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Java IoT: Article

Using Mule as the Foundation for New SOA Infrastructure

How Scripps Networks Manages Media Assets with Mule

Over the course of the past few decades, the consumer media industry has evolved from a slow-moving oligopoly dominated by a handful of vertically integrated networks to a highly fragmented and competitive marketplace of content creation, publication, and distribution players. This disaggregation of the industry value chain, in combination with the proliferation of content sources, channels, and media formats has created a daunting logistical challenge for anyone attempting to deliver content to the consumer in the right format, at the right time.

Scripps Networks, which has a number of popular lifestyle brands including its flagship networks - HGTV and the Food Network - along with the DIY Network and Fine Living Network (FLN) and the country music network Great American Country (GAC), is one such company facing this challenge.

At Scripps Networks, for example, a program destined for the HGTV television channel might come from one of many media content partners. The same program might be formatted for the standard definition HGTV channel, as well as for the high-definition HGTV-HD. The content might also be repurposed for streaming on the HGTV Website, or on one of Scripps Networks' broadband channels, where consumers can watch the program on a broadband-enabled TV or personal computer.

This scenario is played out daily across all of Scripps Networks' properties in the context of a highly intricate and constantly evolving schedule. To manage this complex problem efficiently, Scripps requires an infrastructure that can incorporate and orchestrate services that perform the various required business functions, such as ingesting media, registering and indexing assets, retrieving stored assets, and scheduling.

Since the business requirements are constantly changing, the infrastructure needs to be modular and flexible, even though some of this business logic resides in legacy systems and third-party applications. In addition, given that millions of consumers rely on this application functionality, error handling within this mission-critical application needs to be automated where possible, and efficient when human intervention is required.

More Stories By Ross Mason

Ross Mason is the founder of the Mule Project and co-founder and CTO of MuleSource, the leading provider of open source service-oriented architecture (SOA) infrastructure software.

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