SWGIT Photo Guidelines, Part 1 (Forensic Science Communications, October 1999)
October 1999 - Volume 1 - Number 3
Definitions and Guidelines for the Use of Imaging Technologies in the Criminal Justice System
Scientific Working Group on Imaging Technologies (SWGIT)
(formerly the Technical Working Group on
Imaging Technologies [TWGIT])
(Version 2.1 — June 8, 1999)
If you wish to submit comments to the Scientific Working Group on Imaging Technologies (SWGIT), you may do so via E-mail or the postal system.
When submitting your comments, include the following:
1. Your name;
2. Your job title;
3. Name and address of your agency;
4. Telephone number; and
5. E-mail address.
When commenting on specific parts or sections of the draft guidelines, please indicate the section title to which you are referring.
If replying via E-mail, include the previously requested information (1–5, above) in the body of your E-mail and enter “SWGIT Guidelines Review” as your subject line. You may include your comments in the body of your E-mail or as an attachment in either WordPerfect or Microsoft Word.
Forward your comments to both of the following addresses: email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
If replying via the postal system, please include the previously requested information (1–5, above) in a cover letter, followed by your comments, and forward them to the following address:
Richard W. Vorder Bruegge
Federal Bureau of Investigation
Laboratory Division Room 3449
935 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington DC 20535
Although digital imaging technologies have been used in a variety of scientific fields for decades, their application in the criminal justice system has been relatively recent. Consequently, there has been a need to gather and disseminate accurate information regarding the proper application of imaging technologies in the criminal justice system.
The mission of the Scientific Working Group on Imaging Technologies (SWGIT) is to facilitate the integration of imaging technologies and systems in the criminal justice system by providing definitions and recommendations for the capture, storage, processing, analysis, transmission, and output of images.
This document is intended to serve two purposes:
1. Provide definitions for use by personnel in the criminal justice system when discussing imaging and imaging technologies.
2. Provide preliminary general guidelines for use by personnel in the criminal justice system as they develop specific standard operating procedures and quality assurance and training, qualifications, and proficiency programs for their agencies.
Image (Webster’s New World Dictionary, Third College Edition): An imitation or representation of a person or thing, drawn, painted, photographed, etc.
Imaging Technologies: Any systems and/or methods used to capture, store, process, analyze, transmit, or produce an image. Such systems include but are not limited to film, electronic sensors, cameras, video devices, scanners, printers, computers, etc.
Archive Image: Either the primary or original image stored on media suitable for long-term storage.
Copy Image: A reproduction of information contained in a primary or original image.
Digital Image: An image that is stored in numerical form.
Duplicate Image: An accurate and complete replica of an original image, irrespective of media.
Primary Image: Refers to the first instance in which an image is recorded onto any media that is a separate, identifiable object or objects. Examples include a digital image recorded on a flash card or a digital image downloaded from the Internet.
Original Image: An accurate and complete replica of the primary image, irrespective of media. For film and analog video, the primary image is the original image.
Processed Image: An output image (see Image Processing).
Working Image: Any image subjected to processing.
Archiving: Long-term storage of an image.
Artifact: Any information not present in the primary or original image inadvertently introduced by image processing.
Capture: The process of recording an image.
Capture Device: A device used in the recording of an image.
Compression: The process of reducing the size of a data file.
Digital Image File: A record that includes image data and related data objects.
File Format: The structure by which data is organized in a file.
Image Analysis: The extraction of information from an image beyond that which is readily apparent through visual examination.
Image Enhancement: Any process intended to improve the visual appearance of an image.
Image Output: The means by which an image is presented for examination or observation.
Image Processing: Any activity which transforms an input image into an output image.
Image Processing Log: A record of the steps used in the processing of an image.
Image Transmission: The act of moving images from one location to another.
Image Verification: A process by which personnel identify an image as being an accurate representation.
Intermediate Storage: Any media or device on which an image is temporarily stored for transfer to permanent or archival storage.
Legacy File Management: A methodology for preserving data and images so that they are retrievable as technology changes.
Lossless Compression: Compression in which no image data is lost and the image can be retrieved in its original form.
Lossy Compression: Compression in which image data is lost and the image cannot be retrieved in its original form.
Native File Format: The file format of the primary image.
Source Code: The list of instructions written in a standard programming language used to construct a computer program. This information is not usually provided absent a court order or prior contractual agreement.
Storage: The act of preserving an image.
Storage Media: Any object on which an image is preserved.
Information referenced to this document can be identified as Version 2.1 ¾ June 8, 1999.