150 · Representative Documents: Format Policies
Rutgers University
RUcore. Video and Moving Image Objects
RUcore Media Standards Working Group: RUcore and NJDH Standards Analysis for Moving Image Objects
I. Beard, I. Bogus, E. Gorder, N. Gonzaga, B. Nahory, R. Sandler Version 4 Last Reviewed 9 August 2010 Last update: 8/9/2010
Video and Moving Image Objects:
Recommended Minimum Standards
For Archival and Presentation Datastreams
This document will set forth a standards recommendation for moving images and digital video. In particular, this
video object standard will recommend specific file formats for the preservation master and derivatives, for
implementation into the Rutgers Community Repository (RUcore) and projects using similar architectures, as well as
recommend sampling rates and specifications for presentation derivatives.
As with all other standard types established thus far, it will be mandatory to store and preserve an archival
master, to ensure an object of the highest available quality is maintained for digital preservation. Additionally, one or
more downsampled and compressed presentations copies will be made available for end users wishing to access these
objects online. These presentation copies are to be stored and accessible in formats that users will find easy to play
back, and will use file formats and codecs that are compatible with multiple computer platforms, using established
industry standards.
Sampling and Digitization Rationale
The handling and preservation of digitized moving images presents a unique challenge to digital repositories.
Presently, uncompressed digital video demands an extremely large amount of storage space, and produces incredibly
large files. Yet, the need to store an uncompressed or reliable lossless-­‐compressed object is paramount to ensure its
longevity. While it is recognized that work continues in perfecting lossless video compression standards, we feel that
these codecs are not mature enough and have not yet reached a critical mass in terms of user base and supporting
software to implement in place of an uncompressed stream. We remain open to revisiting this stance in the future.
We also recognize with the growing convergence of digital devices, and the prevalence of smaller video capture
equipment, there will be an increasing amount of digital content which is born in a compressed digital format. Such
cases will pose long-­‐term preservation challenges depending on the file times, video codecs, resolution and compression
levels used. When such video is slated for inclusion into RUcore, a case-­‐by-­‐case condition analysis will occur best efforts
will be made to store the native format as an archival datastream and when necessary, a converted copy into a
designated stable format will also be stored with the archival datastream.
In spite of the present need to store an uncompressed stream when digitizing from an analog master, it is
obvious that delivering such an object to end users would be impractical given current average connection speeds.
Consequently, there is an additional need for downsampled, compressed presentation formats for video objects, more
than any other object type addressed by the repository.
As always, the guidelines presented here are recommendations, and there may be cases where judgment calls
will need to be made about objects that would be better preserved by modifying the recommended guidelines for this
purpose. In particular, the digitization team has not yet digitized film archives, and as such those formats will need to be
analyzed for the best possible digitization settings. The Digital Data Curator, as well as the Digital Preservation Task
Force, should be consulted for guidance when such adaptations are required.
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