CableLabs® Issues Headend VoD Metadata ADI 2.0 Specifications
Louisville, Colorado, January 27, 2005—Cable Television Laboratories, Inc. (Cablelabs�) announced today that it has issued the first set of specifications to aid in the creation of next-generation Video-on-Demand (VoD) cable services through the development of headend metadata and content distribution documents. The two specifications are the products of a collaborative group comprised of cable operators, hardware vendors, and content providers.
These newly released specifications build upon a family of specifications that currently are in use and have been adopted to address the needs of VoD services in the cable industry. The specifications address some of the needs anticipated for next-generation cable services, such as enhanced VoD, subscription VoD, advertising, and audio services in the cable headend.
The specifications provide guidance to content providers for the distribution of content assets to cable operators. In addition, the specifications describe metadata structures that can be used by both content providers and cable operators to manage content assets through addressing VoD component systems in the backend of the cable network. They also provide a basis for application-specific types of documents to be developed in the future. The documents are available on the CableLabs Web site at www.cablelabs.com/projects/metadata/.
The ADI2.0 (Asset Distribution Interface) Asset Structure specification defines the logical organization of metadata structures (Group Asset, Metadata Asset, Content Asset) and operations to place content assets in context with one or more cable service offerings. This allows for better utilization of asset management systems at cable headends. Additionally, the specification provides a document message structure containing assets and operations that is transmitted from the content provider to the cable operator to provide initial management and validation of files and structures. XML schema formats are used to provide some of the initial validation mechanisms.
The ADI2.0 (Asset Distribution Interface) Asset Inventory Messages specification is an auxiliary document that defines messages to indicate an upcoming schedule of content distribution or messages meant to help content providers manage existing content distribution processes.
CableLabs developed the specifications working with cable operators, content providers, and hardware component developers operating under a royalty-free Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) pool. The VoD metadata project at Cablelabs was formed to develop a common approach to content asset metadata that enables cost-effective VoD operations, content encoding, and bandwidth management services located at cable system headends.
The VoD metadata project already has issued several specifications, as well as revisions to those documents, to deal with current VoD operations; they are CableLabs ADI Specification 1.1, CableLabs VoD Content Specification 1.1, and CableLabs Video Content Encoding Profiles Specification.
"This has been a significant, constructive, and collaborative effort between many diverse companies involved in the Video-on-Demand cable industry," commented CableLabs Project Director Dr. Yasser Syed. "With this basic set of specifications as a foundation, many new types of VoD application models can be designed. Initially as the next immediate step, we will be looking at taking VoD movie metadata application structures in the 1.1 specifications and moving them into the 2.0 structure. This will enable us to do a better job of distinguishing standard-definition television programming, high-definition television programming, and other product offerings.
Specification contributors and participants in the CableLabs Metadata IPR pool include: Ascent Media (fka Liberty Livewire Corp.); C-COR Solutions (fka NCube Corporation), Cablevision Systems Corporation, Cauldron Solutions, Charter Communications, Inc.; Comcast Cable Communications, Inc.; Concurrent Computer Corporation, Cox Communications, Inc.; DataTV Networks, Inc. (Home Preview Channel); ESPN Enterprises, Inc.; EVR, Home Box Office, Imake Software and Services, Inc.; Indemand LLC, Mag Rack, Midstream Technologies, Inc.; N2 Broadband, New Frontier Media; Scientific-Atlanta, Inc.; Scott Solutions LLC, Scripps Networks, SeaChange International, Showtime Networks, Inc.; Starz Encore Group, LLC; the Platform, Time Warner Cable, Turner Broadcasting System, TVN Entertainment, and Worldwide Premieres.
About CableLabs: Cable Television Laboratories (www.cablelabs.com) was founded in 1988 by members of the cable television industry. A non-profit research and development consortium, CableLabs delivers innovations that enable cable operators to be the providers of choice in their markets. Cable operators from around the world are members. CableLabs maintains web sites at www.cablelabs.com; www.packetcable.com; www.cablemodem.com; www.cablenet.org, and www.opencable.com.
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