Portland company allows Comcast customers more DVR freedom

Elemental Technologies’ software powers Comcast’s new X1 Box, allowing viewers to stream shows regardless of location.

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Software made by Portland-based Elemental Technologies will power Comcast’s new X1 Box, allowing viewers to stream shows regardless of location.

OregonLive.com explains how the program works:

The cloud-based X1 has a hard drive but it makes duplicate copies of viewers’ recordings in Comcast’s data centers. That enables Comcast to stream video to wherever its subscribers are, using Elemental’s software. That kind of online versatility is a key element Comcast’s effort to beat back rival streaming services from Sling TV, HBO and others that are challenging the traditional cable bundle.

Elemental is on both sides of that fight. Its software enables streaming services for the cable TV giants and also for Major League Baseball, ESPN and others whose programming is now available directly through online subscriptions.

Chief executive Sam Blackman described his company as the “arms dealer” in Mike Rogoway’s story.

Elemental has raised $44 million from investors since its founding in 2006.

Portland Business Journal writes:

“The kind-of neat part about this story is that Elemental is going from just powering the on-demand piece publicly with Comcast to powering all of their live streaming for multi-screen devices in Portland as well as the X1 set-top box,” Blackman said. “So we are expanding the footprint of our services inside Comcast into a much broader array of services.” …

Elemental is taking on the existing infrastructure for video delivery that has traditionally included data centers full of specialized hardware each aimed at a single function. However, with Elemental, these video and content providers can use off-the-shelf hardware layered with Elemental’s software to manage, run and distribute content.

The company has more than 200 employees.

Tech leaders urge legislature for cyber security center

Oregon has repeatedly proved susceptible to hackers in the last few years, and the state’s tech leaders want to change that with a cyber security center, as proposed by House Bill 2996. 

In a guest blog published by the Portland Business Journal, the president of Technology Association of Oregon Skip Newberry, wrote about how the state’s tech leaders are urging lawmakers to fix the problem.

[Eugene-based SheerID CEO and co-founder Jake] Weatherly strongly supports the establishment of a Cyber Center of Excellence in Oregon, and particularly the development of a standardized security-focused curriculum for higher education with the goal of producing a more cyber-ready workforce. SheerID recently underwent a security compliance audit, which turned into a very complex 14-month process.

“SheerID would have definitely benefited from working with local experts as we went through our security reviews and audits,” Weatherly said. “We needed to increase our security IQ.”

Weatherly also said that such a center would bolster the cyber security industry in the state.



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