Return to Blog Home Page

02 February 2007


First off, allow me to give a brief history of streaming video at Granger:

  • Late 2005 | IT department began looking into online options for streaming both live and on-demand versions of services that were already being captured
  • Early 2006 | IT department finds fairly inexpensive solution that allowed us to do a live stream and on demand version of all Weekend Services and New Community services (our midweek service). The stream was 320x240 and was in Windows Media format (.wmv) (neither was available to the public)
  • Shortly thereafter | An on-demand version of one Weekend Service and the New Community service was linked to from the website allowing for public consumption. The link popped the 320x240 .wmv into Windows Media Player giving the user some control over the look and feel of the video
  • September 2006 | Introduced to LightCast Media as a possible vendor for streaming flash video online. Tested the streaming capabilities for the Granger Film Festival (warning: most links in this article do not work now) and found it incredibly simple and yet powerful in terms of the size and quality of the video delivered
  • January 2007 | Went live with LightCast Media as our primary streaming service for the on-demand version of the Weekend Service and the New Community Service
Now that you have the facts, I'll add a few words regarding the process.

Our IT department rocks! They began the process of acquiring the streaming service even before the leadership was banging down their door demanding it. They did the work to get us up and running with a solution that served us well for close to a year. From there they helped one of our go-to-guys maintain the process and keep it running well. And finally, they even helped walk and talk us through the transition to LightCast providing ongoing hardware and storage support in order to pull it off.

Next are the media guys that have gone out of their way to work with us on video formats and encoding solutions to make the process more automated and consistent from week to week.

So what's coming next? Well, High Definition (HD) is the next logical step. We do work with HD files for some things but it won't be long before everything captured at the church will be HD. Of course that means much larger files, 60 frames per second and longer encoding time. But I can't wait!