Wednesday, March 16, 2011

News From Here & There

WebM plug-in for IE 9 released
Google has released a plug-in for IE 9 that plays their new WebM video format.
CNET: Google releases WebM video plug-in for IE9
Google: WebM Video for Microsoft Internet Explorer 9 (Preview)

And Google has also bought Green Parrot Pictures, a company that specializes in software that enhances and improves the quality of video, including motion prediction algorithms for stabilizing video. Engadget thinks it will improve the quality of hand-held video on YouTube. Maybe they could run "Battle: Los Angeles" through it...

AJA Raffle
AJA is running a raffle that could win you a Ki Pro Mini, Kona 3G or other converter. You can get the entry form at the website, BUT you have to drop the form off at NAB to enter! (Can someone out there drop my name in please?!) WIN @ NAB with AJA

Shaky-Cam is so Blair Witch
The shakycam has received negative attention from many quarters over the years; even Matt Damon said that people had suggested buying Paul Greengrass a Steadicam after the last Bourne movie. But now Matt Seitz at Salon wants to really stick a fork in it after seeing "Battle: Los Angeles" (which rates 33% on Rotten Tomatoes):
"Battle: Los Angeles" takes one of the more controversial cinematography fads of recent years -- the "shaky camera and shallow focus equals 'reality'" fad -- to noxious new levels of excess. The movie is the work of professionals who decided to make their film look bad on purpose. Why? Because, according to their logic, it's more "real."
He goes on to give movie makers some advice:
Get yourself a tripod. Make a shot list. Think about where you're putting the camera and why you're putting it there, and try to redirect the audience's attention by moving the camera or refocusing rather than cutting every three to five seconds. Stop covering action as if it were a bank robbery that suddenly broke out without warning. Start directing again.
Salon: Time to declare war on the shaky camera

Movie News
Seems that Hulu isn't the only one looking to create original content, with Netflix reportedly signing a 100 million deal for the Kevin Spacey series House of Cards.
TVGuide: Netflix and Kevin Spacey on Deck with House of Cards

Meanwhile, Robert Redford is bringing the Sundance Film Festival to London (but will he bring the sun?): HollywoodReporter: Sundance London Film Fest to Kick Off in 2012

How to build a cheap Mac
Want a fast Mac for little money? No Film School updates how to build a Hackintosh: NoFilmSchool: How to Build a Hackintosh That’s Faster than a Mac Pro for Half the Price – Updated

Setting yourself up for disappointment at NAB...

Apple doesn't love you
Patrick Inhofer at The Tao of Color explains that when Apple's not saying things about Final Cut Pro, they really are saying things, and he sums it up this way:
Adding all this up, this is what I think Canon is telling us: You’ll get what you get, on a timeline of our choosing, dictated by still photography considerations – and not all features will be given equal priority.

Digital movie making is not a priority.
Oh wait! Sorry, wrong company. He really said this about Apple:
Adding all this up, this is what I think Apple is telling us: You’ll get what you get, on a timeline of our choosing, dictated by non-Pro App considerations – and not all apps in the Studio will be given equal priority.

Final Cut Studio is not a priority.
(I'm always getting those companies confused!)

And you know, yeah, he's right. He's also right that there's a lot of NLE choices out there that didn't exist 5 years ago, so really, why worry? [Of course, when you've got time and money invested in software, plug-ins, hardware and training, then switching isn't a simple process. -Ed]

But I'm still hoping for an awesome Final Cut Pro update before the end of the year. And a Canon 5D Mark III too. And I won't be disappointed surprised that neither will be at NAB.
TaoOfColor: ProApps Users: Apple is Speaking. Are you Listening?

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