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A big theme at last month’s NAB Show in Las Vegas was using artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to help speed the production process. While some of the focus on AI could be attributed to mainstream buzz over new generative AI tools like OpenAI’s ChatGPT, broadcast vendors have been working on AI-based products for several years to tackle the more labor-intensive parts of the broadcast workflow. At NAB, vendors ranging from Adobe to Vislink showed new AI features that can dramatically simplify everyday tasks in news and sports production.
Several NAB conference sessions were also dedicated to AI and ML, including a panel session at the Devoncroft Executive Summit, “Transforming Internal Operations — Driving Business Value Through Automation, ML and AI,” where executives from Warner Bros. Discovery, NBC News and Fox Sports discussed their company’s own AI and ML initiatives.
David Sobel, VP of media management for Fox Sports, described how Fox began working with Google Cloud in 2019 to create a new asset management system to automate the process of logging, discovering and storing video assets. The goal was to create a web-based, deployable, scalable asset management system that was file-agnostic, Sobel said, to “tear down our workflows and say: ‘Here’s your one place for media — whether it’s live media or features, you go here.’”
Fox moved 20 petabytes of content to a cloud-based archive that holds some 1.6 million assets. In the process, it digitized 50,000 tapes dating back to 1994, from the network’s first