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Presented by: Sandy Kellagher, Director of Software Systems, Snell Advanced Media
The presentation will describe SAM's use of RTI DDS Connext Professional in a number of applications related to professional video processing in the broadcast industry. A good example is as the underlying transport mechanism for SAM's award winning Media Biometrics technology. This provides broadcasters with a uniquely powerful range of signal monitoring tools, allowing them to check that every stage of their media processing and delivery chain is operating correctly with minimal need for operator intervention.
Unique signatures are used to provide a content monitoring solution that may be deployed in SDI or IP-streaming broadcast environments. The signatures can be stored and compared at every stage of the production chain to provide automatic checking and verification of video and audio streams--allowing for a fully automated business model. Various aspects are handled including identification of correct media, track mapping, lip sync, logo assurance, and other essential data. The solution is resilient to format, frame-rate and aspect ratio conversions and encode/decode processes and allows monitoring of the content delivered to the end customer. In order to provide true monitoring by exception, the solution responds reliably and rapidly to changing material and content.
Our unique proprietary technology is: Resilience to format conversion and aspect ratio conversion Resilience to encoding and decoding Resilience to colour correction, proc-amps, RGB legalization Resilience to frame rate conversion …and fast acquisition and re-acquisition (~ 2 seconds)
One of the key things with the media biometrics system is to be able to generate media biometrics signatures cheaply and easily to allow a vast array of data from the system to be available for analysis by the server. IQMGB80 is the first step in cost reducing this technology by providing IP signatures for up to 8 SDI inputs on a single card for around $200 per channel.
Generates video and audio biometric signatures from 8 independent SDI inputs for IP transmission to Sigma Media Assurance Software
DDS in the Broadcast Industry
DDS in the
Headquartered in the UK
550 Staff Worldwide, and growing
14 International Offices
Management & Workflow
Infrastructure & Image Processing
Our Market Place
Technologies for evolving media production ecosystems
Why did SAM choose DDS?
To migrate from disparate
existing in-house protocols…
To a single, unified,
open standard, high
In-house protocols - RollCall
• RollCall was designed ~20 years ago for SAM’s IQ modular range of products:
• defines a proprietary (but openly published) set of messages and a wire protocol
• client-server protocol with various services (control, logging, file etc)
• all traffic end-to-end acknowledged
• ‘menu’ service provides metadata about (description of) controls offered
• allows generic GUI client to work with any RollCall device
• However, the simplicity of the protocol limits its usefulness for handling the
complex types of data structure involved in advanced router control
In-house protocols - DCCP
• DCCP is the SAM proprietary protocol used for advanced router control:
• is essentially an object-oriented remote procedure call mechanism
• devices are defined in XML and can have arbitrarily complex control sets
• DCCP framework allows ‘strongly typed’ client code interaction, with all
communication over the wire handled transparently by the framework
• DCCP framework supports persistence and replication of objects
• wire protocol recently adapted to improve performance over WAN links
• However, ongoing in-house support and development of DCCP (eg to
improve performance over WAN links or to support new platforms) is a
significant cost, and slows down product development
Desirable Protocol Characteristics
• So we wanted a protocol that could provide a solid and proven framework for
a unified future C&M solution across the full SAM product range:
• scalable to support many clients and large volumes of data
• high performance and light footprint
• cross-platform and open-standard
• available as a proven COTS solution rather than developed in-house
• mature ecosystem with multiple users, vendors and tool support
• support for persistence, redundancy and replication
• supports a distributed architecture
• automatic discovery of devices
• adaptable to different underlying transport mechanisms, eg LAN, WAN
• And RTI DDS Connext met all of these requirements
Key aspects of DDS
• Full name is OMG Data Distribution Service (DDS)
• Open standard with proven interoperability between several commercial
vendors (RTI, PrismTech, etc), as well as Open Source solutions
• DDS is a data-centric solution (ie modelled in terms of data ‘Topics’ rather
than messages exchanged)
• Basic underlying mechanism uses a ‘publish – subscribe’ model:
• effectively creates a distributed global data space
• designed to be scalable and perform well with large volumes of data
• Proven in safety- and performance-critical applications, eg military,
aerospace, air traffic control, NASA, medical, imaging, power utilities etc
• DDS framework provides an extensive set of Quality of Service options:
• allows system to be ‘tuned’ for optimum performance based on user requirements
and underlying network features/performance
• Framework provides many advanced features as standard:
• redundancy and replication
• automatic discovery
• security and authentication
• Application code becomes simpler and smaller, which leads to faster
Application to SAM
• Unified control and monitoring of all SAM broadcast products
• IP routing
• Media biometrics
What is Media Biometrics?
Media Biometrics is SAM’s unique
signature technology for video,
audio and metadata
Initial application is for Media
What is Media Assurance?
Media Assurance is the act of
automatically checking and
verifying media throughout a
broadcast production chain
• Can be deployed in both
SDI and IP streaming
environments, and for files
• Media can be compared,
corrected and identified
• Improves efficiency
• Reduces the need for
• Reduces operational
What are Biometric Signatures?
A set of numbers which represent each
frame of video, audio & metadata
• Low data rate enables many
hundreds of data sets to be stored or
streamed over an IP network
• Can be transported within VANC in
SDI / MXF or via IP using DDS
• Support for multiple audio channels
What Can You Do With Media Biometrics?
Analyze them ….
• Video there ?
• Video still ?
• Video dark ?
• Audio present ?
• Audio level ?
Compare them …. fast
• Is the video the same ?
• Is the audio the same ?
• Absolute delay ?
• Lip sync ?
Identify them …. fast
• What video ?
• What audio ?
• What video ?
• What audio ?
What is Unique about our Media Biometrics Signatures?
It is resilient to …
Initial Media Assurance Applications
• Lip Sync detection & correction
• Audio mapping detection &
• Confirmation two media streams
are the same
• Video / audio present
• Video stillish detection
Allows Monitoring by Exception
Media Biometrics Philosophy
• Low cost Media Biometric Generation (MBG) points available
throughout the Live and File-based product range
• Analysis of data from these points within the SigMA system provides
licensed media assurance services for broadcast operations
• Comparison of two signatures within the SigMA system is referred to
as an Assurance Point (AP)
• Perfect fit with the publish-subscribe philosophy of DDS
Media Assurance System
Biometric Signature Generation Media Assurance Processing Monitoring by Exception
Switchers IP Stream
Kahuna 9600 MBG XS
Kahuna 4800 File-based
Sirius 800 Playout
IQ SAM00 Biometric
IQ MBG Database
SigMa Engine Management
Engine Management & Configuration
IQ IQ SAM00
IQSAM00 – Media Biometrics Generator with Assurance Point
Two Channel 3G/HD/SD-SDI SAM Media
Biometrics Generator Module with a single
- Generate video and audio signatures
from 2 x SDI
- Signatures can be used locally or
published via DDS and IP multicast
- Integrated Assurance Point
- Standard IQ form-factor
- Monitoring by Exception with Rollcall
IQMBG80 – Media Biometrics Generator
Eight Channel 3G/HD/SD-SDI Media
Biometrics Generator Module
- Generates video & audio signatures from
- Signatures published via DDS and IP
- Standard IQ form-factor
- Space and cost efficient signature
SigMA – Media Assurance Software
Licensed media assurance services in software
- Subscribes to signatures via DDS over IP multicast
- Supports monitoring by exception
- Central core for media assurance system
- Deploy on commodity IT equipment
- Deploy multiple Assurance Points simultaneously
Media Assurance System
• Assurance Point A – Compare
MBG 0 with MBG 1
• Assurance Point B – Compare
MBG 1 with MBG 2
• Assurance Point C – Compare
MBG 2 with MBG 3
Media Centre Head End
IQ MBG/SAMMBG 0
Processing1 MBG 1 Processing2 MBG 2
MBG 3 Processing3
Benefits and Caveats
• DDS provides a complete, proven and
scalable publish-subscribe framework
• There’s a comprehensive set of
configuration options (QoS settings)
• There’s extensive documentation
covering all aspects of DDS
• The data-centric publish-subscribe
model fits very well for many
• DDS is a framework / toolkit, rather
than a solution for your application
• You’ll probably need help working out
the optimum set-up for your system!
• The details are well described, but it’s
harder to get the ‘big picture’
• Data-centric design is a major ‘mind
shift’ for engineers used to working
with transactional message-passing
Benefits and Caveats (contd)
• Automatic discovery of units via IP
multicast is a neat feature.
• There are validated binaries for
• Connext Professional library may be
too big for your embedded device
• By default, data transfer is unicast.
• Good set of debug and analysis tools
• Does your network and/or Firewall
allow multicast? Across subnets?
• Is your favoured RTOS a mainstream
• DDS Connext Micro is designed for
devices with limited resources
• Can configure multicast data transfer
• Wire protocol is relatively complex
compared to in-house protocols.