Swagit's Extensible Automated Streaming Engine solution meets all current and future needs for government without creating any additional work for staff. EASE is a hands-free webcasting tool that eliminates the need for city staff and the requirement of their time spent on indexing and timestamping video content. Built upon years of industry experience, EASE is a software framework comprised of foundation and extension modules that work together to automate many otherwise manually intensive tasks. You may find it helpful to refer to the figure on the left for an overview of the following concepts.
In order to minimize impact on a client's' network, all disk space intensive storage tasks and bandwidth intensive delivery tasks are offloaded to Swagit’s Content Network.
The EASE encoding software is deployed on commodity computing hardware supplied either by Swagit’s preferred vendors, or by the client's existing vendors in consultation with Swagit. In many cases Swagit is able to repurpose existing hardware from previous projects (video related or otherwise) to further reduce up front capital expenditure.
Once deployed, Swagit’s EASE Encoder records content according to your broadcast schedule and stores broadcast quality MPEG-2 video ready for further compression to Flash, Windows Media, QuickTime, Real and HTML5 streaming formats or direct authoring to DVD.
At the conclusion of each recording session Swagit’s EASE Encoder transfers the recorded audio/video to the Swagit Content Network via a secure Virtual Private Network (VPN) connection, making it available for on-demand streaming.
Once the audio/video content tagged for indexing reaches the Swagit Content Network, our video editors are alerted so they may begin the indexing process. Using your published meeting agendas, or other directions, as a guide, they annotate your content by adding jump-to points with specific item headings which give users the greatest possible flexibility to find the specific content they need. With the help of these jump-to points, users can step through video by searching for or clicking specific items.
If meeting packets or other related information are available online, our editing staff will link to them directly from the video player for easy access.
Through our partnerships with document and other content management system developers, Swagit is often able to reference and link to materials created prior to or during meetings. As more cities adopt these wide ranging systems to achieve truly paperless operations, Swagit is there to integrate and help recognize ancillary benefits for citizens such as: increased transparency and accessibility in government as well as increased productivity for staff.
Swagit's EASE is compatible with any and all third-party document management system and provider.
Client audio/video can be stored securely on the Swagit Content Network indefinitely. Fault tolerance and high availability is assured through replication of audio/video content to multiple, geographically redundant, Storage Area Networks (SAN). Our standard packages include storage for three full years of normal city council meetings and unlimited bandwidth.
As clients approach prearranged storage allowances, they may choose to extend those allowances or begin removing old audio/video content in accordance with a storage horizon plan. Alternatively, Swagit can assist clients in adding supplemental storage to their Swagit EASE Encoder, directly or externally, to facilitate more cost effective long-term archiving of content while still maintaining online availability.
Once integrated into the linking structure of the client's web site, the customized video library becomes the portal through which users access audio/video content. As new content is added, it automatically becomes available in the client’s library without any work by the city webmaster.
By navigating through the video library, user can view a list of meetings chronologically or unleash the power of the jump-to markers to search for specific points within individual audio/video clips. When it comes time to view these clips they are presented in a similarly branded player, presenting a consistent look to all aspects of the client web site.
Video PodCasting, as offered by Swagit, is a great way to extend accessibility and adoption of client's audio/video content. Building on the popularity of Apple’s iPod video player, PodCasting technology allows users to subscribe to automatically published content feeds. New content becomes immediately available in their audio/video library and is subsequently synched to their portable devices the next time they are connected.
In order to deliver on-demand content to end users in a format that is native to their computer's operating system, Swagit delivers content in all major streaming video formats: HTML5, H.264, Flash, Windows Media, QuickTime, Real, Silverlight and HTML5. Swagit is proud to support HTML5 with fallback to Flash as its default format, which has proven itself as the format of choice from such vendors as YouTube, Google Video, Myspace, Facebook, Hulu, CNN, ABC, NBC/Universal and even Microsoft's very own MSN.
Our support of Adobe Flash based delivery allows for innovative inclusion of no click audio/video players directly on the city web site, optionally allowing end-users to take that content and embed it in their own web sites or blogs.
Currently, Flash has a 99% ubiquity rate amongst all the platforms. Swagit can provide the Windows Media format (70% ubiquity) as a default stream should a client prefer to exclude Apple users* or 30% of potential end-users.
* On January 12, 2006 Microsoft announced it had ceased development of Windows Media Player for Mac.
By delivering content in a range of frame sizes and streaming bandwidth combinations Swagit ensures your content is accessible on the widest possible range of platforms and Internet connection types, offering superior quality to those on high speed DSL, cable or fiber connections and accessibility to those with low bandwidth mobile devices.
Swagit makes it simple with video 57% larger video then our competitors. Some may say they have larger video, but we encourage you to take a closer look at the properties of the video content. In order to save money, some competitors just stretch the video to a larger size. This results in distortion, pixelation and a loss of video quality.
Our local points of presence ensure your audio/video content is delivered to your citizens and staff in the most efficient manner, minimizing buffering time and providing optimal viewing quality.