The Kayak platform from Digital Rapids, introduced at NAB last year, is now a fully deliverable workflow engine designed to simplify the creation of automated processes. It is set to be the hardware platform for a large part of the Digital Rapids encoding and transmission range in future. The design of the system separates the workflows from the hardware. Workflows are designed by building processing elements up into “blueprints”, which can include logic branching at any point, allowing designers to include sophisticated rules-based decision making and intelligence into the processing. These workflows can then be implemented on one or a number of distributed Kayak devices, spreading the load as required. The platform is also open to specialist software elements from other vendors. Manzanita has already announced that many of its MPEG software solutions are now available for Digital Rapids Kayak, where they operate seamlessly as part of the Transcode Manager. In the first batch of releases, Manzanita offers three multiplexers for Kayak. Leading them is an HLS multiplexer to create adaptive bitrate transport streams for HLS-compliant devices, which as well as Apple products include Android phones and tablets, Blackberries and Microsoft Xbox. Also available from Manzanita are MPEG-TS and programme stream multiplexers, and it is intended to bring the CrossCheck transport stream analyser to the Kayak platform in the near future. All these work seamlessly with Digital Rapids software elements in complete workflows. As well as creating them locally, Kayak also allows workflows to be imported, meaning that content owners and delivery platforms can define precisely the workflows required to prepare their material. Netflix already published approved Kayak blueprints to ensure that content owners deliver material in the correct format and quality.