​Viewpoint: Emilio Zapato of Tedial

In the run-up to NAB, The Broadcast Bridge spoke to Dr. Emilio Zapato founder and CTO of Tedial.

The company has 14 year of experience in creating IT solutions to manage media and workflows for broadcasters. As well as the more familiar media asset management, the company has a workflow solution to facilitate the use of file-based architectures in media preparation and playout services. The complexity of this area has grown since the demise of videotape, and the constraints it placed on workflows. The company has 100 systems already integrated.

Broadcasters now expect as a matter of course to handle tens of file formats, in many languages, and support all manner of additional content like captions and subtitles.

Zapato explained the Tedial approach to managing workflows as different levels.

Level one – storage

Level one is the storage workflow, where we manage different appliances: NAS, SAN, object storage libraries, and optical storage. This level manages media across different media and in the cloud.

Level two – tapeless workflows

This level is the integration of systems in the customer facilities. The separate departments—production, newsroom, sports production, and playout—now seamlessly link together.

Level three - delivery

Content delivery now has to prepare content in many forms for delivery as OTT, catch-up, web delivery, extending the broadcaster’s reach beyond the legacy over-the-air.

These are the three main workflows concerning media files and their associated metadata.

level four - BPM

Level four is concerned with the business of broadcasting. This is the business process management (BPM) workflow. BPM allows the orchestration of the daily tasks of the broadcaster’s staff.

Background

BPM is new to the broadcast market, but has long been a standard for the IT market. Tedial started in 2001, and comes from an IT background.

“We started applying IT technology to broadcast, but broadcast deployment is different to general IT. A, the size of the files, and B the number of disparate system to be integrated. However the base technology is the same.

To provide BPM Tedial uses a service-oriented architecture (SOA) integrated into a MAM system. The Ficus module uses their own BPM technology running on an Oracle Text database. Zapato explained, “With our background in IT we developed our own BPM engine, fully compatible with BPM notation”.

One advantage of BPM is that all the components of the media workflow become integrated under an overarching orchestration layer.

To deploy BPM, the first step is to integrate all components, the second step is to integrate the Media Process Manager (MPM)

When you can control media files with a software system (file-based operations) it it is much more easy to automate processes like compliance checking. The system prepares all the files for the operator, removing the need for many manual, library operations.

Service adaptors

To integrate all the many components in a system, probably in a multiple vendor environment Tedial uses a Metadata Integration Broker (MIB). The company has a suite of MIB plugins integrated into the the Tarsys MAM.

The Tedial architecture

FIMS

The joint AMWA/EBU project, FIMS, is raising the visibility of BPM and SOA for broadcasters and media companies. Zapato said that Tedial supports the FIMS initiative. He also feels that another specification that is going to be important is the interoperable media format (IMF), now formalised as SMPTE 2067, “it is the first time there has been a clear specification for delivery, IMF is the natural way to specify templates for delivery with the composition playlist”.

Zapato sees “the hot topic now as flexible delivery in different profiles”, how to handle different languages, titles, end credits, subtitles and closed captions.

"To integrate their facilities “everyone must support FIMS, but for delivery, everyone must support IMF“

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