METHOD AND DEVICE FOR PROVIDING A VIDEO STREAM FOR AN OBJECT OF INTEREST
A method and device for ranking video feeds provide a user with the best feed depending on what the user wishes to see. The method includes obtaining one or more video feeds and ranking the video feeds. The ranking is based, at least in part, upon input from a viewer indicating an object of interest. The ranking can consider things such as video stream resolution and signal strength.
This application is a continuation application of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 13/668,636, filed Nov. 5, 2012, having inventors Jitesh Arora et al., entitled “METHOD AND DEVICE FOR PROVIDING A VIDEO STREAM FOR AN OBJECT OF INTEREST”, the contents of which are incorporated herein by reference in its entirety.FIELD OF THE DISCLOSURE
The present disclosure is related to methods and devices for organizing multiple video media source streams of an event. The present disclosure is related more specifically to methods and devices for receiving and providing a user a video media stream of an event selected from multiple video media streams of the event based on inputs from the user.BACKGROUND
Video recording and transmitting devices are now present in most smartphones. Given the proliferation of these smartphones, at most any gathering of people (social event, sporting event, political rally, etc.) many smartphones are present. Each smartphone (or other device with video capture and transmission capability) presents a potential video media source whose subject is some portion or all of its surroundings.
Using the example of a sporting event, one camera may be trained on the stadium as a whole, one camera trained on a certain player, one camera trained on a certain point on a field, one camera trained on the scoreboard, etc. Furthermore, each camera may be different and may be capable of producing different quality of video (resolution, refresh rate, etc.) Still further, the camera operators may be amateurs or professionals, may be using a fixed camera (such as with a tripod) or free handing, and likely have differing viewing angles that provide differing qualities of views of various objects/places/people/events.
While such streams are being generated and even transmitted in real time, publishing of such streams occurs at a multitude of disparate locations (both online and through traditional television media outlets). While internet search engines operate reasonably well to catalog recorded video media, the real-time nature of video streaming from a live event does not lend itself to traditional cataloging and indexing that allows for a user to locate the video. Accordingly, for many video streams that are provided to the internet, such streams are not indexed or organized such that a user could readily find the video streams.
If a user would happen upon a stream from an event that interests the user, the user would still be without information as to whether another feed exists and whether the other feed provides increased signal quality. The user would further be without information as to whether another video feed exists that provides a better view of a particular part of the event that the user is particularly interested in. It should be appreciated that “video feed” as used herein describes a stream of data that, when processed, provides a video image of an event that is occurring contemporaneously with the transmission of the data. Stated differently, a video feed is a “live feed.” However, it is understood that transmission delays are part of any video system and thus, the concept of “live” and “video feed” does not require real time display to the millisecond.
Currently, online video streaming requires a website that is set up beforehand such that the website knows that a camera is going to be operating at an event and the camera operator specifically transmits his/her video to be shared on that website. Thus, spontaneous decisions to create a video stream are not supported in a way that is readily locatable by viewers.
Still further, except for those individuals providing video feeds as part of their employment, the generation of video feeds relies on users generating the feeds for enjoyment or general benevolence.
Accordingly, there exists a need for a device and method to provide for real time organization of video media feeds. There further exists a need for a device and method of providing information regarding existing video feeds and optimizing the selection of feed from multiple feeds. Still further there exists a need for a system and method to reward and incentivize the creation of such video streams.
In an exemplary and non-limited embodiment, aspects of the invention are embodied in a method of ranking video feeds to provide a user with the best feed depending on what the user wishes to see. The method includes obtaining one or more video feeds and ranking the video feeds. The ranking is based, at least in part, upon input from a viewer indicating an object of interest. The ranking can consider things such as video stream resolution and signal strength.
In another exemplary embodiment, a system for providing a video feed to a viewer is provided including a feed receiver operable to receive at least one video feed; a viewer input receiver operable to determine an object of interest to the viewer; a feed analyzer operable to determine at least one of features of and content of each received feed; and a feed ranker operable to consider the object of interest and at least one of the features of and content of each received feed to provide a ranking of received feeds.
In another exemplary embodiment, a method of providing a video feed to one or more users is provided including: registering a video feed with a feed aggregator; transmitting data identifying a subject of the video feed to the feed aggregator; and transmitting the video feed to the feed aggregator.
In another exemplary embodiment, a computer readable medium containing non-transitory instructions thereon is provided, that when interpreted by at least one processor cause the at least one processor to obtain one or more video feeds and rank the video feeds. The ranking is based, at least in part, upon input from a viewer indicating an object of interest, the ranking providing a top ranked video feed.
For purposes of this disclosure, individuals operating recording devices are referred to as content collection users. Individual 1 is operating a professional grade camera on behalf of a television network or other professional media outlet. Individual 2 is operating a professional grade camera as an independent freelance reporter. Individual 3 is operating a smart phone as a video recorder and is an attendee from the general public. Individual 4 is operating a smart phone as a video recorder and is an attendee associated with the presenter. Individual 5 is operating a smart phone as a video recorder and is an attendee from the general public.
In one embodiment, content collection users 1-5 register their feed, block 700,
In another embodiment, content collection users 1-5 start an application or feed, block 500,
Registering feeds 1-5 also includes providing information about the content of the feeds, block 520 of
In addition to identifying the event that is the subject of the feed, a more specific subject can be identified. In the example of
Content creation users 1-5 can further specify whether they want to provide their stream free of charge or subject to a charge (including an amount and term, such as per hour or per event). In addition to providing information about the subject of the feed, additional data about the feed is also provided to clearinghouse 20. Such additional data includes feed quality metrics (resolution, frame rate, color depth, content provider signal quality/strength, content provider signal speed, frame drop information, quality of companion audio with the video, and existence of companion audio with the video) and any other metric that impacts the quality and/or desirability of the feed (including whether the feed provides a shaky or steady picture). Such data is illustratively provided as metadata within feeds 1-5 to the extent possible.
In one embodiment, the transmitted feeds 1-5 are obtained by clearinghouse 20 or otherwise, block 600,
In another embodiment, feeds are transmitted to clearinghouse 20, block 530 of
Clearinghouse 20 includes servers and databases that provide processing of feeds 1-5 and provide websites that present feeds 1-5 and feed options. “Websites” is used as a generic term that describes any presentation medium that allows for input from a viewing user.
Viewing device 7, including an exemplary interface 40, is shown in
The viewing user is further presented with the ability to enter preferences at button 46, as to the relative importance of various factors such as stream resolution, stream quality, ideal viewing angle, whether the stream is a free or pay stream, and other factors. Each of the above inputs along with the display capabilities of the panel on which the stream is to be displayed are provided to clearinghouse 20. The feeds themselves are illustratively supplied to clearinghouse 20 via feed receiver 30 (
Given the inputs from sources 1-5, the viewer, and viewing devices 6-9, clearinghouse 20 subjects the inputs to feed analyzer 32 (
By way of example, if the viewer is viewing on a smartphone or tablet 6, then getting a feed 1-5 that has a resolution of 1080p may not be important because the viewing device may not support such a high resolution anyway. Similarly, a smartphone may be operating over a data connection that cannot handle a data rate that is required to transmit video having 1080p resolution in real time. Still further similarly, for a viewer wishing to focus on first presenter 104, feed 3 would be ranked lower in that the viewing angle/line of sight 108 of feed 3 provides that podium 102 and second presenter 106 block camera 3's view of first presenter 104. (Embodiments are envisioned where feed 3 is tagged as being blocked with respect to first presenter 104 and where video analysis is performed to determine that feed 3 presents a poor view of first presenter 104). It should be appreciated that feed 3's view of first presenter 104 is not a static quality due to the ability of the presenter 104 to move and the potential for other moving objects to obscure the view. Accordingly, in embodiments, including where an algorithm determines feed 3's suitability to view presenter 104, the analysis of feed 3's suitability to view presenter 104 is ongoing and constantly re-evaluated. Furthermore, embodiments are envisioned where viewer feedback rankings of the feed are considered in the ranking. Given the inputs, viewing device 7 then presents one or more feeds 1-5 (such as the most highly ranked feed) to a user to be watched simultaneously, or from which to select a single feed 1-5,
Additionally, given the constant re-evaluation, embodiments are envisioned where multiple feeds are stitched together such that a viewer is automatically provided different (switched) feeds depending on the algorithm determining that different feeds are better. Thus, a user would not need to select a different feed to be switched to a more optimal feed. Examples include attempts to follow a particular race car around a track where a single vantage point cannot capture the entire track (or can capture the whole track but other feeds provide better views when the car is at certain parts of the track). Accordingly, a viewer who has selected that car as an object of interest in effect selects a “channel” dedicated to that car and the algorithm switches the presented feed based upon the changing conditions of which feed currently provides the best view thereof.
Embodiments are envisioned where a content creation user is provided with a notification (such as a light on the application) when his/her feed is being viewed by a viewer. Accordingly, a content creation user is provided with feedback as to whether his/her feed is being consumed by a viewer. Still further, embodiments are envisioned where viewers can enter information regarding their objects of interest, and such information can be available via the application. Thus, a content generating user can see what objects viewers are interested in. Still further, embodiments are envisioned where viewers can bid or offer compensation for content creators to create streams that focus on objects of interest to the offering viewer. Content-creating users can then claim the offers and start generating a requested feed. Still further, embodiments are envisioned where the application on the smartphone has options presented to the content creator to allow them to choose the quality of the feed that they are providing. Whereas a phone may be capable of recording and transmitting 1080p, doing so is relatively power intensive compared to lower resolutions. Accordingly, a content creator may choose to record and transmit a lower resolution, such as 480p, so as to lengthen the battery life of his device.
Presentation of video feeds can be done along with advertising. This advertising can be placed alongside the feed presentation, can be made to interrupt the feed at defined intervals or can be presented when a user starts a feed. The revenue generated from such advertising can be split with the feed creator 1-5 and the clearinghouse 20 operator. Thus, individuals are incentivized to participate and to participate in a way that provides quality content that focuses on items of interest to viewers and in a way likely to be chosen by the content rating operation. Still further, feed creators 1-5 can establish fee structures for their feeds. Thus, when feeds are ranked, viewers can select whether to consider only free feeds, only pay feeds, or both. Furthermore, viewers can select to consider only feeds below a certain price point. Similarly, subscriptions can be offered to the system as a whole and there can be multiple levels of subscriptions.
Yet another factor that can be considered in ranking feeds can be the reputation of the content producer. Viewers can manually rank content producers, or computers can rank producers via algorithms. These ranks of a feed can build a ranking for the content producer. Accordingly, a subsequent feed by that content producer can benefit (or suffer) from the content producer's previous good (or bad) work.
The above detailed description and the examples described therein have been presented for the purposes of illustration and description only and not for limitation. For example, the operations described may be done in any suitable manner. The method may be done in any suitable order still providing the described operation and results. It is therefore contemplated that the present embodiments cover any and all modifications, variations or equivalents that fall within the spirit and scope of the basic underlying principles disclosed above and claimed herein. Furthermore, while the above description describes hardware in the form of a processor executing code, hardware in the form of a state machine, or dedicated logic capable of producing the same effect are also contemplated.
The software operations described herein can be implemented in hardware such as discrete logic fixed function circuits including but not limited to state machines, field programmable gate arrays, application specific circuits or other suitable hardware. The hardware may be represented in executable code stored in non-transitory memory such as RAM, ROM or other suitable memory in hardware descriptor languages such as but not limited to RTL and VHDL or any other suitable format. The executable code when executed may cause an integrated fabrication system to fabricate an IC with the operations described herein
Also, integrated circuit design systems/integrated fabrication systems (e.g., work stations including, as known in the art, one or more processors, associated memory in communication via one or more buses or other suitable interconnect and other known peripherals) are known that create wafers with integrated circuits based on executable instructions stored on a computer readable medium such as but not limited to CDROM, RAM, other forms of ROM, hard drives, distributed memory, etc. The instructions may be represented by any suitable language such as but not limited to hardware descriptor language (HDL), Verilog or other suitable language. As such, the logic, software, and circuits described herein may also be produced as integrated circuits by such systems using the computer readable medium with instructions stored therein. For example, an integrated circuit with the aforedescribed software, logic, and structure may be created using such integrated circuit fabrication systems. In such a system, the computer readable medium stores instructions executable by one or more integrated circuit design systems that causes the one or more integrated circuit design systems to produce an integrated circuit.
1. A method of sharing a video feed about an event via a network, comprising:
- providing information about content of the video feed by associating a hash tag with the video feed; and
- transmitting the hash tag about the video feed to an aggregator via the network for subsequent distribution.
2. The method of claim 1, wherein transmitting further comprises transmitting the video feed to a viewing device.
3. The method of claim 1, further comprising registering the video feed with the aggregator.
4. The method of claim 1, wherein the providing information about content of the video feed comprises providing at least one of: metadata associated with the video feed, and location data associated with the event and wherein transmitting comprises transmitting at least one of the metadata and location data to the aggregator.
5. The method of claim 2, further comprising providing the hash tag associated with the video feed by the viewing device.
6. The method of claim 2, further comprising:
- entering preference information associated with the video feed; and
- displaying the video feed on the viewing device based on the preference information.
7. The method of claim 6, wherein the preference information includes information related to at least one of: a viewing resolution, a viewing quality, a viewing angle, and a viewing charge.
8. The method of claim 1, further comprising tagging the video feed with focus information.
9. An apparatus for sharing a video feed about an event via a network, the apparatus comprising:
- a processor executing computer-executable instructions configured to provide information about content of the video feed by associating a hash tag with the video feed, and to transmit the hash tag about the video feed to an aggregator via the network for subsequent distribution.
10. The apparatus of claim 9, wherein the aggregator is configured to make the video feed available to a viewing device.
11. The apparatus of claim 9, wherein the processor is configured to register the video feed with the aggregator.
12. The apparatus of claim 9, wherein the information about the content of the video feed includes at least one of: metadata associated with the video feed, and location data associated with the event.
13. The apparatus of claim 10, wherein the hash tag associated with the video feed is provided by the viewing device.
14. The apparatus of claim 10, wherein the viewing device is configured to receive preference information associated with the video feed.
15. The apparatus of claim 14, wherein the preference information includes information related to at least one of: a viewing resolution, a viewing quality, a viewing angle, and a viewing charge.
16. A computer readable medium containing non-transitory instructions thereon, that when interpreted by at least one processor cause the at least one processor to:
- provide information about content of a video feed by associating a hash tag with the video feed; and
- transmit the hash tag about the video feed to an aggregator via a network for subsequent distribution.
17. The computer readable medium of claim 16, wherein the instructions further cause the at least one processor to transmit the video feed to a viewing device.
18. The computer readable medium of claim 16, wherein the instructions further cause the at least one processor to register the video feed with the aggregator.
19. The computer readable medium of claim 16, wherein the instructions further cause the at least one processor to provide at least one of: metadata associated with the video feed, and location data associated with the event.
20. The computer readable medium of claim 17, wherein the instructions further cause the at least one processor to provide the hash tag associated with the video feed by the viewing device.