In a recent interview with Fortune (which you can view here), Vice President for Facebook in Europe Nicola Mendelsohn made an extremely bold prediction: Within five years, Facebook will be almost entirely video. One of the biggest reasons she made the claim was due to the explosion of live video on the platform. Of course, there are other key reasons, too.
Tools for Workflow and Organization
NAB 2015 has come and gone without too much hype of a new cutting edge technology or gimmick to gossip about. Perhaps it is an indication that the industry is ready to settle down and get to work using the tools at hand. There are, however, still some general trends that are worth noting.
First, in contrast to the 3D fad that we experienced a few years ago, UHD or 4K for TV production is definitely here to stay. All of the camera manufacturers have already released 4K cameras (or are about to) from high-end studio models to consumer DSLRs. This is backed with support from 4K/UHD displays, non-linear editing applications (Avid, Premier, FCPX) and streaming encoders. 2015 may not be the year that we see an imperative to move to UHD production, but it is definitely time to start planning for it.
Second, production now applies to any outlet your customer wants to view your content on, without comprising quality. Consumers want to see sharp, crisp, 1080p video every place they choose to – at home, work desktops, tablets or phones. Producers must take this into account when planning and budgeting a production of any level. Effectively, there is no more “it’s just for the web” rationale.
In this article, we’ll focus on some tools that were highlighted at NAB that will make workflow and organization easier for corporate creative teams.
Using Network Attached Storage (NAS) has finally come to the forefront as a way to connect video editors. Fibre Channel SAN solutions used to be the popular and reliable way to network video editors, but NAS technology has surpassed what was previously only possible under Fibre Channel connections. New systems that run on 1GB, 10GB and 40GB connections over copper wire or optical fiber are ready to take their place at the front of the pack.
EditShare is a pioneer in networked shared storage and end-to-end workflow solutions. It has broken new ground with the launch of XStream EFS. This fault-tolerant “scale out” storage system offers enterprise-class storage capabilities and collaboration features to a broad range of production and broadcast facilities at very attractive price points. Designed to support high-bandwidth, high-volume media ingest, transcoding, online collaborative editing and multiplatform distribution of HD, 2K, 4K and beyond, XStream EFS offers multiple levels of redundancy and tremendous scalability – from 10TB all the way up to 5 petabytes (5000 TB).
Also newly announced is EditShare Flow’s updated extension panel for Adobe Premiere Pro Creative Cloud, which gives editors direct access to Flow’s powerful media management tools from within the Adobe Premiere Pro CC application. This in-app integration enables editors to efficiently search across all online and archive video storage locations for clips in the asset management database, view clip thumbnails, modify metadata, and add assets to their Adobe Premiere Pro CC project – all without ever leaving Adobe Premiere Pro CC.
The combination of EditShare storage with the Flow suite of products for Media Asset Management, and Ark for nearline storage to disk or tape, gives production teams a single source of vendor support and maintenance for a complex system that can start with two or three editors and grow to many more.
The GBLabs SPACE line of storage and archive appliances has arrived from the UK with blazing speed. SPACE is simply the fastest NAS storage you will find on the market today, offering a complete line of storage that handles online, nearline, backup and archive.
SPACE provides reliable stream counts for HD, 4K, and uncompressed; even 8K workflows are being run on the platform. The system’s new Core 3 OS provides hierarchical storage management and intelligent storage tiering for the active management of data and media assets. Aging files and completed projects can now be offloaded automatically from online systems onto nearline or tape archive, freeing up capacity for newly ingested material and the latest projects.
Other significant developments include faster and deeper interplay with leading media asset management solutions, class-leading Avid project support, Active Directory integration, and extensive multi-language support.
ProMAX’s Platform Series of high performance workflow appliances was on display at NAB alongside their new Archiving Appliances: Power-Cache and Pro-Cache. ProMAX took the concepts from Cache-A’s products and revived them with new processors, enclosures and optimized heat and cable management.
ProMAX Pro-Cache and Power-Cache archive appliances are designed to provide a simple and reliable solution for creative professionals to backup and restore media from LTO tapes. Easy to install and operate, the systems have been engineered using the latest technology to provide years of fast and reliable archiving. We should see the integration of this technology into the highly successful Platform line during the next year.
The Platform servers are truly workflow appliances, rather than just shared storage. They offer a simple to use interface for both administrators and users, with integrated proxy generation, indexing and tagging, and even rendering for After Effects. They start with the ingenious Platform Portable, and move up to the economical Platform Studio for small work groups, and on to the Platform Online for enterprise work for larger groups and stream-counts.
Avid announced their new ISIS 1000, finally bringing the cost of shared storage from Avid below the $20,000 mark ($17,999 for a 20TB system). For a production team that is all Media Composer and does not need an integrated asset management tool, the ISIS 1000 offers the peace of mind of a single point of support from workstation to storage, color, and sound mixing. The system is expandable to 80 TB.
Archiware P5 Archive / Backup / Synchronize are software tools that enable production teams to easily keep track of their media, without comprising the need for both backup and archive processes. The professional archiving software moves data offline to disk and tape. P5 can be setup within minutes, and works cross platform on Mac, Linux, Windows and Solaris. You can restore data on any platform, as P5 stores it in a platform-neutral format. To ensure high availability, P5 Synchronize automatically detects modified files and synchronizes them to a target destination.
Featured in the Archiware booth this year was Archive Assistant, a handy add-on to Archive P5 that allows editors to confirm edits directly from LTO Tapes. Editors can take control of metadata using the MetaExtract feature to combine and organize metadata from different sources as a part of the archiving ingest. It also automates archiving tasks such as finding non-central footage to archive and creating proxies using Adobe AME.
XenData released their new X2500-USB LTO-6 archive system that connects to notebooks and workstations via USB 3.0. The system includes an external LTO-6 drive with UNITEX USB technology and XenData6 Workstation management software. It is ideal for storing video, audio and image files on high-capacity LTO cartridges. The solution runs on 64-bit Windows 8.1 or Windows 7. For Mac users, the system is compatible with both Boot Camp and VM Fusion.
The X2500-USB is extremely easy to use. Archive and restore operations are always performed using Windows Explorer: the XenData software extends Explorer’s capabilities to transfer files to and from LTO using drag and drop or copy and paste. Files may be archived to LTO from any accessible logical drive letter or network share. Similarly, files may be restored to an available drive letter or share.
NewTek brought some welcome news to NAB for current and future TriCaster owners with the release of TriCaster Advanced Edition. This $1,495 upgrade for all existing TriCaster units supercharges the system with many new features: real-time feeds from internal or external sources into template based graphics; more options for automation with macros, self-detecting inputs, auto-correcting color matching, and intelligent mix/effects settings; faster and greater number of presets for pushing video and stills to social media, YouTube, FTP and more; expanded router support, increasing inputs with an upstream router control for all Pro models; improved streaming encoder; and improved options and rendering for 3D sets.
IPTV and Streaming Encoders
Haivision reinforces the concept of High Quality / Low Latency streaming from point to point over the public internet. It is now possible to link campuses and engage in two-way dialogues without paying for private MPLS lines or third party optimization services.
Haivision’s Makito X encoders and decoders use a proprietary method of Secure Reliable Transport (SRT) to provide end-to-end security, resiliency and dynamic endpoint adjustment based on real-time network conditions to deliver the best video quality at all times. With SRT, you can optimize video streaming across unpredictable networks, like the Internet, by assuring quality-of-service when faced with packet loss, jitter, latency, and fluctuating bandwidth.
Haivision introduced their Media Gateway, which is powered by SRT and provides the ability to aggregate and replicate SRT streams across private and public networks simultaneously. Imagine being able to distribute a live all-hands meeting to offices in New York, London and San Francisco in HD with encrypted security and very low latency over virtually any network.
Cloud Based Editing Becomes a Reality
Adobe has been gradually rolling out a shared assets system called Adobe Anywhere, but many potential users took a step back after seeing the capital intensive investment required in servers and storage to keep it running smoothly.
British upstart Aframe, having started a quiet revolution several years ago as a cloud-based platform for managing and storing video, has made a giant leap forward in announcing their integration with Adobe Anywhere.
Aframe’s central hub handles the storage and management of original native video content, while Adobe Anywhere will provide stream-based editing capabilities to enable the full potential of a truly cloud-enabled workflow. This provides one central place for video, accessible to anyone on the project team with the correct set of credentials. Footage is available instantly in the edit, anywhere in the world, without the need to download the original media.
By embedding Adobe Anywhere for Video within Aframe’s secure cloud platform, users can stream selected assets to the edit. Metadata is kept in sync, so that timecode based markers added by the project team in Aframe are delivered to the editor, and vice-versa.
About the Author
As Director of Market Development, Jonathan works closely with AbelCine’s Integration Services. The department leverages the power of the latest generation of broadcast and communications tools to help configure high-quality, cost-effective production solutions for traditional studio and stage settings, as well as non-traditional venues, and mobile applications. Jonathan also develops business relationships with key clients and helps them take advantage of AbelCine’s integrated service offerings.
Prior to joining AbelCine in 2006 as Director of Production Sales, Jonathan served as Director of Operations for Mega Playground. Previously, he was the Director of Operations for New York Times Television and supported the production of over 250 hours of documentary television production for programs airing on The Discovery Channel, TLC, National Geographic, PBS and Food Network.
Has your camera crew ever had to capture live presentations? Imagine an event where you are watching a speaker who is teaching you something new and exciting using a captivating PowerPoint presentation.
Yes, it’s true. PowerPoint can be captivating. How do I know? Because our team at Tarika Technologies has crafted eye-catching, animated PowerPoint presentations.
- We analyzed the essentials of PPT: what made it useful, what made it boring.
- We created a storyboard for how to shift the paradigm.
- Then we created a video-animated presentation that showcased the opportunities.
- Then we got really creative and came up with mobile compatible formats.
- Last, but not least, we packaged the new product and loaded it into iPads for our clients.
The end result: What we ended up with was an iPad loaded with the customer’s customized presentation. Customers could then use these iPads to showcase the abilities of their organization and hand them over to high-profile prospects upon completion of the presentation for future use.
Compare this to the traditional means of loading a PowerPoint presentation on a USB drive or an auto-loader presentation on a CD and handing that out.
Consider this scenario: On of our clients, Ocean Renewable Power Company (ORPC), needed to showcase its technology, which was present in CAD diagrams. We created a 3-dimensional model of its turbines and a 3D animation demonstrating the underwater technology. This allowed investors to see how the ORPC technology worked in an interesting, realistic manner.
Tarika Develops a 3D Simulation for ORPC
Why was the 3D model required?
Christopher R. Sauer, CEO of ORPC, says, “ORPC required a 3D representation of the TidGen(tm) technology to showcase how this innovative new underwater power system works. Since the TidGen(tm) Power System is completely submerged and not visible and because the technology encompasses many first-of-a-kind design concepts, its basic configuration and operational features are very difficult to envision for someone not familiar with it. A picture is worth a thousand words but an animation is worth a million words because the animation gives an accurate account of the basic design, size and operational characteristic, such as rotational speed.”
How did it help ORPC? What was the value add?
“The 3D animation added significant value to ORPC in terms of creating an instant understanding of our TidGen(tm) Power System among our key stakeholders, including potential investors, environmental agencies regulators, public officials, the fishing community, the local community, etc. It has also been very useful in discussion with potential international partners because language isn’t needed to gain a basic understanding of the technology.” explained the CEO of ORPC.
TV network Al Jazeera ran a news story on August 14, 2012, about the use of ORPC’s technology in a Maine tide-powered energy project. The video includes a 3D animation created by Tarika Technologies that shows how ORPC’s underwater turbines will harness energy.
Who can use this service? This customized service is tailored towards specific clients and based on client-specific requirements. For a presentation that has about 20 PowerPoint slides, costs start at $3,000 USD. For more information, click here.
How did Tarika Team help ORPC?
Christopher R. Sauer, CEO of ORPC, commented by saying, “The Tarika team developed the 3D animation on a turnkey basis, working closely with ORPC personnel to make sure the technical and operational details were correct and the model achieved ORPC goals. Tarika provided all of the expertise involved, which saved ORPC the cost and delay of acquiring the expertise in-house. We have gained the highest respect for Tarika’s professionalism, capabilities and focus on providing the client (ORPC) what we want.”
Would you consider doing this again?
Christopher finishes by saying, “Not only would we consider doing this again, we will definitely being doing this again as technology improvements to the TidGen(tm) Power System are made and ORPC’s other power systems, RivGen(tm) and OCGen(tm), are further developed and made ready for deployment.”
About Sachin Agrawal
Tarika Technologies founder Sachin Agrawal has more than 14 years of industry experience in various aspects of business technology.
While consulting for small and mid-size companies, as well as Fortune 500 clients and government organizations, Agrawal became captivated by the value that a properly deployed technology plan can add to a company.
He is on a mission to streamline technology for his clients, and to make technical implementation simpler and more effective.
Agrawal holds a master’s degree in Information Architecture (Highest Honors), a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering, and an associate’s degree in Computer Engineering Technology from Capitol College, Maryland, USA.
He has been a practitioner of KyoKuShin Karate for more than a decade.
For more information, visit www.tarikatechnologies.com
The Digital Media D.C. conference is Washington DC’s leading training event for camera crews in the TV, video, film, motion graphics and New Media industries. In its seventh year, DMDC offers 3 full days of sessions in 5 parallel tracks and includes 48 unique sessions focusing on the latest techniques and practices for editors, motion graphics designers, new media professionals and video producers. DMDC is produced by Future Media Concepts, the nation’s leading training organization and features the world’s best Certified Instructors, award-winning editors, authors and power users. With a full pass, attendees may move freely between all the tracks and attend sessions of their choice.
When: NOVEMBER 27-29, 2012
Where: WALTER E. WASHINGTON CONVENTION CENTER
How much: Packages & Pricing
Who Attends This Event?
Broadcast, Cable and Pro Video to all Branches of Government, Law Enforcement, Military, and Contractors.
Each full-day DMDC conference pass entitles you to move freely between all tracks and attend the session of your choice. For a Full Schedule of Events you will want to visit their website.
Final Cut Pro Workshop
This session begins with an in-depth look for all those editors looking to master this new way of editing. Class is then broken down into more focused and advanced sessions for experienced editors and content creators.
Adobe After Effects Workshop
This session kicks off with an introductory in-depth session for editors and content creators looking to incorporate AE into their workflow. Then join us for advanced sessions that will push the boundaries of what you thought After Effects was capable of.
Producer | Director Workshop
Speakers will explore the latest in both business and technology trends to help those in charge of modern productions. Learn how to craft successful proposals, learn to build effective budgets and how to present both in dynamic form.
Web 3.0: Social Media & Web Video
Explore the latest in social media technology and video compression and learn how it impacts traditional media production and distribution.
Adobe Premiere Pro Workshop
Join in for an in-depth introductory session and then launch into advanced sessions and topics like audio mixing and trimming shortcuts to explore the wide range of tools Premiere Pro has to offer.
Digital Video Production
These workshops focus on advanced techniques used for both field and studio production. The session will pertain to sound, HDSLR and more.
Advanced Motion Graphics and Visual FX In-Depth
Join top designers and published authors as they share the latest design techniques and workflows. Topics include a range of software including Adobe After Effects, Photoshop, and Illustrator.
Adobe Creative Suite Production Premium Workshop
This workshop is designed for editors, motion graphics designers, and multimedia artists. Whether you’re a recent adopter or a power user you’ll find classes to help you learn the most from your digital tools.
If you would like more information on this event you can go directly to http://www.gvexpo.com/ and register on their website. If you are looking to exhibit, sponsor, get sponsorship, or just general press inquiries you will want to contact GV Expo for that information.
Ah – so much to see and do over the span of this year’s National Association of Broadcasters 6-day convention in Las Vegas, Nevada, from April 9-April 14. There’s a great lineup of conferences set to begin April 9th and exhibitions to follow starting April 11th. Crews Control will be on the scene shooting a showcase of the best in gear and workflow solutions and will have a few tips, tweets, and info links here on what not to miss when you touch down for the show.
NAB’s mobile app and website both have a list of event highlights and speakers searchable by topic, calendar and presenter. Vitec Group’s site maintains a calendar of events for Key Speakers their sponsoring with a line up featuring Philip Bloom and other respected experts in the filming industry here.
If you work in post production you won’t want to miss the largest gathering of Final Cut Studio, Avid and Adobe editors and digital content creators on the planet. #MediaMotionBall, an event for post production, motion graphics, 3D and anyone in the post production field brought to you by the International Media Users Group, returns April 11th to the Sahara Hotel. They’re planning a keynote presentation by Brian Maffitt with Dave Bittner MC’ing the event. Event info and tickets are available for purchase on their website.
Supermeet’s also taking place at NAB starting April 12th. While the website, www.supermeet.com, reports that this hugely popular event has already sold out, they’re making arrangements for additional tickets to go on sale and will announce availability it on their website. If you can make it you won’t want to miss it. Follow #supermeet or www.supermeet.com for details.
Ever wonder how an event this big gets set up? Check out the “Build Up Diary”, Quantel’s progress weblog with photos and details of how the custom built-to-suit platform is coming together for the event.
Before the exhibits open on April 11th, NAB will be featuring sessions lead by industry experts and thought leaders. NAB has a session search feature on their website making it easier to locate your Hot Topic sessions of choice by speaker, keyword, topic, and calendar. Clicking on your topic of choice takes you directly to the line up for that event category. The topics are:
- Online Video
- Access Networks
- Social Media
NAB also has a web-based mobile accessible app at http://m.nabshow.com/ which features alerts, info on events and speakers, news, and tweets.
Up-to-the-minute coverage on the event will be available from several other key sources:
Tech guru and radio host Leo Laporte will be livestreaming from the 2011 NAB Show on The TWiT Netcast Network, producing both regular programming and special coverage of the event throughout his popular network of shows at http://live.twit.tv .
While there’s plenty to see and do at the convention centers for the event, the city of Las Vegas has no shortage of adventure to seek while in town for the conference. TV Technology put together a list of activities to enjoy while in town for the NAB Show should you run out of ideas for making the most of your trip. And don’t forget, after business is taken care of comes the fun. Tickets to the official NAB after parties are still on sale at Eventbrite.
See you at NAB Las Vegas!
Emerging new media and technology are ever-evolving factors that influence how creative professionals produce for our industry. Newer tools, methods and software are being released by the time we’ve mastered the last greatest thing to come along. How do creative’s stay ahead of the changes and still consistently produce fresh and relative content? We wanted to know about professional development for creative’s so we took a poll to get an idea. It turns out; production professionals are looking for ideas too. Read on for the full report and learn where imaginative and savvy producers go to squeeze the pulp to get their creative juices flowing.
Our poll revealed that ongoing training for producers was more often not required but encouraged by their employers. Out of 322 poll respondents, 15% of producers said that it was encouraged though not offered where they work. We were surprised to learn that 57% of producers are left to fend for their own advanced training education while 20% reported that their company does require continuing education. The remaining 8% answered that they are uncertain if their employer requires or offers continuing education. I’m sure if we asked, nearly 100% would agree that creativity needs to be supercharged with new ideas from time to time. Whether maintaining your creative endurance is required or not, advancing your creative education is a worthwhile personal investment.
The Q & A on C.E.
Q: If you have taken continuing education classes, where did you take them?
A: Workshops ranked #1, University Campus ranked #2, and Online classes ranked #3
Q: Who was the training provider?
A: Maine Media
Maine Media, the #1 most popular name dropped here, offers a course catalog full of curriculum for creative professional development. They offer a year long schedule with a variety of training programs ranging from Corporate Video Scriptwriting to Location Lighting. Most classes last for 6 days and the facility offers on-campus accommodations to immerse you in the learning experience.
Future Media Concepts, the 2nd most popular education source listed, offers online and in-suite classes at 6 nationwide locations (9 worldwide). They provide video editing, motion, 3D animation, and other digital media design programs training. If you’re thinking about brushing up on your design skills, here’s a demo of their online classroom.
Lynda.com is 100% online based. Ranked 3rd most used in our survey, Lynda offers– literally– a plethora of categories and class topics including business, productivity, developing, animation, and video classes where ever you have access to computing.
We also asked “What type of training are you interested in/looking for?” and here’s what pollers told us:
There are many CE training providers worth considering for furthering your professional development. Crews Control University is the educational platform we developed for our clients and vendors. We created this resource to provide an interactive exchange where professionals can discuss video production solutions with peers and our experts in a classroom environment. Crews Control hosts classes and workshops in partnership with our vendors including professional equipment resellers, manufactures and video production solution providers. These events are free and are held in cities all across the country.
There are many online resources that provide instructor-lead software training, instructional videos, and live webinars. We selected a few worth mentioning though we do not represent or endorse these resources.
Total Training, “Software Training for Creative Minds“, offers online and DVD-based training– with a twist. For a monthly access fee, you have 24-hour, 7-day a week access to web based training modules for creative design, digital video, and office productivity software programs. Here’s a breakdown of their subscription program.
Filmmaking Webinars is a resource worth bookmarking for sure. The site offers live and on-demand webinars, videos and podcasts on digital film production by digital filmmakers. Live webinars are free or may be downloaded on demand for a nominal archive fee.
MediaBistro is another great resource for sharpening the professional skills that support your production expertise such as writing. They offer courses in 3 major metropolitan cities (New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles) as well as online classes.
Another good place to look for workshops and professional development courses are on the events section of the manufacturers and organizations you do business with. NAB, the National Association of Broadcasters, for instance, has an extensive calendar of workshops offered on location at NAB conferences and conventions.
Crews Control reports daily on the events, seminars, tradeshows, and conferences we come across as they’re announced. Stay tuned for behind the scenes updates on upcoming industry events published via twitter and our facebook fanpage.