So what's in Octopus 8?
The new Octopus Mobile App is far more than a remote viewer. As a true extension of the desktop client, the app allows journalists to create and edit stories via mobile devices. They can receive notifications on new assignments, submit stories for approval and design the rundown on the go. The Octopus Mobile App is supported by Android and iOS smartphones and tablets.
The Octopus 8 system can ingest all your incoming source materials, such as news agency wires, RSS feeds, emails with feedback or tips from your audience, SMS messages or even faxes. Such feeds may also contain images, videos or audio files as Octopus 8 can display all media belonging to a feed in one view.
The Octopus 8 assignment desk helps organise and delegate tasks to one or multiple users, based on a modern planning calendar. The assignment desk delivers notifications, allows users to communicate with each other using the built in user-to-user messaging system and share files related to the task.
Octopus helps different teams within TV, radio and online portals work collaboratively on current affairs programmes and news items. Professionals from a variety of departments can share information to deliver well sourced stories quickly and accurately. Source materials, documents, photos, contacts or emails can be attached to each task and will be archived alongside the final content. Users can allocate all of the stories and elements into one central location.
Apart from the standard scripting features, such as calculation of the duration of spell checker, Octopus 8 also offers additional advanced functionalities to ease the work of each team. Such features include the visual story history and version comparison, possibility to separate the script and the technical part or the instant preview of the CG objects from selected graphics systems.
The system samples each anchor's reading speed. It then calculates the on-air time accurately.
Rundowns can be created in Octopus 8 automatically based on a schedule plan and rundown templates; they can also be created manually. Multiple slugs or even entire rundowns can be copied/pasted to another show. In the rundown, Octopus 8 offers all required timing information including planned duration, real duration and countdown time. Customisable slug colours, status colours and forms are available to all users.
Octopus integrates with the most popular social media platforms in both directions. On one hand it allows users to search and browse content being posted in accounts such as YouTube and Twitter, follow particular hashtags or channels and have the streamlined view organised in Octopus. On the other hand it supports the uploading of videos to YouTube, tweeting breaking news to Twitter and posting your programme teasers on Facebook. The Octopus 8 Social Media Hub also tracks the feedback from your followers.
With audiences increasingly using the internet for their news, media organisations are under immense pressure to publish stories online. Octopus 8 directly interconnects with CMS systems such as Joomla, WordPress and CoreMedia, enabling scripts and articles to be uploaded dynamically to web portals. This new web component allows TV news editors to upload pages directly, saving considerable time and reducing pressure on the web team.
This is an effective contact management solution allowing you to store and manage your contact list in a secure, central location. You can specify the access rights to each individual contact. Contacts can be linked to stories or assignments and used in the inbuilt Guest Management System.
Delivers a wide range of statistics to the management and human resource teams. Reports can track the productivity of the newsroom in terms of story creation, duration of selected stories or topics on air, and comparison of different shows or channels.
Octopus system licensing is based on concurrent user connections (floating user licensing). It allows customers to install the application on as many machines as needed. Instead of purchasing seat licenses, customers need only purchase the number of floating licenses required to support concurrent users.
Octopus 8 is a fully MOS compliant system and as such it can be integrated into any environment and workflow that supports the MOS protocol. The system can easily integrate with existing and new MOS devices. It fully supports the placeholder workflow, thumbnails and proxy preview, item status, channel assignments and many other commands.
As a MOS-compliant system, Octopus 8 supports not just the ActiveX technology but also the latest HTML5-based plugins. Whereas ActiveX is being phased out due to its limited compatibility, HTML5 plugins are OS and platform agnostic, offering support for Windows (including Windows 10), OS X, Linux computers, tablets and mobile devices.
The Octopus system uses a powerful relational database with SQL to store the data. This delivers many advantages such as better data security and maintenance, consistency in the data and of course the possibility to carry out complex queries used in many areas of the system to help users work faster and more efficiently.
Octopus is designed to run natively on any major operating system, be it Linux, Mac OS X or Windows. So there is no need for a parallel operating system, no additional licensing, and no remote sessions to run the system.
Depending on the required level of fault tolerance/high availability, hot-standby Octopus servers can be added. The hot-standby server offers automatic client fail-over when the main Octopus server is offline. The Octopus hot-standby server is set up to run simultaneously with an identical primary server.
Octopus 8 provides an easy to use REST API, available via HTTP. This interface allows customers to build their own applications which can communicate and exchange certain data with the newsroom system. Octopus 8 also supports manual and automated exports and imports.