About IDN (ILDA Digital Network)

The ILDA Digital Network is a collection of standards intended to help transfer laser show data between show-producing software, playback devices, projectors, and laser signal recorders.

IDN is not a product that you can buy, or even a schematic you can download. It is a series of high-level open standards. Any ILDA Member, and even some non-members, can help develop this open standard system. Any person or company can download and implement the IDN standards in their equipment.

IDN is not intended to replace the proprietary networking standards developed by laser companies. Instead it complements them, because IDN is open. If and when IDN is widely implemented, it will allow users to more seamlessly use one company's software or controller on another company's projector.

In this way it is similar to the successful 1990's ILDA laser signal standard that came up with the DB-25 "ILDA" connector. This connector is widely available on controllers and projectors today. That's how so many different control systems can work with so many different projectors.

No one is forced to use the IDN standard — just like 1990's manufacturers could have stayed with their own proprietary laser signal connectors.

But if IDN has some success, over time there may be more and more persons who see the benefit of an industry-wide open networking standard.

ILDA Digital Network resources

ILDA's Technical standards page contains official and proposed IDN standards. (Scroll down to the section listing the various IDN standards.)

The ILDA Technical Committee has a separate website with resources about the IDN. As of March 2021 it contains the following sections:

  • Commercial Products — Software systems, Plugins and drivers, Turnkey products, Hardware. Note: These are non-ILDA third-party products. ILDA is a non-profit trade association that does not make, sell or receive royalties from products.
  • Integration - OEM components
  • Projects - Platforms, Tools, Source code and libraries
  • Documentation - link back to the ILDA Technical standards page

A general overview of IDN is in the document Understanding IDN Wireshark Traces. It is best for persons familiar with Wireshark. (The source document is kept here; if it is updated, the update will be at that link.)

Below is an overview of IDN as an open standard.

For more information, visit our other ILDA websites:

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ILDAmember.com: Membership database and event management, including joining ILDA
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LasershowSafety.info: Information about safe laser shows, including laws, regulations, checklists, and more

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