DAM Lowdown: Celum Goes International, ADS Goes Tapeless

5 minute read
Jason Campbell avatar

This week in the DAM world includes: a new version of Medialibrary, VFinity gets some attention from our friends at Forrester, celum expands its borders, WebArchives partners with Continuum and ADS warns us about the dangers of tape.

Medialibrary Reaches Version 2.0

Medialibrary is the creation of the UK-based services firm Logicmighty and is a web-based digital asset management system. Along with the repository providing a secure place for multiple users to share digital assets, Medialibrary also contains the following features:

  • Support for XMP, IPTC, and EXIF embedded metadata
  • Role-based user management
  • Integration with Active Directory for Windows-based authentication
  • A desktop client file uploader
  • Automatic keyword generation
  • Image and text watermarking
  • Personalized lightboxes, for each user, for sharing and organizing assets
  • Standard and customizable reporting
  • Web service API


Medialibrary can be installed and managed on local hardware or used in a SaaS configuration. The desktop file uploader is licensed separately from the core asset management system. Pricing information is available on the Medialibrary website.

Forrester Shines Its Light on VFinity

One of the highlights of Forrester's Market Overview: Rich Media Management Software report is the latest version of VFinity. VFinity, founded in 2004 by Shen Tong and several members of the MIT Media Lab, attempts to differentiate itself from the myriad of DAM vendors by being built from the beginning as a set of web services.

Because the core of VFinity is a service-oriented architecture, the product can plug in to an existing enterprise service bus and act as an asset management service. I won't pretend to assume the actual integration will be as easy as it sounds, but your IT staff will be intrigued anyway.

As for the overall functionality provided by VFinity, the highlights include:

  • Search -- custom-built for locating digital assets within the VFinity repository
  • Retrieval -- assets can be downloaded in their original form or transcoded using either the built-in transcoder or a third-party transcoder
  • Ingestion -- ability to consume repositories of assets and associated metadata
  • Support for known and unknown file types -- includes thumbnail and proxy generation
  • Metadata schema support -- metadata standards such as DublinCore are supported and the schema is stored as Unicode


Celum Goes International

Based in Austria, celum provides a suite of four products for managing digital assets:

  1. Imagine -- supports managing assets across an enterprise
  2. Swift -- provides a lightweight version of the Imagine product
  3. Dynamo -- supports the creation of web-to-print and marketing materials along with providing brand management capabilities
  4. Movis -- manages video, IPTV, and social media offerings

Why is celum touting its international presence all of a sudden? Not wanting to get ahead of themselves, the leadership at celum wanted to be established in more than two countries before declaring themselves an international company. If only other companies were so prudent.

Following the establishment of offices in the US and France, celum decided that the opening of operations in Germany was the tipping point to announce its global presence.

According to Michael J. Kraeftner, CEO of celum: "For years, celum has acted as a global company. With the sharp increase in sales, we are now developing formal structures in our most important markets. After the United States and France, the new subsidiary, celum Germany GmbH, has been formed."

Continuum Chooses WebArchives (iDAM)

Continuum, a global design consultancy, generates thousands of documents containing images and video for its clients every year. To help manage this mountain of content, Continuum turned to WebArchives and its iDAM product.

Learning Opportunities

The iDAM platform consists of two sub-components:

  1. iDAMLive -- The real-time ingestion engine that indexes and converts documents without modifying any of the embedded metadata; iDAMLive works with an organization's existing network infrastructure and workflow configuration
  2. iDAMFinder -- The 5 Continuum offices use this component to search a rich metadata index without affecting the existing permission structure

More details on this partnership can be found in this case study.

ADS Encourages Firms to Go Tapeless

Advanced Digital Services, a post-production house in Hollywood, is using the natural disaster in Japan as another reminder of the danger of relying on tape as a medium for transferring, storing and archiving digital content.

In essence, ADS is recommending that media companies "go tapeless" and move their digital content management to the cloud. It just so happens that ADS offers a "Go Digital" program to help organizations transition to digital workflows.

For customers ready to take the leap, ADS is waiving set-up fees and will burn a customer's data to tape at the cost of ADS. On a humanitarian note, ADS promises 3% of the revenue from the "Go Digital" program to disaster relief in Japan.

Honestly, this is a no-brainer. Tape is fine for long-term archival of digital content. But for the transfer of current and valuable digital assets, I prefer to use a cloud-based solution and rely on the disaster recovery capabilities of the data center backing your cloud.

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