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  • www.broadcastengineering.com A PEN -ON MEDIA PUBLICATION

    AVOID A COMPRESSION HEADACHEUnderstanding AVCHD and H.264/AVC

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  • I www.solidstatelogic.com

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  • Make the Most of Your MediaYour media is your lifeblood. From it f ows the two most essential

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  • TABLE OF CONTENTSVOLUME 53 I NUMBER 10 I OCTOBER 2011

    BroadcastEngineeringe

    FEATURES42 Understanding AVCHD

    The codec differs from H.264/AVCin several important ways.

    48 Production workflowsSmaller broadcasters have differentneeds than their larger counterparts.

    BEYOND THE HEADLINESDOWNLOAD

    12 Audio-visual archivesAs other options become available,tape may not make the cut.

    FCC UPDATE16 TV -51 under attack

    The wireless industry's wish wasgranted as the FCC froze applicationsand changes to Channel 51.

    DIGITAL HANDBOOKTRANSITION TO DIGITAL

    18 Interactive systemsThe upcoming ATSC NRT standarddelivers content in advance of use.

    COMPUTERS & NETWORKS22 Networked media

    Storage and usage are almostcompletely disconnected.

    PRODUCTION ROOM24 In -stadium entertainment

    Vendors and venues find revenue in equippingsports arenas for HD production.

    (m tinucef on page 6

    SEE IT ONLINE!Learn from the experts with Broadcast Engineering'sSpecialized Training eBooks and video tutorials.

    Learn more at: www.broadcastengineering.com/specialized -training/.

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    4 broadcastengineering.com I October 2011

    ON THE COVER:AVCHD, developed jointly by Panasonic and Sony, is aproprietary version of H.264/AVC. Specifically, AVCHDemploys both the H.264 Main Profile and High Profile.Thus, althouch it is marketed as a single codec, it uses apair of codec profiles.

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  • TABLE OF CONTENTS (r0mTiNt1ED)VOLUME 53 I NUMBER 10 OCTOBER 2011

    SYSTEMS INTEGRATIONNEW MEDIA NETWORKS

    28 BXF explainedThe new, open SMPTE schema standardlevels the playing field for manufacturers.

    SHOWCASE36 In -game experience

    Oregon's Matthew Knight Arena boastsHD production technology.

    NEW PRODUCTS & REVIEWSAPPLIED TECHNOLOGY

    52 Openet SDM software

    61 Signiant CSCM software

    FIELD REPORTS54 T-VIPS's IP transport

    58 Plura monitors

    TECHNOLOGY IN TRANSITION63 Video processing

    GPUs could make advancedgraphics attainable by all.

    NEW PRODUCTS65 Harmonic's Electra 9000 video

    encoder and more ...

    DEPARTMENTS8 EDITORIAL

    71 CLASSIFIEDS73 ADVERTISERS INDEX74 EOM

    JUST THE FACTS!After 10 months of anxious waiting, the FCC's netneutrality rules have finally been published in theFederal Register. The rules are set to take effect onNov. 20. However, it's expected that Verizon andMetroPCS will challenge the rules in court. Earliercases from Verizon and MetroPCS were tossed outof court because the rules hadn't been finalized.

    Learn more at www.broadcastengineering.com

    6 broadcastengineering.com I October 2011

  • -hat's a bold statement, but a true one. As one of the world's largest broadcast and professional solutionssuppliers, Grass Valley" has over 3,000 ac-ive 'broadcast' customers, and lens of thousands of professionalusers generating content using Grass Val ey tools. For more thE n 50 years, Grass Valley has been, and

    continues to be, at the forefront of on -air innovation, creating some of the most accomplished productsand services available. When you're watching news, sports, or entertainment programming, whether ona TV, the web, or a mob]e phone, you're watching Grass Valley at work.

    For more informaticn, please vis t:www.grassvalley.com

    Ge00"g rass valley

  • EDITORIALDEPARTMENT

    Do we needthe cloud?

    If I rated technical topics by the number of press re-leases received, cloud storage would be number one.Not a day goes by when I don't receive at least severalpress releases about new vendors, products or no-

    tices of webcasts or seminars about cloud storage. Today, Ireceived a press release titled, "Cloud on a USB stick."

    But the question readers continue to ask me is, "What doescloud storage have to do with broadcast and production ap-plications?" That is a more difficult question to answer.

    In looking for help, an hour on the Web merely left memore confused than before. One vendor offered 10 reasonsto use cloud for backup. Another white paper suggestedthere are three types of clouds: private, public and hybrid.There were also many papers appearing to want to scareone off from the technology with titles like, "Cloud Appli-cation Deployment: 10 Deadly Sins." I also discovered thehybrid cloud, the rich cloud and the virtual cloud.

    The recent IBC convention should have provided someguidance, right? Nope. While some of the convention'stechnical papers mentioned the cloud, I did not visit asingle vendor claiming to offer cloud storage as an endproduct. That may not be so surprising as broadcasters areabout as risk adverse and anyone.

    Cloud technology is a huge business. Amazon operatesthe world's largest cloud -based service provider, the EC2(Elastic Compute Cloud), which is said to use 40,000 serv-ers. It generated $500 million last year, and some believe it

    will hit $1 billion in revenue next year.While certainly large, that amount of storage is peanuts

    compared to Google. According to a report from DataCenter Knowledge, Google has approximately 900,000servers consuming about 220MW of power, or about1 percent of total global electricity use by data centers.

    MI of this makes me wonder why cloud vendors are notscrambling to supply technology to this industry. Then, Ireflected on a point above: Broadcasters are not risk takers.

    Even so, IT -centric products are already core to somebroadcast and production applications, so can the benefitsof the cloud be far behind?

    As one who likes holding my content on local servers, Iwould be hesitant to turn it over to the invisible cloud. Butthen, my own experience includes several system failureswhere several years of data suddenly disappeared. That aloneshould make me eager to hand that task to someone else.

    However, before you upload your entire station to thecloud, it is worth reading what Oracle CEO Larry Ellisonsaid about the cloud. Keep in mind he's made a lot of cor-rect business and technical decisions that have made himthe third richest person in America.

    "The interesting thing about cloud computing is thatwe've redefined cloud computing to include everythingthat we already do," Ellison said. "I can't think of anythingthat isn't cloud computing with all of these announce-ments. The computer industry is the only industry that ismore fashion -driven than women's fashion.

    "Maybe I'm an idiot, but I have no idea what anyone istalking about. What is it? It's complete gibberish. It's in-sane. When is this idiocy going to stop?"

    What's your opinion? Is there a cloud in your future?Let me know at [email protected] BE

    EDITORIAL DIRECTORSend comments to: editor©broadcastengmeering.com

    8 broadcastengineering.com I October 2011

  • T4,

    s, nized by industry professionas Japan's largest broadcasting equipment exhibition.What is Inter BEE?E A venue where everyone can experience the latest trends and developments in audio, video

    and communications, as well! as related leading -edge technologies.

    IIAn excellent opportunity to witness firsthand the burgeoning businesses related to the completetransition to digital broadcasting that took place in Japan ahead of other Asian countries.

    MA venue where technical engineers, sales staff, and industry experts will be waiting at exhibitorbooths to welcome participants.

    MAn excellent opportunity to gain knowledge and acquire the latest information at symposiumsfeaturing invited guest speakers who are actively involved in the industry.

    Exhibition CategoriesIMProfessional Audio Equipment Zone:

    High -end products such as consoles, mixers, audio equipment for facilities, etc. thatare designed to satisfy professional needs.

    Efficient workflow systems from recording to mastering.

    1111Professional Lighting Equipment Zone: Energy saving and super -luminosity LED spotlights.

    Stage -lighting equipment such as lasers and mobile lights that work together witha variety of audio and video configurations.

    E Video and Broadcast Equipment Zone:File -based workflow systems that fadlitate comprehensive media management.

    HD-, 4K-, and 2K -related products as well as the latest in non-linear systems.

    Power -source equipment, batteries, measuring equipment, and converters thatincrease broadcasting equipment performance.

    Cranes, steadycams and other special/peripheral products that enhance the operationof broadcasting equipment.

    Cross -media Zone: Digital signage and digital cinema products/technologies. 3D technology and content for filming, editing, relaying, and screening. IPTV5, mobile TVs, H.264 encoders, decoding -related technologies, FPU products, etc.

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    Now acceptingvisitor pre -registration!Inter onlinewwww.into,r-bee.comOrganizer: JE I TA Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association

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    Inter BEE 2010 Results Number of exhibitors:

    824 (a new record) Number of overseas exhibitors:

    478 (a new record)11Number of visitors:

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  • DOWNLOADBEYONDTHE HEADLINES

    Audio-visual archivesAs other options increase, tape may not make the cut.

    41 he demise of videotapepresents a challenge forbroadcasters. It is no lon-ger possible to send pro-

    gram videotape to the archive - aclimate controlled warehouse - andexpect to check it out sometime inthe following 25 years. Instead, pro-grams now exist as data files, andnew systems and working practicesare required.

    Virtually all new cameras shoot asfiles written to data cards or opticaldiscs, and videotape as an acquisitionformat is becoming a memory. Morefinished content is being delivered tomaster control as MXF files or anoth-er similar format, so again, videotapehas had its day.

    There are two issues with tape:How long will the medium last, andhow long will tape decks be around?Tape generally lasts 20 to 30 years ina climate -controlled environment.However, finding a working tape deck

    BY DAVID AUSTFRBFRRY

    DAM

    Content and archive management

    Hierarchical stora e mana s ement

    High- Nearline Automatated Externalperformance disk tape tape

    disk array array library storage

    Media migration

    The storage of the future

    Figure 1. An archive consists of a hierarchy of storage, with a management layer tocontrol file transfers and migration to future storage media.

    older than 20 years is nearly impos-sible. There are still working quadmachines, but they are relatively easyto repair, with discrete electronicsand large mechanical parts. The min-iaturized parts of modern decks are

    FRAM E GRAB A look at the issues driving today's technologyWatching the streaming cloudWith better devices, more people are choosing Internet -based,on -demand viewing.

    Scheduledbroadcast TV

    Recordedbroadcast TV

    Short video clips,e.g. YouTube

    DVD/Blu-ray

    Streamed on -demandTV shows

    Downloaded content

    Streamed on -demandmovies

    Pay -per -view

    Source: Ericsson

    M2011II 2010

    0 20 40 60 80 100

    PercentConsumer usage (more than once a week) for TV/video

    http://wwwericsson.com

    difficult to manufacture withoutspecial tools, so sourcing parts decadesahead will be difficult. The same appliesto the highly integrated electronics.

    In the data storage world, thisproblem is solved through ongoingmigration to the latest format. Dataon SCSI drives is copied to SAS, LTO-2to LTO-5, and so on. Migration iscarried out before the media wearsout or the drives become obsolescent.Some tape libraries include lifecyclemanagement software that moni-tors tape condition and migrateswhen appropriate. Archive manage-ment software similarly managestapes, migrating when needed, and"defragging" partially erased tapes,compacting them to fresh media.(See Figure 1.)

    Videotape can be similarly migrat-ed, but each dub is a generation loss.For compressed digital videotape for-mats, losses from error concealmentand correction can occur. For com-posite recordings, there are additionalartifacts of decoding.

    Data tapes and disks can be copiedwith very low data losses. An archivesystem should include a data integrity

    12 broadcastengineering.com October 2 011

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  • DOWNLOADBEYONDTHE HEADLINES

    check to ensure the file hasn't beentampered with or corrupted whilein storage.

    LTOLTO is a popular format for ar-

    chiving because it has media anddrives available from several manu-facturers. Also, the format has a well-defined roadmap, with the currentgeneration being LTO-5. Each gener-ation drive is backwards -compatibletwo or three generations, providingfor easier transition.

    LTO-5 also introduced supportfor Linear Tape File System (LTFS).This is useful for small archives wheresingle tape may be used to store proj-ects, jobs or program series. It allowsdirect access to tape from Linux, Macand Windows operating systemswithout the need for tape manage-ment software.

    With a large robotic library, a DAMsystem and archive manager is usedto catalog and index data tapes, butLTFS offers a low-cost alternative forad -hoc archiving.

    LTO-5 cartridges store 1.5TB data.The projected LTO-8, three gen-erations ahead, is planned to store12.8TB. Since LTO-3, support wasadded for write -once read many(WORM), and hardware encryptionwas added in generation 4. Theseare both of potential application inmedia archives.

    One day, there will be a successorto the LTO format, and, in time, thearchived files will be migrated to an asof yet unknown storage medium.

    Cost vs. performanceData can be stored on spinning

    disks or data tape, and each has itsadvocates. But, will one eventuallyovertake the other? While that answeris unclear, the choice will be largelydetermined by cost and features likeintegrity, resilience and restore times.

    The choice of local server sys-tems, or "the cloud," is partly a busi-ness issue, balancing CAPEX andOPEX. However, security and disas-ter recovery are important issues to

    consider. Cloud -based storage servicesare backed by strong marketing. But,with broadcasters' experience at main-taining program archives, there is notnecessarily a great need to turn to aservice provider. Also, many IT solu-tions are designed for a data life of lessthan a decade, making them unattract-ive for a lot of broadcast content.

    A secure archive will house a mini-mum of three copies. These would bea local copy and two different cloudsuppliers, which would give very goodresilience against disaster or businessfailure of a cloud service provider.

    Data can be storedon spinning disksor data tape, but

    will one eventuallyovertake the other?

    DAMResiliency is important, but how do

    you find the content? Any videotapeand film library will have a catalog.Originally, it could have been a cardindex, but now more likely a database.In a similar fashion, digital assetsneed a catalog, index, and a means tosearch and retrieve content.

    But, how do you protect the cata-log? Again, the answer lies in datamigration. This is where standards areimportant for asset records. It makesit much easier for future generationsto use the information if it conformsto a standard. There is much workongoing to standardize file wrappersand metadata for content archives,but the work continues, and, in 2011,there is no complete answer as towhich standards are best.

    The issues to be consideredinclude: the choice of video and audiocodecs, wrappers and containers, andmetadata. Much of this has alreadybeen covered by SMPTE standardsand AMWA specifications, but thereare particular issues for archives.

    How do you know what you are view-ing is what was originally stored? Hasit been edited or tampered with overtime? File integrity checks are oneway to assure that you are viewingthe original content. Some storagesystems support WORM, and this is agood way to prevent tampering.

    Heavily compressed video datais not ideal for an archive, as it ismore subject to picture impairmentsthan uncompressed or mezzaninecodecs. Long GOP compression isalso less suitable for further editing.The choice of codecs should balancestorage cost against the compressionratio that suits future repurposing.Too much compression could dam-age the future value of an asset.

    For many reasons, the content fileand DAM record can become sepa-rated. During mergers and acquisi-tions of media companies, data canbe lost. Also, databases corrupt formany reasons over decades. For thisreason, it is essential that content filesbe self -describing. That means suf-ficient metadata is wrapped with thefiles to ensure the audio-visual datacan be decoded, and that descriptivemetadata provides explanation of thecontent and its ownership.

    SummarySetting up a program archive is

    a complex balance of cost versusperformance. An archive must bemore resilient against failure thangeneral IT systems. The reason isbecause lost files are a business'lost assets.

    Judging an asset's value 20 or 50years in the future requires a crystalball, which makes it even more dif-ficult to judge the ROI of an archivesystem. Additionally, some mediacompanies are attempting to de-velop a best practice for media pres-ervation; so, for now, learn from theguys with valuable assets as they willhave given the task considerable timeand effort. BE

    David Austerberry is the editor ofBroadcast Engineering's world edition.

    14 broadcastengineering.com I October 2011

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  • FCC UPDATEBEYONDTHE HEADLINES

    TV -51 under attackThe wireless industry's wish is granted as the FCCfreezes applications and changes to Channel 51.

    0 n Aug. 22, the FCC im-posed an immediatefreeze on applicationsfor new stations andimprovements in existing stationson Channel 51, currently the up-permost TV channel. The freeze wasimposed at the request of the wirelessindustry, which wants interferenceprotection for future wireless opera-tors on 698MHz to 704MHz, whichis adjacent to Channel 51 (692MHzto 698MHz).

    Seeking protectionChannel 52 has been auctioned

    within the wireless world, and thewinning bidders do not want high-powered TV stations operating nextto their lower -powered wirelessdevices. Wireless advocates asked theFCC to, in effect, create a guard bandon the TV side of the spectrum dividerather than on the wireless side bystopping any growth on Channel 51.

    DatelineOn or before Dec. 1, 2011, Non-

    commercial TV and Class A stationsin Alabama and Georgia must filetheir biennial ownership reports.

    On or before Dec. 1, 2011, com-mercial TV and Class A TV stationsin all states and territories must filebiennial ownership reports reflectingtheir ownership as of Oct 1, 2011.

    By Dec. 1, 2011 TV and Class ATV stations in the following loca-tions must place 2011 EEO reportsin public files and post them on theirwebsites: Alabama Colorado, Con-necticut, Georgia, Maine, Massa-chusetts, Minnesota, Montana, NewHampshire, North Dakota, RhodeIsland, South Dakota and Vermont.

    BY HARRY MARTIN

    These requests resulted in the freezeimposed in August.

    Fixed database priorityWhile the FCC is considering how

    much of the TV band it can rededi-cate to wireless, it has already frozengrowth in the entire TV band. Nonew applications or channel changesare allowed for full -power stations,and no new applications are being ac-cepted for low -power TV stations onany channel. All of this is to ensure afixed database when the FCC receivescongressional authority to incentiveauctions and channel repacking. TheAugust freeze signals the FCC's de-termination that sanitizing Channel51 is a higher priority over having afixed database.

    Immediate changesFull power TV stations on Channel

    51 are invited to move to any lowerchannels they can find. Their rule -making petitions to amend the TVTable of Allotments, and their ap-plications for construction permitsto change channels, will get expe-dited treatment. On the other hand,pending applications for new LPTVstations on Channel 51, most of whichwere filed in 2009 and 2010, and werebeing processed up to now, have beenfrozen. Although, they were given a60 -day window, ending Oct. 21, to filechannel change applications. Suchwindow applications will be treatedas minor changes.

    Moving not mandatoryExisting full- and low -power sta-

    tions authorized on Channel 51 maycontinue to operate undisturbed- at least until the FCC decides onpermanent rules governing the wire-less -Channel 51 interface. Incumbent

    TV -51 stations will be permitted tofile minor change applications, butonly if they do not propose to coverany area they did not cover before.

    Only TV -51 affectedThe relaxed rules governing fre-

    quency changes are limited to Chan-nel 51 stations and applicants. Allother television licensees remain sub-ject to all old processing rules. Thus,full -power stations on channels otherthan 51may not change channels, andpending LPTV applications for newstations on other channels will not beaccepted. But, unlike Channel 51 sta-tions, licensees on other channels mayfile for minor changes even if they pro-pose an expanded service area.

    Those in limboThe Commission's initiative raises

    some important questions. Will LPTVstations that want to abandon Channel51 now be allowed to claim displace-ment status and be eligible for prior-ity over pending applications for newLPTV stations or changes in existingstations? Will Class A stations be treat-ed any differently from LPTV stationsin this context? Will frequency -changeamendments to pending Channel 51LPTV applications take priority overpending applications on lower chan-nels? What about granted but un-builtconstruction permits for new LPTVstations on Channel 51? May theybuild on 51? And finally, if they pre-fer to move, may they do so as a minorchange the way pending applicants arepermitted to do? BE

    Harry C. Martin is a member of Fletcher,Heald and Hildreth, PLC.

    IllSend questions and comments to:[email protected]

    16 broadcastengineering.com I October 2011

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  • TRANSITION TO DIGITALDIGITAL HANDBOOK

    Interactive servicesAn upcoming ATSC standard supports interactivity.

    The killer app of computerinteractivity, when consid-ering popularity, is prob-ably the Web browser. But

    interactivity requires more than justa browser; a rich user experience re-quires access to live and cached mul-timedia content as well as static pages.This month, we'll look at how thesecapabilities will be supported in anupcoming ATSC standard.

    Local interactivity withnon -real-time services

    When adding interactivity to aDTV broadcast service, both "lo-cal" and "system" interactivity canbe provided. The former provides acomplete mechanism within a DTVreceiver, relying on stored content;users interact with their DTV, and thecached content can be retrieved andpresented at a time after it was broad-cast. The latter uses an out -of -bandreturn channel that provides signal-ing back to the broadcaster.

    FRAME GRAB

    BY ALDO CUGNINI

    ATSC NRT (Non -real time) is aCandidate Standard that providessupport for delivery of content inadvance of use (i.e., files, as opposedto streaming content) to both fixedand mobile broadcast receivers. NRTservices will usually carousel (i.e., re-transmit) content throughout an an-nounced availability window, sincereceivers will begin "connecting" toa broadcast at different times. In thesimplest use cases, the set of avail-able files is fixed for the durationof an NRT session. However, dy-namic update of available content isalso supported.

    NRT content carried in an ATSCbroadcast stream is delivered via ex-tensions to the File Delivery over Uni-directional Transport (FLUTE) pro-tocol. Developed by the Internet En-gineering Task Force (IETF), FLUTEprovides for unidirectional deliv-ery of files over the Internet, whereerror correction, and not bidirection-al handshaking with retransmission,

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    provides protection against data de-livery errors. The specification buildson Asynchronous Layered Coding(ALC), an Internet protocol designedfor massively scalable multicastdistribution. When used with ATSCNRT broadcast streams, FLUTE ap-plies to fixed receivers using the ATSC

    ATSC NRT is aCandidate Standard

    that providessupport for delivery

    of content inadvance of use

    to both fixed andmobile broadcast

    receivers.

    DTV Standard and mobile receiv-ers per the ATSC Mobile DTV Stan-dard. FLUTE file packets are allowedto use the entire transport, up to themaximum bit rate (i.e., 19.4Mb/s forfixed), minus signaling overhead.

    NRT uses URL conventions thatprovide multiple capabilities to clientbrowsing of HTML files. With theserules, receivers can distinguish be-tween files that are available only viaFLUTE versus files that are availablevia both FLUTE and an Internet link.Specific NRT URL constructions alsofacilitate using relative URLs for filesdelivered by FLUTE, rather than lon-ger absolute URLs. They also supporthyperlink resolution among the fileswithin a FLUTE session, similar tohow file paths are defined in a com-puter's file system. Thus, conventionslike virtual folders can be used.

    Three distinct consumption modelsare described in the ATSC NRT stan-dard: Browse and Download, Push,and Portal. Browse and Download

    18 broadcastengineering.com I October 2011

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    describes content that can be selectedfor later download. There are two basicoperations expected to be supported:one where the user browses for contentto be retrieved from the digital broad-cast and one where the user chooses toview previously downloaded content.The Push service offers continuouslyupdated content and is similar in func-tion to an RSS news feed on the Inter-net. The Portal NRT service providesan experience similar to browsing theInternet using a Web browser.

    When an out -of -band interactionchannel is present in an ATSC DTVservice using NRT (e.g., on a fixed re-ceiver with an Internet connection),it must conform to ATSC A/96 Sec-tions 6 (Application -layer protocols)and 7 (Network and Transport -layerprotocols), and can additionally sup-port other protocols. Network layerprotocols enable communicationsbetween a remote server and theinteractive television client in theDTV, over a return -channel network.Transport -layer protocols are de-ployed on top of the network -layerprotocols and are used for end -to-end data exchange between the serv-ers and clients. The A/96 specifica-tion does not define the physical anddata -link layers.

    Receiver customizationprovides personalization

    NRT also supports a receiver tar-geting mechanism, which is based onthe optional association of targetingcriteria with services or individualcontent items. Using this mechanism,DTV receivers personalized by meansof a user setup (or other automaticmechanisms) can be programmed tobehave differently and present differ-ent content to different users, all ina seamless fashion. Various targetingcriteria are currently supported inthe NRT stream, such as geographicallocation, postal code or demographiccategory, and new criteria can poten-tially be added in future versions ofNRT. Using the NRT specification,receivers can also be built that sup-port different codecs, compression

    formats and container file formats,including AVC, MP3 and DTS-HDaudio, and the multimedia containerformat profiled in the DECE MediaFormat Specification.

    NRT services are fully backward -compatible with existing DTV receiv-ers, which would simply ignore the ad-ditional content. (If a receiver firmware

    NRT services arefully backward -

    compatiblewith existingDTV receivers,which would

    simply ignore theadditional content.

    update mechanism is available, thencurrent receivers could potentially ac-cess the new NRT features, too.) TheCandidate Standard is expected to goto Draft Standard this month, unlessotherwise extended by the ATSC.

    Mobile devices supportinteractivity with othertools, too

    ATSC Mobile DTV (A/153) pro-vides for the delivery of auxiliary(graphical) components that sup-port interactivity, based on theOMA-RME (Open Mobile AllianceRich Media Environment) specifica-tion, written specifically for mobiledevices. OMA-RME is an umbrellastandard, encompassing elementsof application creation, delivery andcontrol. OMA-RME content consistsof scenes of objects such as video, im-ages, animation, text and audio thatare composed together. By definingeach object separately, the presenta-tion can follow scripts that controlthe appearance and dynamic behav-ior of the objects.

    OMA-RME includes Scalable VectorGraphics (SVG) Tiny 1.2 (a W3C stan-dard), Dynamic and Interactive Multi-media Scenes (DIMS) and the ECMA

    Script Mobile Profile. SVG is an objectcoding specification, an alternative tothe JPG or GIF formats, that provides away to generate and render both staticand dynamic (i.e., animated) graphicalelements on display devices. DIMS isa 3GPP multimedia standard that pro-vides for the development and deliveryof rich media services over mobile net-works, optimized for computationallyconstrained devices. DIMS is used tosynchronize graphics elements withaudio and video, and provides for thespatial and temporal layout of a mul-timedia scene. Scenes generated usingDIMS can consist of any combinationof still pictures, video, audio and ani-mated graphics. DIMS also defines anupdate mechanism that supports par-tial updates of an existing scene, as wellas on -the -fly tune -in functionality.ECMA Script is an OMA standardizedversion of JavaScript, which enablesWeb applications to have a compactenvironment within which to runcomputationally intensive programsand scripts.

    The various interactive featuresdescribed here are under develop-ment (NRT) or in early deployment(OMA-RME). (ATSC 2.0, currentlyin development, will include Inter-net connectivity and NRT file -basedcontent delivery, as well.) Expect newtools and business models to emergeas interactivity and mobile broadcastgo forward. BE

    Aldo Cugnini is a consultant in the digitaltelevision industry.

    ElSend questions and comments to:[email protected]

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  • COMPUTERS & NETWORKSDIGITAL HANDBOOK

    Networked mediaStorage and usage are almost completely disconnected.

    BY BRAD GILMFR

    It will not be long before thereis a complete disconnect be-tween where professional mediais stored and where it is being

    used. This is a profound shift, and itopens possibilities that are only nowbeing contemplated, including pro-fessional media applications hosted inthe cloud. This new frontier is beingenabled by cutting -edge innovations

    professional purposes over WANs;in fact, some would argue we arealready there.

    You might wonder exactly whatI mean by "networked media over aWAN." Well, it depends upon the usecase. The WAN in question might bea VPN between a broadcaster and apost house. It might also be a private-ly managed network used by a media

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    Hit enter these days, and your data can just as easily be stored in a cloud -basednetwork as it once was on a local server.The option is becoming more attractive assecurity continues to develop.

    that combine IT technology in newways for professional media. It is alsofueled by some fundamental changesin large-scale corporate and consum-er environments on the Internet.

    For some time now, this columnhas looked into technologies thatremove barriers to accessing profes-sional media over LANs. At this point,many of the issues surrounding LAN -based editing, file transfer and qual-ity of service have been addressed. Infact, collaborative, LAN -based pro-fessional media applications are com-mon place.

    We are at a point where one canconceive of a sequence of techni-cal developments that allow a mediaprofessional to access content for

    company with facilities all across theU.S. Or, it might be freelance peopleworking on a project that is hosted inthe cloud. From where I sit, it is thelast case that is getting interesting,and that is what I would like to lookinto in this article.

    Securing the cloudIf you assume professional content

    can be stored in the cloud (anotherway of saying content is stored onservers accessible across the Inter-net) and that extremely fast connec-tions are generally available, then thestage is set for professional use of net-worked media in the cloud. Almostimmediately, one runs into objectionsabout storing content in the cloud

    rather than in a facility. After all, thisis almost the same as saying you wantto upload a bunch of content to theInternet, and we all know this couldhave serious security implications.

    Actually, it is not the same. Whatif smart people are able to figure outways to secure professional media inthe cloud? After all, security is alwaysa risk/reward decision. I think this isnot only possible, but also I think it ishighly likely that media companies willaccept the security risks associated withcloud -based storage of media assets.

    With this barrier out of the way, thenext question is whether professionalapplications accessing networked me-dia in the cloud can be built and stillmeet professional user requirementsfor speed, security, quality and overallfunctionality. I believe such applica-tions not only can be built, but alsoI have seen early implementations ofthese applications, and they are quiteamazing. Surely challenges exist, butlet's look at one example where thesechallenges are met and resolved usinga creative approach.

    One potential problem is latency.Latency could result in unacceptablyslow response time in a viewer or edi-tor. One way this challenge could beaddressed is by intelligently predict-ing what content the user will requirenext, and moving the content onto theedit platform in the background whilethe user continues to edit. The conceptof a "viewable window" (let's say 10seconds before and after the currentlydisplayed content) has already beenemployed in a number of networkedediting systems. Extending smart solu-tions to networked media allows func-tional barriers to be removed.

    But this scenario begs a question:Where is the system that is being usedto manipulate the professional media?Traditionally, the system might be aneditor sitting in a small room in a

    22 broadcastengineering.com I October 2011

  • COMPUTERS & NETWORKSDIGITAL HANDBOOK

    television station. Over time, we haveseen these edit bays move from tape -based facilities to laptops, and the lap-tops move from edit bays in the stationout into the field. But, in these cases, aswe moved from specialized hardwareto a combination of commodity hard-ware and specialized software, the ap-plication has still resided on the sameplatform as the media. (For example,you may be using a laptop editor, butthe video and audio you are editing re-sides on the laptop as well.) As networkperformance across LANs and nowWANs has increased, it has becomepossible to remotely access the contentyou are editing. In some cases, vendorshave even demonstrated editors thatoperate using a Web interface. But now,however, we are at a tipping point.

    Applications as a serviceWe know we can run professional

    editors on commodity computer plat-forms. We also know we can separatethe location of the content we are edit-ing from the location of the edit soft-ware. We can use network attachedstorage to edit content located on a re-mote server. And, as I have just pointedout, we are at a point where we can editcontent stored on servers not withinour four walls, but in facilities locatedin other cities accessed across a WAN.

    Right now, we are moving from aparadigm in which we know exactlywhich servers are storing our content,to a notion of content stored in thecloud, on servers in places where itmakes the most financial sense. Thephysical location is not dependentupon a specific place, but instead isbased upon meeting performance cri-teria for latency, lost packets, etc. Inthis environment, professional mediacompanies have no idea where contentis stored or copied and only care thattheir contract with the cloud vendorensures their business requirementsfor security and performance are met.How the cloud vendor achieves theserequirements, while important, areultimately left to the cloud vendor.

    Wow, this is a very different world!But, this is not the end of it. What ifour professional media applicationsare pulled into the cloud as well? Forexample, imagine professional edit-ing software offered as a service in thecloud. In this world, you can walk upto any computer, open a Web browser,log in to your editing application andbegin editing content. In this world, itdoes not matter whether you are us-ing a PC or a Mac. Eventually, you cando the same thing using a hand-helddevice such as a tablet, an iPhone orAndroid device. You do not own the

    software, nor do you own the serverson which the applications or mediaare stored. In fact, the software andthe media are stored in many differ-ent places in the cloud. The contentand even the editing software are notonly replicated in a number of physi-cal locations on the Web, fragments ofthe content and software are cachedclose to the user in edge devices.

    I know that, by now, many of youare thinking this scenario is not onlyout there, but that it is completely offthe deep end. However, I can tell youthat not only is this possible, but thatI have seen early demonstrations ofit from several vendors. Yes there arebarriers - some technical, some cul-tural. Yes, it is true that in the futurenot all professional media applica-tions will work this way. That said,a significant number of professionalmedia applications will move to thecloud, so it is important that profes-sional media engineers start thinkingabout this new future. BEBrad Gilmer is Executive Director of theAdvanced Media Workflow Association,Executive Director of the Video ServicesForum, and President of Gilmer &Associates, a management and technicalconsulting company.

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  • PRODUCTION ROOMDIGITAL HANDBOOK

    In -stadium entertainmentVendors and venues find new revenue

    in equipping sports arenas.

    The market for a wide varietyof live sports productiontechnology continues togrow significantly, but we're

    not talking about mobile trucks. Asnew outdoor stadiums and indoorarenas continue to be built - or ret-rofitted - with new large HD (and3-D) displays, electronic scoreboardsand hundreds of flat -panel moni-tors at concession stands throughout,equipment vendors are reaping new-found revenue without having to de-velop new products to support them.Indeed, sports stadium entertainmentis big business with a substantial re-turn on investment.

    In addition to producing content,this "new" technology is also beingleveraged to send ads and other spon-sored content to this captive audience,increasing the sports team's bottomline revenue as well.

    The trend is clear: Stadiums andteams are trying to keep people in theseats by creating a multimedia expe-rience that is similar to, but can't bereplicated at, home. These new mediaproduction and distribution capabili-ties often require separate all -digitalHD control rooms, IP network back-bones and deterministic switching todistribute the numerous signals todifferent locations (simultaneously)within a venue.

    In many cases, this has resulted inan infrastructure that is designed andimplemented as a completely separateentity from the network or regionalsports telecast production facilities,although it also includes HD cameras,production switchers, multiviewers,servers and routers.

    Harris is one vendor that has tar-geted the space in a big way. Thecompany has designed and installedan entire IP-based digital signage

    BY MICHAFL GROTTICFLLI

    and live entertainment system insideAmway Center, in Orlando, FL, andis now working on the rebuildingof Madison Square Garden (MSG),in New York City. At MSG, Harris isdesigning the IP-centric core infra-structure and an infinitely customi-zable digital signage network basedaround Cisco Systems hardware (datadelivery) and Harris' encoders, as wellas its Infocaster (digital signage) andPunctuate (scheduling and invoicemanagement) software.

    The Amway Center, in Orlando, FL,features an IP-based digital signage andlive video display network.

    At the Amway Center, the mostlyHarris system (NEXIO servers, HDrouters, CENTRIO and IP multi -viewers, template -based Inscribergraphics systems and modular gear)features an HD video productionand distribution and IPTV system,integrated with a multichannel digi-tal signage network. This allows theMagic to address more than 1100 in-dividual screens located throughout

    the arena with tailored content. Dis-plays can be driven to show high -impact replays and highlights, venuemessaging, out -of -home advertisingor any combination of the three.

    In addition, the system enablesadvertisers to have their names dis-played on every screen in the facilityat the same time, providing exclusivemarketing opportunities.

    Serving fans in new waysNew innovations include taking

    some of the traditional productioncapabilities of a video control room,which usually pushes out images to acenter -hung scoreboard, and makingthat content available to fans individ-ually either through special receivingdevices supplied by the team or mo-bile apps on their smart phones. Thisoften requires significant transcod-ing capabilities to convert basebandvideo into an easily consumable for-mat delivered over an IP and/or Wi-Fi network. Working with establishedsystem integrators around the coun-try, Harris has been implementingCisco switching technology with itsown HD servers and routers to makethis happen.

    Harris is also working to developless costly systems, with less capabilitybut the same high -quality image pro-cessing, for colleges and smaller -mar-ket stadiums. It would be an integratedsystem that has been preconfigured toensure system interoperability.

    Colleges get in the gameOn the collegiate level, many

    schools are upgrading their in-houseA/V capabilities to enrich the fan ex-perience. The University of Oklahomaoperates a state-of-the-art video andtelevision production department,complete with in-house production

    24 broadcastengineering.com I October 2011

  • PRODUCTION ROOMDIGITAL HANDBOOK

    ion, whichevents (for

    cokzampus ven-

    s.2.60es' 65V broadcasts1060 st on campus_ttep.6.ee dwest.

    a _es), 4 this high -value`-`,..2N.!th Sony XDCAM

    s athletics de -e video production

    The University of Oklahoma'sSoonerVision department developscontent for in -stadium and teamtraining purposes.

    control room in 2009 that included aGrass Valley Kayak HD productionswitcher. It has now built a secondcontrol room and populated it with anew Grass Valley Kayenne HD videoproduction center switcher and twoK2 Summit (four channels each) HDvideo servers.

    Facilitating dual broadcastsThese all -digital control rooms are

    located inside Oklahoma MemorialStadium (the main football and soccervenue) and are connected via fiber-optic cables to a total of six athleticvenues across the campus in Norman,OK. During most games, the depart-ment produces a "dual broadcast," onefor the people in the stadiums and an-other for the broadcast TV audience athome. To accomplish this, the schoolpurchased two Grass Valley Kayennepanels, which are both operated off asingle switcher mainframe. One panelis dedicated to the in -stadium enter-tainment, and the other handles thelive TV broadcasts.

    For the Miami Heat NBA basket-ball team, managing its vast arrayof assets was a problem until it in-stalled an Avid Interplay asset man-agement system, the same type usedat TV stations around the country.The Heat Group's Media ProductionDepartment, leveraging a sharedstorage infrastructure designed andimplemented by SGI Professional

    responsible for the project manage-ment, space planning, final design,equipment procurement and systemsintegration as part of an ongoing de-velopment of the multimedia tech-nology in the stadium.

    A full complement of HD technol-ogy has been installed that enablesthe "event -day" control room to mixa variety of feeds and send images

    A full complement of HD technology has been installed at FedEx Field inWashington,DC, that enables the "event -day" control room to mix a variety of feeds and sendimages (both live and prerecorded) to fans in attendance.

    Services (Fremont, CA), usesInterplay to search, retrieve and ar-chive the media it needs to createhigh -profile, brand -centric contentfor those in attendance at games.The Interplay gives the group's stafftotal access to their media and en-ables everyone in the workflow tomanage both data and the metadataassociated with it.

    The Heat Group has expanded bybuilding an infrastructure that movesmaterial among EVS servers, SonyXDCAM optical disc players, andAvid editing and storage systems.

    Keeping fans in the seatsThe Washington Redskins have

    completed a new HD upgrade totheir FedEx Field video control roomand infrastructure, with the help ofCommunications Engineering, Inc.(CEI), in Newington, VA. CEI was

    (both live and prerecorded) to fansin attendance at FedEx Field. The sig-nals are delivered to two 100ft-wideDaktronics screens as well as to a sta-diumwide video distribution systemthat can be configured to send differ-ent signals (and promotions) to dif-ferent parts of the venue.

    Keytechnology pieces of the projectinclude a new HD Ross Video produc-tion switcher; Boland, LG and PlanarHD displays; Click Effects multichan-nel HD clip server system; EVS slow-motion video system upgrade; Evertzmultiviewer system; GMS wirelesscamera system; Grass Valley server;Harris video routing equipment;Image Video tally system; Sony HDcameras with Fujinon lenses; SonyHD video recording and playbackequipment; Apple edit system up-grades; Tektronix test equipment;Wohler audio monitors; an upgrade

    October 2011 I broadcastengineering.com 25

  • PRODUCTION ROOMDIGITAL HANDBOOK

    to fiber optics for the stadium's truckdock; and new operating consoles.

    Another noteworthy project isthe MLB's Florida Marlins' ballpark,known as Miami Ballpark, whichis less than 2mi west of downtownMiami - on the site of the formerMiami Orange Bowl. The new ball-park will become home to the FloridaMarlins in 2012; the team will thenchange its name to the Miami Marlinsafter moving into the stadium.

    The team's current home,Dolphins Stadium, includes a gamepresentations and events departmentthat is responsible for creating con-tent displayed on the large screen inthe ballpark. It uses a predominantlytape -based workflow, facilitated byHD editing and networking technol-ogy from Avid.

    The department has three staffmembers who work collaborativelyto develop all of the video displayedin the ballpark as well as marketingspots that are aired in TV and radio.They also make community outreachvideos and dubs for a number of otherdepartments within the Marlins orga-nization. They are discussing buildinga new section of the team website thatincludes content shown at the ball-park that day on the "Marlin Vision"(Daktronics) displays.

    All of the Avid gear, including AvidMedia Composer edit stations, anAdrenalin, an AirSpeed multichannelvideo server, Mojo and Unity sharedstorage and an Interplay connected toit, will be moved to the new ballpark.Storage capacity will be increased from16TB to at least twice that much.

    Beginning in 2012, at the newMiami Ballpark, the game presenta-tions and events department will de-ploy an all -tapeless environment thatwill handle two separate feeds from asingle control room, one that goes tothe large ballpark displays and a sec-ond for all of the monitors through-out the vending areas. This will givethe team flexibility to customize adsand other promotions for differentparts of the ballpark.

    [Note: Avid offers Avid InGame, apreconfigured video production sys-tem that enables sports marketing or-ganizations within leagues, teams andfacilities to deliver fan experiences aswell as drive enhanced brand visibil-ity and revenue.]

    EntertainmentThe name of the game in sports

    today is entertainment. Teams wantto monetize as much of that enter-tainment experience as they can byquickly creating content, such as

    video packagand displaying isscreens througho,Web or in other typvthat use personalized

    For broadcast equip7clthen, in -stadium entertaresents a reinvigorated verts(in light of a stagnant broasstation sector) that holds thetial for significant new business.all, who knows television produc,and video signal delivery better? Isbest part for equipment companies isthat they can easily carry over exist-ing technology to support these newtypes of digital signage and multime-dia AV applications.

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    BXF explainedThe new open SMPTE schema standard

    levels the playing field.

    For years, broadcast automa-tion systems and businesssystems needed manual ac-cess and conversion inter-

    face applications to convert metadatato/from their respective systems. Themultitudes of proprietary interfacesare difficult to keep up with, especial-ly as system upgrades and enhance-ments were added to either side.

    The new SMPTE 2021 BXF 1.0 sche-ma standard is one of the biggest ad-vances in broadcast automation in thisdecade. The holy grail of automationhas always been to provide a systemthat uses a central database for metada-ta between traffic and master control.Since centralizing a database betweenbusiness systems and master control/operations is easier said than done, thenext best thing is to standardize on acommunication schema for the ex-change of mission -critical data.

    Technology standards are neededto organize varying systems and tech-nologies. While manufacturers offerthe promise of tight integration be-tween varying systems, they still of-fer varied proprietary systems. BXFchanges that. The new open SMPTEschema standard levels the playingfield for manufacturers. By enablingtheir systems to work within theprotocol's framework, manufactur-ers can assure broadcasters of gettingnonproprietary full -feature metadataconversions and messaging systems.

    History and statsIn 2008, SMPTE developed and

    published a schema standard calledBXF (Broadcast Exchange Format)1.0 or SMPTE 2021. In a nutshell, BXFwas developed to replace the variousarchaic text conversion schemas thathave been developed over the years tointerface, access and transfer schedules,

    BY SID GUFL

    playlists, dubs lists, record lists, deletelists, etc., from business systems to au-tomation systems.

    Today, SMPTE representatives notethere are dozens of manufacturersthat have developed applications andworkflow systems using the BXF sche-ma. There have been more than 150national and international SMPTEmembers, including industry -leadingmanufacturers, involved in the devel-opment and enhancement of BXF. Inthis new digital world of broadcast-ing where multichannel, multimediaoperations are the norm, the BXFschema standard helps manufacturers

    BXF-based applications and their open -standard schema save on costs.

    build applications for automatingprocesses and procedures to next -generation enterprise levels.

    The current BXF 1.0 includes anexchange schema definition (XSD)collection for schedules, as -run,content, content transfers, etc. TheBXF schema helps manufacturerssimplify and automate the commu-nication and workflow between abroadcaster's diverse business andtransmission systems such as traffic,program management, content deliv-ery and automation. The master con-trol and traffic departments are themost common broadcast uses. Whenproperly implemented, BXF-based

    applications automate the work-flow process, streamline operations,maximize value of content and inven-tory, and increase flexibility for salesand advertisers.

    As an XML-based communicationschema, BXF allows for near -real-timemessaging and updating betweendisparate systems. The XML-basedmessages include instructions aboutprogram or interstitial changes, al-lowing an automated approach to as-run reporting and schedule changes.Other BXF capabilities include near-real -time dub orders, missing spotsreports and content management.

    In the past, a phone call to/fromtraffic was the norm. Seeing a trafficdepartment representative in mastercontrol to make changes to the paperschedule is usually a daily event. In to-day's world, business departments needto know exactly when a program orinterstitial has aired and if it aired cor-rectly, and they need to know it as soonas possible.

    Revenue optimizationOne of the most important fac-

    tors about BXF-based applications isthat they allow the decision -makingaspects of master control schedulechanges to be made in the traffic de-partment. Traffic personnel can max-imize revenue opportunities by pro-viding lucrative replacements to anymissing spot scenario. Or, when lucra-tive missing "copy" finally arrives andis ingested into playout video servers,traffic can make decisions on whichinterstitials/programs to drop and re-place. Traffic has advertiser contractinformation giving them the abilityto switch programs and interstitialsto more lucrative advertisers.

    The sales department also ben-efits from BXF-based applications.

    28 broadcastengineering.com October 2011

  • NEW MEDIA NETWORKSSYSTEMS INTEGRATION

    Because of the automated near -real-time fashion of the BXF messagingschema, the sales department canmake last-minute, higher -revenueinterstitial or program additions tothe on -air schedule. So while BXFschemas lower costs through stan-dardizing, streamlined processes andminimized manual changes/input-ting, they also generate more revenuethrough revenue optimization.

    Comprehensiveevent structure

    In creating playout schedules, thegoal is to create a schedule with theminimum and most efficient amountof effort. BXF-based applicationssimplify the creation of complexmultiline event situations by auto-mating the creation of multiple eventlines within a playout schedule. In themost efficient configuration, trafficdoes little to activate a complex play -

    out scenario like a live news breakfor example. For traffic personnel, itmay be as simple as creating a one -line traffic schedule with a predefinedidentification number. A BXF-basedapplication and the master controlautomation system take that one -linetraffic schedule and convert it into acomplex multiline playout schedulewith all the needed secondary events.If BXF-based applications are proper-ly configured with predefined conver-sion rules, master control personnelare not saddled with creating or fixingcomplex multiline event structures.

    Latest applicationsNews production automation is

    the latest craze in broadcast auto-mation. A handful of manufacturershave developed systems to automatelive newscast productions. The moreadvanced news production automa-tion systems repurpose content for

    distribution via Internet, mobile devic-es, VOD and syndication. A key aspectof these systems is the ability to mon-etize content assets. Interfacing withtraffic and billing systems, via BXF-based applications, helps to maximizeadvertising avails to other platforms.BXF-based applications automate theheavy lifting of scheduling, changingand verifying ads in live on -air and livestreaming productions.

    Content metadatamanagement

    Beyond schedules and as -runs,access and distribution of databasemetadata is another of BXF's ben-efits. Business systems such as sales,programming and rights manage-ment use BXF-based schemas andapplications to automatically popu-late centralized data warehouses withcost and scheduling data. The mastercontrol automation database can be

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  • NEW MEDIA NETWORKSSYSTEMS INTEGRATION

    populated with extensive and accuratemetadata from traffic systems. Mediaasset management (MAM) and digi-tal asset management (DAM) systemsuse database information from busi-ness systems also. News productionsystems use BXF-based applicationsto automate schedule changes andverify information for on -air, VOD,mobile and IPTV schedules. BXF-based applications and features canallow for the exchange of metadataamong systems that may not have di-rect access to content.

    Content movementinstructions

    As rich media content moves fromplace to place, the metadata associ-ated with this content moves also.This usually is a manual process orone with error -prone work-aroundssuch as hot -folders. Today, there areBXF-based applications that can

    automate the transfer of metadatathat originates from advertising agen-cies and business systems to mastercontrol, nearline and archive MAM/DAM systems.

    For example, let's say traffic makesa change request via a BXF schemamessage to master control, and anew interstitial is added to the mas-ter control playout schedule. Oncethe message is accepted by mastercontrol and the event is added to theschedule, the master control systemwill begin searching for that richmedia within its automation data-base. If the rich media is located ona nearline and/or archive system,the master control automation orMAM/DAM system will activate atransfer request for that rich media.Metadata from the business systemswill populate the master control andmedia asset management systemsdatabase. BXF-based applications

    can create move -instruction mes-sages to activate a system's physi-cal transfer of content from sourceto destination.

    The spotlight moves tobusiness systems

    As BXF-based applications becomemore popular, we can see businesssystems playing a larger role in thecontrol and monitoring of broadcastproduction systems such as mastercontrol automation, MAM, DAM,etc. It's clear that improving andadvancing operations, proceduresand workflows that are upstreamof master control is now more im-portant than ever for broadcasters.The spotlight will shift to the traffic,programming, sales and rights man-agement systems. For example, itmakes sense for traffic to be respon-sible for master control metadata andschedule changes. With advertiser

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  • NEW MEDIA NETWORKSSYSTEMS INTEGRATION

    contracts in hand, the traffic depart-ment has the information to make thebest possible decisions.

    Cost versus benefitWe've mentioned many times dur-

    ing this report that BXF-based ap-plications and their open -standardschema save on costs. To factor howmuch, you must first define cost andvalues to each aspect of the workflowand operation, multiply personneland wage costs by the hours it takesto transfer files, manually update da-tabases, manually correct schedules,manually enter and correct data indatabases, plus e -mails, phone calls,meetings, etc. Define the costs of howmuch time and effort is being exertedby functioning in a manual mode.

    Value is the next factor. What is theaverage value of your interstitials andprograms? How much revenue wouldbe lost if an interstitial or program

    did not air or it aired incorrectly, re-quiring a make -good? Value can alsomean potential revenue. By offeringautomated processes, last-minutechanges can incur additional revenue.Near -real-time updating is constantlyshowing commercial avails. Thesebenefits have value. Value can alsobe given to your on -air look. Howdo we compare to the competition?Automated systems by definitiongive you a higher up -time percentageand better on -air look than stationswithout automation.

    ImplementationImplementing BXF-based applica-

    tions involves hardware, software anda good amount of workflow changes.The majority of a BXF implementa-tion is reorganizing and revampingyour workflow process. In fact, you'llspend more time on redefining du-ties and tasks than you will with the

    physical implementation of hardwareand software. In physical terms, theBXF-based applications and theirschemas run best on server -classhardware with modern network ac-cessibility to all parties involved.

    To implement BXF in your facility,you must first understand the needs.Then, understand how BXF will ben-efit your system. You must also un-derstand the manufacturer and its in-tegration of BXF schema standards inits products. Once you've pinpointedthe areas where BXF-based applica-tions can be used, devise a plan. Cre-ating a diagram and documenting isalways a good first step.

    Even though automating simplifiesan operation, it's only smart to haveaccurate documentation. The mainreasons for documentation includethe training of new staff, for trouble-shooting issues and for future con-figuration changes or enhancements.

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    Test offline and verify the results.Train staff on how the new processesand procedure will work, and then ac-tivate your BXF-based applications.

    BXF 2.0The SMPTE BXF standard and sche-

    ma is alive and constantly changingand updating. SMPTE representatives

    note there are big advances coming inthe next version of BXF. SMPTE bal-loting and voting are still required, butthere are a few new advances worthnoting. If voting passes, the next BXFversion standard will soon providesupport for simultaneous programevents in master control.

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    scenario occurs when there is a clos-ing credits DVE squeeze while simul-taneously starting the next program.BXF will properly report timestampsand durations for programing andinterstitials. Previously, secondaryautomation events such as DVE,logos, crawls, animation keys, etc.were considered nonprogram events.In BXF 2.0, the plan is that second-ary events can be identified as pro-gram events for proper automationas -run reporting.

    Multilanguage support is alsoplanned for BXF Version 2.0. If com-mittee voting passes, the BXF schemawill be enhanced to allow for multiline,noncontrol program titles that can beplaces on the schedule in multiple lan-guages. The noncontrol informationlines are used by program managers toproperly schedule and verify, via as -run,multilanguage programming. Mastercontrol operators will also benefit byknowing if a program will run on otheroutput channels in another languageor that the program has multilanguageaudio channels.

    The futureThere are many enhancements

    coming in future releases of the BXFschema standard. Most notably is howthe BXF schema will be used in ap-plication to interface with rich mediaMXF files. BXF-based applications willsomeday have the ability to map andextract metadata information fromMXF files. For example, if a station ornetwork receives an MXF file from adistributor, a BXF schema -based ap-plication can extract the metadatafrom the MXF file without having towait for a hard copy sent separate viapaper timesheet or e-mail.

    Combining metadata with rich me-dia is a common operation in manyapplications for European broad-caster. For example, metadata extrac-tion is automatically entered into themaster control automation system forplayout. Databases in master controland traffic for spot or programmingmetadata is not common like it is inthe U.S.

    32 broadcastengineering.com I October 2011

  • NEW MEDIA NETWORKSSYSTEMS INTEGRATION

    The EBU, Advanced Media Work-flow Association (AMWA) and theirFramework for Interoperability MediaServices (FIMS) initiative are work-ing to improve how metadata andrich media are managed in a service -oriented architecture environment. Itis hoped that the output of this initia-tive will soon be brought to SMPTEfor due process standardization.

    We can also expect more rightsmanagement support in the future. Asour industry is quickly moving frommultichannel to multichannel/multi-media operations, rights managementis more important than ever. Bothbroadcasters and content owners willbenefit by accessing near -real-timeinformation regarding their content.BXF schema -based application manu-facturers are working to make theseoptions and features a reality.

    Thus far, advertising agencies havenot used BXF. SMPTE representativeshope that one day ad agencies will alsobe able to benefit from BXF. Nationaladvertising and content metadata be-gins with advertisers and ad agencies.By adding ad agencies to the broad-casting workflow, metadata accuracycan be improved and operations can bemore streamlined. For example, todayinterstitials have unique agency identi-fication code. If they used BXF-basedschema and applications, this agencyidentification code would stay withthe metadata throughout the entireend -to -end workflow. The metadatawould begin at content creation, thenstay through advertising buys, contentdistribution, playout, as -run, businessreconciliation and finally to ve