HOW TO: Control OnTheAir CG Server from OnTheAir Video

IMPORTANT NOTE: this feature is only available with OnTheAir Video. OnTheAir Video Express can not do "Actions" which are needed here.

 

Configure OnTheAir Video and OnTheAir CG outputs

First make sure that you have properly configured the playback settings of OnTheAir Video or OnTheAir CG. There are 2 ways of cabling the video outputs:

  • Using 1 card (on one computer): in that configuration, you will setup OnTheAir Video to use a "Virtual Output", and OnTheAir CG will then be configured on the same Mac with the "Direct Link", the same way as explained in the video with MovieRecorder. This configuration is the simplest, as you only need one video card, and this card does not even need to have the ability to key. But it also means that everything happens on the same Mac.
  • Using 2 cards (on one or 2 computers): this configuration is more expensive and complex, but is sometimes preferred if you want to run on 2 computers or for backup purposes. One card is used to output video with OnTheAir Video and that signal is entered back in the input of the other card (it can be on the same computer or a different one) this second card will overlays the graphics on top of video with OnTheAir CG. This later card must have the ability to key. You can either key on the card itself with Internal Key, or use external Key (if supported by the card). Some users prefer this configuration so the key is done externally and things are well separated.

These 2 type of configurations are explained in this article.

 

Create "Actions" for OnTheAir Video 

In OnTheAir Video you can use "Actions" to trigger external devices, such as controlling a video router, sending GPI triggers, or control OnTheAir CG. This is what is sometimes called "Secondary Events".

Actions are AppleScripts with the following characteristics:

  • They must start with "On Action (parameter)" and end with "End Action"
  • If you try to run these AppleScripts by themselves (from ScripEditor for example), they will not run. If you want to test them, you'll need to delete the "On Action" and "End Action" lines.
  • The AppleScripts must be saved in the "Actions" folder located in the same folder as the OnTheAir Video application.

  

Important things to know about Actions

  • One Action can contain multiple commands, so a LIVE Start Action could for example at the same time, control a Video router to switch to the studio, start a ticker in OnTheAir CG, and start the recording in MovieRecorder, all that with a very simple manipulation.
  • Actions are moved with the clip (also when you copy/paste to a different playlist).
  • When you have an Action to start for example a ticker, you will need another action to stop it a little bit later.
  • Do not use long "Delays" in your script as OnTheAir Video may be unresponsive during the "waiting" period.

 

Example

At the bottom of this article, you can download 2 files:

  • CG3ProjectRemoteControlExample.cg3 : this is a sample project with a few items. Place it in the following folder: Applications/OnTheAir CG 3/
  • OTAVAction_ControlCGServer.scpt : this is an Action Sample. Copy that file to the "Actions" folder of OnTheAir Video.

IMPORTANT NOTE: the Actions example here will only work if OnTheAir Video and OnTheAir CG are running on the same computer. It is possible to write AppleScripts to "talk" to a different computer

Once you have downloaded the 2 files and placed the files in the appropriate folders:

  • start OnTheAir CG Server and configure the playback settings so you can see the output of OnTheAir CG Server. If you don't have a video device to test, you can use the same trick that is explained with the direct link here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SseHZ4UsQ3o 
  • Make sure that "AppleScript Remote Control" is enabled in the "OnTheAir CG Server preferences > General":

 

Then:

  • start OnTheAir Video,
  • create a playlist,
  • drag and drop clips in the playlist,
  • select one of the clip
  • open the inspector (cmd+i), and select "Timeline".

You should see something like this:

To create an Action:

  • position the playhead at the moment you want to the graphics to appear. 
  • click in the "+" icon at the bottom of the list. A new line will be created
  • click on the Actions popup menu to select which "Action" you want to perform and select the Applescript that you have copied "OTAVAction_ControlCGServer"

  • Then eventually enter some text in the "Parameter Value" field. This text will be used for the text in the CG Project. Note that you can use this Parameter for multiple things. You could send the name of the project to start for example.

That's it! Now if you play the file the Action will be triggered at the moment you required it to start, and the CG project should start. Note that you can use the same action multiple times on one clip, but at different positions.

You can find an other AppleScript example in the article explaining how to control OnTheAir CG remotely.

 

 

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