Ben Long looks at the forthcoming Nikon Capture NX. This comment from the writer, a Canon user, caught my eye:

If you're like me, you probably thought that NEF was merely Nikon's format for its Raw files, but the spec is actually much more versatile than that. NEF files can include Raw data or regular TIFF-like data. In addition, Nikon can put its edit list (a small XML file) directly into the NEF format.

Digital capture now dominates the SLR area in a way it didn't do just two years ago, and all photographers are now suffering from DAM shortfalls and from the raw processing volume. The latter's going to weaken Photoshop's hold and will be met by a range of instruction set processors like Aperture and Lightroom, and any old wave products that make the jump. Capture NX belongs to this new wave, saving multiple versions in the image metadata, and I suspect the Nikon connection will make it a big player. I do wish they'd just save DNGs instead of concocting another and no doubt ill-documented format.

Thanks Robert Edwards.