Dramatic images of victory and loss from the London 2012 Summer Olympic Games are being distributed with digital media tools developed by Waterloo, ON’s Open Text.
Images captured by national press photographers who are part of the National Olympic Photo Pool (NOPP) are being distributed to dozens of news and sports media outlets within minutes of the action.
But with tens of thousands of photos being created, it’s crucial for publishers to manage the imagery effectively. So important semantic metadata, text mining technology, and valuable tagging terms must be added so image creators, distributors and viewers can have better content and search experiences.
Open Text has long been a major independent software provider of Enterprise Information Management (EIM). The company was founded in 1991 as a tech spin-off from the University of Waterloo. The international company still has its corporate head office in Waterloo.
The foundations of its full-text indexing and string-search technology came out of the innovative Oxford English Dictionary (OED) project at the University, and have since evolved to be applied to e-learning, digital media, secure communications and more.
Using Open Text's Enterprise Information Management (EIM) and cloud based Content Hub for Publishers (CHP), more than 50 top sports and news photographers capturing key moments of the 2012 London Olympic Games are able to transmit pictures from their privileged vantage points at Olympic venues to a single distribution point.
The images are then reviewed and edited by photo editors located in the main press centre in the Olympic park.
Images are then released for publication, simultaneously being delivered not only to the contributing members of the NOPP, but also to a Web portal which allows the 1,100 titles published by members of the Newspaper Society to access the content in real time.
More than 700 images were distributed in this way during the Olympic Opening Ceremonies. On average, 650 images per day have been added since, and the total number is expected to top 15,000 by the end of the Games.
The NOPP was established, with OpenText support, in response to an initiative from the International Olympic Committee (IOC), which was keen to see sports photography of the national newspapers made available more widely throughout the UK. The offer was taken up by the national newspaper members of the Newspaper Publishers Association (NPA) trade body which has been coordinating a number of Olympic photography projects.
Detailed planning for the NOPP began more than a year ago by Andrew Moger, an independent consultant to the NPA and former Picture Editor of The Times, and Mike Sharp, Group Development Executive at Trinity Mirror, supported by a select group of senior sports photographers from across the industry.
"No blueprint existed for the practical aspects of collating, editing, and distributing images on this scale within the tight time constraints we set ourselves,” Sharp, a digital imaging technology specialist, said in a release. “We therefore needed to find a technology partner with a proven track record and a system which could meet the demands of newspaper publishing houses across the country, for both their print and online editions. Open Text was a natural choice having been in the industry for many years."
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