Why Editors Resist Using MAM Software


Why Editors Resist Using MAM Software

To paraphrase an old saying: “You can’t have too much storage, or be too organized.” But, what does that mean when an average production is now shooting well over 100 TB of data? Michael Kammes, Director of Technology at KeyCode Media, shares his thoughts on workflow, storage and finding that missing shot.


Larry Jordan:    In his current role as director of technology at Key Code Media, Michael Kammes consults on the latest in technology and best practices into the digital media communication space.  Hello Michael, welcome back.

Michael Kammes:  Hello sultry Mr Jordan, how are you?

Larry Jordan:  I tell you, it’s a great show so far.  And it’s only going to get better because I’m talking to you.

Michael Kammes:  Thank you so much.

Larry Jordan:  You’ve always been fascinated by optimizing workflow and storage and the integration of technology in our lives, and I also know you were listening to Philip’s interview.  What’s your reaction?

Michael Kammes:  Philip’s been on the bleeding edge for quite a while and now that he’s made the jump further, you know, headlong into AI and machine learning, I think that’s probably the best route to go especially when it comes to all the disparate media and whatnot we’re doing within our industry.  So I couldn’t be more behind what he’s doing and where he sees the industry going.

Larry Jordan:  Does the increasing use of machine learning enable new opportunities in workflow from your point of view?

Michael Kammes:  Oh completely.  I think when we look at things like asset management, all asset managements do the same thing at the core.  They allow you to find media, and they allow you to then use that media.  What I look for in more advanced asset management systems is how can it take away the dragging my knuckles across the keyboard, the repetitive things that I do that doesn’t take the creative power that I have or the intellect that I have.  I want something to do the stuff that doesn’t take up those things.  So if I could automate transcoding, if I could automate pushing files to different places, if I could automate the tagging of media so I can start to use it, then I want that.

Larry Jordan:  We’re going to be talking with Sam Bogoch who’s the CEO of Axle Media, and has developed some media asset management software in the section after you.  But before we talk to Sam, why do you think editors are so reluctant to embrace media management software?

Michael Kammes:  Because I think creatives want to create. I can’t fault anyone for that.  I mean, that’s why you got into this industry.  You didn’t get into the industry because you feel like working in an Excel doc, or using Filemaker Pro.  You got into the industry because you want to be creative.  And a lot of asset management systems require you to do a lengthy process of logging and organizing and that takes the fun out of manipulating the moving image which is again why you got into the industry.

Larry Jordan:   So you think that the more that the machine can take over the logging process, the more people will adopt media management?

Michael Kammes:   Bingo.  When we start using AI technology to do facial recognition and recognize who’s speaking and not just how we translate what they’re saying, what we think they’re talking about, but actually what they’re saying, so subjective versus objective.  Once we pair those things together to machine learning, we now have an instant 80 percent, 90 percent of being there, getting things done, and logged.  So now we don’t have to spend as much time on the front end.  You know, that pay now versus pay later philosophy.

Larry Jordan:  Well Sam is going to talk about that exact subject, so I’m going to leave the rest of those questions for Sam, but I want to talk about the other love in your life which is storage.  And I know…

Michael Kammes:  I thought you were going to say Philip.

Larry Jordan:  No, it’s storage.  We’re going to talk about storage.  Storage is on the list of things we’re going to talk about.

Michael Kammes:  OK.

Larry Jordan:  Only you and I, I think get excited about the specs of a hard drive, but what’s happening in storage that’s got your attention these days?

Michael Kammes:  Well, right now we have several different paradigms.  We have the SSD and Flash, and we have the spinning disc, and we’ve got the nebulous, no pun intended, cloud.  Right now, there’s a shortage of SSDs which is making things difficult for some companies.  What I’m finding out there is that drives are actually getting larger in capacity than what folks actually need.  Hear me out on this, I have plenty of clients I work with that I say this’ll be 100 terabytes.  They say, “We don’t need that, we only need 20 terabytes.”  And I say, “Well that’s two drives.”  If you’re going to be sharing this amongst many people, you need more spindles.  If I can get you a 20 terabyte two drives, that’s not enough spindles, so people are now paying for throughput as opposed to capacity, and I find that’s a complete change from what it used to be.

Larry Jordan:  I totally agree.  I just purchased a system for myself.  It’s got 40 terabytes of storage on five drives, and you know, that’s illegal I think.  But you make a really good point which is that we really need to focus on how we’re going to get the data and how quickly we get the data from our drive to our computer.  What’s the next thing on bandwidth?  What’s coming up?

Michael Kammes:  Well right now I think a lot of facilities finally moving over to a 10 gig infrastructure, instead of the single gig infrastructure they’ve had for years, they’re now moving to 10 gig.  That requires running new Ethernet cables which could be expensive.  But it also requires a new switching infrastructure, and that’s usually several thousand dollars and a lot of facilities aren’t ready to make that kind of investment.  But we’re seeing more and more folks forgoing the fiber route and going more to the copper Ethernet route.

Larry Jordan:  I think we have to have another conversation talking about ways to improve your bandwidth, but we’ll save that for another time.  Michael for people that want to keep track of what you’re up to, where can they go on the web?

Michael Kammes:  Two places, michaelkammes.com and 5thingsseries.com.

Larry Jordan: That’s the number five, 5thingseries.com.  Michael Kammes is the technology director at Key Code Media, and Michael, thanks for joining us today.

Michael Kammes:  Always a pleasure Larry thanks.

Larry Jordan: Bye bye.

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