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FlipFactory Expands Access to ARKive Digital Library

Enables wireless and off-line access to nature films and sound recordings (November 30, 2004)

Telestream, the leading provider of universal media encoding solutions, today announced deployment of its FlipFactory MPEG component to provide new video and audio format support for the ARKive digital library, an initiative of the UK-based educational charity, Wildscreen. Following initial FlipFactory implementation to provide streaming formats for Web audiences, the new MPEG component now adds format support for new viewing audiences. The addition of MPEG-4 3GPP and MPEG-2 formats will enable Wildscreen to broaden access and viewing of the ARKive endangered species library to mobile devices and video monitors at off-line exhibits.

The award-winning ARKive Digital Library has been called the digital Noah's Ark of the 21st century. ARKive uses the latest digital technology to collect and preserve the world's most important nature films, photographs and sound recordings of the Earth's endangered plants and animals. The project's aim is to provide a permanent safe haven for the records, while providing global access to the collection via a free, public website at

Since its launch in May 2003, the site has attracted more than one million visitors from 120 different countries who have requested nearly six million pages from the on-line library. The site has received numerous awards, including "Find of the Year 2003" by Yahoo! Picks UK & Ireland, and the prestigious British Environment and Media Award (BEMA) for the best environmental website.

Telestream's FlipFactory transcoding automation software has been used since project inception to transcode the vast video and audio library from uncompressed 10-bit 4:2:2 files into a variety of streaming formats for online access by Web audiences. When the Wildscreen decided to proceed with expansion for mobile telecom devices and off-line exhibits, Telestream's FlipFactory MPEG output module was selected to provide the required formats.

According to John Leedham, ARKive Lead IT Systems Architect at Wildscreen, "When we needed the new MPEG formats, Telestream's FlipFactory was the obvious choice. Over the past year and a half, FlipFactory has proven itself to be a very robust and reliable encoding engine. FlipFactory provides two important benefits for us: smooth workflow integration and speed."

The first of the two expansion projects to be implemented is the mobile telecoms pilot slated for early December 2004. Working in partnership with a major international scientific field research and education organization, 20 new endangered species will be added to the ARKive library for access by wireless users. Eventually all 1,500 species will be converted for mobile access.

The addition of the FlipFactory MPEG module provides automatic conversion of video/audio files to the required MPEG-4 3GPP format for delivery over wireless networks to devices such as mobile phones and PDAs. The ARKive system will automatically detect that an incoming request is from a mobile device and will respond by providing the required MPEG-4 format. The MPEG module will also be used to automatically convert video and audio to high-resolution, DVD-grade MPEG-2 files for on-demand public access via interactive kiosks as well as display on video monitors located at scientific discovery centers and zoos.

Importantly, the FlipFactory SDK provides the flexibility Leedham needed to customize and manage the ARKive workflow. FlipFactory is configured to automatically monitor output folders on Final Cut Pro edit systems. Once new content is detected, the files are automatically pulled, transcoded to the required formats, and delivered to destination Web and video servers.

FlipFactory's load-balanced processing across multiple processors (four in the case of the ARKive library) is another major benefit according to Leedham. "It cuts down transcode time by a factor of four. Running 100% across all four processors, FlipFactory generates multiple streams in parallel (Real, QuickTime, Windows Media, and now MPEG-4 and MPEG-2) to dramatically speed the workflow process - from edit systems to destination servers."

Telestream UK distributor, Boxer Systems Ltd., provides local support for FlipFactory.

About ARKive
ARKive is the 21st Century Noah's Ark. It's harnessing the latest in digital technology to create a centralised record of the world's most important nature films, photographs, sound recordings, and memories. It uses these to build fact-backed portraits of Earth's endangered species, which can be accessed via its free website. ARKive is an initiative of Wildscreen, a UK based educational charity, which also manages the biennial Wildscreen International Wildlife Film Festival - the largest and most prestigious festival of its kind in the world (

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About Telestream
Telestream products have set the standard with the world's leading media and entertainment companies, corporations and government institutions for the encoding, organizing and delivery of digital media. Customers rely on Telestream products for convenient, cost-effective, and robust digital media access and exchange over IP networks. ClipMail MPEG appliances enable peer-to-peer worldwide media delivery. FlipFactory(r) software applications provide universal transcoding and metadata exchange between professional video systems. Telestream MAP(tm) media organizers enable workgroups to capture, find, organize, repurpose, and share video/audio files. Telestream's automation applications and smart media organization solutions streamline workflows for broadcasters and media companies, as well as content owners and creators in government, higher education and corporate markets. Telestream and its team of video experts are located in Nevada City, the "video valley" region of Northern California. The company is privately held.

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Related Keywords:Telestream, FlipFactory, ARKive, Wildscreen, encoding, streaming, MPEG-4 3GPP, ARKive Digital Library, transcoding, John Leedham, Final Cut Pro, Boxer Systems,


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