The SDL Forum Society was formally established in 1995 as a non-profit making organization registered in Darmstadt, Germany (see constitution). The main reasons for Darmstadt, are that the initial steps to formalize the Society were made in 1993 before SDL '93, and this was the home of the first chair of the Society: Amardeo Sarma.
Informally the Society has existed since June 1990, when the 5th SDL Forum Organisation was formed in the UK. The main function of the Society was initially to act as a legal entity behind the SDL Forum series of events. The main participants of the Society have therefore been the key people involved in organizing the SDL Forum and publishing the proceedings. Although there is no formal connection, it is natural that the ITU-T language rapporteurs have also chaired the society (both before and after it was legally registered) and the programme committee of Society events. There is, however, a requirement that the Society should ensure that its decisions are in agreement with ITU-T Study Group (or its successor) responsible for ITU System Design Languages standards.
In the period 1996 to 2000 the Society became closely involved in the evolution of the ITU-T Specification and Description Language. This continued after 2000 with the Society taking a strong role in future standardization. The Society has supported meetings of the experts' group and related electronic interchange of information and participation of Society members in ITU-T meetings.
The Society funds the cost of this website, and the discussion email list <sdlnews of sdl-forum.org>. The discussion list can be joined via the discussions page that also gives access archives of previous discussions.
The aims of the Society also include dissemination of information, promotion and education. These activities (such as running this site) will benefit the whole community of users of the ITU-T System Design Languages. The use of funds to establish and run this site was explicitly agreed (see minutes of the meeting April 1996). To enable the Society to sustain the site and run the other activities it was agreed there should be membership fees.
Paid up members of the society have access to information, discussions and other benefits (such as a discount on Forum proceedings and events), not available to non-members (see Membership: benefits and fees).
Postal Address: SDL Forum Society, c/o TSE, The Laurels, Victoria Road, Windermere, LA23 2DL Cumbria UK
Telephone - +44 15394 88462