The Jewel in Our Crown

The global Information Systems team
The global Information Systems team

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Graham and David
James and David
Franz and Geoff
Helen and Rob
Kevin (US office)

GRN has recorded nearly 15,000 programs in over 6,500 different languages and dialects over the past 78 years. This audio archive, containing more than 1.4 million files, is "the jewel in our crown".

Keeping this jewel safe is very important to us. The vast majority are in digital form and stored on our servers in the Australian and US offices, and on offline devices in two other locations. There are also subsets of these recordings on hard disks at many other locations around the world. And so our crown jewels are as safe as we can reasonably make them.

However, our purpose is to tell the story of Jesus in every language. This means we want to keep adding to the audio archive as new recordings are made and we want people to have access to them so they can hear the good news they contain. As priceless as it is, our audio archive is of no value if it is locked up, safe and sound, where people cannot use it. Our Australian Information Systems team plays a key role in providing the infrastructure to allow our recordings to be kept safe and made widely available.

Graham Schabel works with our recordists on the field to make sure they have the equipment, computers and software they need to produce good quality recordings. He looks after our studio equipment and software. He helps them resolve technical problems and looks towards future equipment needs.

Graham also makes our recordings and audio visuals available to the end user in the audio and video formats that they want to use. This is an ever changing situation requiring constant upgrades and new formats.

David Miller looks after our servers and keeps them running securely and reliably. He develops software needed to process and distribute our recordings. He is also working on moving many of our software systems into "the cloud" to improve reliability and reduce pressure on our Australian and USA Information Systems staff.

James Thomas leads our 5fish development team which has made our recordings available on your mobile phone and other devices. He is assisted by David Nolan and Franz Broch and several volunteers. David Nolan is also working on moving our systems into the cloud, and providing other ways to access the recordings.

Geoff Wong is our newest staff member. He tests software. So far Geoff has concentrated on making 5fish as robust as possible, working with a team of volunteer testers.

Helen Sadler is our data analyst. With so many recordings produced over eight decades there has been some poor quality data which causes problems for our computer systems. Helen works on cleaning up and sorting out this data so that programs are more accessible to those who would love to hear them.

Rob McDonell is our Information Systems manager. He leads this group and the many volunteers who help out. Rob is the creator of GRID, our main database software used by our studio and other staff to process recordings; and also Sabercopy which enables recordings to be loaded onto mp3 players and other devices and media. He is largely responsible for our website which allows people to download our audio and video onto their computers and provides general GRN information to any who are interested.

We are thankful for Kevin Horan in the US office who looks after the servers and off-site backup there, does some software development and is also helping move our systems into the cloud. Kevin would love some help, so please pray for God's provision of more skilled computer people for the US office.

We thank God for this very competent and capable team who enable us to keep our audio archive safe and accessible. We can add new recordings, update old ones and make them freely available through our websites and apps. Please pray for God's protection of our servers and the audio archive. We do our best to protect our systems, but ultimately we look to God, our strength and fortress, to keep them safe.

Pray too that many people would access our recordings, listen to them, and be introduced to our Lord and Saviour as a result.

Christine Platt - CEO

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