Rainbow Expands With Harris Automation

For the past 15 years, Rainbow Network Communications has based its entire master control operation upon a key product from Harris Broadcast's ADC automation system.
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by John J. Barbieri
Senior Vice President and General Manager
Rainbow Network Communications, a subsidiary of Cablevision Systems


BETHPAGE, N.Y. For the past 15 years, Rainbow Network Communications has based its entire master control operation upon a key product from Harris Broadcast's ADC automation system. And during this time, we were also one of the first customers in the United States to implement Harris Invenio for media asset management. Our use of these two Harris products amounts to a big competitive advantage.

We consider both to be core technology. They form the powerful and reliable platform upon which we have built and expanded our Rainbow Media operation. Harris Broadcast has been a strong partner, providing customer and technical support at every stage.

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The Rainbow Network Communications master contol room Currently, ADC automates all 30 channels that we originate. Without ADC, it would be extremely difficult to deliver these 24/7 channels with the same level of quality and reliability. This technology manages all the bells and whistles that we employ in the play-out of our own channels and those of our third-party clients, performing such things as credit roll squeezes, graphical inserts, and commercial breaks.

We have 50 seats of ADC for managing the automation of the 30 channels, which are comprised of a mix of HD and SD, live event-based and long form play-out networks. ADC acts as the pivotal "communicator" between our SD and HD play-out servers, master control switcher and other key components of our play-out operation; many of these are non-Harris products, but are supported by Harris' open architecture.

GMT (Global Media Transfer) is a critical component within ADC that acts as the primary "motivator" for moving media content from our archive to satisfy playlist requirements for SD and HD play-out, and it has proven to be indispensable. The ADC GMT interfaces with Front Porch Digital's DivaNet archive management software and the two systems work in concert to communicate with and retrieve content from two data tape-based storage systems. The two systems also interface with multiple terabytes of SATA drive near-line storage and our SD and HD media area network.

Harris Broadcast wrote customized code for converting the traffic system logs to make this data flow seamlessly to ADC automation. Also, when we first implemented our Invenio media asset management system, Harris Broadcast worked to adapt it to our workflow, integrating it with other core technology to become the front end of our ingest process for our archive systems.

INVENIO IS A WORKHORSE

We've also used Invenio for ingesting footage and associated metadata from baseball, basketball, hockey and other sports events carried by one of our regional sports clients. To make it easier for the client's producers and editors to pull the sports clips they need, we devised a thesaurus to provide standardized guidelines, keywords and topics on which to search. Our plan is to upgrade our Invenio platform to support HD as part of our continuing expansion of our Harris infrastructure.

Invenio and ADC have become the backbone of our technical operations, and have moved us into the tapeless age. The return on investment from our Harris systems goes beyond monetary savings in facilitating a very cost-effective and improved workflow that enables the many services we provide our clients.

John J. Barbieri is senior vice president and general manager of Rainbow Network Communications, a subsidiary of Cablevision Systems Corp. and has been with the company for 28 years. He may be contacted at jjbarbieri@rainbow-media.com.

For additional information, contact Harris Corp. at 800-231-9673 or visit www.harris.com.