Hearst TV VP of Engineering Marty Faubell has a little extra money for tech projects this year, but plenty to do, including finishing the upgrade of all master controls for HD, the introduction of HD news in four more markets and and the completion of the Next-Generation Newsroom initiative. He’s also looking for ways to comply with the letter and spirit of closed captioning and loudness regulations.
Tech VP Jim Ocon implemented that Gray model at WOWT Omaha and is rolling it out across all the company’s 36 stations. Its focus is getting all the stations on the same page technically, including greater use of automation, upgrading to HD news production and a steady push toward IP-friendly, open format equipment. He also says Gray will be very aggressive with its mobile rollout once receiving devices are available. “We see this as the future.”
Belo’s Tech VP Craig Harper is overseeing the group’s staggered rollout of mobile DTV. He will be going to this year’s NAB Show with that on his agenda. Other action items for Harper and Belo include upgrading field acquisition and editing at eight stations and looking to improve news ingestion in multiple video formats and quickly make it available for broadcast, for the Web and any other medium.
Del Parks, Sinclair Broadcast Group’s engineering VP, has a full plate of projects — and spending— this year at his 58 stations. His company is well along on upgrading operations to HD news and overhauling master controls. At the upcoming NAB Show, he and his team will be looking for content management solutions and he’s very curious about exploring digital fingerprinting technology and ways that broadcasters can deliver content directly to the new generation of Internet-connected TVs.
Mike Doback, the chief technologist for the Scripps 10-station TV group, says he’s being careful and conservative in his tech purchases. His priorities include improved work flow, more automation and the latest offering from his camera vendor of choice (JVC) and introducing mobile DTV in two more markets. He’s also making sure that the technologies are in place so that the stations can work across all four platforms effectively and produce quality products.
Ardell Hill, president of broadcast services for Media General, spells out his goals for his 18-station group this year. After completing work on a two-station plant in Augusta, Ga., he intends to introduce HD news into two more markets and equip two or three additional stations for mobile DTV. Other than that, it’s mostly replacing what needs to be replaced.
Sterling Davis of the Cox Media Group talks about what’s on this year’s tech to-do list at his 15 stations. In addition to upgrades and replacements, the big push will be consolidating the back-office business operations and the IT facilities as part of a multi-year project. Other priorities include rolling out the BXF interface between traffic and master control and extending mobile DTV capability to a few more stations.