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30 2017 Jan

YEP Continues Momentum

Jesse Korosi (Director of Workflow Services at Sim) and Jennifer Zeidan (Media Systems Engineer, Industrial Light & Magic) head up the YEP initiative for HPA alongside WIP leaders Laura Thommen, Kari Grubin, and Belinda Merritt; HPA Board Member Loren Nielsen; and HPA President Seth Hallen.

Since the first class of HPA YEPs was announced last September during the SMPTE Annual Technical Conference, we have been collaborating, connecting and designing the road map for our first year of this committee. The next event that will bring YEPs together will be the HPA Tech Retreat. Some of our YEPs will be presenting at the event, while others will be attending the VR seminar, as well as the Supersession. We are working on a number of additional activities over the next few months, which will soon be announced.

27 2017 Jan

What’s in store at the 2017 HPA Tech Retreat. And why it matters.

For more than 23 years, the HPA Tech Retreat has brought community and passionate conversation to the desert as attendees step away from their offices, studios and facilities to investigate and discuss – and often to debate – the rapid onslaught of technological changes that affect how stories are seen, heard and shared. It’s a unique, intimate event exclusively for those engaged in this expanding environment of media.  Over the years, a number of incredibly important advances from companies like Sony (OLED monitors, SE memory), Pansonic (Varicam and 3D), Real D (Ultimate Screen) and so many more have been seen first at the Tech Retreat.

With its non-marketing approach, the Tech Retreat has brought years of thoughtful analysis to bear, and this year’s Tech Retreat program under the tutelage of Mark Schubin promises to be a stunner.  Sessions include The World’s First 8K/4K Regular Broadcasting, AI/Machine Learning, a Remote and Mobile Production panel, and Production in the Cloud.  Tuesday’s supersession, programmed by Leon Silverman, Jerry Pierce and Seth Hallen, focuses on the changing patterns of consumption, which impacts everything. Sessions include How today’s technologies are changing the relationship between content creators and content consumers; Speaking of Consumption Devices: Bringing Home the Bits; and Do You See What I see: Who is Watching and on What?.

Launching big this year is TR-X (Tech Retreat eXtra), a full afternoon of engagement with the thought leaders and experts from two critical domains. The Virtual and Augmented Reality session, chaired by Marcie Jastrow (Technicolor Experience Center) and Lucas Wilson (SuperSphereVR), will explore the changing VR landscape in the context of rapidly growing integration into entertainment applications. Speakers include representatives from Technicolor, Jaunt, Digital Domain, Radiant Images, MPC, Subtractive, 8i, and Magnopus. A second TR-X session, chaired by Madeleine Noland, will focus on the latest developments in ATSC.

Because the HPA Tech Retreat is envisioned as an escape for the attendees, there are abundant opportunities to step out of a session and have a drink, a coffee, or even an ice cream bar with the speakers and your colleagues.  Have a question?  The person who can answer it, or at least discuss it, is bound to be close by. The atmosphere has always been the secret of the event’s power and appeal: while the sessions feature amazing topics and speakers, it is empowering to continue those conversations one-on-one or in small groups, into the evening. The Innovation Zone, which filled up early, will feature opportunities for Tech Retreat attendees to meet more than 50 companies doing work on the leading edge.

From AI to VR to ATSC and HDR, it’s at the Tech Retreat.  And so are your friends.

Full information about the supersession, the Tech Retreat program, and TR-X, are available online.

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26 2017 Jan

WRAL-TV Selects Xytech’s Mediapulse to Keep Its Lede

WRAL, one of the country’s most respected and innovative television stations, has selected Xytech MediaPulse to manage the station’s production and news activities. MediaPulse plays an important role behind the scenes at WRAL, helping to schedule reporters, photographers, anchors, engineers, creative services personnel and their activities, as well as equipment and trucks. MediaPulse also supports scheduling of master control for the station.

WRAL is the flagship of the Capitol Broadcasting Corporation and a recognized trailblazer in the broadcast industry. In 1996, the FCC awarded WRAL the first experimental HD television license in the United States, and the following year it was the first in the U.S. to broadcast a live sports program and newscast in high definition. In 2000, WRAL became the first TV station in the world to produce and air an all-HD broadcast, including the graphics, live shots and news. Last year the station switched to NBC from its long-standing affiliation with CBS.

WRAL’s focus on innovation continues with the selection of MediaPulse to optimize efficiency and transparency, and to automate and analyze its operational activities along with a news operations staff of 120. WRAL covers major events including tournaments and elections where numerous personnel and a large pool of equipment need to be planned, organized, scheduled and tracked over multiple days. All those operations run on MediaPulse. Additionally, WRAL Creative Services production work and the station’s engineering staff are better scheduled and tracked through MediaPulse.

Pete Sockett, WRAL director of engineering and operations, said, “WRAL Raleigh, alongside two sister stations in the Capitol Broadcasting family, is now capable of racking daily assignments of newsroom personnel, trucks and equipment for story coverage with MediaPulse. We are planning on better management and tracking of resources with reduced resource conflicts, improved maintenance scheduling, enhanced staff communications and, in the end, an overall ability to better analyze how the station can operate most efficiently, productively and profitably.”

Xytech is the industry leader in facility management software for the broadcast, production, media services and video transmission industries. Its products are currently facilitating operations in some of the world’s most dynamic companies and leading broadcast environments, such as ABC, Lifetime, Scripps, Sinclair Broadcasting, Univision, CBS Television City, WGBH, RDS, TV Globo and Nebraska Educational Television.

MediaPulse offers broadcasters and production facilities the ability to more efficiently track their resources and costs in real time. The platform provides WRAL and other stations with better management and staff decision-making by making important information available. MediaPulse Sky enables anytime-anyplace browser interface, and the MediaPulse iOS app facilitates efficient time entry and schedule access via mobile devices.

Greg Dolan, COO of Xytech, noted, “WRAL is one of the most successful and technically progressive local television stations in the country, pioneering important technological advancements while broadcasting local news in a major regional market. They continue to lead the way for local news stations and for all stations covering national events. Their choice of MediaPulse to power their operations is something we are terrifically proud of.”

Sockett concluded, “WRAL has a history of innovation and we’ve consistently been first in broadcast technology trends. As a busy station in a busy market, we must perform and analyze our operations in the most efficient way possible and that includes getting reporters and equipment to sites in a timely, effective manner. The reality of local broadcasting demands extreme functionality. The strength of MediaPulse in WRAL’s operations is being demonstrated to us daily and we’re delighted to work with the great team there to fully realize the benefits of this powerful platform.”

Learn more HERE.

26 2017 Jan

Interra Systems Launches ORION-OTT at BVE

interra_logo_500Interra Systems will be exhibiting at BVE (stand N-29), demonstrating comprehensive, integrated, and intuitive QC/monitoring systems. A key highlight will be new HEVC and 4K support across all of the company’s products, including ORION real-time content monitoring and video analysis systems, VEGA media analyzers, and BATON automated, file-based QC.

BVE will mark the launch of Interra Systems’ ORION-OTT, one of the industry’s first software-based over-the-top (OTT) solutions for realtime monitoring of adaptive bitrate (ABR) content for multiscreen service delivery.

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26 2017 Jan

MTI Film Continues to Streamline Film Restoration with DRS™Nova 2.3

Digital film restoration software adds new features for tracking, stabilization, de-warping, dirt mapping and more.

MTI Film recently announced the release of DRS™Nova 2.3, a significant update to its industry-standard software for digital film restoration. The new release includes a host of new and enhanced features created in response to requests from restoration professionals worldwide.  All are aimed at making such tasks as dust-busting, image stabilization and de-warping faster and easier.

“We listened to people who use the product every day,” said MTI Film Director of Product Development Randy Reck. “This latest release is focused on streamlining routine tasks and making the software more responsive to the way artists work.”


New features of DRS™Nova 2.3 include offset tracking for image stabilization. It allows users to track objects even when tracking points move beyond the boundary of the frame. The feature makes it simpler to stabilize shots with camera movement or complex motion. The same functionality will soon also be available for de-warp operations.

Other improvements include:

  • Mouse magnifier. Pan, zoom in and zoom out via a mouse button.
  • Mouse preview. View import frames in reveal or clone mode.
  • Dirt map generator. Generate dirt maps utilizing data from the alpha channel of a film scanner.
  • Stabilization and de-warp presets. Save used settings and perimeters for routine tasks.
  • Improved clip import. Import large files faster.
  • Streamlined management for OpenEXR files.

MTI’s original DRS™, released in 1997, was the industry’s first restoration software and revolutionized the process of restoring films through an integrated suite of tools for addressing dust, debris, scratches, mold, warping and a host of other problems quickly and seamlessly. MTI Film software is currently used worldwide by motion picture studios, post production facilities, film archives and others seeking to restore motion pictures, documentaries and other archival material to pristine quality.

26 2017 Jan

Avid Innovations Address Key Industry Collaboration Challenges

Pro Tools 12.7 update, Marketplace ‘in-app’ access and Avid Artist Community partner integrations deliver empowering collaboration features to thousands of creatives

Avid recently announced several key innovations to the MediaCentral® Platform to address some of the industry’s most pressing collaborative challenges. Continuing to accelerate the pace of innovation to help music professionals, developments to the Avid Marketplace and partner integrations to the Avid Artist Community, along with a brand new Avid Pro Tools® update, will allow artists, producers and engineers to create, distribute and optimize media with the most comprehensive workflow solutions.

“Competition in the music industry is growing more intense, and artists and media professionals need resources that will elevate their work, gain them greater exposure and promote their name in the global marketplace,” said Avid Chairman and CEO Louis Hernandez, Jr. “The industry is embracing our vision of a collaborative media network, and we’re pleased to introduce further innovations that will continue helping our users to maximize the value of their media.”

Read more here.

26 2017 Jan

Avid and Al Jazeera Sign Global Enterprise Agreement and Announce Cloud-based Newsroom Project

Companies to collaborate on cloud deployments, working together to pioneer cloud-based newsroom workflows that will help lead the industry

Avid has signed a major framework agreement with Al Jazeera Media Network, further cementing the companies’ ongoing strategic relationship and enhancing Al Jazeera’s investment in Avid’s comprehensive tools and workflow solutions to create, distribute and optimize media for its end-to-end news production infrastructure around the world. The companies also announced a joint collaboration to develop and test cloud-based technology deployments of the end-to-end Avid newsroom solution. The alliance will help Al Jazeera realize its own cloud strategy, and help shape the future of cloud-based newsrooms across the industry, paving the way for the first-ever hybrid cloud deployment of the MediaCentral® Platform across a large, global newsroom operation.

Read more here.

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26 2017 Jan

Denice Angelo Named VP of Business Development at Testronic

Denice AngeloDenice Angelo has been named vice president of Business Development at Testronic, the leader in quality assurance (QA), localization services and compliance for the film, television and games industries.

“Testronic’s footprint is growing as we add new services such as virtual reality and expand our services for On-Site, UHD/4K and other areas, and Denice’s expertise will be instrumental as we continue to further our reach across the entertainment industry,” said Jason Gish, senior VP and general manager for Testronic U.S. “Denice has a wealth of experience in the post production community and a comprehensive understanding of technologies that makes her uniquely suited for this role, and we’re excited to have her on the team.”

Angelo is a seasoned sales executive with extensive experience in the entertainment industry. Prior to joining Testronic, Angelo has served as vice president of Broadcast Sales at Modern VideoFilm, director of Broadcast Services for Technicolor, and also as vice president of Sales for LaserPacific. She brings a depth of knowledge and experience working directly with studios and facilities to her new role at Testronic. She will report to Gish, and be based in the company’s U.S. headquarters in Burbank, Calif.

Angelo’s hiring is the latest in the growth of operations at Testronic U.S., following on the heels of the company’s recent launch of a virtual reality lab to test the growing VR content pipeline. Testronic is finishing up a record year globally and will unveil new service offerings in the coming months.

26 2017 Jan

Blackmagic Design Announces DaVinci Resolve 12.5.4 Update Now Available

Blackmagic Design recently announced an update for its professional editing and color correction software. DaVinci Resolve 12.5.4 features support for the new MacBook Pro Touch Bar, additional Rec. 2100 and 2020 support for high dynamic range workflows and more. DaVinci Resolve 12.5.4 update is available now for both DaVinci Resolve and DaVinci Resolve Studio customers, and can be downloaded free of charge from the Blackmagic Design website.

DaVinci Resolve 12.5.4 update adds compatibility with the new MacBook Pro Touch Bar from Apple. The Touch Bar is a multi touch retina display strip at the top of the new MacBook Pro keyboard that provides instant access to the most common tools the moment they are needed. While using DaVinci Resolve 12.5.4, the Touch Bar automatically changes to show context sensitive tools based on the task customers are performing. For example, on the Media page customers can instantly add the current clip to a bin, switch between icon and list view, display clip attributes, search media and show metadata simply by tapping on the Touch Bar.

Read more here.

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26 2017 Jan

Welcome to the New Year!

As you read this, the new year is already well underway – in fact, the HPA Tech Retreat will be kicking things off in just a few more weeks.  All signs point to another spectacular week that will bring on a full slate of content – including breakfast roundtables, a Supersession, three days of stimulating content and a full and engaging Innovation Zone.  The Women in Post committee will be hosting its 5th Tech Retreat luncheon.  All of this plus the usual networking opportunities abound.  I look forward to seeing many of you there.

If you are a regular to the Tech Retreat, you will see that this year’s Tech Retreat has a new addition, namely the TR-X sessions taking place on Monday.  TR-X literally translates into Tech Retreat eXtra, added value sessions that complement the rest of the week’s content.  These include an ATSC update session on the latest 3.0 developments, and a session focused on new and emerging trends in media.  This year’s “emerging trends” topic is VR/AR, and we are very excited to have VR gurus Lucas Wilson and Marcie Jastrow co-chair this inaugural session.  While this may not be the first––or last––VR session you attend, we promise it will be different. Our session will speak to workflow applications and the integration of VR into your production stream.  We think it’s an important part of the discussion and something that you haven’t seen before.  I hope you’ll plan on arriving on Monday morning to take advantage of this special session that kicks off at 1 PM.  You can learn more about the program here.

The Tech Retreat continues its global footprint, and returns bigger than ever to the UK, same place and nearly same time – Oxfordshire, July 12-13. Preliminary programming for this exciting second event will be announced at the Tech Retreat in Palm Springs.

The 2017 calendar is chock full of events, connections, and opportunities for engagement, planned by HPA committees.  These include the new Young Entertainment Professionals (YEP) group, relaunched social events, and a reinvigorated SCRG group under the new moniker NET.  And, of course, the 2017 HPA Awards program plan is already underway, so get your nominations ready!  The Awards show will take place on 16 November at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles.

While you don’t have to be a member of the HPA to participate in these activities, we do hope you will join to help support this organization that does so much to advance the art, science and business of the media and entertainment industry.  Your support enables HPA to hold these important events and ensures that every year we meet the industry’s challenges with fresh ideas.

I look forward to meeting you in the desert, in Oxfordshire in the summertime, and all around LA throughout this year.