Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. #1

    Content Management Solution?

    Hello all,

    I am new to streaming so there is not such a thing called redundant or basic information for me. I am planning to launch a video-on-demand website focused on education. Currently, I am searching for hosting/streaming server solutions and looking at small and big companies. Some provide only content delivery solution some couple this with content management software. Assuming it will be successful, I am planning to build a scalable, but cost effective system to begin with. Any advise will be invaluable in any aspect of this initiative. The videos will be relatively long (30-60 minutes), I don't hear good things about flash for long videos, any advise about the format here, which one is cheaper to operate? The content providers are willing to FTP the files, is this the best way to receive them?The content management will be an issue if demand increases and more video is avaiable, any open source solution for media content management? Or am I better off working with a turn-key solution provider and pay the price for that. I highly appreciate any information/suggestion/opinion on any of these issues. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Administrator Dave's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Te Awamutu, New Zealand
    Posts
    3,959
    Blog Entries
    79
    Hi aytulu,

    I usually recommend Flash. It really does have a lot of advantages over other streaming formats if you can make it work. Since version 8, Flash handles long videos perfectly well - it's possible that what you have heard is related to earlier versions where long files tended to lose audio synch. That's no longer an issue.

    One potential problem with Flash is that content providers are less likely to be able to deliver in this format, meaning that you'll have to convert it yourself. It is possible to create server software to do this automatically but you'll probably need to hire a software developer to do this (I have previously looked for off-the-shelf software but couldn't find any). Of course, you'll need a system for re-encoding video whatever format you choose.

    FTP is a good way to receive files, especially files as big as half-hour video. You won't be able to receive these by email. The problem with FTP is that the sender needs to have an FTP client. Another option could be a generic upload script, available from many of the script websites (hotscripts.com etc). This would allow users to upload using your website, but it won't be as reliable as FTP (users may upload 90% of the file and then lose the connection and have to start again).

    Regarding a general content management system (CMS) for your site, this depends a lot on the site's requirements. Personally I think CMS is overrated/overused. If you have a specific need to use such a system, e.g. very large website with frequent updates by different people, maybe it's worth having. I maintain about two dozen sites, some very large, and I find Dreamweaver to be the best choice for managing my content. I've used online CMS's and I prefer Dreamweaver.

    It's hard to say what the best approach is without knowing more about your site and your market, but my best guess is that you should begin small and simple, providing progressive-download videos rather than full streaming. Unless you have a very good reason to expect a flood of traffic, this will be the safest and most cost-effective approach.
    Dave Owen
    MediaCollege.com

  3. #3

    Thanks Dave

    This was very helpful thanks. The reason that I am not considering progressive download is that (as far as I know) you cannot gather user data. And I'll need that information from day 1. I have not looked at DW but it seems like it will be a good option. Any suggestions about re-encoding solutions? Specifically for receiving videos in Real format and re-encoding them either in flash or windows. Do you also think that Content Delivery Networks are overrated? Since some of them do offer Content Management solution, do you think it might be a viable option? Any suggestion for a CDN?

    Thanks Dave!

  4. #4
    Administrator Dave's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Te Awamutu, New Zealand
    Posts
    3,959
    Blog Entries
    79
    Hmmm, after reading your reply I'm thinking of back-tracking a little. If you need things like user data right from the start then it becomes difficult to start small. You're right of course that you'll need a proper streaming server to do this properly.

    Real Media is a bit of a sticky one. The Flash encoding options I would normally recommend don't support Real Media which is a shame. There certainly are plenty of apps which do convert Real Media to Flash but be careful - a quick Google search shows some familiar but undesirable apps. IMO you should stay away from anything to do with these companies:
    Wondershare
    Xillisoft
    flash-on-tv.com
    flash-video-mx.com

    I would prefer to recommend something to use rather than avoid, but that's the best I can do for now, sorry.

    I don't have any direct experience with large-scale Content Delivery Networks so I won't comment too much. What I can say is that I've run some reasonably demanding websites without the need for a CDN. Having said this, if you're looking to stream to a sizable audience and you want a good, robust system from the start then it could be worth considering.

    And finally, if you do go with a CDN and get a CMS as part of the deal, then you might as well go for it. I still do have some reservations, for example some CMS's are death for search engine results. Perhaps you could investigate some options and then get some independent advice (from here and other webmaster forums) before committing.

    All this is a little vague I know - sorry I couldn't be more specific.
    Dave Owen
    MediaCollege.com

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Subscribe to us on YouTube