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RTE wins the IBC Innovation Award for Content Management

RTÉ's innovative FAST project - a file-based rather than tape-based system - has won the prestigious IBC Innovation Award for Content Management at a ceremony in Amsterdam.

The project was a collaboration between RTÉ, TransMedia Dynamics (TMD) and Eurotek. IBC (International Broadcasting Convention) is the premier annual event for professionals engaged in the creation, management and delivery of entertainment and news content worldwide.

Playing out on file was a quantum leap in operational performance for RTÉ. FAST – File Acquisition and Server Technology – was designed to allow RTÉ to move away from tape-based, labour-intensive operations. The FAST project also ensures that RTÉ is fully prepared for file-based programme delivery from its international and local suppliers, and it streamlines the delivery of content not just to terrestrial, cable and satellite in both standard definition and high definition, but to online and mobile platforms.

As a public body, RTÉ selected the key supplier for FAST by open tender. The successful bidder was TransMedia Dynamics. A broad group of staff throughout the organisation was involved in testing the system and designing the workflows. Their engagement made the development stage more valuable and greatly simplified the implementation of the full system to air. It also meant that the acceptance testing was carried out by real users, adding greatly to the confidence in the process.

Says Noel Curran, Director General, RTÉ: “The move towards handling RTÉ video content as files is evolutionary more than revolutionary. A key objective in RTÉ’s strategy is to lead within our sector. To remain relevant to our audiences RTÉ must continue to embrace new technology. This win is important: it tells us that, even in challenging times, RTÉ has the vision, and the people, it needs to become the best public-service media organisation it can be.”

Richard Waghorn, Chief Technology Officer, RTÉ, and sponsor of the FAST project, says: “FAST is a key project for RTÉ as it enables us to realise a number of efficiencies and streamline the way we handle content. The heart of any file based architecture is the asset management system, and FAST is key for supporting the move towards an end-to-end file based workflow. One of the key aspects of this system is that workflows are not hard coded into the system, but rather FAST allows users to assemble their own pre-sets and routines, and build them into workflows themselves”.

FAST will enable RTÉ to increase the amount of high-definition content it can make available currently on RTÉ Two and, over the coming months, also on RTÉ One.

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