NASA launches searchable multimedia database
Part of NASA’s mission is to increase public awareness of space exploration. Present high-quality images, videos and audio files from 50 years of space exploration were challenging because multimedia files are housed in 10 different NASA field centers.
In collaboration with InfoZen, the space agency has been able to provide 14,000 downloadable images, video and audio files via searchable images.NASA.gov site.
“In just a few decades, our images are scattered on NASA.gov so you have to know who would be most likely to have the image you’re looking for,” said Rodney Grubbs, head of NASA’s GCN imaging program. “It was ineffective for NASA, the taxpayer and frustrating for everyone involved, so it created a way to solve the problem and create something that was scalable for mobile.” The site was hosted on Amazon cloud services and using the content of the service broadcast networks attention. The database uses the infrastructure as the code to support a wide variety of photo, audio and video formats.
NASA has used YouTube to display videos, but some schools block the video chain, making it impossible for teachers to upload or display videos in class. The choice of videos to download on the NASA site was also problematic.
“A lot of people want to insert videos into their presentations, but so far they have not been able to do it,” said M. Grubbs. “To comply with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act, we also had to include a legend with each video file,” he said. “One of the main challenges of InfoZen [was] to operate legends versions with different operating platforms, browsers and mobile devices.”
InfoZen uses AWS Lambda, a serverless computer service to run the search library. Building the site infrastructure by design patterns and writing custom code, InfoZen takes responsibility for managing the site based on the cloud.
The site also has an application programming interface that automates NASA image downloads and gives members of the public the opportunity to integrate content into their own sites and applications.
Although the new site is not a complete collection, Grubbs says more images and descriptions of metadata are added daily to the database. “This database is not all that NASA creates, but it comes from a wider range of collected images that are relevant to the public or of good quality and of interest to the public,” Is it, he told himself.
About the Author
Sara Friedman is a journalist / producer covering cloud, computer security and a wide range of other public sector IT issues.
Prior to joining DCB, Friedman was a Compliance Journalist, where he covered issues related to the state of casinos, lotteries and fantasy sports. He has also written for Daily Communications and Washington Internet on a daily basis in the public telecommunications and cloud computing network. Friedman graduated from the University of Ithaca, where he studied journalism, politics and international communications