Another DAM Podcast

Audio about Digital Asset Management

Another DAM Podcast interview with Richard Buchanan on Digital Asset Management

Here are the questions asked:

  • How are you involved with Digital Asset Management?
  • How does a media company use Digital Asset Management?
  • Do you use specific standards and do you feel there are enough in Digital Asset Management?
  • What advice would you like to share with DAM professionals and people aspiring to become DAM professionals?


Henrik de Gyor: [0:01] This is Another DAM Podcast about Digital Asset
Management. I’m Henrik de Gyor. Today I’m speaking with Richard Buchanan.
Richard, how are you?
Richard Buchanan: [0:10] I’m fine today. How are you?
Henrik: [0:12] Good. Richard, how are you involved with Digital Asset
Richard: [0:15] I work with the Comcast Media Center in Denver, Colorado. We
are a technical facility that supports Comcast and NBCUniversal and commercial
clients throughout North America. We specialize in delivery of file assets, such
as video on demand. We do live events. We do content aggregation and distribution.
We do channel origination, and we do production and post-production.
Henrik: [0:45] Excellent. Richard, how does a media company use Digital Asset
Richard: [0:52] A media company like ours has a huge inventory of assets with
multiple platforms and routes for delivery. To keep track of all that and be able
to do it efficiently, with high quality, and consistently deliver the customer experience
that’s expected, you have to be able to find your assets and deploy them
in a very rapid turn time. [1:17] For example, we pitch about 10,000 video on
demand assets every 30 days. This comes in from 297 different sources and is
in Canada and the US to 97 percent of the VOD enabled households
Henrik: [1:38] VOD, video on demand.
Richard: [1:40] Video on demand. That’s correct.
Henrik: [1:42] Excellent. Do you use specific standards, and do you feel there
are enough in Digital Asset Management?
Richard: [1:47] In the case of video on demand, we use specific standards that
have been exacted by what’s called CableLabs. A consortium of cable companies
came together about 20 years ago and established a group to test, analyze,
and publish standards so that the industry could share content more easily.
[2:10] This specifically affected how set top boxes were developed, how VOIP
was rolled out over cable MSOs, and now how video on demand is delivered
and managed. There are specifications not only for the file type and the signal
quality, but also the metadata that goes with it.
[2:30] In the Digital Asset Management field, this is a wide open opportunity for
someone to take the reins and form a group to start to define what the standards
are in order to create more interoperability among vendors and more
efficiency for users.
Henrik: [2:52] We would hope that some of those entities may possibly be in
existence such as the DAM Foundation, which was started a few months ago.
Time will tell, for sure.
Richard: [3:02] Yeah.
Henrik: [3:04] Let me finish with the last question I ask individuals that I interview.
What advice would you like to share with DAM professionals and people
aspiring to become DAM professionals?
Richard: [3:12] I would say focus on one of three areas. You can be a technologist,
you can be a leader, or you can be a designer. I think that all three of those
disciplines are very important if you can learn more than one or all three. But I
think the important message is it’s not just technology.
Henrik: [3:39] True.
Richard: [3:40] There has to be some creative thinking, especially around defining
problems, being able to decide what it is you can solve and how you
can solve it and prevent scope creep. So that you know how you’re going to
deliver what, and what it’s going to cost. [3:56] So the benefit to the company
is well demonstrated at the end of the project, and the leaders who are able
to manage these different disciplines and apply the traditional thinking that’s
necessary to deal with legacy libraries and bring them into contemporary digital
multi-platform distribution environments.
[4:19] I think that what I would say is be clear on what your objectives are, define
the problem you’re trying to solve and don’t get distracted from that.
Henrik: [4:29] Great advice. Thanks, Richard.
Richard: [4:32] You’re welcome.
Henrik: [4:35] For more on Digital Asset Management, log on to Another DAM Podcast is also available on Audioboom,
Blubrry, iTunes and the Tech Podcast Network. Thanks again.

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Author: Henrik de Gyor

Consultant. Podcaster. Writer.

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