Reliability is perhaps the most important feature of any production process, and nowhere is this more significant than playout. But any automated playout system must also be dynamic, flexible and redundant. And playout is affected by the processes earlier in the chain, such as intelligent metadata during ingest. Playout automation for long-form content requires flexibility as well as highly efficient file transmission. The beauty of the best systems is their ability to remain controlled by automation while also enabling last-minute edits to be performed — only seconds before broadcast.
On the horizon
We surely haven’t seen the end of media server innovation. Tools will continue to get better and faster. But server technology won’t just reduce production time; it will redefine it. With the rise of applications for, and integration with, second screens, it will be more about transformation than optimization.
Next-generation servers will also be able to support multiple codec types in parallel. When recording video feeds, the encoding process will start simultaneously, making content immediately available for exchange. Providing people in remote locations with full workflow access and participation capability is another sure byproduct of our times. Access, speed and innovation will continue to transform how we work and what we see on screens of all types.
—James Stellpflug is vice president, products and technical services, EVS.