We design and implement a research friendly software platform, which aims at the flexibility and the abstraction of MPEG-7 application prototyping. We studied and analyzed the MPEG-7 standard, including a typical scenario of using MPEG-7. In order to fulfill to needs of researches, in addition to the normative parts of MPEG-7, additional requirements are included. By examining these requirements, we propose a research friendly software platform. The architecture consists of a framework, utility units, and the descriptors. Because this system is implemented using Java, it also incorporates the features of the Java environment, and thus it is flexible for developing new components and prototyping applications. We demonstrate the flexibility of this testbed by constructing an example program which allows users to manipulate image related descriptors.