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Standard Review
Last Updated March 2019

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Standard Review

Ortana Media Group offers a media asset management, automation and orchestration platform called Cubix, plus event and webcasting, bulk tape ingest, cloud transcoding and archive service offerings. Cubix is promoted as the hub in the content lifecycle to which all team and resources can be integrated. In addition to configurable workflows, metadata and analytics (described in more detail below), it has a number of modules that extend to scheduling content and resources, rate cards and order management, live capture, Flexicart automation, missing material manager, and cloud playout.

ARCHITECTURE: Cubix can be deployed on-premise (Windows Servers with full support for virtualisation), in the cloud (client account AWS only), hosted (Ortana hosted on AWS only), hybrid (using their Remote Harness feature) or a multi-tenanted SaaS model (on a per seat model with module limitations). It is installed on Microsoft OS, using a Microsoft SQL database. No mention of security.

INTEGRATION: Cubix integrates with a wide range of on-prem resources for file delivery, capture, AQC, transcoding, facility management, archive and linear playout. In the cloud it integrates to storage (AWS, Backblaze, Google Nearline and Azure), compute, e-commerce, and playout. No mention is made of integration to OVP or VOD platforms. All integrations are reported as being “out of the box”.

AUTOMATION: Cubix includes a Taskflow Designer module that facilitates the definition of 3-step sequences of automated tasks in a graphical UI, each of which can drive other 3-step linear workflows. A Tracker module provides very simplistic real-time monitoring of these workflows in a tabular form - with each of the 3-step workflows represented by a cell with a traffic light colour coding for status, running left to right. A Media Rules module provides configurable event handling capabilities.

METADATA: Cubix has a range of modules supporting different aspects of metadata management. The Metadata Schema module supports the defining of schemas for user defined object hierarchies. The Excel Importer module enables mapping of Excel cells to metadata definition fields. There does not seem to be a drag-n-drop type design tool, nor support for more complex metadata such as thesaurus, taxonomies, temporal, spatial or event metadata.

USER EXPERIENCE: For media operators there are three main portals - Clips for access to unstructured assets (like rushes), Distribution for access to structured assets (like episodes in a season) and Review & Approve. The Uis are simplistic in style and have fixed functionality. Clip recommendations in the Clip portal and security features in the Review portal are interesting.

ANALYTICS: Cubix has a Reporting module that enables static reports on any element (billing metrics, throughput, SLA breaches, task queues etc) to be produced in Excel or PDF format. No graphical displays of event data is offered.

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE: With the exception of a mention of AI as a bullet point on their NAB booth signage, no reference to AI integration or application was found in the Ortana marketing material at the time of this review.