Asset logs

When planning a project it is useful to create an asset log to detail all the content and media that will be used, together with meta data such as file and format specifications. You will also want to include workflow guidelines for editing and repurposing. These specifications will be arrived at by profiling end-users, researching current delivery technologies (browsers, platforms etc), and analysing available authoring technologies, team member skills, and existing assets provided by a client. The following are the primary things you should consider including in your asset log and an example.

What form should the asset log take?

The ideal form for an asset log is a server located database or dedicated programme containing the asset files themselves, re-purposing guidelines, and the the asset log of meta data. Assets can be retrieved and saved to it, sorted and searched.

Next best thing might be a filing system on a server and a document logging all the assets and associated meta data.

Finally for a small project, you could use a local filing system of folders and a simple WP or web page document under the control of the project manager.

Example / template asset log

html table example asset log

A site/asset testing plan is here

Location

Where will the assets be stored. Ideally these will be in a central location available to all team members. This could take the form of a folder structure on a server, or a database.

Categories/meta tags

Categorising the assets (images, animations, logos, backgrounds, video etc) will help them to be located in a filing system.

File naming conventions

Most file names will need to conform to ISO9660 naming conventions, but end-user profiling will help you determine how far you can deviate from these rules. You will also want to consider naming your native files according to these rules so they don't need to be re-named every time you re-purpose them for delivery (eg the web).

Version tracking/naming

You will need some guidelines to ensure you can track versions and edits, and return to old versions should you need to.

File formats / X-platform / Compatibility

These will be determined by your end-user profiling, and will usually need to be as x-platform compatible as possible.

Required playback components

You may find it useful to identify which technologies on end-users systems will handle the differing interchange file types you will be publishing.

Optimising/ compression specifications and workflow's

Detail technologies, workflow's and settings according to your research and testing results.

For example, if publishing video you will need to specify ...

  • frame rates
  • key frame duration
  • codec
  • data rates
  • frame size
  • cropping
  • etc

Legal status / ownership

Record what the copyright status of an asset is and the copyright holder/owner.

Example asset log

Here is a simple html table asset log. Not ideal for big projects where a database or server file system will be be required.

Testing plan

A site/asset testing plan is here