Project Task Page: Kamaelia Macro

Description

Status: Blocked since June '06 - Awaiting access to hardware
Current Developers: n/a
Current "inflight" dev location: /Code/Python/Kamaelia/Examples/DVB_Systems
Start Date: January 2006
Major Milestone date: May 2006
Expected End Date: September 2006
End Date: na
Date this page last updated: 27th November 2006
Estimated effort so far: 9 man months
Owner: Michael

A system for taking DTT - DVB-T - of all BBC channels, transcoding & dumping to disk for serving by a front end, 24x7, 365 days a year.

This will create a large resource of BBC programmes for internal experimentation (only). A previous system existed that provided a similar capability, but failed and support was an issue. This task replaces that system.

Benefits include:

  • Provides motivation for optimisations to be performed.
  • Exemplar project
  • Provides a useful outcome/resource for the business
  • Expands capabilities of Kamaelia to deal with DVB & databases making Kamaelia a more generally useful tool.
  • Long term soak test of Kamaelia in a production environment.
  • This system would also end up being a continually/indefinitely running system that internal users (only) would have the potential to be able to take programmes and experiment with new formats based on a previous record of transmission.

Inputs

Task Sponsor: TL

Task Owner: Michael (MPS)

Developers:

  • Michael. (MPS)
  • Matt. (MH)
Users:
  • TL, MPS, MH, etc
Interested Third Parties:
  • NT - Request for demonstration at EuroOSCON & OSCON
  • MB - Creation of the original Radio based system that proved (in principle) that Kamaelia was suitable for this task
  • HW
Requirements:
  • MUST be able to record DVB (TV) 24x7, 365 days a year
  • MUST support transcoding of content
  • MUST segment at least at the programme level, automatically
  • MUST be stable (eg leavable alone for months at a time)
  • MUST be maintainable (ie able for new eyes to come in and take over project & code relatively easily)
  • MUST have a working demonstrator (of MUSTs) for XTech (May 2006)
  • WOULD LIKE subprogramme segmentation, approach TBD
  • WOULD LIKE multiple format transcoding.
  • WOULD LIKE metadata inserted into a database
  • WOULD LIKE a protocol/API for more granular access than 'just' programme level
Influencing factors:
  • Already done by MB for radio
  • B2 has kit needed for large scale system, but not been able to get at kit
  • TL reassigned to other large scale (higher priority) projects
  • Interest by FLOSS community for public presentation at OSCON/etc
  • MS has decided (Nov 2006) to potentially reassign manchester research lab machines to this task
    • Issue if that's done: Storage

Outputs

Expected

  • A server as a demonstrator of the core system for a single channel & simple demo frontend
  • Document for access protocol (API)
  • Server farm for full system inc DB. (requires access to existing Macro Kit)
  • Documentation for maintenance
  • New components implementing the given requirements
  • Presentations (XTech & OSCON)
  • First production Kamaelia system

Actual

  • 6 months (as of Nov 2006) of TV transcoded on demonstrator system (2 weeks storage capacity). (This marks a Kamaelia system running reliably consistently with a high data rate (8Mbit/s) flowing through it whilst also processor intensive (transcoding).
  • Demonstrator system & simple demo front end

Code Produced:
  • Axon Optimisations
  • DVB Tools
  • Macro Code
  • UnixProces
  • TCP/IP throughput/CPU optimisations
  • Quiessence

Documentation:

Presentations

  • XTech - TL - May 06
  • OSCON - MPS - July 06
  • EuroOSCON - MPS - Sept 06
  • Internal research board - MPS, MH - Oct 06

Releases:

  • Core time shifting code included in Kamaelia Bundles 1.2 & 1.4

Event:

  • Brussels open space @ fo.am

Realistic possibilities arising as a result on activity on this task

  • Ability to pipe data through external transcoders and a stable UnixProcess component allow many more interesting apps. (essentially opens up traditional unix pipes to be usable from within a Kamaelia system)
  • Command line PVR tool
  • IRC/webcontrol of a TV agent
  • Complete toolset for most tasks people would want for handling DVB
  • Components for OCR of subtitles would now be a realistically useful task to work on
  • Quiessence has opened up lots of applications due to simply freeing up CPU - especially for desktop apps (such as the Whiteboard)

Related Tasks

Tasks that directly enable this task

  • Co-ordinating assistant Tracker
  • Selector Service

Sub Tasks

Done:

  • Axon box delivery optimisations
  • Selector Optimisations
  • UnixProcess
  • UnixProcess Rewrite
  • Python DVB Tools
  • Basic DVB components
  • Demuxer
  • Optimised Pyrex Demuxer
  • TCP/IP subsystem partial rewrite
  • Threading changes to allow quiessence
  • XTech Ready Kamaelia Macro Demonstrator
  • Kamaelia Macro Presentation for OSCON
  • Kamaelia Macro Presentation for EuroOSCON

Todo:

  • Database Tools
  • Macro Database schema creation
  • Video segmentation protocol
  • Macro API design for content access

Task Log

Log started 27th November. The inputs/outputs and status represent a snapshot at that point in time. -- Michael, 27th November 2006

Discussion

Any comments welcome



 

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