UEFA European Championship

Bannister Lake is pleased to be part of the team bringing the UEFA European Championship broadcast coverage to Canada. The tournament was originally scheduled for 2020 but was rescheduled to begin today. It is being held in 11 cities in 11 UEFA countries as a celebration of the event’s 60th anniversary. The 24 teams will be vying for what is one of the premier soccer events on the planet. Portugal will be defending its 2016 win.

Bannister Lake provided both a scorebug and graphics for the Canadian broadcasts on TSN and CTV. The software included client/server architecture allowing a single operator to control unlimited concurrent games. Bannister Lake provided a custom application using the Ross Video XPression api as the CG platform.

Bannister Lake Announces Integration with Traffic Systems using the BXF SMPTE Standard

In an effort to provide improved integration between broadcast branding and traffic systems, Bannister Lake’s Chameleon has added support for reading playlists using BXF, the SMPTE standard for data exchange in the broadcasting industry.

By reading traffic playlists directly, Chameleon provides a way to bypass automation systems for triggering secondary events like snipes and bugs. The playlist data is moved directly into Chameleon’s schedule providing tight integration with graphics and data.

To help in viewing the secondary events, Chameleon now also supports viewing segments in the schedule. This makes it easier to view the timing of assets and offers a way to safely adjust or manually add new ones.

Another new feature is to clearly mark assets which haven’t been fully defined. In this way, assets that aren’t currently in the database can be scheduled but can be clearly marked as requiring definition.

For more information on Chameleon integration with WideOrbit, contact us at mailto:info@bannisterlake.com.

Introducing Chameleon Character Generator and Sequencer Support

Chameleon customers may have noticed something new in our web interface Flow:

CG Support !

Bannister Lake is rolling out Character Generator (CG) support for Chameleon. While the Chameleon renderer has a full function Designer allowing the creation of scenes used for tickers, branding and custom applications, an easy way to create traditional CG sequencing is now available. The new CG Sequencer support is provided through Chameleon’s web interface Flow. This gives users a way to drive graphics from any browser including support over internet, intranet, cloud, streaming and OTT.

The Chameleon CG is all driven from the chameleon.api which is Bannister Lake’s api for building standalone and web-based applications on any platform. All communications happen using a tcp/ip port providing great flexibility. And all rendering happens using JavaScript on the client side providing a wider distribution of processing. The requirement for rendering on the client side is supported on any platform supporting the chromium engine from phones, tablets, Raspberry Pi, laptops, Macs, PCs, Xenix and more. This offers excellent support for remote broadcasting, streaming and traditional studio environments.

After publishing graphics from the Designer, the scenes are now available to be used on any channel. In Flow, pick the channel, scene and set the dynamic tags in the scene. Save the scene in a playlist which can be used among users in a content group and we now have a web-based, collaborative CG sequencer for Chameleon.

While the Designer will be given sequencer support going forward, the new web-based CG sequencer offers the most flexible means for providing a fully functional CG sequencer to our users.

For more information on Chameleon Character Generator and Sequencer Support contact sales@bannisterlake.com

News, Broadcasting, Production and COVID

SMPTE Toronto’s January 2021 Virtual Go-To Webinar meeting reviewed how Global News and Corus Entertainment have had to adapt to the restrictions faced by the changing COVID regulations. Gerry Belec, National Director, Operations & Technology focused on the world of plexi-glassed control rooms, mask-wearing staff and PPE’d reporters. Gerry shares how working from home accessing operations systems for Graphics, Elections, intercom and monitoring via the network was possible.

Watch Global TV’s Live Election Night with Bannister Lake Chameleon

Chameleon For Elections

Election night is one of the most important events for television broadcasters. You want to be absolutely correct when you call races. Watch how Global TV used Bannister Lake’s Election Module for three Canadian Provincial Elections and the 2020 US Federal Election. In this video, Global TV’s Gerry Belec, Director of News Technology & Operations and Laith Jadua, Global’s Graphic Technologist explain how they used Chameleon Election software for all their graphic displays including Broadcast L-Frame’s, Touchscreen, OTT channels and the Global News web site.

Bannister Lake Drives Global Television’s Coverage of Three Canadian Provincial Elections On-Air and Online

Bannister Lake is pleased to announce today that it played an instrumental role in the production of three recent Global News provincial election specials. The company’s Elector software was used by editorial teams in British Columbia, Saskatchewan and New Brunswick to track results, make race calls and manage full frame graphic and ticker playout. Bannister Lake also provided custom software development services creating interactive web widgets. The web widgets were used to visualize results on on-set touchscreens that allowed analysts to navigate through various provincial ridings and pinpoint election results. In addition to results data, the widgets included other contextual datasets including demographics and historical voting outcomes. A second set of widgets were created and fully integrated into the GlobalNews.ca website providing users with access to election results in a fully interactive format that could be accessed by any device.

“We have a longstanding relationship with Bannister Lake and having them add their expertise to our online election coverage not only improved the overall web experience, it created a strong sense of consistency across both our properties”, said Gerry Belec, Director – News Technology and Operations, Global News.

Global took full advantage of Bannister Lake’s HTML5 capabilities and integrated election results data directly into VizRT graphic engines that populated regional L-bars. Bannister Lake’s election data was also incorporated into Global’s News’ social media distribution efforts populating graphics announcing breaking election news.

“Our election solutions are completely agnostic and work well on any graphic engine and as our web widgets demonstrate on any device. For broadcasters using various products to reach their audiences both online and on-air, we offer exciting new ways to tell the election night story.”, said George Hentsch, President, Bannister Lake.

The Global Television Network and its parent company Corus Entertainment use Bannister Lake solutions in a variety of innovative ways. In addition to election coverage, Bannister Lake’s Chameleon data aggregation and management solution powers L-Bar graphics for both the network’s regional morning news shows and for its over the top news channels. Chameleon also powers an extensive digital signage network with localized news, weather, sports and other data-driven content.

Broadcast Graphics Expert Phil Carmichael Joins Bannister Lake

Bannister Lake is pleased to announce today that broadcast graphics industry authority Phil Carmichael will be joining the company as Director, Sales and Marketing. Phil brings decades of experience to the role in a number of capacities including product management and as a demonstration specialist. Phil began his career at CBC Calgary as a broadcast technician before focusing on broadcast graphics. As a graphic designer and operator, he specialized in sports production and worked on a wide variety of high-profile events including the Stanley Cup playoffs, Major League Baseball and the Olympic Games. Phil moved on to become a product specialist at Chyron where he worked closely with a variety of customers helping them gain a deeper understanding of both the products and associated workflows.

“We are pleased to have Phil join our team and explore new opportunities. He is well known in the world of broadcast graphics and uniquely brings experience from both an operator perspective and from a pre-sales angle”, said Georg Hentsch, president, Bannister Lake.

“I have been impressed with Bannister Lake and the Chameleon product for many years and am excited to join their efforts to bring more real-time data capabilities to broadcast graphics. The company’s dedication to product development and custom data solutions is needed in the industry and I look forward to contributing to Bannister Lake’s success”, said Phil Carmichael.

Bannister Lake’s flagship data aggregation and management product Chameleon plays an important role in broadcast, digital signage and over-the-top. As audiences’ demand for real-time data continues to increase, Chameleon provides producers with new opportunities to enhance storytelling with data visualization, improve production workflows and create exciting new business opportunities.

CustomWeather and Bannister Lake Form Partnership to Create New Business Opportunities in Broadcast and Digital Signage

Bannister Lake and CustomWeather  announced today that they have entered into a partnership to develop joint business opportunities and enable users of Bannister Lake’s Chameleon software to incorporate weather data from specialized weather company, CustomWeather, Inc. CustomWeather is an industry-leading weather data provider featuring forecasts for 85,000 global locations in 95 languages, providing high-resolution forecasts from its proven forecasting model, the CW100.

Bannister Lake’s Chameleon product is an innovative real-time data aggregation and management solution used throughout the broadcast and digital signage industry to power and populate graphic templates. The solution drives news tickers, election results, financial data, wagering, and other editorial applications. Chameleon is also used for on-air branding applications, controlling and populating snipes, bugs, promos, and “coming up next” boards. Chameleon’s RESTful API allows data to be reformatted and strategically distributed to broadcast graphic engines, as HTML5, and be integrated into mobile applications.

 “Bannister Lake’s Chameleon software offers a novel way for us to expand our reach in the broadcast and digital signage market,” said Geoff Flint, President and CEO of CustomWeather. “Our superior weather products combined with Bannister Lake’s expertise in managing real-time data and custom development offers tremendous value to their customers.”

“CustomWeather is an ideal partner for Bannister Lake. Weather data is an important data source for our customer base and CustomWeather’s accuracy and assortment of data products provides an attractive offering for both the broadcast and digital signage market”, said Georg Hentsch, President, Bannister Lake.

Both CustomWeather and Bannister Lake will actively pursue opportunities that leverage each others expertise in creating real-time data and custom software solutions. As data specialists with strong development skills in database, APIs, and applications, Bannister Lake designs, builds, and implements solutions that utilize editorially relevant data sources, such as CustomWeather, to engage audiences and attract advertising revenue.

Bannister Lake Completes Chameleon Integration and Custom Development Project at RFD-TV

Bannister Lake is pleased to announce today that it has completed a major project for popular agribusiness and rural lifestyle channel RFD-TV. RFD-TV is owned by Rural Media Group, INC. (RMG). RMG properties include The Cowboy Channel and Rural Radio Sirius XM channel 147. The Nashville based cable network provides viewers with extensive daily coverage of commodity markets and other business news of special interest to the farming industry.

RFD-TV required Bannister Lake to oversee a number of upgrades including, the transition to a new data provider, integration of real-time data into updated graphic engines, create and power graphic tickers, and design and build a custom application allowing on-air talent to select, edit and control graphic playout.

Bannister Lake acted as the liaison between data provider Barchart and the channel to ensure that RFD-TV journalists were receiving the financial and editorial content required. The development and project teams at Bannister Lake worked closely with both Barchart data experts and RFD-TV engineering staff to ensure that RFD-TV’s data calls worked flawlessly. The Bannister Lake financial application provided news anchors with visibility into real-time commodity pricing and the ability to quickly create graphical financial charts and tables. Anchors would then use the application to generate graphic playlists and take the lists to air without incumbering the control room.

“Bannister Lake provided RFD-TV with an innovative way to take real-time data from our data provider and give our editorial teams the control they needed to customize that content,” said David Mitchell, Chief Technology Officer, RMG. “In addition to generating and populating tickers, we dramatically sped up our production process by running the entire graphics workflow from the anchor desk.”

The financial application also included a sponsorship management component that allows RFD-TV to schedule and execute sponsors’ logos associated with specific graphic boards. The solution automatically generates logs to reconcile logo exposure with advertising sales. This solution provides a more efficient workflow, while managing new revenue opportunities.

“We are pleased to see RFD-TV embracing Chameleon and our custom financial software solutions. The project represents what we do best, reading and ingesting complex real-time data sources and providing producers and editorial teams with the tools they need to disseminate that content to audiences as efficiently as possible”, said Georg Hentsch, president, Bannister Lake.

In addition to powering tickers for RFD-TV, Bannister Lake also created tickers for The Cowboy Channel. The 24-hour television network is dedicated to western sports including bull riding, roping, reining, and barrel racing. Chameleon plays an instrumental role visualizing results, standings, and event schedules.