Live Cloud Production: Key Benefits and Challenges
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Jef Kethley: Live always has its own set of challenges to say the least. One of our biggest advantages that we found with the cloud side, though, is that we're able to be more nimble. So if they do come to us and say, "Oh, by the way, we need another transmit going to this location. And we also need that transmit to have a second set of languages--or a third or fourth or fifth"--the number always changes. That's where the cloud makes it so much simpler. It's like, "Okay, I'll spin up another machine, create the audio paths that I need. And we're going." It's that fast. Like within minutes, not even hours. And that's kind of the big thing of being flexible is what we find the cloud does for the live environment.
Magnus Svensson: Interesting. I assume that the large file systems and these types of things sitting in the cloud compared to having it on-prem will also come with challenges when it comes to the live element of the cloud and then getting things into there and out of it again.
Jef Kethley: We're still faced with the same challenges of getting content from the ground up to the cloud. That first mile is still the hardest part. But it's getting easier. SRT, which really came to fruition in the last year, especially during pandemic--was a game-changer for us, being able to have reliable sources timed together, whether it's hardware-based, like our favorite Haivision or Matrox encoders, or LRT-based with our LiveU partners. Those signals are there in the cloud, but then it's easy to store it. And that's a beautiful thing too. I've got archives that go back years and years and years, I've never had a copy on the ground. It's all there.
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The first thing to think about when considering a move to cloud production as an alternative to traditional, centralized, on-prem production workflows is, why the cloud? It's because it has specific advantages for certain applications. Whenever you're thinking about the cloud, you need to be thinking about how it will benefit you and your productions.
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