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Research opportunities

Enterprises of all kinds increasingly use digital processes and digital documents to manage their work. In the process, they are creating vast stocks of digital files, which they need to store and then easily retrieve.

Industries like film and television – where the product itself is digital -- face even tougher challenges. Movie studios, for example, must create multiple digital versions of their films for a wide variety of markets (i.e., different geographies, edited for airplanes, with slots inserted for advertising) and for numerous types of delivery mechanisms (movie theatres, TV, the Web, mobile phones and more).

Surprisingly, most studios still do this by sending files around to boutique re-packagers via motorbike. Relying on many separate groups to repackage their content, they lack a centrally controlled system of electronic distribution for managing that work.

Media producers' challenges are likely to become more complex. Not only are delivery methods for media content becoming more diverse and sophisticated, but users' expectations about the speed and quality of media delivery continue to grow.


Research focus

HP Labs researchers are working to provide content-delivery solutions for the entertainment industry, as well as to develop technologies that can be applied to electronic media management in general.

Current work

Researchers developed the Digital Media Platform -- a system for managing digital media workflows that creates, in effect, a supply chain for digital media products.

Two major innovations underpin the Digital Media Platform:

  • It applies the principles of service-oriented architecture (SOA) to the digital media world, providing an IT infrastructure that delivers functionality as shared, reusable services. These services might include tasks like assembling media files into a new form, locating individual files in a large collection or transcoding files for a particular kind of delivery.
  • It creates large-scale, secure and sophisticated digital media repositories that allow media to be efficiently held, searched, found and retrieved. Crucially, the repositories are also made available as a service within the platform’s service-oriented architecture.

This approach not only automates a highly inefficient process, but also makes it run much faster and at a lower cost -- all while allowing media companies to more speedily address new market opportunities.

Technical contributions

The HP Digital Media Platform has been extensively piloted with major Hollywood studios and now underpins HP’s Digital Vault Service, which is offered by HP’s Digital Entertainment Services group to enterprise-class media companies.

Future research in this area will examine how insights gained in creating the Digital Media Platform can be applied to creating content repositories and storage systems for other industries.

Media, mobility & communications

» Multimedia capture & display
  » Media networking & communications  
  » Distributed systems networking  
  » Mobile service platforms  
  » Interactive media experiences  
  » Digital rights & secure media  
  » Media & information systems  

Learn more

»  HP digital entertainment services
»  Feature story: HP Labs technology to create digital media supply chain services
»  Feature story: Supply chain for digital media
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