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Atlanta Chapter

September 26, 2001
Meeting Abstract

Computer Architecture Requirements for Video-On-Demand Servers


1) What is a Video-on-Demand system
i) show complete system from content provider to viewer
ii) define industry definitions and metrics
iii) compare different networks
(hybrid fiber-coax, IP, DSL)
iv) discuss salient business issues
2) Overview of important issues regarding video servers
a) real-time and deterministic response times
b) I/O flow
c) scalability
i) multiprocessor arrangements
ii) adding stream and storage capacity
iii) linear price/performance requirements
3) Overview of Concurrent Corp. MediaHawk video server
4) Distributed versus centralized architectures
a) content availability to processors
b) system bottlenecks
c) architectural tradeoffs
d) content propagation
5) Video storage subsystems
a) SCSI versus Fibre Channel
b) Levels of RAID
c) Hot-swappable disks
6) Redundancy, Availability, and MTBF discussion
7) Future trends in VOD systems
8) Q & A session


William J. Oehme
Title: Director of Custom Engineering, Concurrent Computer Corporation
Responsibilities include systems packaging, custom product integration, and developing solutions per customer requirements
Worked at Concurrent for 18 years

Education: MS Computer Engineering 1990, BS Electrical Engineering 1987, BS Mechanical Engineering 1983, all from Florida Atlantic University

Written numerous articles and holds 2 patents Registered Professional Engineer

About VoD

Video on Demand (VoD) is on the cusp of a commercial breakthrough. Interactive media has been in the development stage for more than ten years. In spite of the continuing challenges of implementation and design of computer systems that can efficiently handle large continuous media files, three Atlanta based companies have already brought their products to market.

Concurrent Computer Systems markets servers and account management software solutions for VoD. Concurrent has commercial broadband VoD deployments that are associated with AOL Time Warner, Cox, Comcast, Cogeco in North America and Transact/VoD Pty Ltd in Australia, as well as numerous rich streaming media applications for the digital video-to-the-home, hospitality, and education markets.

Scientific Atlanta, a leading designer of digital set-top boxes that handle cable based VOD, has been selected by Comcast Communications to roll out subscriber based VoD.

Pathfire designs and implements the software applications that link the sources of VOD content to the VOD servers that are owned by cable systems.


IEEE Computer Magazine
Continuous Media on Demand
Jonathan C.L. Liu—University of Florida
David H.C. Du—University of Minnesota
Berkley Multimedia Research Center
The Berkeley Distributed Video-on-Demand
Lawrence A. Rowe, David A. Berger, and J. Eric Baldeschwieler; 1996
Introduction to Video on Demand
Derek Quek
Concurrent Systems Corporation
Product News 2001

Meeting Location and Time

September 26, 2001 at 7:00 p.m.
Corporate Values Room
Bell South Tower in midtown Atlanta
(near Crawford Long Hospital, the North Avenue Marta station and the Renaissance Hotel)

Lowell E. Reed
(770) 798-4940