The Triple-S standard defines a means by which both survey data and variables may be transferred between different survey programs running on different software and hardware platforms.
It represents a real attempt to resolve what should be a simple, but is often a complex process.
The initial version of the Triple-S standard (version 1.0) was devised by Keith Hughes, Stephen Jenkins and Geoff Wright, and published in 1994. The impetus was a paper by Peter Wills. During 1996 the same group of people met to enhance and extend the standard, based on comments from implementers and users. An interim result of these meetings was presented as a paper to the ASC (Association for Survey Computing) International Conference in 1996. The preliminary specification for version 1.1 of the Triple-S standard was agreed in December 1996 and published in March 1998.
A proposal for an XML translation of the standard was put forward in 1998 and Triple-S XML3 was presented to the ASC Millennium Conference in 1999. The Triple-S XML version 1.1 standard was published in February 2000. Subsequently, new members Ed Ross, Laurance Gerrard and Pat Molloy joined the group. The Triple-S XML 1.2 standard was published in July 2002 and version 2.0 was published in December 2006.
The standard has been implemented by numerous survey software packages