What’s new in Media Asset Management

  • By David Kirk

What’s new in Media Asset Management

In the almost aftermath of unprecedented events in the global media & entertainment industry, Contributing Editor David Kirk examines the current MAM state of play…

The accepted rule throughout the broadcast media asset management business is that nothing is safely stored unless held on at least three separate servers, preferably at more than one location. Nor is it safe unless properly indexed and easily searched. This article looks at recent developments including areas such as automated content recognition which is now a commonly used tool. Cloud-based content storage has also become an integral aspect of MAM with obvious advantages in allowing easy access to designated members of a production team and keeping at least one copy off site… but be sure to renew the subscription.

Arvato Systems’ Vidispine  extended their offer on VidiNet with Cognitive Services and VidiEditor. With fast on-boarding and instant scalability, VidiNet is intended for organisations of all sizes, whether looking for complete turnkey systems, toolkits and quick-starts or anything between, with the ability to predict the operating cost. Cognitive services include tools such as automated logging of ingested content, language analytics, face and content recognition and explicit language detection as well as AI-driven sports highlight detection. Associated metadata information relating to licensing can be analysed to allow automated decisions further down the supply chain.

VidiEditor is a browser-based desktop editor for use in remote editing, journalistic editing, and content preparation. Offered as an application within the Vidispine cloud-based media services platform, it works though a standard desktop internet browser.

Ateliere Creative Technologies defines its Connect SaaS offering as a cloud-native media supply-chain orchestration platform that helps content providers of all sizes manage libraries and deliver content to all leading global service providers and OTT endpoints from one central location. “Ateliere Connect’s automated component-based workflows maximize the advantages of the Interoperable Master Format (IMF), allowing users to create multiple distribution formats from a single composition and reduce their storage footprint by more than 75%,” comments Ateliere COO Bill Admans. “Instead of building and storing dozens of video files for each specification, country, and format, a user can create a single IMF with all the relevant media and metadata, simplifying versioning, compliance edits, and localization. Integrated automated quality control using AI is more accurate than human operators and catches over 90% of common issues. Ateliere Connect integrates leading workflow and business process tools to automate and orchestrate every step of the media supply chain. Connect’s fully cloud-native parallel processing, the industry’s fastest, transcodes up to 35 times faster than traditional infrastructure, completing a full-length movie in under 2 minutes.”

Dalet now offers its customers greater choice in terms of cloud providers, remote editing and archive options with expanded support for Adobe Premiere  Pro, Microsoft Azure, and Spectra BlackPearl RioBroker. “We have always encouraged our customers and partners to use our APIs to expand their content supply chains while protecting existing investments,” says Chief Marketing Officer Bea Alonso. “We will continue to explore integrations with providers of complementary solutions, especially cloud infrastructures and services such as Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, Microsoft Azure and Alibaba Cloud. Dalet Flex was one of the earliest cloud content supply chain solutions, and works seamlessly with these four different cloud infrastructure vendors.”

EditShare’s Q3 technology update includes improvements to the way customers can access, monitor and configure its FLOW media asset management and workflow software and EFS media storage system. Moving towards portable web-based operation, EditShare solutions now include analytics monitoring and reporting plus HPE-optimised nodes that accommodate productions of all sizes “Our solutions enable customers to create amazing together, anywhere,” comments Sunil Mudholkar, EditShare’s Vice President of Product Management. “It provides a web-based remote production workflow experience for productions of all sizes so our customers can work where they want and with their tools of choice.”

Operating similarly to a CDN, EFS allows users to prioritise transfers across multiple locations with easy to define business rules. The FLOW Scan Scaling Service enables distributed processing in parallel, letting users run multiple scan instances across storage tiers. Optimized for HPE, new FLOW production nodes now come in Light, Standard and XL, supporting small to enterprise workflows. Open-source analytics let customers easily visualise important data to maintain the health of their FLOW and EFS installations as well as ensure that all systems are running at optimal performance. EditShare Connect is now available for Linux, expanding cloud workflows. FLOW UI and EFS Control offer users a superior navigation and seamless graphical experience with new iconography and dark-mode colour scheme.

eMAM’s Vault is designed provided the resources needed to manage media processing, storage and archive in multiple cloud or local/on premise environments. The web interface can be used to supervise the storage, processing, and archive of content. Operators can quickly search human-tagged or AI-tagged content, browsing and previewing proxy copies of media from any connected device. Content can be downloaded or delivered to any location. A range of transcoding systems are accessible. Content can be automatically or manually moved to alternative storage devices but media remains searchable. Required content can be restored, with some configurations supporting partial file restore. eMAM Vault can run on one or two servers or virtual machines to support 10 active defined users. It can be expanded to include an unlimited number of users.

Facilis’ FastTracker is a media asset management system included with every Facilis server, and designed to be a fast way to index, catalog and find video, audio, and still-image files across Facilis volumes, network drives, and local storage. FastTracker includes automated file movement and archive profiles enabling the user to copy assets to archive locations, or to move content from ingest location to project volumes. Duplicate file tracking finds and reallocates the location of files that have been moved outside the FastTracker interface. Facilis Object Cloud and Object LTO backup and archive products are integrated, showing the status and storage location of archived files and allowing drag-and-drop restore from archive and backup.

Proxy generation is available on demand or automatic, including proxy to cloud for remote access of lower bitrate footage. Automatic or on-demand speech transcription is included as a local service with no cloud upload required. All transcription, attached proxies and metadata fields import to Adobe Premiere through the FastTracker Adobe Panel. FastTracker is also a web server, granting fully featured, secure access for internet-based users to download proxy and source files, and upload to shared storage locations without direct access to the storage volumes. FastTracker is fully integrated into the Facilis Web Console volume management, so that upon finding the proper record in the database the user can mount the required storage volume to access the sources.

“FastTracker started as a simple tool, but has grown to be a true asset management interface with secure catalogs, automations and management of backup, archive and remote access content. We feel the advantage this toolset brings to the creative process is limitless, and we’re available to help our customers deploy and use this technology” says Jim McKenna, Chief Marketing Officer at Facilis Technology.

Primestream recently introduced new ingest access capabilities for its Xchange MAM system. Xchange is now able to access and log ‘growing files’ from live broadcast feeds as the content is being recorded. Xchange has always had the ability to ingest file-based content but users previously had to wait until the entire program was ingested and encoded before they could access and log the content.

Tedial’s Hybrid Cloud allows media companies to meet business objectives quickly while maintaining full control of media archives and costs. By using computing storage and services architecture that combine the privacy and security of a private cloud with the scalability of a public cloud, users benefit from orchestration among various platforms and multiple sites. They can store sensitive data and high-value, high-resolution content on-premise inside a secure IT environment fully under the control of their IT team and not accessible outside their facility. Less critical operations including burst or peak demands in business operations can be quickly deployed and run in the cloud for enhanced agility. Media companies pay only for the period of time required by the additional business operations. High-cost services such as storage for archiving can benefit from the ability to tailor the operations to the business cost criteria. Tedial’s Hybrid Cloud architecture does all this and more.

Telestream’s Vantage media processing platform is made up of discrete services and connectors that combine to create automated workflows under unified system control. Vantage services include transcoding, media capture, metadata processing, media analysis and content assembly. API-level integration with third-party systems can be performed. The Vantage Transcoding Product Family includes support for over 120 video and audio compression formats and file types, covering a broad range of input and output devices. VANC, time code, captions and AMWA metadata can be inserted or preserved during transcoding.

Transmedia Dynamic’s Paragon is a hierarchical storage management platform that can scale up to petabytes of data using the Linear Tape File System format and controlling LTO data libraries. An integrated proxy-browse interface allows search and browse of content with associated metadata. Operators can select clips and partly restore content before downloading. Paragon maintains a full audit trail. It can retire tapes once their read/write count is reached, respond to error thresholds and automatically migrate between legacy and future LTO formats. Data integrity tests can be performed at every archiving and processing stage. Paragon can integrate with third-party MAM systems through its REST API or simple watchfolder XML ticket integration. It can also be integrated with the Mediaflex-UMS messaging bus.

Vimond’s VIA is a cloud-based, modular, and scalable video content management system for use in media ingest, asset management and content curation through to distribution. It is available on a cloud-based software-as-a-service model that scales automatically to accommodate peak viewing volume. Individual users and editorial teams can manage and their video content, create lists and assemble content carousels.

VSN’s state of the art VSNExplorer MAM will soon include the latest advances for automated metadata detection using Artificial Intelligence. The system allows integration of the main AI engines in a single interface to catalog your content and manage it in a much more efficient and accurate way. All of this with the possibility to install VSNExplorer MAM on cloud and under a SaaS model to provide greater flexibility.