API Update for Ensemble Video Version 3.0

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Ensemble Video 3.0 – Simple Publishing API Changes

Here is a call to the Ensemble Video publishing API for a typical video entry [1].

One of the significant changes in version 3.0, is the how images and attachments are handled. These assets are now stored in the MS-SQL database (along with captions), and new API calls are available to retrieve them. You can see that there are video images (thumbnails and previews) at the top of the XML file returned above, but this is the old way to mine that data. The new way is with the Content Assets/Content Properties, and you will see that info if you look toward the bottom of the file. The Previews are accessible there, and you should probably write your code to the new API if possible. The ContentAsset info indicates type of asset, location, title, description, etc. While the ContentAssetProperties info provides additional information, for example which image assets have been selected as previews and thumbnails.

You can retrieve an asset with a call to getImageAsset.aspx, getAttachmentAsset.aspx or getCaptionAsset.aspx, as shown here. [2]

Note that the example above is an image asset, and you can optionally provide a width parameter, which we’ve done here. Video Preview/Thumbnail images are now captured at the native resolution of the video, and you can use the width to retrieve these items for standard display in your application.

Here is an API call to a photo gallery, and you can see the entire list of photos, with titles and descriptions, is available in the Content Assets list. |http://ensemble.cnyric.org/ensemble/app/simpleAPI/video/show.xml?videoID=Us1c7EOQ_0e6DWVriW-Hmw

You can identify a photo gallery as a video entry that does not have any video encodings, and we do that to identify whether or not to use the regular video display or our photo navigator in the Ensemble Video Quick Publish and HTML Plug-in pages. However, this doesn’t give you ability to easily execute searches by content type and otherwise organize your video by content type. That’s why some applications use video and photo gallery categories in the Web site; when users upload new content and publish to the News@Northeastern Web site they must select the proper category. Then those categories can be selected via API calls to provide browse and search access by content type.

Ensemble Video 3.0 enables system administrators to configure either the Quicktime Player or the Flowplayer as an embedded player for different content types. This is indicated in the XML returned by an API call for an individual video as in this example: <useEmbeddedPlayer>FlowPlayer</useEmbeddedPlayer>