CGATS.17 Text File Format
ANSI CGATS.17-2009 (at the time of writing the latest version is 2009) is the standard text file format for exchanging color measurement data.
As the document describes: "Exchange format for color and process control data using XML or ASCII text"
This standard text format (the ASCII version is the most common) is the format accepted by most color measurement and profiling applications.
It consists of a Preamble section containing originator information, keyword definitions, etc and then one or more data sections, each consisting of header and data subsections. The header subsection is where the BEGIN_DATA_FORMAT and END_DATA_FORMAT delimiters define the actual data types / units contained in the following tables. The data subsection contains the BEGIN_DATA and END_DATA delimiters which contain the actual color information in tabular form.
CGATS.17 text files can contain device (RGB, CMYK, etc), colorimetric (Lab, XYZ, etc), densitometric, spectral, naming and other information so it is a fairly comprehensive storage and exchange format.
The CGATS.17-200x (x for year) document is available for purchase at a nominal fee so we are unable to directly link to it from this ColorWiki article.
You may purchase the document here: