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Challenges in multimedia analysis are calling for the sharing of research efforts, while in practice collaboration is hindered by technical and proprietary issues. The Community of Multimedia Agents project (COMMA) attempts to solve this problem by creating an open environment for developing, testing, and prototyping multimedia content analysis and annotation methods. Each method is represented as an agent (an executable module) that can communicate with the other agents based on descriptors and description schemes in the coming MPEG-7 standard. This allows multimedia-processing agents developed by different organizations to operate and collaborate with each other, regardless of their programming languages and internal architecture. The researchers can compare the performance of agents and combine them to build more powerful and robust system prototypes. It can also serve as a learning environment for researchers and students to acquire and test cutting edge multimedia analysis algorithms. Through sharing of media agents, the Community can increase efficiency of research while protecting the intellectual property of the inventors.