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Hands-On Guide to Webcasting

Internet Event and AV Production

By Steve Mack, Dan Rayburn

  1. ISBN: 9780240807546
  2. Publication Date: November 2005
  3. Format: Paperback
  4. Pages: 272
  5. Price:
    • $34.95 (USD)
    • £20.99 (GBP)
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Description

In "Hands-On Guide to Webcasting," industry experts address the fastest-growing application for streaming media - broadcasting live audio and video on the Internet. Used in all industry verticals from corporate to entertainment, this book provides an end-to-end technical overview of the webcasting process. Providing you with step-by-step instructions from audio/video production, encoding and authoring to delivery and business issues, this guide provides both the depth and breadth necessary for mastery of the subject.

Author Bio

Steve Mack has spent the last eight years at the forefront of the streaming media industry. He is a partner at LUX Media, a firm specializing in all areas of streaming media, including large-scale live event production, a/v production, authoring, encoding, hardware and software implementation, training, original music composition, and script writing. An accomplished author, Steve wrote The Streaming Media Bible for Hungry Minds (published Spring 2002) and wrote an article for the 1999 Wiley and Sons Encyclopedia of Electrical and Electronics Engineering entitled Broadcasting on the Internet. He has a monthly column in Streaming Magazine and regularly contributes to various web publications. Steve has produced some of the largest and most prestigious Internet broadcasts, including U2 live from Notre Dame (Yahoo Internet Magazine's "Top of the Net for 2001"), the Rolling Stones Bridges to Babylon tour, Elton Johns Oscar Party, the WOMAD festival, Bumbershoot, the Tibetan Freedom Festivals, The New York Digital Club Festivals, the MTV Europe Awards, President Clintons Inaugural address, and the first ever public live Internet broadcast of a Seattle Mariners game in 1995. Steve is a popular and sought-after public speaker, having has presented and given workshops at the National Association of Broadcasters, Internet World, the the RealConference, Streaming Media East and West, and South by Southwest. He also chaired the Internet Audio Workshop at the 105th Audio Engineering Society conference in September 1998.
Dan Rayburn has thirteen years of high profile experience launching and growing successful technology companies specifically in the streaming and digital media sector and co-founded one of the industry's first streaming media webcasting production companies. He is recognized as "the voice of the streaming media industry" and is Executive Vice President for StreamingMedia.com, a diversified news media company with a mission to serve and educate the streaming media industry. He is a sought after speaker, writer, publisher, consultant and industry entrepreneur to corporations and industry vendors and his work has been featured in print and online by nearly every major media outlet. He provides economic, financial, and business strategy consulting to law firms, corporations, and government agencies regarding litigation cases involving video over IP and digital media patents and provides independent, unbiased, industry specific data on key investment sectors in the digital media, IPTV and wireless industries to institutional money managers.

Reviews

"All in all, we think the book is well done and will make a great addition to the library of those who are interested in Webcasting." - Camcorder and Computer Video

"..the layout of the book is clean and well designed. Screenshots are large and clearly legible, so it's easy to follow along and get a preview of the screens you'll see when you produce the Webcast." - Camcorder and Computer Video

"The series serves as a great reference resource in streaming and digital media-based subjects for industry professionals." - HiTech Review

"It is very well-organized going through webcasting in the order that events occur and is divided into sections that correspond to the different components of a webcast." - HiTech Review

Contents

About the Authors
Acknowledgements
Introduction
Introduction to Webcasting
Successful Webcast Ingredients
How to Use this Book
A Quick Word about Platforms
Support: We're Here to Help
Chapter 1 - QuickStart
Getting Ready for a Webcast
Business considerations
Planning for your webcast
Equipment You'll Need
Computer Hardware You'll Need
Software You'll Need
Encoding Planning
Authoring Planning
Distribution Planning
Crew Planning
Your First Webcast
Connect Your Sources
Set up your encoding software
Test the webcast
Chapter 2 - Basic Webcasting Concepts
Streaming Media: What It Is and How It Works
The Importance of Bandwidth
Webcasting System Components
Encoders, Servers, and Players
Protocols, File Formats, and Codecs
The Webcasting Process
Planning
Production
Encoding
Authoring
Distribution
Webcasting Tools
Production Tools
Encoding Tools
Authoring Tools
Distribution Tools
Platform Considerations
Chapter 3 - Digital Audio and Video Basics
Digital Audio and Video
Digital Audio
Sampling Rates
Bit Depth
Digital Video
Digital Video Encoding Schemes
Digitizing Audio and Video
Soundcards and Capture Cards
External Appliances
FireWire (IEEE 1394)
Codecs
Codec Side Effects
The Limitations of Streaming Media
Chapter 4 - Business considerations
Business Considerations
Does it Really Have to Be Live?
Cost Considerations
Production Costs
Bandwidth Costs
Bandwidth Measurement Basics
Real-World Bandwidth and Throughput Calculations Example
Return on Investment
Legal considerations
Get the Right Clearances
Location and Union Permissions
Streaming and Digital Media Patents
Chapter 5 - Choosing the Right Partners
Do it Yourself vs. Outsourcing
Production Partners
Expertise
Pricing
Professionalism
Distribution Partners
Physical Distribution
Pricing and Providers
Marketing Partners
Contracts
Chapter 6 - Webcast Production Planning
Location Concerns
Signal Acquisition
Dedicated vs. Shared Connectivity
The Importance of Connectivity Testing
Equipment
The Crew
Communication
Presentation
The Pre- and Post-Show
Use Talent
Technical Difficulties
Chapter 7 - Webcast Audio Production
Audio Engineering Basics
Level
Setting Up a Gain Structure
Audio Equipment
Microphones
Mixing Desk
Signal Processing Equipment
Monitoring
Additional Audio Tools
Webcast Audio Engineering Techniques
Get Rid of Ground Hum
Ambient Microphones
Compression
EQ
Chapter 8 - Webcast Video Production
Video Engineering Basics
Lighting
3-Point Lighting
White Balancing
Warm Cards
Video Equipment
Camera and Tripod
Lights and Lighting Accessories
Video Switching and Distribution
Monitoring
Additional Video Equipment
Webcast Video Techniques
Keep Motion to a Minimum
Video Signal Processing
Chapter 9 - Webcast Encoding
Encoding Basics
Consider Your Audience
Consider Your Programming
Encoding Equipment
Computer Hardware
Computer Software
Special Encoding Equipment
Multiple Stream/Format Solutions
Presentation Solutions
Production/Encoding Hybrids
Setting Up for Redundancy
Webcast Encoding Techniques
Bit Rate Considerations
Audio Considerations
Video Considerations
Resolution
Frame Rate
Frame Quality
Using Advanced Encoding Filters
Cropping and Resizing
Legacy Considerations
Multiple Bit Rate (MBR) Files
Push vs. Pull
Encoding Settings Examples
Windows Media Encoder
Selecting Sources
Choose Your Encoding Settings
Adjust the Video Size
Fill in the Stream Information
Video Processing
Advanced Functionalities
Apply Your Changes, Save the Session
Start Encoding
Test Your Stream
RealProducer
Selecting Sources
Setting up Your Outputs
Setting up Audiences
Video Processing
Fill in Clip Information
Save the Job File
Start Encoding
Test Your Stream
Redundant Encoding Techniques
Chapter 10 - Webcast Authoring
Authoring Considerations
HTML considerations
Embedded vs. Standalone Players
Standalone Players
Metafile Examples
Windows Media
RealMedia
QuickTime
Redundancy in Metafiles
Embedded Players
The Microsoft ActiveX Control
The Netscape Plug-in Model
Building Cross-Platform Web Pages with Embedded Players
Embedding the Windows Media Player
Embedding the RealPlayer
Chapter 11 - Webcast Distribution
Distribution Basics
Size Matters
Equipment
Platforms
Distribution Techniques
Live Server Redundancy
Deployment Considerations
Unicast vs. Multicast
Live Stream Latency
Firewalls
Webcasting "Canned” Performances
Server Setup Examples
RealNetworks Helix Server
Windows Media Services
Log Files
Chapter 12 - Case Studies
X-Prize Competition
Implementation
Results
ACLU Members Conference
Implementation
Results
Sweet Adelines Convention
Implementation
Results
Appendix A - Streaming And Digital Media Statistics
Resources
Glossary
Index