DMA 24

WRAL Raleigh To Go Live With Google Glass

Beginning today and continuing each day through Friday, a different news person will wear the glasses between 6:30 and 7 a.m., giving on air and online viewers an unusual perspective of the broadcast. Anchor Bill Leslie is first up with the high-tech eyewear.

WRAL Raleigh, N.C. (DMA 24), this week will give viewers a live, behind-the-scenes glimpse of what goes into putting its morning newscast on air with the help of Google Glass.

Beginning today and continuing each day through Friday, a different person associated with the newscast will wear the glasses between 6:30 and 7 a.m.

First up is Bill Leslie, one of the station’s morning anchors, who will wear the Google Glass in the studio so viewers can see what he sees as he delivers the newscast. Throughout the rest of the week other people working on the newscast, including news producer Kianey Carter, studio crew chief Stuart Todd and traffic anchor Brian Shrader, will each wear the glasses.

WRAL occasionally will drop video from the Google Glass into a picture-in-picture window on the lower left of the screen, says Steve Hammel WRAL VP and general manager. The Capitol Broadcasting Co. flagship station also will make the Google Glass perspective available on its website for the full 30 minutes of the newscast, including during commercial breaks. The live link of the Google Glass perspective will be available here.

To get video from the Google Glass on air and online, the station will use a combination of consumer and broadcast technology, says WRAL’s Pete Sockett, director of engineering and operations. The Google Glass will stream video via a Wi-Fi connection to an Apple iPad, which in turn will stream the video via an Apple AirPlay connection to an Apple TV box, Sockett explains.

The station will convert the Apple TV’s HDMI output to an HD-SDI signal, which will feed the control room video switcher. The Apple TV box rotates the video source 90 degrees, so before it can be used on air or online, the video switcher will be used to rotate the video upright, Sockett says.

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With one of the switcher’s M/E busses, WRAL will add custom graphics before sending one version of the signal to be encoded for online use and keying another version into the program output of the switcher for broadcast viewers.

“Our engineers love a challenge,” Hammel says. “We wanted to take the first step to see if we can make this experimental technology work for live TV.”


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