Aveco Content Management and Automation Tools
ASTRA Suite of Tools provides broadcasters with cost-effective solutions for content management, master control and news/live playout automation, studio automation, ingest and archive. ASTRA applications run on a robust, virus-free platform and specialize in multisite operations with desktop and web-based tools for proxy viewing, monitoring and control. ASTRA is on-air at over 275 locations worldwide with solutions from single channel playout systems to very large fully redundant systems and specializes in centralcasting, disaster recover sites, and regional ad insertion applications.
ASTRA CMS is the core of ASTRA and provides a comprehensive content management system. It can offer a common interface for archive, production, news and master control departments by synching these databases into the ASTRA database. Rules-based file transfers automatically moves material from any of these systems to the right location either within a facility or to remote locations with or without transcoding.
ASTRA MCR provides frame accurate playout for master control with interfaces to most all popular traffic systems. By controlling new and legacy devices, ASTRA offers a clean migration from analog to digital-based workflows. With Astra MCR, one operator can easily manage a large group of channels.
ASTRA News is similar to Astra MCR but includes MOS links to all popular NRCS systems and is specially designed to handle live events or events that cannot be accurately pre-programmed. Astra News enables flawless newscasts and other live broadcasts with minimal resources.
ASTRA Studio 2 is Aveco's second generation of studio automation, ASTRA Studio 2 enables a single operator to produce complex live newscasts and news programs. Studio 2 is hardware independent, working with various vendors' studio equipment, allowing users to pick the switcher, graphics, and other equipment that works right for them. New journalist tools and MOS integration with most NRCS systems enable journalists to quickly take advantage of these new capabilities without needing to understand the underlying technology.
ASTRA Ingest automatically or manually ingests content from live feeds, videotape, or files. Based on an off-line generated list from traffic or NRCS, content is recorded and registered into the ASTRA CMS database. Metadata can be automatically generated, loaded from traffic or NRCS systems, imported from external sources such as news agencies, or added manually.
ASTRA Architecture enables various software components to be integrated into one seamless solution. Its flexible architecture starts with systems designed with basic redundancy and grows to systems that use an N+1 design, a fully redundant design, or a design with the specific level of protection required.
SAS Solutions – To compliment the ASTRA Suite of Tools, Aveco recently introduced SAS Standalone Solutions which are standalone versions of some of the ASTRA Suite of Tools, including media asset management, archive, ingest, browse and playout. The key feature of SAS Solutions is that they can run with any vendor's automation system or MAM system. SAS Solutions provide a simple and incremental option for users just beginning their move to a file-based workflow and only need modest capabilities. SAS Solutions are also designed to enhance the operation of larger facilities that already have an automation or media asset management system. Based on the same powerful technology used in the ASTRA Suite of Tools, the SAS Solutions can scale in functionality and size from a single channel shopping network to a fully functional multichannel TV station.
SAS Solutions starts with SAS CMS for media asset management and can be expanded with many different plugin modules including SAS Ingest, SAS Browse, SAS Playout, and SAS Archive to provide extensive capability. This incremental approach avoids many of the pitfall users experience in implementing a complex and expensive media asset management system.
SAS CMS provides the core MAM capability for all the tools. It interfaces with storage devices such as videoservers, SANs, NASs, production systems, NLEs, etc. The actual files remain on the storage systems, only the metadata is stored in the CMS database. This can also be extended to include devices at remote sites.
SAS CMS's powerful rules-based workflow engine automates many common tasks in a file-based workflow. Users can easily add new metadata fields to a file that the workflow engine can read and act upon. For example, when an edit is finished a metadata flag can be set for proxy generation or content repurposing. Content can be sent to other application based on rules defined by the user.
SAS CMS is designed around a modular architecture and built on a powerful Real-Time Operating System (RTOS). It is not impacted by viruses that threaten most PC-based systems. The CMS database is automatically backed up and optionally protected with full redundancy. Hardware and software failures can be protected with backup videoservers.
Disaster Recovery Solutions
Aveco's comprehensive Disaster Recovery Solutions have been deployed in a variety of configurations based on customer requirements and budget. While a disaster is rare, most station outages today are the result of human error or simple equipment failure. The cost of going dark is expensive both in terms of revenue and reputation. Aveco has solutions on-air today that provide frame-accurate synchronization between sites for truly seamless failover—even with last minute changes in the playlist.
Automated Social Media Integration
Aveco gives broadcasters the ability to promote on-air and upcoming programming automatically to both Twitter and Facebook. With this feature, programming information from a channel playlist or a program rundown can be fed to the broadcaster's Twitter and/or Facebook account. Broadcasters can promote programming or news segments as they air, or promote what will be coming up using a look-ahead feature.
Regional Ad Insertion
Aveco's Regional Ad Insertion is a simple and cost-effective solution for Hub and Spoke or Centralized architectures that can generate additional revenue by enabling higher priced ads to be sold that are specific to viewers in different regions. Various configurations enable playlists to be controlled solely from the Hub or shared control with the regional stations. Aveco manages the ad insertion playout in all regions by distributing the playlists and making sure that the media is available in the various locations.
Editors Note: A chart showing which SAS Solutions work with specific functions is available at: http://www.aveco.com/
About Aveco s.r.o.
AVECO s.r.o., based in Prague, Czech Republic and the United States (as AVECO Americas), designs, sells, and supports Broadcast Facility automation worldwide. Based on a powerful content management system, the ASTRA Suite of Tools provides complete solutions for all aspects of file-based and traditional video workflows including solutions for ingest, browse, master control, newsrooms, and studio automation. ASTRA is the only automation system available that scales from single channel to high channel systems that are built on a Real-Time Operating System which has the ability to hot swap software modules without rebooting. http://www.aveco.com.