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Scan Conversion at Youth Olympics

The 2010 Youth Olympic Games were held on August 10-28, 2010. More than 5,000 athletes, non-athletes, and officials gathered in Singapore for this 18 day event. The Youth Olympic Games included a Culture and Education Program (CEP). In support of the digital media component of the CEP, participants were encouraged to act as citizen journalists by documenting their personal impressions of the Games using digital media.

Broadcast quality feeds from the venues (SDI with embedded audio) were brought into the Games’ Digital Media Center. There, the venue feeds were integrated with content captured by the participants on a variety of consumer grade camcorders and cell phones and uploaded by them onto a number of popular web-based video sharing sites. Content was played out from the Digital Media Center to the network of monitors located throughout the Olympic Village.

The biggest technical challenge was converting the content produced by the participants so that it could be combined with the feeds from the venues. Staff at Nanyang Technological University’s Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching worked hand-in-hand with Techtel, a local systems integrator in Singapore, to address this challenge.

The solution was Ensemble Designs’ BrightEye Mitto Scan Converter, a compact, self-contained module in the company’s BrightEye Series. The Mitto module accepts computer video and audio and converts it to digital video with embedded audio. The output format of the Mitto is user configurable as either 3G, HD-SDI, or standard definition SDI. A reference input is provided to enable the output of the Mitto to be timed to a house reference.

A unique capability of the BrightEye Mitto is its ability to automatically up or down convert a selected area of the computer screen in order to achieve the desired video output resolution. All the operator has to do is use the computer’s mouse to select the area of the computer image to convert, and Mitto does the rest: image scaling, video synchronization, and audio embedding. Proprietary scaling technology developed by Ensemble results in superb picture quality.

The Digital Media Center was manned by volunteers rather than by a fully trained crew of professionals. Mitto’s intuitive, easy-to-use interface made it possible for the volunteer staff to easily download and convert the participants’ video clips with a minimum of training.

The ease of use really made the Mitto scan converter a worthwhile investment. Mitto performed flawlessly throughout the event. Hundreds of video clips were converted and distributed via the media information and display system. Thousands of young people were able to view coverage of the Games from a unique point of view: their own.

Andrew Chua is Assistant Manager of Video Productions at Nanyang Technological University’s Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching in Singapore.

Contact: Ensemble Designs
+1 530 478 1830

- from TV Technology Asia/Pacific