London, July 2014: Systems integrator and reseller NMR has won a six-figure contract to upgrade the digital video infrastructure at Guardian News & Media (GNM), the leading global media organisation which publishes theguardian.com, the Guardian newspaper, and The Observer newspaper.
The deal will see current video editing and content creation technology replaced with a flexible and future-proof set-up based around Cantemo’s Portal Enterprise DAM (Digital Asset Management) system, using Vidispine MAM backbone APIs.
The turnkey solution will also include Adobe Creative Cloud with Premiere Pro editing, ToolsOnAir Just: In ingesting, a Quantum StorNext high-performance SAN and anObject Matrix MatrixStore nearline archive with off-site replication.
As well as supplying equipment through its partners, NMR will provide installation, integration, customization, migration, training and on-going technical support services.
A key component of the project will see current Final Cut Server content migrated to Portal DAM to create a central repository that can be accessed by Guardian staff not only in London but also in other group offices around the world.
“Part of the driver for this upgrade was a requirement to access video from any location,” said NMR managing director Neil Anderson. “ One of the trends we are seeing is that people want web-based interfaces and the ability to access, upload, edit and approve rich media from anywhere in the world. This suits perfectly what Portal DAM offers.”
The Cantemo Portal DAM, which was selected from a shortlist of five, will be used not just for content management and project sharing but also for content discovery and improved distribution.
- Adobe Premiere editing workstations will be installed throughout, replacing the current Apple Final Cut Pro set-up. NMR will provide Final Cut Pro to Premiere training.
- Object Matrix MatrixStore will be used for as a high-speed nearline archive with offsite replication. LTO tape will be used for storing sensitive material internally within GNM.
- Alongside hardware and software integration NMR, an Amazon Web Services (AWS) Consultant Partner, will provide custom S3 Glacier cloud-based long-term archive integration and will build a custom Portal DAM ‘App’ for this.
- Significant customization is part of the project. Swedish IT consultant CodeMill is providing User Interface design while Moo Systems is providing a plug-in for the Final Cut Server to Portal DAM migration and for integrating Portal DAM with the tape library, via Archiware PresSTORE software.
- A dedicated production management layer will be added to Portal DAM along with rights management capabilities.
On the decision to appoint NMR for this project, Grant Bremner, the digital video and transformation consultant working on the project on behalf of GNM, said: “They have a great track record within the media space and experience of bespoke projects like this. It is not an IT project. It is digital video. But neither is it a ‘Soho’ type installation. This is a new world of broadcast, using broadband to satisfy the public’s appetite for on-demand video content viewed on mobile and other non-TV devices.”
GNM creates digital video content for its websites and apps and also for TV, cinema, and other platforms. Content types include interviews, news and feature items, multi-camera studio shows and re-purposed licensed online feeds.
Installation of the new digital video infrastructure is currently underway. Testing will take place in August with training in September before a phased go-live in October.