Knowledgebase: sIX System Operation
sIX Rosetta Stone (Glossary)
Posted by Jennifer Armstrong on 12 April 2018 04:34 AM

Application Programming Interface (API) —

The set of rules and specifications that software programs can follow to communicate with each other. It serves as an interface between different software programs and facilitates their interaction. 


APT (American Public Television) —

Founded in 1961, American Public Television is the largest syndicator of programming for public television stations in the United States. APT distributes a wide variety of public television programs nationally and administers the Create and World channels.



Amazon Web Services.


Broadcast Educational Media Commission (BEMC) —

This is the JMC organization based in Columbus, Ohio and organized under charter of the State of Ohio.


Central Cast, LLC —

The JMC organization based in Syracuse, New York and co-located with WCNY. Often referenced as NYJMC or JMCO.


Channel —

In the context of sIX, this term may be used to indicate one of the following terms, depending on context:

    1. (OneVigor) Users of the OneVigor Portal can view, download, upload and share content with other users safely and securely via one or more Channels.
    2. (BroadView) Distributors identify content to be sent to sIX via PBS sIX Channels in BroadView.


Content Delivery —

The functionality whereby content is moved from storage and presented to the Interconnection user in a usable format. 


Content Discovery —

The process that enables all users to search and discover content provided from all distributors. 


Content Distribution —

The overall process of providing content to Interconnection users.


Content Verification —

The part of the ingest process to include Anti-Virus Scan, TOS Verification & MOS Metadata verification.  


COVE (Comprehensive Online Video Ecosystem) —

A former PTV administrative tool used by national producers and local stations to publish videos online and to PBS Mobile applications and connected television devices. Before replacing it with the new PBS Media Manager, PBS used COVE to fortify all of its online video products, known as “COVEpowered” products, and benefited from COVE's viral feature, which enables other websites to embed video files. This site has been taken out of service and replaced by the PBS Media Manager as of May 2017.


CPB (Corporation for Public Broadcasting) —

A private, nonprofit corporation created by Congress in the Public Broadcasting Act of 1967. CPB is the steward of the federal government’s investment in public broadcasting and the largest single source of funding for public radio, television, and related online and mobile services.

CPB’s mission is to ensure universal access to noncommercial, high-quality content and telecommunications services. It does so by distributing more than 70% of its funding to more than 1,400 locally owned public radio and television stations. CPB does not produce programming and does not own, operate or control any public broadcasting stations. Additionally, CPB, PBS, and NPR are independent of each other and of local public television and radio stations. 



Create, Read, Update, Delete. A computer programming term describing the four basic actions that can be taken on content files and/or metadata within the sIX System.


DCA (Digital Convergence Alliance) —

The JMC organization based in Jacksonville, Florida and co-located with WJCT. Often referenced as FLJMC or DCA.


Demarc —

Also called Point of Demarcation (POD) or demarcextension, the demarc is the physical point at which the public network of a telecommunications company ends and the private network of a customer begins. This is usually where the network cable physically enters a building or campus.


Deployment —

Includes readiness and go-live for the sIX System at PBS and Service Recipient Sites.


Development —

Includes design, build and test of the sIX System. 


Direct Connection Sites —

Service Recipient Sites with a MagnuBox and Level 3 connection, as opposed to Indirect Connection Sites.


Distribution Profile —

Refers to a content file format ready to “go on air” to viewers via Service Recipients (e.g., stations). This is not content sent direct to consumers via web or Over The Top (OTT) mechanisms. 


Distributor —

This is a user who will upload content into the sIX System.


Download (Interconnection) —

Encompasses all the processes that occur when moving Content from the Interconnection Central Storage to Service Recipient Storage.


Edge —

This is a networking term that refers to a core network entry point.

In the context of the sIX System, this term refers to the file exchange interface at the Direct Connection Sites. In other words, this is the intersection or demarcation point between the sIX MPLS/IP VPN WAN provided and managed by Level 3 Communications (Level 3) and the Site’s local systems (i.e., the “edge” of the sIX network).



Entertainment Identifier Registry Association. 


Equipment / Hardware —

The computer and telecommunications equipment used in providing the Designated Services, including without limitation: (i) all computers and associated attachments, features, accessories, peripheral devices and other equipment, and (ii) all private branch exchanges, communications controllers, multiplexors, local and remote front end processors, connections terminating equipment (e.g., jacks and associated configuration files and management systems), matrix switches (e.g., Bytex), modems, hubs, bridges, routers, automatic call distributors, voice response units and other telecommunications equipment.


ETAC (Engineering and Technology Advisory Committee) —

A twelve-member advisory committee made up of station engineering managers who advise PBS on technology and technology management issues relevant to PBS and its member stations. The ETAC also provides valuable feedback to PBS from member stations. ETAC members are selected by the ETAC membership and by PBS; each may serve up to two consecutive three-year terms. 


File Transfer Protocol (FTP) —

This is a standard network protocol used for the transfer of files between a client and a server on a network as defined by standard RFC-959.


Gigabit Ethernet (GigE) —

This term describes the transmission of Ethernet frames at a rate of one gigabit per second in a wired network, as defined by the IEEE 802 standard.


Graphical User Interface (GUI) —

A human-computer interface (i.e., a way for humans to interact with computers) that uses windows, icons and menus and which can be manipulated by a mouse (and often to a limited extent by a keyboard as well). Icons are used both on the desktop and within application programs.


Implementation —

The Development and Deployment of the sIX System to PBS and Service Recipients.


Indirect Connection Sites —

As opposed to Direct Connection Sites, these are Service Recipient Sites that connect to the sIX System via only the OneVigor Platform’s One Vigor Portal HTML GUI over Internet. Indirect Connection Sites can also interface with the OneVigor API Portal using an API client with proper permissions and protocol.


Ingest —

This encompasses all the processes that occur when moving Content from the Service Recipient Storage to Interconnection Central Storage.  


Interconnection System —

The aggregate of all Linear and Non-Linear solutions and systems that provide or otherwise distribute programming content, other content and/or metadata to public television stations, licensees and distributors and other related entities, including any other entity authorized by PBS.  The Interconnection System includes, without limitation, the Non-Linear System. 


IWG (Interconnection Working Group) —

A combined ETAC & TAC Working Group focused on all things Interconnection. They advise PBS on the sIX Project as well as any other Interconnection topics of concern to the system.


Joint Master Control (JMC) —

Refers to the organizations providing centralized master control and other value added services to the PTV stations that they serve.  These may be organized by stations, or may be independent commercial provided services. 

There are two JMC architecture models: centralized playout and de-centralized playout models. Each model is comprised of station “spokes” around a central master control “hub.” 

The centralized playout model involves the station “spokes” receiving a media playback stream from the master control “hub.” Station “spokes” ingest locally produced media and send it to the “hub” for storage. The “hub” also receives all RT and NRT content and stores it locally for future playout. Messaging between the hub and spokes includes schedule and program metadata synchronization.

In the de-centralized playout model, the “hub” still receives all RT and NRT content; however, this content is not stored locally but rather in a centralized cloud archive from which it is pulled by station “spokes” based on their content schedules. Also in this model, automation and playout servers are on the station side rather than the hub side, as in the centralized playout model. Messaging between the hub and spokes includes media availability updates and technical metadata synchronization.


LAN (Local Area Network) —

A network that connects computers and other devices in a relatively small area, typically a single building or a group of buildings. Most LANs connect workstations and personal computers and enable users to access data and devices (e.g., printers and modems) anywhere on the network.


Linear Distribution —

Refers to an asset that is broadcast in the same temporal order in which it is received (i.e., Real Time streaming video).


Local Content —

Station-produced content that is used locally rather than being distributed through the Interconnection System.


MagnuBox —

This is the sIX System Edge Server provided by Vigor. Part of the OneVigor Platform, this hardware enables Direct Connection Site connectivity to the WAN. Each Direct Connection Site will have at least one of these servers.


Management and Maintenance —

Refers to the ongoing Management and Maintenance of the sIX System for PBS and Service Recipients after Implementation is completed for any given Site.


Media Operations —

The group within a Distributor responsible for delivering the media content to sIX.


Metadata —

Refers to the set of data that describes and gives information about other data. In file-based systems, metadata can be added electronically to program files and can travel with the program from producer to audience. Metadata follows a specified vocabulary and structure so that specific words or symbols always mean exactly the same thing. This can make using digital assets much easier and is essential for a DAM system and automated workflows.



This refers to the Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) network provided by Level 3. This is the underlying WAN for the sIX System.


National Content —

Station-produced content that is distributed through the Interconnection System.


National Distributors —

Refers to entities serving public media clients through distribution services including but not limited to: Creation of fully packaged feeds, rights management, and other media business related services.  Currently the National Distributors are APT, NETA, and PBS.


NETA (National Educational Telecommunications Association) —

Founded in 1967, the National Educational Telecommunications Association is a professional association of public broadcasters serving public television licensees and educational entities in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico.


NGIS (Next Generation Interconnection System) —

The current (fifth) generation of technology and services for distributing television programming across Public Television (PTV). The program is comprised of Linear Distribution (RT), Non-Linear Distribution (NRT), and Diversity & Redundancy (DDMS).


NOC (Network Operations Center) —

The primary management and monitoring facility for the PBS linear and non-linear feeds. The combination of staff, hardware and software needed to manage, control, operate and maintain the Interconnection network.


Non-Linear Distribution —

Refers to programming that is distributed to the Public Television (PTV) community at a speed greater (or less) than its on-air playback speed. It is recorded or transferred into local storage by recipients for playback at a later time and/or date.


Non-Real Time (NRT) - Generic —

Refers to file based content delivery, or any file-based system for distributing content in a nonlinear fashion before it is scheduled to be on the air.


Non-Real Time (NRT) - NGIS —

The satellite based file delivery service that is part of the NGIS PTV Interconnection System providing Non-Linear (file-based) content distribution functionality.


Non-Real Time (NRT) File Delivery System —

Refers to the file-based system for distributing content in a non-linear fashion before it is scheduled to be on the air.


OneVigor Platform —

This term refers to the technology platform that contains Vigor Systems, Inc.'s suite of services.


OneVigor Portal —

Contained within the OneVigor Platform, the OneVigor Portal is a suite of APIs (i,e., API Portal) and a static HTML (Web) GUI.


OSC (Operational Service Center) —

Vigor provides the OSC to assist all OneVigor Platform users in the monitoring, support, operation and administration of the OneVigor System. Vigor’s OSC leverages technical solutions and tools along with human-driven processes and workflows as appropriate to deliver the incident management, security notification, and security risk management service components of the sIX System.


OTO (One Time Only) —

This term refers to content that airs one time only, and no more



Refers to Public Broadcasting Service or its elected Designee. 


Phase A, B, C —

Terminology used for the sIX Project and Feature Phasing Strategy. 


Program Offering —

This term refers to the program or show data itself.


Program Scheduling —

The group within a Distributor responsible for selecting programs to distribute to Member Stations through the sIX System. This group is responsible for managing (creating, editing, deleting) all metadata to be uploaded to sIX.


ProTrack —

Myers proprietary broadcast management software.


PTV (Public Television) —

A general term for referring to local stations, national providers of programming and organizations devoted to technical support, management assistance and research.


Public Media Management —

The JMC organization led by WGBH and Sony, based in Boston, Massachusetts. This JMC is the one JMC with de-centralized playout architecture.


QC (Quality Control) —

Quality control, or QC for short, is a process by which the quality of all factors involved in production is reviewed.


Service Provider —

This term refers to one of the vendors managing and supporting any of the services and components of the sIX System: CenturyLink (formerly Level 3), Myers Information Systems (Myers), or Vigor Systems, Inc. (Vigor).


Service Recipient —

Refers to PBS member stations, non-member broadcast stations, and distributors that provide public broadcasting, along with other Persons related to the public broadcasting industry.


Service Recipient LAN —

Local Area Network (LAN) Equipment (i.e., switches, fabrics, routers, firewalls, cabling, infrastructure, etc.) and system services (i.e., setup, configuration, monitoring, management, alerting, etc.) that are owned, leased, operated, or contracted by the Service Recipient.

The MagnuBox is the Edge device that connects the rest of the sIX System to a Direct Connection Site Service Recipient LAN for purposes of file contribution and delivery.


Service Recipient Site —

This refers to a physical station or JMC location that uses the Interconnection System. In the sIX System, Direct Connection Sites will receive a MagnuBox and a Level 3 connection whereas Indirect Connection Sites will not.


sIX File Delivery System (sIX System) —

This term refers to the new file delivery system for PTV Interconnection Service Recipients, replacing the current NGIS Interconnection system.


sIX Project —

This refers to all of the work required to create the sIX File Delivery System (sIX System).


sIX Router —

This refers to the Level 3 Cisco router(s) provided to each Direct Connection Site. This is the customer edge device to the MPLS/IP VPN WAN.


SMB (Server Message Block) Protocol —

SMB Protocol, or Server Message Block Protocol, is a network file sharing protocol. The Common Internet File System (CIFS) Protocol is a dialect of SMB.



Simple Object Access Protocol. The NGIS SSP leverages SOAP web services.


SSP (Station Services Platform) —

In the NGIS, the Station Services Platform (SSP) interacts with station equipment and applications to enable Service Recipients to use the content files delivered in Non-Real Time (NRT) from the NGIS according to their business operations.


Storage —

Shall consist of the physical and logical storage infrastructure necessary to track and distribute file-based assets registered in the Digital Asset Management System and distributed to stations via the Interconnection network.


System(s) —

Means an interconnected grouping of manual or electronic processes, including Equipment, Software and associated attachments, features, accessories, peripherals and cabling, and all additions, modifications, substitutions, Upgrades or enhancements to such System.  Systems shall include all Systems in use or required to be used as of the Effective Date, all additions, modifications, substitutions, Upgrades, or enhancements to such Systems and all Systems installed or developed by or for PBS, the Service Recipients or Service Provider during the Term. 


TAC (Traffic Advisory Committee) —

A liaison between PBS, national distributors, and traffic and operations departments for all public television stations, defining and disseminating information common to those areas. The group assists in planning, development and execution of key initiatives that affect the PBS traffic and operations discipline.



Transmission Control Protocol / Internet Protocol.


TDP (Terrestrial Data Path) —

This is the terrestrial monitoring and management backchannel provided by Hughes Network Systems for the NGIS.


Terrestrial Broadband —

In telecommunications, broadband is ground-based (i.e., not satellite), wide bandwidth data transmission which transports multiple signals and traffic types over coaxial cable, optical fiber, radio, or twisted pair.


Transcoding —

The conversion of one digital media encoding to another. This is usually done in cases where a target device (or workflow) does not support the format or has limited storage capacity that mandates a reduced file size, or to convert incompatible or obsolete data to a better supported or modern format.


Uniform Resource Locator (URL) —

A Uniform Resource Locator (URL), colloquially termed a web address, is a reference to a web resource that specifies its location on a computer network and a mechanism for retrieving it. A URL is a specific type of Uniform Resource Identifier (URI), although many people use the two terms interchangeably.


Version(s) —

Means major Software upgrades that generally add function to existing Software and may be provided by the Software vendor at a fee over and above the standard Software maintenance costs.   


Virtual Private Network (VPN) —

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) extends a private network across a public network, creating a secure, encrypted connection that tunnels between a computer and a server operated by the VPN service. Applications running across the VPN may therefore benefit from the functionality, security, and management of the private network as if they were directly connected to the network.


VOS (Vigor Operating System) —

Refers to the proprietary operating system on the MagnuBox.