic(R) or Visual C++(R).

The Computer Graphics Metafile (CGM) is an existing, widely accepted international standard (ISO/IEC 8632:1992) for structured, intelligent 2D vector and raster graphics. It is specified as the exchange format of choice for 2D graphics by many influential industry and government groups, including the Air Transport Association (commercial aerospace), CALS (defense systems), and J2008 (automotive). The underlying technology for dealing with CGM in a Microsoft Windows(R) environment, which Intergraph calls ActiveCGM, allows hyperlinking of vector and raster graphics defined in CGM. ActiveCGM also supports zooming, panning, magnification, navigation and animation of "intelligent," hyperlinked CGM graphics.

"ActiveCGM creates highly interesting possibilities in delivering graphics and engineering information across the Internet," said Paul Maritz, group vice president, worldwide platforms group at Microsoft. "ActiveCGM technology is based on the Computer Graphics Metafile format, which is an internationally accepted, vendor-neutral standard used in everything from clip art to the documentation of aircraft. This is further evidence of Microsoft's commitment to embracing existing standards and enhancing them for the Internet. As an ActiveX Control, ActiveCGM addresses technical content delivery across the Internet because CGM is already used worldwide, already has a MIME type, and can be imported by Office applications today."

Intergraph pioneered intelligent computer graphics, in which attribute information is linked to features within the graphic. With the help of its subsidiary, InterCAP Graphics Systems, it has now developed a set of tools for creating, viewing and adding intelligence in the form of hyperlinks and animation to CGM graphics. This capability makes CGM a very useful complement to HTML, the text markup language for the World Wide Web (WWW). Using ActiveCGM and HTML, authors can easily create high-quality, interactive, graphics-driven documents that are compact and efficient for access over the WWW. In the same way HTML links text data on the Web, Intergraph's MetaLink Author adds hyperlinks to CGM graphics. By clicking on "hotspots" in a drawing, a user can access related text, graphic, video or other information.

While ActiveCGM provides simple methods to animate and add hotspots to 2D graphics today, Microsoft and Intergraph are working closely together to synchronize the rich graphics environment of CGM with the revolutionary active content modeling capabilities of ActiveVRML. This synchronization of ActiveCGM and ActiveVRML is expected to result in new and exciting tools for producing and publishing compact, efficient, standards-based, interactive, animated, multimedia illustrations on the Internet and on corporate Intranets.

ActiveX Controls are small, fast, full-featured components for the Internet, Intranets, and desktop systems. ActiveX Controls are already broadly supported by hundreds of software vendors; they represent the building blocks of active content. A key benefit of ActiveX technologies is the ability to integrate applications into Web browsers, so data managed by those applications becomes accessible as Web pages. This technology, called ActiveX Documents, lets a user navigate a corporate Intranet to view a department's Web page, examine the department's budget spreadsheet, query the database for sales data or write a memo -- all from within the Web browser and without undergoing the expensive and unnecessary process of converting that content into HTML format.

"The integration of ActiveX Controls with ActiveCGM is a very powerful way to improve integration of 2D engineering and technical information across the Web," said Rich Buchheim, executive vice president of Intergraph Information Management and Solution Engineering. "So much of the success of the Web is based on the power of hyperlinking and ActiveCGM which brings a new level of hyperlinking to graphics. By adding the capability to easily embed hyperlinks based on URLs or other linkage mechanisms, ActiveCGM extends the usefulness of the CGM standard. All of our applications will quickly take advantage of this approach."

Intergraph Background Information

A member of the Fortune 1000, Intergraph Corp. is the world's largest company dedicated to supplying interactive computer graphics systems. Products range from point solutions, meeting individual and departmental needs, to integrated, enterprisewide systems. The company's common stock trades on The NASDAQ Stock Market under the symbol INGR. -0-

Note to Editors: Microsoft, ActiveX, Visual Basic, Visual C++, and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries. Point your browser to the Microsoft cad/cam home page at http://www.mcrosoft.com/industry/cadcam. Intergraph is a registered trademark of Intergraph Corporation. Other brands and product names are trademarks of their respective owners.

CONTACT: Intergraph Corporation, Huntsville

Mike Paludan, 205/730-8440

mkpaluda@ingr.com
COPYRIGHT 1996 Business Wire
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1996, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Business Wire
Date:May 7, 1996
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