BBC Scotland upgrades to Viz One for advanced archive management

To maximize the value of its vast video and audio archives, BBC Scotland is upgrading from Vizrt’s Viz Ardome media asset management system to the company’s next-generation Viz One file-based video workflow solution. This upgrade will give BBC Scotland more advanced Web-based media asset management with faster, more robust search tools and a streamlined content production workflow supporting its many broadcast services.

BBC Scotland broadcasts three DTV channels (BBC1 Scotland, BBC2 Scotland and the Gaelic-language BBC Alba) and two radio stations (BBC Radio Scotland and BBC Radio nan Gaidheal) to audiences in Scotland and Ireland.

With Viz One, other BBC affiliates will be able to access BBC Scotland’s library of media from around the world. If a BBC employee in Manchester or Afghanistan needs a clip from BBC Scotland, they can access that.

Viz One is a powerful workflow solution that goes beyond asset management to include support for content distribution via multiple platforms. Its feature set includes tools for ingest, search, categorizing media, proxy editing, archiving, and automated transcoding of media into formats suitable for broadcast, online, and mobile publishing.     

Users can search for a piece of video by using a word or key phrase – just as you would in a Google search. A new search engine provides the speed and ability to search for content using key words. Users can also filter search results using criterion like transmission dates, rights managements and other parameters. The system can filter and refilter search parameters and add words as a search is further refined.

The new user interface is significantly faster and is particularly aimed at making users find the right content quickly – by enabling users to both scrub through video, update search queries and view new results directly from the search results – near instantly.

“Everyone searches like Google now, and people expect search results with Google-like speed and search functions,” said Petter Ole Jakobsen, chief technical officer for Vizrt. “And that’s one of the most important aspects of archiving now – speed and search parameters.”

As a test of the speed of its system, Vizrt imported the entire contents of Wikipedia into Viz One as metadata, with each Wikipedia article as an asset. The search speed was faster than milliseconds. That speed is due to both the search engine used and the architecture that Viz One is based on. 

The transition from Ardome to Viz One at BBC Scotland began in May 2012 and will culminate at the end of this year. During this transition, Ardome metadata will be converted to Viz One’s newer and more expanded metadata schema that enables faster, more effective searching and categorizing of media assets. While Viz One is being installed alongside Viz Ardome, which has been in use for four years now, BBC Scotland will switch over to Viz One exclusively when the transition is completed.

Viz One fully integrates with BBC Scotland’s Avid NewsCutter editing system, Avid InterPlay media management system, and other Avid systems, and the assets and file formats are MXF-compliant. BBC Scotland’s journalists will be able to browse, access, and manage content in the digitized database using a Web-based interface.  

In searching for an asset, such as a particular soccer or tennis match, Viz One can quickly locate that asset as well as others that are similar or relevant to that request. The journalist can perform proxy editing—marking in and out points—to indicate the portion of the footage that is of interest.  The clip can then be transferred to the NewsCutter where an editor can edit it in high-resolution and drop it into the news rundown or other upcoming broadcast productions.

Viz One also interfaces seamlessly with other Vizrt products in the workflow, including systems for the creation and playout of live graphics to air. Since BBC Scotland’s broadcast facility has Vizrt graphics products in its production chain, such as the Viz Engine realtime HD/SD media server, they are well positioned to fully utilize Viz One for multiplatform content distribution when they’re ready.

“Other MAM products just don’t do asset management as fast or as smart,” explained Jakobsen. “With Viz One, a user has all of their graphics in 2D and 3D, online tools, content publishing systems – all sitting in the middle of the workflow where he or she can integrate with all of the parts.”

The user interface of Viz One shows task lists and workflow steps, making it easier to search for an asset and resolve a task. For archivists with what could be 1,000 tasks every day, everything that comes into the system must be validated and logged. When a task is closed, users can designate if it’s archived to all or restricted or deleted.  

BBC Scotland is also getting a rights management subsystem within Viz One that’s been rewritten from scratch. It enables considerable flexibility in determining who can view and what they can view and do with video assets. For example, a group of users may be restricted to only look at metadata and keyframes, and may or may not be able to view and browse but can’t move an asset to another location. It provides a much more secure environment for programming, and the system can be used as a rights management tool as well.

“We’re extremely pleased that BBC Scotland has expressed continued confidence in Vizrt and our next-generation Viz One.  Our team is working very closely and diligently with BBC Scotland’s media management department to ensure that their decades worth of precious media and metadata are protected and the transition to Viz One is seamless,” concluded Jakobsen. “For broadcasters like BBC Scotland, sophisticated media asset management tools, such as searching, browsing, and proxy editing, are the key to unlocking the true value of their notable media archives.” 


Vizrt provides real-time 3D graphics and asset management tools for the broadcast industry - from award-winning animations & maps to online publishing tools. Vizrt's products are used by the world's leading broadcasters and publishing houses, including: CNN, CBS, Fox, the BBC, BSkyB, ITN, ZDF, Star TV, Network 18, TV Today, CCTV, NHK, The Globe and Mail, Times Online, The Telegraph, and Welt Online.  Furthermore, many world-class production houses and corporate institutions such as the Stock Exchanges in New York and London use Vizrt systems. Vizrt is a public company traded on the Oslo Main List: VIZ, ISIN: IL0010838154.