There is always going to be pre-existing equipment and facilities such as stills stores, graphics, video editing as well as the traditional newswire services. It is most likely that these are file-based, and so it should be possible to integrate them with the NRCS. The most efficient way to achieve this is to have all elements running on the same type of platform, which, in practice, means being able to offer news systems working on Mac OS X, Windows or Linux platforms. Such platform independence makes basic integration easier and leads to a greater exchange of information between the components of the newsroom. In addition, further development for deeper integration with specific relevant products, such as media asset management (MAM), can deliver even greater efficiency.
The MOS news communication protocol allows integration with third-party systems. It gives the newsroom and the TV station a huge advantage in terms of flexibility as it can select each piece of the news system independently — provided that it supports MOS. This means they can select the best systems on the market to suit their needs and, thanks to common MOS protocol support, these systems will work together as a single package. MOS can also ease the transition to a new NRCS as other existing equipment that supports MOS can be plugged into the new NRCS and continue to be efficiently used.
The business of making the news continues to evolve. Bringing new ideas to the process can provide new features, as well as enable the better use of existing resources.
A recent innovation is the introduction of a management information system (MIS) within an NRCS. With the aim of refining the workflow to provide the optimum use of resources, it allows managers to view the use of any chosen resource to get a picture of its use. The facility allows managers to set up reports that detail operations on selected aspects of the NRCS operation and deliver the required details back to the manager.
For example, such information could be used to identify any bottlenecks in the news workflow, or where there may be spare capacity. It could also be set to report the volume of resources used for each story, bulletin or day, the volume storage and output per story or department, or to report by topic, such as finance, sport, politics, etc. Such an MIS allows managers to get a picture of how the NRCS is used and may contribute to improved workflows and greater efficiency.
The arrival of tablets has provided an opportunity to deliver targeted information from the NRCS to the studio floor and control room areas so that appropriate people receive live selected information that is a version of their normal NRCS screen views. This generates several types of tablet client each with easy, convenient access on the move to the live status of particular areas of operation that are forever changing as the news evolves.
For example, these could be the rundown, the anchor’s script and available media. When information in these areas is updated in the NRCS, so are the tablet views, keeping everyone everywhere in the studio up to date and in-step with the news.