Audio and Video Digitization and Restoration for National Park Service

Most of us no longer own VCRs, tape players, or phonographs – but centuries of our history are captured in the old-style analog media. Through a contract with the National Park Service, NCC will convert nearly 900 hours of analog recordings for the Mary McLeod Bethune Council House National Historic Site into digital file formats, for improved accessibility to the public.  NCC is proud to provide digitization and restoration support for recordings in numerous forms of media – including reel-to-reel video and audio, Betacam and VHS cassettes, audio cassettes, and even Edison-era phonograph disks.

The Mary McLeod Bethune Council House, located in Washington, DC, is dedicated to the life and legacy of its namesake who was a noted African-American educator, civil rights champion, and presidential adviser during her lifetime (1875-1955).  The Washington, DC townhouse was the first headquarters of the National Council of Negro Women and was Bethune’s last home.

There is an entire generation that has never played a cassette, record, reel-to-reel video/audio, or VHS tape.  This massive project ensures that this and future generations will have access to hundreds of hours of media, giving them the opportunity to learn more about the history of African American women and their many contributions to the Civil Rights Movement.

Through our contract with NPS, NCC provides media digitization, transcription, translation, and captioning to support NPS’s mission to preserve “unimpaired the natural and cultural resources and values of the National Park System.”

National Capitol Contracting is a full-service provider of technology and multimedia solutions. From audiovisual engineering and broadcast operations, to captioning, digital court reporting and document management, we provide the people and the technology to enable communication and collaboration. We focus on delivery for you – the customer – enabling you to focus on your mission.

Audiovisual Support for Foreign Service Institute

FSI

In August 2017, NCC was honored to begin an audiovisual support contract with the State Department’s Foreign Service Institute (FSI).  Through this contract, NCC provides support to FSI’s Audiovisual Facility in the areas of audiovisual technical support; project services; eLearning and Blended Learning Development; and programs/contract management services and support.

The students at FSI are American diplomats who are studying foreign cultures and languages within short time frames, prior to embarking on their posts overseas.  Our experienced and knowledgeable on-site audiovisual team develops and maintains the innovative audiovisual and eLearning technology to prepare each student for his or her diplomatic mission.  We support FSI’s National Foreign Affairs Training Center (NFATC) Rosslyn (Arlington) campus, plus two other FSI facilities in Rosslyn and Washington, DC.

FSI is the federal government’s principal training institution for employees in the foreign affairs community.  The Institute prepares American diplomats to foster U.S. foreign affairs interests abroad and domestically.

Through our contract with FSI, NCC provides audiovisual and a variety of other services to support the Institute’s mission of “ensuring the career-long learning opportunities required for success in today’s global arena.”  NCC is familiar with the dynamic needs within the Institute’s multicultural learning environment, as we currently provide on-site support with a 7-person team at FSI’s training center.  We look forward to providing a diverse range of high-quality support throughout the duration of our contract with FSI.

National Capitol Contracting is a full-service provider of technology and multimedia solutions. From audiovisual engineering and broadcast operations, to captioning, digital court reporting and document management, we provide the people and the technology to enable communication and collaboration. We focus on delivery for you – the customer – enabling you to focus on your mission.

NCC to Exhibit at Government Video Expo and ASAE Technology Expo

ASAE Booth

NCC continues our annual late-fall tradition of exhibiting at two prominent expos: the Government Video Expo (GVE) and the ASAE (American Society of Association Executives) Technology Expo.  This will be our sixth consecutive appearance at GVE and fourth straight year exhibiting at the ASAE Tech Expo.

We will close out November at the GVE, which takes place on November 29-30 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC.  We will be located at Booth #328 on the Convention Center floor, directly across from the Drone Cage.  There, we will showcase our enterprise communication and collaboration solutions, including IT, Broadcast, AV engineering and operations, as well as captioning and transcription.

Two weeks later, on December 12-13, we will take our show across the Potomac River to the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in National Harbor, MD, to exhibit at the ASAE Tech Expo.  We will again feature our scope of services and solutions, including audiovisual, communications, captioning, and transcription.  Our exhibit will be located at Booth #613, on the eastern side of the expo floor, adjacent to one of the food areas.

Please visit us at Booth #328 at the GVE on November 29-30, and at Booth #613 at the ASAE Tech Expo on December 12-13, follow us on Twitter at @NCC_Comm, and discuss your technology, communication and collaboration needs with us.

National Capitol Contracting is a full-service provider of technology and multimedia solutions. From audiovisual engineering and broadcast operations, to captioning, digital court reporting and document management, we provide the people and the technology to enable communication and collaboration. We focus on delivery for you – the customer – enabling you to focus on your mission.

NSF-funded LIGO Discovers Kilonova – Two Stars Colliding

space

Our clients are engaged in interesting, meaningful, and sometimes world-changing work, and here is one example.  In October, the National Science Foundation-funded Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) announced news 130 million years in the making.  Hundreds of scientists worked with LIGO to discover a “kilonova” – an explosion caused by the collision of two collapsed stars

And though the collision occurred all those millions of years ago in an extremely distant galaxy, it was not until August 17th that the signals of the kilonova could be detected from Earth.  Up until that point, there was only indirect evidence of kilonovas, but no proof that neutron stars were involved.  That changed in August, when LIGO’s sensitive detectors were rattled  for 100 seconds by the faraway crashing of the two neutron stars.  The kilonova generated a gamma-ray burst which contained aspects needed to create heavy elements like gold, platinum, and uranium; and scientists have surmised that all the gold on Earth was likely created in a kilonova.

Since 2010, NCC has provided on-site transcription (for the National Science Board); audiovisual integration and maintenance; dedicated, on-site conference scheduling and conference center support; and live event services at NSF’s headquarters and throughout the United States. For seven years, NCC has focused on delivery to facilitate NSF’s mission to promote the advancement of science around the world – and in this case, around the universe!

We congratulate NSF on this remarkable discovery, and we are privileged to support this long- respected organization in a diverse range of service areas.

National Capitol Contracting is a full-service provider of technology and multimedia solutions. From audiovisual engineering and broadcast operations, to captioning, digital court reporting and document management, we provide the people and the technology to enable communication and collaboration. We focus on delivery for you – the customer – enabling you to focus on your mission.

Information from the Washington Post and The Globe and Mail was used in this blog post.  

Video Production Support for ASPR During Recent Hurricanes

camera and mic

Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria left massive devastation in their wake, and directly impacted millions of people in Southern Texas, Southern Florida, the Florida Keys, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

When natural disasters like hurricanes occur, the access to timely, accurate, and reliable communication is paramount.  Our team at the HHS Broadcast Communications Division was responsible for the production and transmission of social media video content for the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR).  A Houston crew traveled for six days to the affected areas around the city, and created safety and awareness videos during Hurricane Harvey for ASPR’s Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube pages.  Likewise, two other crews – one based in Atlanta, another in Orlando – traveled to locations in Florida to cover Hurricane Irma, also producing videos for the ASPR’s social media sites.

Despite spotty internet and cell service, the crews were able to transmit the video content to HHS’ Washington office in order for it to be transcribed, captioned, and uploaded to the ASPR’s social media feeds.

Through our contract with the HHS Broadcast Communications Division, NCC provides day-to-day production and post-production operations including scheduling, coordinating, producing, recording, editing, and delivering professional quality services and products to support the Division’s mission to support key initiatives for the Secretary of HHS and all Staff Divisions by creating and implementing media campaigns and projects.

Those affected by Harvey, Irma, and Maria  need our help.  Please consider making a donation to the American Red Cross or other reputable relief organizations.

National Capitol Contracting is a full-service provider of technology and multimedia solutions. From audiovisual engineering and broadcast operations, to captioning, digital court reporting and document management, we provide the people and the technology to enable communication and collaboration. We focus on delivery for you – the customer – enabling you to focus on your mission.

Real-time Captioning for Presidential Address at Fort Myer

Trump - Fort Myer

On August 21, at the Fort Myer U.S. Army post in Arlington, VA, President Trump addressed the nation to lay out the U.S. strategy in Afghanistan.  Given just 12 hours’ notice, NCC was up to the task to deliver real-time captioning for the webcast of the President’s speech on multiple platforms, including the Defense Media Activity (DMA).  One of our expert captioners produced timely and accurate captions for the primetime address, ensuring that hearing-impaired viewers could fully receive the content of the speech.

NCC has a long and diverse history in providing real-time captioning for significant events, including the Army Birthday Ball, the Dalai Lama’s and Bill Gates’ lectures at NIH, Nina Pham’s (the nurse who treated the first person infected with Ebola in the U.S.) press conference, multiple Medal of Honor ceremonies, and countless DoD events.

Furthermore, we are honored to continue supporting DMA – with whom we launched a contract in 2015 – with real-time captioning for town halls, news, and other events and programming for domestic and international viewers in 177 countries and 279 Navy ships at sea.   In addition, we have provided post-production support for movies on a daily basis, as well other programming upon request.

We are proud to have a team of dedicated captioners who are ready to deliver top-notch captions for major events, such as a Presidential address, on short notice.  We are privileged to be enabling communication and collaboration for DMA and all of our other customers that utilize our reliable captioning services.

NCC Exhibits at 2017 ASAE Annual Meeting & Expo

In her opening keynote address to the audience at the 2017 ASAE (American Society of Association Professionals) Annual Meeting and Expo in Toronto, Nilofer Merchant (Fellow at the Martin Prosperity Institute, and a visionary behind more than 100 products in the tech industry) talked about the power of “onlyness,” a term she coined.  She uses this term to remind executives to make their ideas powerful, and also as a way for anyone to “make a dent” in this social media-driven world where there are countless new ideas floating around at any given time.

With that, on August 13th, ASAE’s Annual Meeting & Expo was underway.  NCC was proud to exhibit for the fourth straight year, striving to showcase our onlyness among the 395 companies on hand to exhibit to key leaders of national associations.  About 4,500 executives and exhibitors walked through the doors of the convention center to participate in ASAE.  We were privileged to meet with a large number of Expo attendees to discuss the ways in which we are enabling communication and collaboration for our customers.

NCC’s representatives utilized their decades of experience as sales and business development executives to market the diverse services NCC offers,  including AudioVisual design, engineering and installation; virtual and live event supportmultimedia production; and transcription and captioning.

NCC Booth - ASAE
The NCC booth at ASAE

We continued our tradition of games, prizes, and giveaways right at our booth, as guests had the opportunity to play Jenga and Guess the Number of Marbles; one lucky visitor walked away with a Fitbit Blaze Smart Fitness Watch; and we gave away loads of NCC swag including water bottles, pens, mousepads, thumb drives, and USB plugs.

ASAE is a leading organization for association management and represents both organizations and individual association professionals.  The ASAE Annual Meeting & Expo brings in thousands of association professionals and industry partners who gather to exchange resources, strategies, and solutions.  Over the course of the event, attendees are “equipped with a year’s worth of support in their daily responsibilities as leaders in the association industry.”

NCC looks forward to our fifth appearance at the ASAE Annual Meeting and Expo in August of 2018 in Chicago!

NCC Employees Experience the Solar Eclipse

Solar eclipse

At NCC, we like to think that nothing can eclipse the experiences we have working together, enabling communication and collaboration for our customers.  Nothing except perhaps…experiencing an eclipse together!  On the afternoon of August 21st, many of our employees joined millions of Americans who stepped outside to get an optimal view of the solar sensation.

NCC Group shot (eclipse)
Several NCC employees gathered outside HQ on a beautiful Monday afternoon to view the eclipse.

While our McLean, VA headquarters was not in the path of a total eclipse, our employees were able to capture some amazing images of the glowing crescent shape as the moon shielded the sun; the eclipse reached approximately 80 percent of totality at 2:42 p.m. Eastern Time.  Some employees took in the experience from the rooftop terrace of the EastBoro, while others observed the eclipse from outside the front entrance.  All wearing protective eyewear of course!

solar eclipse (from NCC HQ)
The eclipse, as seen from NCC Headquarters in McLean, VA

Other employees who live outside the metropolitan DC area were in prime position for the eclipse.  About 650 miles southwest of NCC HQ in Nashville, TN, a Senior Editor in our Multimedia Production division was one of the lucky ones to be in the 70-mile wide path of the total eclipse (see the photo in the upper right).   She hosted a viewing party at her house, and had the privilege of a front row seat to this inimitable event.  “It is hard to describe,” she said about the scene outside as the eclipse commenced.  “It wasn’t like sunset lighting; it was like a lightbulb about to go out, dull, and then it looked like it was 8:00 at night in seconds.”  She continued, “You could see the shape of the eclipse through the leaves of the trees; they made crescent moons.”

We were thrilled to enjoy this incredible event with our colleagues, friends, and family.  For those of you eclipse chasers, hold onto your glasses and stake out your 2024 spot between Texas and New England!

Fairfax County Economic Development Authority Press Release Highlights NCC

Tysons

NCC has called Fairfax County home for just over 5 months (we moved from Arlington to McLean on March 6th), but we’re already making headlines there!  On August 10th, the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA) issued a press release to announce that NCC highlights a group of 25 businesses the Authority supported that added 600 new jobs to the county in the 2nd quarter of 2017.

When we opened the doors of our new headquarters at Tysons Metro Center II in March, we added 105 jobs to the local economy in Fairfax County.  This was the second highest number of jobs among the 25 FCEDA-affiliated companies which either moved or expanded to Fairfax County last quarter.

“NCC had good reason to choose Fairfax County as our new home,” said Chris Marquez, NCC President and CEO. “The amenities offered to businesses and their employees, a prime location close to our customers and partners, the business-friendly fiscal environment, and easy access to highly skilled human resources were all key factors in our decision to move to Tysons. We look forward to working within Fairfax County to achieve our mission of enabling communication and collaboration.”

The FCEDA promotes the competitive advantages of Fairfax County, and provides services and resources to business that wish to grow in the county.  Time magazine has called Fairfax County “one of the great economic stories of our time.”  Tysons, in particular, has experienced tremendous growth in recent years, and is expected to transform into an urban center of up to 100,000 residents by 2050.  We are thrilled to be a part of this growth, and to call Tyson Metro Center II – the heart of Tysons – our home!

We are proud to partner with FCEDA, which further inspires us to continue enabling communication and collaboration for our customers every day.

NCC to Exhibit at ASAE Annual Meeting & Expo, August 12-15

ASAE Annual Meeting

On August 12th to 15th, NCC will go international!  We are thrilled to present our wide-ranging, state-of-the-art products and capabilities at this year’s ASAE Annual Meeting & Expo, in Toronto.

Two NCC associates will make their way up to the Great White North to the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, to promote several of our services and technology, including AudioVisual design, engineering and installation; virtual and live event support; multimedia production; and transcription and captioning.   We will exhibit at Booth #207, just steps from the main entrance to the expo floor.  This will be our fourth exhibition at ASAE Meeting & Expo; in addition, we have appeared at ASAE Tech Expo for the past three years.

ASAE Booth
The NCC Booth at the 2016 ASAE Annual Meeting & Expo

As has become tradition when NCC exhibits at various events across the country – or the continent in this case! – we have some amazing giveaways planned.  Visitors to the NCC booth will have the chance to win a pair of Bose SoundSport Wireless Headphones or a Fitbit Blaze Smart Fitness Watch.  In addition, there will be plenty of NCC merchandise to take home.

ASAE is a leading organization for association management and represents both organizations and individual association professionals.  The ASAE Annual Meeting & Expo brings in thousands of association professionals and industry partners who gather to exchange resources, strategies, and solutions.  Over the course of the event, attendees are “equipped with a year’s worth of support in their daily responsibilities as leaders in the association industry.”

We look forward to meeting with ASAE attendees at Booth #207 to discuss the ways we are enabling communication and collaboration for our customers.  We encourage you to follow us on Twitter at @NCC_Comm for updates and pictures from the event.