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The Cloud - Nowhere To Go But Up

COW Library : Broadcasting : Ryan Salazar : The Cloud - Nowhere To Go But Up
CreativeCOW presents The Cloud - Nowhere To Go But Up -- Broadcasting Editorial


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"The Cloud" is here. Although the concept of the cloud is not new, with the basic framework for the concept tracing back to the 1950's, it is only now that we have gained the technological expertise and widespread computing power to make efficient use of the cloud possible. As iCTVBA (International Cloud TV Broadcasters Alliance) Global Vice Chairman, our motto ("I see TV Beautifully Anywhere") beats within me. And despite my post-production industry slant, "broadcast" is still my first love. The thought of broadcast television via the cloud is such a no-brainer. Internet, everywhere; data, all around you; television, at your fingertips, when and where you want it, at your beck and call. As it should be.






The cloud is perfect for television broadcasting. For example, you can expect the speed on your personal data devices to improve once you enter the cloud. This is because the cloud can hold many of the programs that, right now, have to be stored and/or or processed inside your computer or device; when connected to the cloud via the internet, there is less need for your personal devices or computer to be weighed-down with processing needs. Think of it as a diet that allows you to eat whatever you want (accessing massive server farms in an instant) and not gain any weight (because most of the power and software resides in a datacenter running a cloud environment). With the cloud, most of your data demands and usage are now outside your computer; the inside is now on the outside (like a virtual Klein bottle).


Photo courtesy of: www.kleinbottle.com



"The Broadcast industry is changing, has always been changing and will always be about change," says Michael Rofe, iCTVBA Chairman and Global president. "It is driven by folk that enjoy watching TV and by their enormous appetite and demand for the highest quality content you can give them that resonates with their passions. Who knew?" The old clouds: cumulus, cirrus, nimbus, & stratus, are now welcoming new members to their ethereal ranks. There are several styles of data clouds: community, hybrid, private, & public.

A community cloud links several people or organizations that share a common interest or pursuit (like broadcast engineering, or geology) and provides extra computing power and access to computer programs pursuant to that field of endeavor. Hybrid clouds occur when 2 or more cloud services retain their 'individuality' but combine their resources. The private cloud is run for the benefit of a single organization. Public clouds make certain services and programs available for public use.

"How you, as a Broadcaster, get it to them is your problem not theirs; if you do not respond to their desires, someone-else will," states Rofe. "If someone can create that content and deliver or now it seems just deliver it, at a price the consumer considers fair, better than you can, more flexibly than you can or you will consider, then watch out for they will inherit your viewers and so you must respond." By using the cloud, individuals and corporations can reduce their initial material outlay when starting up or purchasing new equipment. The cloud can offer on-demand services, which you don't pay for if you're not using them.

In general, the operation costs are highest for private clouds (because only one organization is picking up the tab); community clouds operate more inexpensively (because expenses are paid by an entire type of community) and cheapest with public clouds because anyone can subscribe. You won't be subscribing to a hybrid cloud, per se; hybrid clouds are more of an agreement by cloud providers with other cloud providers to share resources. This type of joint operation agreement can be used to counter network problems of crashing due to an otherwise unmanageable spike in computing usage in a single cloud (this type of data surge is called a 'cloud burst').

Migrating broadcasting to the cloud is a natural transition. More and more companies are beginning to trust the cloud for more and more applications. According to Sruthi Ramakrishnan of Reuters, Adobe has been shifting to a web-based subscription service Creative Cloud from a licensing model since last year.

The Photoshop and Acrobat software maker reported a higher-than-expected adjusted quarterly profit as demand rose for Creative Cloud, the subscription-based version of its flagship software package, Creative Suite (or "CSx"). Adobe said in May that upgrades for Creative Cloud, which includes Photoshop, Illustrator and Flash, would be available only through online subscriptions. The company also said it would not develop versions of the license-based Creative Suite, states Ramakrishnan. Read the original article at: http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/06/18/us-adobe-results-idUSBRE95H19020130618.

As our mission states: "The iCTVBA embraces all forms of Broadcast Television distribution SD, HD, 4K and ultimately 8K via CloudMesh TV." We are the future of broadcast television. IT professionals need not fear the cloud, though; this mass shift in internet usage won't be reducing their numbers per capita anytime soon - although it might affect where their job is.

"Cloud TV engineered-well offers a route to get to the multi-screen universe now and looks like a must have bolt-on to Broadcast. Very soon, however, Cloud TV will be re-engineered by the Broadcaster teams themselves and will start to look more and more like the center of the action with Broadcast the bolt-on. You should know your friends well and you should know your enemies even better; you should be talking to some good Cloud TV Engineers or becoming one yourself fast, like we are," says Rofe.

The cloud promises to be more environmentally friendly than our current system. The centralization of computer programs will expend less physical resources while still making the programs available to cloud subscribers. Blending broadcast with broadband just makes sense. When advertisers embrace the potential of targeted ads, the age of broadband broadcasting will truly erupt. For now, though, some narrow-minded broadcasters sully the waves for this wondrous technological advance, taking the battle into the courtroom. When it is discovered that you can't stop progress, broadcast broadband will become more of a reality. Broadcasters need to face facts: the wave of the future is here! One thing's for certain - it's time to take a ride in the clouds.






Ryan Salazar is currently a Director of Engineering and Post Production Technology, and is a seasoned industry professional with over two decades of experience in the broadcast, post production and information technology fields. He is an active member of The Society of Broadcast Engineers (SBE), the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE), the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Broadcast Technology Society (IEEE BTS), National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS) and the Association for Computing Machinery's Special Interest Group on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques (ACM SIGGRAPH). Check out his website at: www.ryansalazar.net.


The International Cloud TV Broadcasters Alliance is a group of Broadcasters that have decided to build a Global Cloud TV Internet 3.0 shared mesh service platform to deliver TV directly to viewers connected devices globally from the Alliance Global IXP CloudMesh. Ryan is now on the board at iCTVBA as Global Vice Chairman.

For more information about iCTVBA, visit their Facebook page and view their LinkedIn profile online.



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