SOMEONE YOU SHOULD KNOW: Mark Corl, Jon Fairhurst and Craig Todd

Three industry experts are starting three-year terms on the ATSC Board of Directors in January. This month’s “Someone You Should Know” column features these talented, seasoned individuals – Mark Corl of Triveni Digital, Jon Fairhurst of Samsung and Craig Todd of Dolby – offering their vision and insights about the future of ATSC at this critical time in the evolution of Next Gen TV.

 

Mark Corl
Senior Vice President, Emergent Technology Development, Triveni Digital, Inc.

 

“The broadcasting industry is at a crucial time when it can either succumb to competitive technologies and business pressures or embrace new technologies to be a key player in the overall media distribution infrastructure. ATSC 3.0 paves the way toward that objective, even though the development speed of Internet standards means that the ATSC 3.0 standards suite must be continuously updated. That means ATSC specialist and ad hoc groups must be able to respond to change expeditiously. By embracing best practices from other SDOs (standards development organizations) as well as methods shown to work in other industries like agile software development processes, the ATSC can engage more closely with other stakeholders, especially those developing web and Internet technologies. The TG3 ad hoc group on interactivity and the ATSC’s ongoing relationship with the CTA ATSC 3.0 working group are excellent examples of such joint efforts. Future collaborative work with CTA, SMPTE, W3C and others must be the norm to keep the momentum going for ATSC 3.0 and beyond.”

 

Mark Corl works on new technologies that impact digital TV distribution, with a special focus on IP-delivered content. During his 20-year tenure at Triveni Digital, Corl has led the metadata generation systems development and continues to lead the test and measurement monitoring systems development effort.  Prior to Triveni Digital, Corl had 15 years of software engineering experience at leading companies including Texas Instruments and Xerox Corporation. He has been granted multiple U.S. patents related to the broadcast industry.  Corl has been contributing to ATSC efforts as chairman of the S34-4 Ad-hoc Group on Runtime Environment, chairman of TG1-10 AHG on the transition to ATSC 3.0, vice-chairman of the Personalization and Interactivity Implementation Team, a co-author of the A/324 Scheduler / Studio to Transmitter Link standard and as a contributing member to multiple other groups within the ATSC. He earned his B.S. degree in mathematics and computer science from Bucknell University.

 

Jon Fairhurst
Principal Standards Engineer, Samsung Research America, Inc.

 

“An important next step for the ATSC as an organization is to help facilitate deployment of ATSC 3.0 receivers and transmission in the United States and around the world.  This includes ensuring continued robust ATSC 3.0 deployment with enhanced features in Korea, the launch of a quickly growing market in the U.S., and future expansion throughout North America and even to new markets that haven’t previously been ATSC adopters. Achieving these goals will require continuing to develop and refine technical standards, while also supporting interactions and guidelines in Implementation Teams, working to ensure well-provisioned and robust infrastructure items such as registries, and supporting third parties that provide services to enable deployment and ongoing operations. It will be important to interact cooperatively across industries and with other SDOs (standards development organizations) such that all parties have a stake in supporting the ATSC 3.0 standard. To create demand, we need to work across groups to market the new services, features and benefits. And it’s important that we listen closely to customers to help identify areas for improvement as well as opportunities for enhancements and new projects.”

Jon Fairhurst has worked for more than 30 years on projects related to digital television. This includes 10 years at Grass Valley Group developing broadcast equipment and digital switchers and 20 years at Sharp Laboratories of America developing technologies and products for the television market. He joined Samsung in April 2017. Fairhurst has been involved in standards throughout his career, first demonstrating an RP-125 digital video distribution amplifier to SMPTE in 1987. Among his accomplishments was spearheading IEC 62087:2008 and subsequent versions used for measuring television power consumption internationally.  Active in leading multiple Consumer Technology Association standards over the years, he currently chairs the CTA Television Manufacturers Caucus. and he has been active in leading and developing multiple CTA standards over the years. In ATSC, he is the vice-chairman and editor of TG3 S34-1 Video Ad Hoc Group. He earned his B.S. degree in electrical engineering and computer science, University of California, Santa Barbara.

Craig Todd
Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, Dolby Laboratories

 

“Broadcast technology must continue to evolve in order to assure its long-term success. Broadcasting functions in a broader ecosystem of content, other media and consumer equipment. The ATSC is a unique organization in that it brings together this diverse set of participants with common business and/or technical interests in broadcast television. I am personally involved across the broader industry and understand the needs of key players in content, distribution, and consumer electronics. The 3.0 standard provides a significantly improved physical layer, an expanded feature set, and substantial quality enhancements over 1.0. The challenge, of course, for the industry will be to get the system launched and to then provide the infrastructure needed so as to realize the benefits beyond those of the physical layer. Victory will require cooperation across the ecosystem, and the ATSC will continue to have a very important role to help drive the underlying infrastructure that will lead to success.”

Craig Todd has been an active participant in ATSC activities for more than 25 years, and served on the ATSC Board from 2007-2013 and 2015-2017.  (He was just re-elected to a new three-year term.) With Dolby for 40 years, he has played a major role in surround sound and digital audio coding for film, broadcast, and packaged media. Todd conceived and architected both AC-3 and Dolby E, to meet the practical needs of broadcasters. He was a major participant in the FCC Advisory Committee and Grand Alliance activities related to the introduction of the ATSC 1.0 standard. In later years, Todd identified contrast and brightness as key areas for further image improvements, leading Dolby to develop the fundamentals of HDR technology. He drove international HDR efforts that resulted in the ITU-R BT.2100 recommendation.  In addition to ATSC, Todd has been an active participant in numerous other standards activities and industry organizations, including ITU-R, DVB, UHDA, CTA, MPEG, SMPTE, AES, SCTE, IEC, and NABA. He is a Fellow of both AES and SMPTE, recipient of the SMPTE Warner award, and recipient of an Emmy for development of the BS.1770 loudness measuring algorithm.  He earned his B.S. degree in physics from the California Institute of Technology.