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    Focused on Progress

    The pandemic-driven transformation from traditional broadcasting to remote integration

    by Chris Kean, Focus Engineer

    The disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic felt in everyday life was no less challenging for media and broadcasters. Overnight, Focus Studio was no longer able to accommodate residents and officials in-person, on-set.

    In March, we quickly reconfigured our studio to enable remote interviews. This was just the beginning. As we began to realize the extent of the pandemic, we knew we needed to change the way we produced content. Not too long ago, this Remote Integration Model (REMI) was far outside of our reach in terms of cost and infrastructure. With diligence and many remote meetings, we defined our strategy. The primary goal, we concluded, was a technology offering that was not just single-use for pandemic times, but would benefit our viewers for the foreseeable future.

    We designed and integrated an infrastructure that would allow us to transmit anything from a phone, all the way up to a full six-camera broadcast, from any location back to our studio control room. New cabling and equipment were installed in the Focus offices, allowing for normal workplace duties during the day and socially distant production workstations during our broadcasts. Additionally, we designed the system to offer our schools, residents and cities the ability to send us content from any place that had an internet connection. Going forward, we can now broadcast town hall meetings and important messages from our mayors with little advance notice.