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Transcript: Digital Production Buzz – September 29, 2016

Digital Production Buzz
September 29, 2016

HOST
Larry Jordan

GUESTS
Alexander Rea, Creative Director of Technology, Framestore
Les Zellan, Chairman, Cooke Optics
Laura Blum, Blogger, FilmFestivals.com
Wes Plate, President, Automatic Duck
Michael Kammes, Director of Technology & Marketing, Key Code Media
James DeRuvo, Film and Technology Reporter, DoddleNEWS

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Larry Jordan: Tonight on The Buzz, what would it be like to fly to Mars? Lockheed Martin has designed a brand new interactive VR experience on a school bus. Alexander Rea, the creative director of technology joins us to explain how it works.

Larry Jordan: At IBC, Cooke Optics announced a new release of some of their most celebrated lenses, the Cooke Speed Panchro. Les Zellan, the chairman of Cooke Optics, joins us tonight to talk lenses, technology and the art of making glass.

Larry Jordan: Laura Blum, writer for Thalo.com wraps up her series on films of the Arab Spring, and how they’ve influenced funding and production throughout the Gulf.

Larry Jordan: Next, Wes Plate, the president of Automatic Duck checks in with an update on some of their latest technology.

Larry Jordan: Michael Kammes, director of technology and marketing at Key Code Media looks at the process of transcoding, what it is, and when you should consider it for your projects.

Larry Jordan: And as always, James DeRuvo joins us with a DoddleNEWS update. The Buzz starts now.

Announcer: Since the dawn of digital filmmaking – authoritative – one show serves a worldwide network of media professionals – current – uniting industry experts: production, filmmakers, post production and content creators around the planet – distribution. From the media capital of the world in Los Angeles, California, The Digital Production Buzz goes live now.

Larry Jordan: And welcome to the Digital Production Buzz, the world’s longest running podcast for the creative content industry covering media production, post production, and marketing around the world. We are celebrating our 17th year of podcasting. Hi, my name is Larry Jordan.

Larry Jordan: Generation Beyond is a first of its kind, national education program designed to inspire the next generation of students to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math. Started by Lockheed Martin, it focuses on what it will take to go to Mars, and who will make the trip. The extent of this program caught our attention because it features an interactive, immersive, virtual reality experience to enable school kids to discover what it would be like to travel to and drive on, Mars. I’m looking forward to learning more about this school bus to Mars in just a couple of minutes.

Larry Jordan: Also, with the launch of the iPhone 7 and IBC both behind us, attention now turns to hardware updates from Apple. James DeRuvo has some thoughts on exactly that as part of our DoddleNEWS update in just a moment.

Larry Jordan: I also want to remind you to subscribe to our free weekly show newsletter at Digitalproductionbuzz.com. Every issue, every week, gives you an inside look at The Buzz, quick links to all the different segments on the show, and curated articles of special interest to filmmakers. Best of all, every issue is free.

Larry Jordan: Which brings us to our DoddleNEWS update with James DeRuvo, the senior writer for DoddleNEWS. Hello James, welcome back.

James DeRuvo: Hi Larry.

Larry Jordan: So, what’s the news?

James DeRuvo: Well, you were talking about Apple, and riding high off the iPhone 7 launch last week, Apple waded in a little bit of rough waters this week as they’re facing a class action law suit over defective trashcan Mac Pros. It’s that sleek design that came out in 2013. The law suit alleges screen malfunctions are causing processing defects and system failures, and making them completely unreliable for day to day use. The law suit seeks an injunction prohibiting Apple from selling and distributing the machines until they’re fixed, plus damages for those who have purchased trashcan in the last couple of years.

James DeRuvo: I think that this could be a little combination between a little bit of user error and a design flaw. The Mac Pro trashcan design has this central core cooling design which sucks in air from underneath and cools the entire system through a central core. And it becomes very easy to block the air flow if you have a very messy desk. So it could be a bit that the design is a little bit of the issue, could be a user issue as well, but considering Apple hasn’t updated or given any attention to the Mac Pro in three years, this is a pretty big deal and it might put the kibosh on whether or not Apple’s going to update it this year. I honestly don’t think they will.

Larry Jordan: OK, we’ve got Apple in possible problems with the Mac Pro. What’s story number two?

James DeRuvo: DJI announced their answer to GoPro’s Karma personal drone this week. The Mavic Pro offers everything you can do in the Phantom 4 drone, but does it in a form factor that is so tiny you can fit it in the palm of your hand when it’s fully collapsed and you can unfold it and have it flying within seconds. It’s got 4K video, a follow me mode, a track mode, portrait mode, circle mode and my personal favorite, a sports racing mode. You know those NES like playstation game controllers?

Larry Jordan: Yes.

James DeRuvo: It’s controlled by a game controller that is about that size that can merge with your mobile phone to give complete control with telemetry updates through the DJI Go app. The cost of the Mavic Pro will 999 with the controller, and 749 without and it will ship in October.

Larry Jordan: DJI is the largest drone manufacturer in the world. Do you think they’re going to be able to overcome GoPro?

James DeRuvo: Yes. I was joking with somebody the other day that the drone wars have officially started. I think this is going to be a really interesting holiday season as we see who actually is going to win the drone war between DJI and GoPro. They’re both excellent machines with really good features. It really just comes down to whether or not you already have your GoPros or not. The GoPro has the advantage of having the pull out three axis gimbal that you can place anywhere, and use. But then again, the Mavic Pro has live 4K video streaming and all these automatic track modes and follow me modes, so it really just depends on what you want. But they’re both very excellent drones.

Larry Jordan: It will be fun to watch. What’s our third story this week?

James DeRuvo: When I got my first computer it had a 20 megabyte hard drive, and I thought I will never ever be able to fill this. 30 years later, SanDisk has announced a one terabyte SD card.

Larry Jordan: Wow.

James DeRuvo: It can write at 90MB per second and read at 95MB per second. It’s designed for 4K and 8K video and the expected price is around $800. No word on when it’s going to ship yet thought but I bet it’s probably going to be after the first of the year.

Larry Jordan: James, for people that want more information and are just hungry for the news, where can they go on the web?

James DeRuvo: You can read more about these stories and others at DoddleNEWS.com.

Larry Jordan: James DeRuvo is the senior writer for DoddleNEWS and James, thanks for joining us. We’ll chat with you again next week. Take care.

James DeRuvo: Alright Larry, take care.

Larry Jordan: Bye bye.

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Larry Jordan: Generation Beyond was created by Lockheed Martin to enable young kids to envision what it’s like to fly to Mars. Part of this experience is a one of a kind virtual reality thing designed by Alexander Rea. Alexander describes himself as a creative director of technology. Hello Alexander, welcome.

Alexander Rea: Nice to be here, thank you for having me on.

Larry Jordan: I have been looking forward to this conversation for several weeks and before we start talking about the school bus, tell us what Generation Beyond is about.

Alexander Rea: Well Generation Beyond is Lockheed Martin’s STEM education initiative and Lockheed Martin works with McCann Advertising in New York and McCann reached out to Framestore and I had the pleasure of working with Framestore to produce this, as you put it, one of a kind experience, on the first ever Group Beyond bus. Its goal is to inspire children through this experience where we bring them on a school bus and have them drive on the surface of Mars.

Larry Jordan: When was it that you got involved in this project?

Alexander Rea: McCann came to Framestore in the fall of last year, and the project kicked off right before the end of the year. Then we premiered at the USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington DC on April 15th. Lockheed is the premier sponsor of the USA Science and Engineering Festival.

Larry Jordan: They just walked up to you and said “Here’s a school bus, make it float on Mars?” What was the challenge?

Alexander Rea: McCann New York does all the advertising, to put it simply, for Lockheed Martin. They were tossing around this idea for the better part of a year, maybe longer. They came to Framestore and said “Can this be done?” I said, “Yes, I know we can do about 40 percent of it and the last 60 percent is going to be like going to the Moon for the first time. We’ve got to figure a lot of things out.” Framestore has the right team to make that happen and the brief was really simple. “It has to look like a school bus on the outside, has to look like a school bus on the inside, and we’re sending kids to Mars. Go.” That was basically it and we achieved that through some of the wizardry of Framestore, which is a 30 year VFX company, and great fabrication partners that we had, and an amazing client and agency relationship that was willing to take the risk, which was on all parties, and we were able to achieve something in a short amount of time that has never been done before and has been a very successful project for us.

Larry Jordan: Let’s put your technology hat on for just a minute. I’m looking at a school bus. What did you do to make it look like we were driving on Mars? What technology did you use, and how did you put it together?

Alexander Rea: It looks like a school bus on the outside, so the illusion persists. When you get onto the school bus, you start to look around a little bit. You can imagine the audience is children, so if you’re a big kid, you might notice some things are a little off. Most small children did not. … Custom built transparent LCDs taking 4K LCDs that you would buy at a big box retail. Then we just mounted those and constructed transparent versions of those which basically means that they are semi-transparent, you can see out of them. And when you get onto the bus you can look out of the window and then when the bus started moving, we changed the image from clear to the surface of Mars, and that was achieved by using game engine technology. We used a game called ‘Unreal’ which is used to make console games, something for your PS4 or Xbox and we developed a suite of technology that turns the bus itself into a game controller. Essentially the content that you are looking at on the windows, looking out of the bus onto the surface of Mars was produced by a video game engine, and all the modeling and programming was all done by Framestore New York.

Larry Jordan: Was this one giant monitor of immense pixel width? Or were you feeding multiple streams of video off a server farm?

Alexander Rea: It would have been ideal if we could afford to custom make screens, but we ended up using what was commercially available, so we used four 84 inch, 4K displays that covered most of the windows inside the bus and those were connected to four high end gaming PCs which were in turn connected to one server, and Unreal’s game engine has a multi-player mode, a client server model, and the Unreal server was collecting all of the control data. The bus itself, the movement of the bus, the position of the bus was being translated into the server, which in turn was then controlling the clients which were the windows themselves. If you can imagine that you are inside of a bus which is inside of a video game, and what you see on the screen is what you would see if you were perhaps playing a multi-player game and you were looking out the window of a vehicle.

Larry Jordan: I don’t generally sit in a bus while playing a video game. I must admit that I’m laughing hearing you describe this. This is pretty amazing. Were they looking at photo realistic or was it more cartoonish?

Alexander Rea: It was as best as we can achieve with game engine. So when you look at video games today, you can see aspects that are photo real and some things that you can tell that it is real time generated. Framestore won an academy award for the visual effects for ‘Gravity.’ We know how to do photo real CG, for example ‘The Avengers’ films, ‘Harry Potter,’ and the limitation we’re working with is the limitation of the graphics card capabilities and the power of the PCs to achieve the real time rendering, because keep in mind this bus can drive anywhere in Washington DC, and content will be rendered real time on screen. So because it’s real time rendered, because it has to change on the fly, like a video game, you turn left, you turn right, you turn up, you turn down, it’s not a linear start stop experience. So we are limited by the capability of the graphics cards that we had at the time when we produced this bus. A year from now, two years, five years from now, it’ll be exponentially better. But we were only limited by the power of the computers. We could have made it hundreds of millions of polygons, but we had to keep the polygon count in check in order to reduce latency and again limited by the hardware that was available in April when we launched this.

Larry Jordan: You said something that I didn’t understand, so I want to come back to it. You say the bus is driving, so it doesn’t just drive the location and stop? The bus is actually traveling through physical space while the kids are watching Mars go by?

Alexander Rea: Exactly. It’s synched one to one, and there’s videos on generationmarsandbeyond.com and also fieldtriptomars.com that show some of the behind the scenes experience. The bus is driving in Washington DC. We created over 200 square miles of actual streets of Washington DC in the video game engine. So it’s synched one to one, so when the bus moves, imagine you’re going up Highway One, and you’re in a car, and the speed of the car and the velocity of the vehicle with the bumps and the turns are being represented on screen. So it’s synched one to one.

Larry Jordan: Wow.

Alexander Rea: So we created it with reality. We had to do that because it couldn’t be scripted, it had to be real time because it’s a city. And we had a route, but what if there was traffic? What if there was a detour? It’s Washington DC, what if there was a motorcade that was detouring traffic? We would have to change our course, so it had to be real time. So we developed a drivable VR one to one landscape synch experience.

Larry Jordan: That is just amazingly cool. Aside from faster graphics cards, if you had to do the project again, what would you change?

Alexander Rea: I think really other than particular project related variables and time and money, if we could have gone more photo real, I definitely would have gone more photo real. We designed the project to scale and the bus itself right now is actually touring the country through a separate company that isn’t responsible for the touring version of the bus, but it’s going to multiple cities. That information’s available on Generation Beyond and also if you just Google ‘Lockheed Mars Bus’ you’ll see a significant amount of press and PR around where it’s appearing.

Alexander Rea: If I could change something it would be the power of the computers that we had. If it could have been real time it would have been a better experience obviously and if we could have custom made some of the hardware, like I said we used commercially available strains, but with unlimited funds we could have built bespoke hardware. Because all the hardware we used, was stuff that you could buy, so we were limited only by that.

Larry Jordan: Have you ever been on the bus when kids are watching? What’s the kids’ reaction?

Alexander Rea: Absolutely. We built the little showrunner room in the back where the generator was and all the computers, so the footage you see on fieldtriptomars.com is actually footage that was shot on the initial runs of the bus. And the big kids and little kids have an amazing reaction, and it was quite rewarding, because as you could imagine, we were working up to the 11th hour on this. As I mentioned, this started at the end of last year, and it launched in April, so you do the math. There’s only a finite amount of days there to pull off something that has not been achieved before. The reward, the payoff was when we were on the bus the first time and their reaction which was captured on film. Their reaction was amazing, it made all of the sleepless weeks worth it.

Larry Jordan: That is so cool. Really quickly, is Framestore a development company or is it a production house?

Alexander Rea: Framestore is a 30 year old VFX post production company. Started in London and we’re in London, Montreal, New York and LA. London and Montreal do most of the Hollywood work, so if you go to IMDb and you look up Framestore, there’s 100, over 150 films since the mid 80s. If you’ve watched TV or the movies, you’ve seen our work in the last 30 years from the work we do in New York such as ‘Geico Gecko,’ and the M&M characters, to shots in ‘The Martian,’ ‘Gravity,’ ‘Guardians of the Galaxy,’ all ‘The Avengers’ films. So it’s a VFX post production company, and we have been able to build a VR studio in New York and LA, leveraging our CG and VFX pipeline and we’ve been able to produce some great content through some of those relationships born out of the movie production that we do, and some of the newer relationships that we’re forming with some of our partners and media partners here in New York.

Larry Jordan: Very cool. Alexander, for people that want more information about the school bus to Mars, where can they go on the web?

Alexander Rea: The best place to direct people is the overall campaign hub which is generation-beyond.com and from there you can learn all about the Lockheed STEM education initiative, and then of course from there you can get to more information about the bus.

Larry Jordan: Very cool. Alexander Rea is the creative director of technology at Framestore, and the guiding genius behind the school bus to Mars. Alexander, thanks for joining us today.

Alexander Rea: Thank you very much.

Larry Jordan: Take care, talk to you soon. Bye bye.

Alexander Rea: Bye bye.

Larry Jordan: Laura Blum is a filmfestivals.com blogger, a Thalo.com contributing writer, and a discerning film critic. And best of all, she’s back. Hello Laura, welcome.

Laura Blum: Delighted to be back.

Larry Jordan: Laura, last week we were talking about films of the Arab Spring and we looked at ‘As I Open My Eyes,’ and ‘Sandstorm.’ There’s another film I want to quickly touch on which is ‘Barakah Meets Barakah.’ What’s that?

Laura Blum: Larry, ‘Barakah Meets Barakah’ is a blistering critique of the restrictions placed on young Saudis. We haven’t seen the likes of this. It is a romantic comedy and as with any rom-com it’s about the obstacles to getting together, but in Saudi Arabia it’s really compounded because one obstacle is that there’s no public space for a couple to meet.

Larry Jordan: Tell me about some of the groundbreaking techniques that Barakah uses.

Laura Blum: For one thing, there is female skin. There is female leg. There would be female belly but that’s part of the fun here, and that’s because the film starts out with a title card that lets us know that the blurred images are not due to censorship, and it’s just a little jab at Saudi censorship. There’s been a tradition, a history where Saudi’s were always watching American films on VHS and anything slightly risqué, say alcohol or holding hands, all of that was pixilated.

Larry Jordan: I was just thinking that we’ve looked at ‘As I Open My Eyes,’ and we’ve looked at ‘Sandstorm’ and ‘Barakah Meets Barakah,’ and all of these are new films growing out of the Arab Spring. How have production trends evolved because of these films?

Laura Blum: That’s such a great question. So production is really a work in progress in the Arab world. It’s definitely evolving, we’re seeing a lot more work from first time directors, as we’ve talked about these millennials. And there’s something of a shift in the region’s production hubs, so Egypt used to churn out about 40 films a year, and that’s dipped down to about 15. Lebanon is still coming out with a few, but Syria’s production has ground to a halt there. The Emirates have come out with some big budget productions, and one that’s opening in the States in October is called ‘Bilal’ and it’s a very impressive animation from Dubai which was also at the Toronto Film Festival. Just what kind of player the Gulf will continue to be remains to be seen but quickly I’ll say that you’ve got a new generation of filmmakers who are experimenting with art house cinema, but also with genre story telling like comedies and thrillers and horror films, also with some fiction, non-fiction hybrids. And these millennials have been exposed to pop culture from around the world, especially online, and now they can join in with their own low budget productions.

Larry Jordan: Where is funding for these films coming from?

Laura Blum: That’s another great question. We were just talking about this. ‘Pink Bra’ would not have made censorship traditionally in Saudi Arabia. Arab cinema has gotten a shot of adrenaline from unconventional funding sources. There are a lot more local grants coming from non-governmental wallets which means less censorship, more opportunity for debut story tellers. Then there’s also a spillover effect across the industry. So we’re seeing more polished, professional productions and more sophisticated narratives with fewer stereotypes and fewer conventional ticks. Again, some of these are coming from local funds, some of them are European funds, but there’s much more access to other sources and you’ve got the likes of Vimeo and Netflix and they continue also to shift this landscape, both in distribution and in up front funding. So Arab filmmakers are really finding unprecedented outlets within reach.

Larry Jordan: What have these independent films done if anything, to influence larger mass market outlets?

Laura Blum: Let’s go back to this notion of ‘Barakah Meets Barakah.’ Saudi Arabia only has one public theater, and apparently it’s an Imax. But the filmmaker is not just interested in making a film, he’s actually trying to bring a kind of Hollywood to the coastal town of Jeddah. So, he’s interested in laying down the infrastructure for a Saudi film industry. That’s just one country, one example where this new filmmaking is getting some real traction and may start to make some big changes much more systemically.

Larry Jordan: It’s an amazing thing from a series of protests into documentaries into feature films and to continual changes for society. It’s an amazing time.

Laura Blum: It truly is.

Larry Jordan: Laura, thanks for joining us today. This has been a fascinating conversation. Laura Blum is a filmfestivals.com blogger, a Thalo.com contributing writer, and a discerning film critic. Laura, it’s been a great visit, thank you.

Laura Blum: Thank you so much.

Larry Jordan: Wes Plate is an editor, a software pioneer and the co-founder of Automatic Duck, and Automatic Duck makes translation software allowing different apps to share projects. Today they offer tools to translate Final Cut Pro X projects to After Effects, and Final Cut Pro X to Motion and other cool stuff. Hello Wes!

Wes Plate: Hey Larry, it’s good to talk to you again.

Larry Jordan: The last time we checked in was April at NAB when you’d just launched your new translators from Motion to Final Cut X. What’s the latest from Automatic Duck? You guys doing any work, or just kicking by the side of the road doing nothing?

Wes Plate: You’re right, at NAB we announced Xsend Motion which is a new application that translates Final Cut X projects to Motion, to make it easy to send your clips from Final Cut to Motion, and in June we shipped that product and so it is available to FX Factory and a lot of people have been really taking advantage of the powerful feature that that makes possible. So since that we’ve been working on updates to Xsend Motion and also Ximport AE which is the part you mention that goes Final Cut X to After Effects. So we’ve been busy. I’ve also been doing a lot of editing, traveling and running, and so I feel like I’m in a whirlwind, but having a great time.

Larry Jordan: I know that if I ask you to announce the next ten products that you guys are coming out with, you’re going to decline, but what technology are you watching? Are you still staying in the translation space and helping stuff move from place to place?

Wes Plate: I would say I’m more interested in workflow in general. My history is as an editor, and I’m spending a lot of time lately doing editing, which is just so much fun to get back into my roots and use Final Cut in a professional environment and do real projects, some of which will actually be aired nationally. Being able to just sit in the chair of the editor and feel where some of the challenges are helps inform where improvements might be made. I look at the whole thing, not just how can I get from one project, one application to another? But where are the little roadblocks that are making my work inconvenient? I look generally at the overall workload in that way.

Larry Jordan: You’re not going to tell us the next ten projects you’re coming out with?

Wes Plate: You were right in your prediction Larry that I was not going to tell you.

Larry Jordan: I also understand you’re going to be speaking at the Final Cut X Creative Summit which is coming up shortly. What is the summit, and what are you going to be talking about?

Wes Plate: Yes, I’m thrilled about this. Last year, Future Media Concepts, who produces Post Production World Conference at NAB and they also produce the Editors Retreat Workshop and Adobe Video World, as well as doing lots of training. Last year they created a conference for Final Cut Pro X editors, and they called it the Final Cut X Creative Summit. This is the second year of this conference and it’s a great opportunity for SDP or Final Cut Pro X editors to meet each other and talk about the technology, talk about the tool and how to be creative with it. I’m going to be doing a session about integrating Final Cut X with animation tools, with Motion and After Effects. I’ll be talking about how to use Final Cut with other applications, and it’s also a great opportunity to meet the team that makes Final Cut. Apple is going to be a big part of the conference, and I think there’s actually a day where all the attendees get to go visit the Apple campus and Apple will be doing some presentations. I’m a part of some Final Cut Pro groups and there’s a lot of enthusiasm for what might be coming at this conference, what Apple’s going to be saying and I’m just excited to meet all the users again. It was a lot of fun last year, and I’m sure it will be again this year.

Larry Jordan: For people that want more information about the summit, do you know what website they can go to?

Wes Plate: Every time I want to go to it, I just Google ‘Final Cut’ or ‘FCPX Creative Summit,’ and if I remember right it is actually FCPXcreativesummit.com. If you go there you can learn more about the conference as well as the schedule and all the various people who will be speaking. It’s really a Who’s Who of luminaries in the Final Cut X world, developers and users alike. Great keynotes are scheduled, so I would encourage people who are interested in Final Cut Pro X to check it out. I think they’ll have a great time there and learn a lot.

Larry Jordan: And for people that want more information about Automatic Duck, where can they go on the web?

Wes Plate: If you go to Automaticduck.com you can visit our website and we are on Twitter as autoduck, that’s AUTODUCK.

Larry Jordan: Wes Plate is the co-founder of Automatic Duck, and Wes thanks for joining us today.

Wes Plate: It’s always great to talk to you Larry. Thanks.

Larry Jordan: Take care, bye bye.

Larry Jordan: In his current role as the director of technology and marketing at Key Code Media, Michael Kammes consults on the latest in technology and best practices into the digital media communication space. He also has a strange love of workflows, codecs and process which just warms my heart. Hello Michael, welcome back.

Michael Kammes: Good evening Larry. Good to talk to you again.

Larry Jordan: So what’s caught your attention this week?

Michael Kammes: Almost every week I get pulled into a discussion on encoding and transcoding, and as we’ve talked before, I’m one of those weird folks that actually enjoys codecs and transcoding, so it’s been all about transcoding this week.

Larry Jordan: Why is transcoding so important?

Michael Kammes: There’s been a discrepancy, a disparity actually, between camera manufacturers and post production as I’m sure you know. Camera manufacturers come out with camera codecs that look great but don’t work well in post, to have a pleasurable editing experience. So being able to create files that are easier to use in post and still hold up is very important.

Larry Jordan: I will confess that editing H.264 natively is not my favorite way of editing. Why not do transcoding in the NLE, because every single one of them supports it? Why do we need to have transcode be a separate process?

Michael Kammes: That’s a real good question. We find a majority of NLEs aren’t as fast as dedicated transcoders. It also ties up your NLE by doing these transcodes. When you could be using the NLE to do editing tasks, you’re now tying it up with transcode.

Larry Jordan: What software are we recommending for transcoding?

Michael Kammes: There’s a couple of different ones. Obviously Adobe Media Encoder is fantastic, and it’s pretty quick. When we get into some of the higher end applications, that also have workflows built in and have analytical tools to make intelligent transcoding decisions, where we’re looking at stuff from Telestream like Vantage, or ContentAgent by Root6.

Larry Jordan: When you say intelligent decisions, what does that mean?

Michael Kammes: Traditionally, you tend to throw files at an encoder and say, “Go.” Those encoders will transcode to a set frame rate at a set frame size. But, what if you’re taking camera original cards which have hierarchies? What if you’re dealing with MOVs that may have letter boxes or pillar bars? You manually would have to go in there and set those parameters. By having intelligent transcoders, it can analyze the file and make transcoding decisions based on what it sees in the visual realm of that file.

Larry Jordan: If we are shooting camera native, and a lot of the lower end cameras are shooting a format of H.264, what should we transcode into? What codecs are good mezzanine formats?

Michael Kammes: That’s a good question and it comes down to your workflow. If this is going to be long form, whether it be a feature film or a documentary or unscripted, a lot of folks will do a standard def. offline using antiquated codecs like 15 to 1 or 14 to 1. I’m a big fan of following what some of the newer studios are doing, which is transcoding to a ProRes 422 or a DNx 145, so your offline is broadcast quality. So if you run out of funding at the end, you can still do an export for a broadcast quality master instead of being stuck with an offline.

Larry Jordan: Michael, you’ve mentioned Telestream Vantage and Root6 ContentAgent. What are we looking at for pricing for these tools?

Michael Kammes: It’s relatively expensive. It usually starts, with the CPU and everything, about 30,000 and goes up from there. So they’re more facility grade. But what we find with a lot of facilities is that they want the creatives to create and offloading the transcoding to a dedicated system that also has some intelligence built in, allows the creative to create instead of doing the transcodes.

Larry Jordan: How about at the lower end, and a smaller work group? What would you recommend?

Michael Kammes: Adobe Media Encoder. That’s always a really good solution. And I’ve recently been using Sorenson Squeeze quite a bit more because Telestream has announced end of life for the Episode product line which is a product that I’ve loved for many years.

Larry Jordan: I had not heard that, when did that occur?

Michael Kammes: About a month ago. Telestream, after several years of supporting Episode, they actually bought the technology from a European company, and the Episode Pro, Desktop and Engine family have been end of life unfortunately. It’s a shame because Episode gave the ability for clustering, across a network, which was great. And the Engine product allowed you to do ProRes on PC which was kind of a diamond in the rough.

Larry Jordan: When should filmmakers consider transcoding as opposed to editing camera native files?

Michael Kammes: Good question. There’s a couple of factors that go into that. First is, speed. How fast do you need to edit, can your system handle those kind of camera originals? If you need more color latitude, perhaps consider transcoding to a codec which gives users more flexibility in terms of color. We also want to look for faster exports. If you’re in a better format like a ProRes or DNx or Cineform, your exports can be faster than a more compressed format. And I think lastly, if you have more time in your schedule, then transcoding makes a lot of sense.

Larry Jordan: Michael, this has been a fascinating interview. For people that want to learn more and follow your thinking, where can they go on the web?

Michael Kammes: Two different places, you can go to michaelkammes.com or my web series, fivethingsseries.com.

Larry Jordan: That’s M-I-C-H-A-E-L K-A-M-M-E-S. The Michael Kammes himself at michaelkammes.com and Michael, thanks for joining us today.

Michael Kammes: Always a pleasure Larry, thank you.

Larry Jordan: Here’s another website I want to introduce you to. Doddlenews.com. DoddleNEWS gives you a portal into the broadcast, video and film industries. It’s a leading online resource, presenting news, reviews and products for the film and video industry. DoddleNEWS also offers a resource guide and crew management platforms specifically designed for production. These digital call sheets, along with their app, directory and premium listings, provide in depth organizational tools for busy production professionals. DoddleNEWS is a part of the Thalo Arts Community, a worldwide community of artists, filmmakers and story tellers. From photography to filmmaking, performing arts to fine arts, and everything in between, Thalo is filled with resources you need to succeed. Whether you want the latest industry news, need to network with other creative professionals or require state of the art online tools to manage your next project, there’s only one place to go. Doddlenews.com.

Larry Jordan: Les Zellan is the chairman of Cooke Optics, best known for their precision lenses for film and television. And recently Cooke announced new lenses at IBC that we want to learn more about. Hello Les, welcome.

Les Zellan: Hi Larry, how are you?

Larry Jordan: I’m doing great, and before we start talking about the new announcements, I wonder if you could start by describing what Cooke Optics does?

Les Zellan: We have been making lenses for the motion picture industry since the days of Thomas Edison and George Eastman, back in the 1880s. As far as I know, we are the oldest continuously functioning company servicing the industry. There are a few companies that are older than us, but they really weren’t involved in the industry until more recently. Actually I love this story, George Eastman before he started Eastman Kodak, came over to our company in England and met the founder of it, William Taylor, to discuss lens making, and what problems there may be. And then he started Kodak in 1889, and our company goes back to 1886 so we’ve been doing this a while.

Larry Jordan: What makes Cooke Lenses different from lenses say from Panavision or Canon?

Les Zellan: Today at least we all use pretty much the same raw materials that we grind and polish. And it really comes down to the philosophy that we use in our design. Our philosophy goes back, again, back to the 20s and it’s the look of our lenses that has been described, not by us, but by the industry, as what’s called the Cooke Look. It’s a warm look, it’s very flattering to skin tones, it’s highly dimensional. Some people call it a roundness. It is flattering and it’s not a harsh look, not a high contrast. It’s just a pleasant, very natural look. There are stories where the stars of movies, especially in the heyday of studios where the stars would specify in their contract that they had to be shot with Cooke lenses. That’s a look that’s been consistent with us almost 100 years now, especially in this day of digital. Digital as you and I have discussed before, is pretty sterile and as the camera manufacturers quest in the K race, 2K, 4K, 8K and then it’ll be 16K and onward and upward, ultimate resolution does not necessarily make a picture that is really suitable for telling a story. And if you can’t keep the eyeballs on the screen, whatever screen it is, whether it’s your iPad or your TV or your movie, if you don’t like the look of what you’re seeing, you’re not going to stay. For the most part, ultimate resolution does not supply a pleasing image.

Larry Jordan: Part of your new announcements was going back to the past. What did you announce at IBC?

Les Zellan: We announced at IBC what we call the Panchro Classics. In the 1920s, just as talking movies came in, we introduced what was called the Speed Panchros and these were the first fast, specifically designed motion picture lenses and again, we have letters in the archives from studio heads saying that these lenses made talking movies possible. Before talkies, they could light with anything and most of those anythings were big carbon arc lights that made a lot of noise. Obviously when sound came in they couldn’t do that anymore. The state of incandescent lighting in the early 20s was primitive at best. So a lens that could use less light was absolutely fundamental for the industry to adopt talkies, and we had them. We went on to make them from the early 20s to the mid 60s and there were several series of the panchros. There were speed panchros, there were deep field panchros, there were telepanchros, but they made I would say a great majority of the movies from the 20s to the mid 60s.

Les Zellan: What we noticed when digital cameras came out, because of the sterileness and what I like to say that digital is a boring format, as the cameras got better and better, the cinematographers are looking for ways to reinject character and personality. Things that in film is there intrinsically, but in digital it’s not. They were looking for ways to put this personality back into the pictures. One way they were doing that was anamorphic has been very big lately and anamorphic offers its own personality that can help digital not look so antiseptic. But another way they did it is by using old lenses. They’d get old speed … , speed panchros, anything they could find, and speed panchros, obviously not made for 55 years now, were really in demand. They’ve made a lot of recent movies. They never stopped being used, but with digital they became more to the forefront again. We have the designs, so we said “This is silly, people are struggling to find enough of this old glass that’s in good repair, let’s make them again.” We had to update the old designs somewhat as the glasses that we have to work with are different today than they were 50 years ago or longer. We updated it to a modern camera mount, the PL, and we put a modern linear iris in it, we put our metadata, our eye system into it, but the look and feel of lens and the character of the lens, we did not mess with. And judging from the reception we’ve had since … and since IBC, they should have done this a couple of years ago. It’s been overwhelming.

Larry Jordan: Does age make a difference to a lens?

Les Zellan: The answer is unfortunately not really in one sense, and really in another sense. In one sense, I look at people like the camera manufacturers and other people and think what a great thing, they’re making something they’re selling for anywhere from ten to $100,000 and people are buying it, knowing it’s going to be obsolete in two or three years. It may not even last that long. They buy my product, and the products that I made, I am using the royal I here, the products that Cooke made 60, 70, 80 years ago, are still making films today.

Larry Jordan: That’s both exciting and depressing.

Les Zellan: I tend to wear that as a badge of honor, even though I’d love to sell more lenses. But the upside is that lenses will reasonably last a long time. It is probably the best investment that any rental house will make, and the glass they purchased ten, 20, 30 years ago is probably still working today, where the cameras they bought two, three, four, five years ago are probably already in the back room or being sold off.

Les Zellan: So, glass is a good investment. The miniS4s are a great case study.
I know we talked about those at one of our interviews a while back. When we originally introduced those lenses, we actually tried to revive the panchro name, about five years ago I think, and we called them panchros as a tribute to the old speed panchros. We got in a lot of trouble and we re-named them miniS4 which should have been the right name along, and the reason we got into trouble is that people that were expecting them to look just like the old panchros were disappointed as they looked like S4s, because the same color and feel of the panchros but are a modern design and I’ll explain the difference in a minute, and people that for whatever reason didn’t like the old speed panchros, wouldn’t even look at them thinking they were going to look like the old speeds. So it’s a lose lose for me.

Les Zellan: We got a lot of feedback right away when we introduced those lenses, and we renamed them the miniS4s which is exactly what they are. The difference between a speed panchro design and an S4, be it the original S4 or the miniS4s, is pretty straightforward. The S4s and the miniS4s are actually direct descendants of the speed panchros. The designs are in the same philosophy, the Cooke Look is the same. But what we did when we made the S4s is we made them cover a larger field. In the old speed panchros they were very small diameter, very small lenses, and due to that, on axis, they were really good. But as soon as you get off into the field, that is as soon as you get off of that center line or that center point and you start moving in any direction, they fell off very quickly. The S4s have the same look and color but they don’t fall off. They will hold resolution to what we call the picture height area, for a larger area, if where they start to naturally fall off. So the lenses that we’ve redesigned are small diameter, small lenses, and they’ll have the same look and feel and fall off as the original speed panchros.

Les Zellan: It seems to me that a lot of people have forgotten that the story should dictate the choices and not the technology. The technology is there as a tool, and the cinematographer and the director should make the appropriate choices to tell their story correctly, whether that’s using a brand new piece of gear, or using old stuff or using a combination. A lot of films where they have flashbacks, they’ll use maybe speed panchros for flashbacks, and S4s or 5is for the modern part. So using the right tool to tell the story to me is something that a lot of people have forgotten about.

Larry Jordan: Cooke lenses are not inexpensive because they last forever. For filmmakers on a budget who can’t afford to purchase their own set of Cooke lenses, what’s their option?

Les Zellan: Cooke lenses are available for rental almost everywhere.

Larry Jordan: For people that want to learn more about lenses and how to use them, what educational resource do you have available?

Les Zellan: You can go to Cookeopticstv. It’s where we’ve interviewed DPs and they tell us tricks of the trade. Whether or not they use Cooke lenses is completely incidental, so we urge people to take a look.

Larry Jordan: For people that want to learn more about Cooke and its lenses, where can they go on the web?

Les Zellan: They can go to Cookeoptics.com, that’s COOKEOPTICS.com.

Larry Jordan: That’s all one work. Cookeoptics.com and the chairman and owner of Cooke Optics is Les Zellan, and Les it is always fun talking to you, thank you very much.

Les Zellan: I look forward to the next time Larry, thank you.

Larry Jordan: I’m always impressed at the range that we have of the guests on this show. Whether we’re looking at interactive VR with Alexander Rae, or Les Zellan talking about new lenses by returning to designs of the 1920s from Cooke Optics. And then we shifted overseas to Laura Blum looking at the films of the Arab Spring, and Wes Plate, confab on the west coast called the FCP X Summit. Michael Kammes talking about transcoding, and James DeRuvo bringing us the latest news from DoddleNEWS. The range in our industry continues to fascinate me.

Larry Jordan: And thinking of fascinating history, there’s a lot of history in our industry and it’s all posted to our website at digitalproductionbuzz.com. Here you’ll find thousands of interviews all online, and all available to you today. And remember to sign up for our free weekly show newsletter that comes out every Friday. You can talk with us on Twitter @DPBuZZ and Facebook at digitalproductionbuzz.com.

Larry Jordan: Our theme music is composed by Nathan Dugi-Turner with additional music provided by Smartsound.com. Text transcripts provided by Take1 Transcription. Visit Take1.tv to learn how they can help you. Our producer is Debbie Price.
Larry Jordan: My name is Larry Jordan and thanks for joining us for the Digital Production Buzz.

Digital Production Buzz – September 29, 2016

Join host Larry Jordan as he talks with Alexander Rea, Les Zellan, Wes Plate, Michael Kammes, Laura Blum, and James DeRuvo.

  • Its True: Take A School Bus to Mars!
  • New Lenses Coming From Cooke
  • Film-making in Times of Revolution
  • Wes Plate Looks At New Technology
  • The Ins and Outs of Transcoding
  • Weekly DoddleNEWS Update

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Listen to the Full Episode

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Guests this Week

Featured Interview #1: Its True: Take A School Bus to Mars!

Alexander Rea
Alexander Rea, Creative Director of Technology, Framestore

Most school buses go to school – but not this one. Alexander Rea is the Creative Director of Technology for “The School Bus To Mars.” He joins us tonight to discuss the technology behind this innovative traveling science exhibit.

Featured Interview #2: New Lenses from Cooke

Les Zellan
Les Zellan, Chairman, Cooke Optics

At IBC, Cooke Optics announced new lenses, along with new lens mounts for existing lenses. This week, Les Zellan, Chairman of Cooke Optics, joins us to explain their latest news.

Film-making in Times of Revolution

Laura Blum
Laura Blum, Blogger, FilmFestivals.com

Continuing her look at narrative films based on the Arab Spring, Laura Blum wraps up her three-part series with a look at how film financing and production have changed in the Gulf region with the release of these films.

Wes Plate Looks at New Technology

Wes Plate
Wes Plate, President, Automatic Duck

Wes Plate, founder and CEO of Automatic Duck, returns with a look at the future of new technology, a follow-up on his popular transfer utility between FCP X and Motion, as well as his upcoming presentation at the FCP X Creative Summit.

The Ins and Outs of Transcoding

Michael Kammes
Michael Kammes, Director of Technology & Marketing, Key Code Media

Michael Kammes, Director of Technology and Marketing for Keycode Media, returns with a look at new technology and workflow to help us be even more efficient.

DoddleNEWS Update

James DeRuvo
James DeRuvo, Film and Technology Reporter, DoddleNEWS

Check out the latest news from our industry this week from James DeRuvo, senior writer at DoddleNEWS.

Transcript: Digital Production Buzz – September 22, 2016

Digital Production Buzz
September 22, 2016

HOST
Larry Jordan

GUESTS
Dan May, Product Manager, Blackmagic Design, Inc.
Boris Yamnitsky, Owner, BorisFX
Laura Blum, Blogger, FilmFestivals.com
Ned Soltz, Contributing Editor, Creative Planet, Ned Soltz Inc.
Scott Page, CEO, Ignited Network
James DeRuvo, Film and Technology Reporter, DoddleNEWS

===

Larry Jordan: Tonight on The Buzz we have a lot more on several major announcements at IBC. We start with Dan May, the President of Blackmagic Design US, talking about their new acquisitions of both Ultimatte and Fairlight. Along with several new products that Blackmagic demonstrated at IBC.

Larry Jordan: Then, Boris Yamnitsky, the founder and President of Boris FX explains why they acquired GenArts. And what Boris FX is hoping to do with this world class effects software.

Larry Jordan: Next, Ned Soltz returns with more on new cameras and lenses, announced at IBC.

Larry Jordan: Next Laura Blum has part two in her series on how feature films are creating dramas that reflect the Arab spring uprising.

Larry Jordan: Next, Scott Page wraps up his five part series on how to grow your creative business and tonight, we look at education.

Larry Jordan: And as always James DeRuvo has our weekly Doddle News Update. The Buzz starts.

Larry Jordan: Welcome to the Digital Production Buzz, the world’s longest running podcast for the creative content industry, covering media production, post production, marketing, around the world. Hi my name is Larry Jordan. We are still sorting out all the announcements from last week, at IBC, so tonight we have in depth conversations about two of the largest, Blackmagic Design and Boris FX. But there is more in the news than just IBC, for example, Photokina opened this week, and with new camera announcements from a variety of vendors, as we will hear from James DeRuvo.

Larry Jordan: Thinking of cameras, Apple released a beta version today of the iPhone 7 portrait mode software. Unlike lenses which create depth of field by zooming in, the iPhone uses four ground recognition technology to create a nine layer depth map. Then applies varying degrees of blur to layer it, and blur the different layers to give us the illusion of depth of field. Initial reports of the feature is pretty amazing, though still quirky.

Larry Jordan: Thinking of lenses, reminds me that Ned Soltz is on tonight, with a report of new IP lenses, as well as announcements from IBC, and Photokina.

Larry Jordan: I want to remind you to subscribe to our free weekly show newsletter, at Digital Production Buzz. Every issue, every week, gives you an inside look at the Buzz, links to all the different segments, and curated articles of special interest to film makers. Remember every issue is free.

Larry Jordan: Now it’s time for a Doddle News update, with senior writer for Doddle News, Mr. James DeRuvo. Hello James.

James DeRuvo: Hello Larry! How are you?

Larry Jordan: I’m talking to you, I’m doing great. So what have we got that is news today?

James DeRuvo: Well first, on that Apple portrait thing, one of the reasons why I’m holding my powder on keeping it dry on buying an iPhone 7, is that I’m kind of hoping that maybe by iPhone 7S, they will have that for video, although maybe not. I don’t know. But it’s only for still photography so I am hoping that they will be able to port that over to video someday.

Larry Jordan: I think the technology to do that live, with video, would be pretty processor intensive.

James DeRuvo: They are going to have to wait until they have something stronger, and more powerful, that’s for sure. But going to this week’s news stories, GoPro finally introduces the Karma. Which is their drone, but they are not calling it a drone, they are calling it, an Experience System. The reason why they are calling it that is, it has as its big feature, a removable camera gimbal, that you can not only attach to an included handheld device, but also any GoPro mount. So you can literally take the gimbal right off the nose of the drone, and put it on, say the handle bars of your motorcycle, and get that rock steady image that you would expect from a drone. It is a really interesting design, and the drone itself is collapsible and it comes in a back pack. And it is really an amazing looking device. For 799 it is almost half the cost of a DJI Phantom 4. They are not taking it lying down either, I believe they have been leaking pictures of their new drone, and it looks like we are seeing the emergence of a new drone category, called a selfie drone. Which is a drone that is going to be used to record experiences, rather than from the sky. That is pretty much what the Karma is going to do.

James DeRuvo: They also announced, a Hero 5 and a Hero 5 Session, which has mostly some housekeeping fixes, and improved menu system. But they have also added voice activation and GPS, to the Hero 5 as well as automatic Wi-Fi sync and upload to the GoPro accounts in the Cloud. The GoPro Hero 5 Session, finally shoots in 4K. So that is what is coming down from GoPro. It is going to be a very lucrative Christmas for Nick Woodman and the guys over at GoPro.

Larry Jordan: Well there is a new show that opened this week, called Photokina, what is happening there?

James DeRuvo: Photokina is the big camera show. It is all cameras, all the time. This week, Sony introduced the new A99, Alpha 99 camera, for 4K DSLR, that shoots at 60 frames per second. What is really cool about it, is it has full 4K video with no pixel binning, which means you are basically recording at 6K, and then they are downscaling to 4K. So you get this amazingly crystal clear sharp image. It also has internally five axis image stabilization. So it is really like having a gimbal, without having a gimbal. It is really going to be an amazing camera.

James DeRuvo: Panasonic also finally announce the GH5, and we were hoping that it was going to be at least 5K, but it is not, it’s going to be 4K at 60 frames per second. Internally, so you do not have to rely on the external yaggy device anymore. It will have 10 bit, 422 color. Finally, Olympus announced the OMD EM1 mark II, which also will record in 4K. So that has been the big highlights of Photokina.

Larry Jordan: Oh my goodness, we have got cameras for drones, and cameras for motorcycle helmets and Sony and Panasonic and Olympus, there is plenty to keep you busy. For people that want more information, where can they go on the web?

James DeRuvo: All these and other stories can be found at doddlenews.com.

Larry Jordan: Senior writer for Doddle News is James DeRuvo, and James, as always thanks for joining us today. We will talk you again next week.

James DeRuvo: Ok Larry, take care.

Larry Jordan: Take care bye bye.

Larry Jordan: I want to introduce you to a new website, Thalo.com. Thalo.com is an artist community and networking site, for creative people to connect, be inspired and showcase their creativity. Thalo.com features content from around the world, with a global perspective on all things creative. Thalo is the place for creative folks to learn, collaborate, market and sell their works. Thalo is a part of the Thalo Arts community, a worldwide community of artists, film makers and story tellers. From photography, to film making, performing arts to fine arts, and everything in between. Thalo is filled with resources you need to succeed. Visit Thalo.com, and discover how their community can help you connect, learn and succeed. That’s Thalo.com.

Larry Jordan: Dan May is the President of Blackmagic Design US, and he’s been with the company since 2006. He oversees North and South American Operations, and has been an integral part of our core team which has built Blackmagic Design into a game changing force, in the feature film, post production and TV broadcast industries. Hello Dan, welcome back.

Dan May: Larry, good to be here as always.

Larry Jordan: Well it’s become tradition that both NAB, and IBC, on discovering what Blackmagic have done this time to stun the industry. So, just so we can hear it directly, what did you announce?

Dan May: Well we definitely are not ever going to be confused with being boring I suppose. We generally are always looking to advance the storyline, and continue to bring out exciting announcements that we feel are going to be game changing in the industry and expanding our product offerings and portfolios and…

Larry Jordan: Dan… will you tell us what you acquired?

Dan May: The big acquisitions we have made have been Fairlight and Ultimatte.

Larry Jordan: I want to talk to you about both of those for a second, because what puzzles me is that both Ultimatte, and Fairlight, Ultimatte that does blue and green screen compositing, especially for live shows. And Fairlight which does audio, both audio posts but more importantly live audio. Both Ultimatte and Fairlight are focused on live production, but Blackmagic’s tradition has been in post, why the shift into live?

Dan May: Well, we are always looking to expand, and we have moved quite a bit into live, without ATEM Live Productions, which is a number of our cameras which are focused on more live production. So while we have had products and acquisitions which continue to build on those core post production and resolve, and those assets that we have. We also are looking to expand the markets that we can go into. What is great about both of these toolsets that we can bring to the table, there is relevance into what we currently do. Obviously we do have quite a bit of understanding for what it takes, and what Ultimatte can bring to the table. But it is certainly a major step forward to what we currently have to offer, and what we think we can bring to the table in the future.

Dan May: With Fairlight, we are already working in post-production, we are already talking about high end color grading, and some live production with the ATEM, but now you are talking about really tacking on this big part of audio, and what Fairlight brings to the table. So while they are not necessarily, when someone thinks about, Da Vinci or Decklink cards, they definitely do have enough similarities, but are exciting as they are new waters for Blackmagic to expand its game changing philosophies into. That have not yet been done in those market spaces.

Larry Jordan: I can see where Ultimatte fits in with your ATEM switcher, because the ATEM’s chrome gear that comes with it as standard right now, is not particularly world class. Have you announced specific plans on how you are going to integrate Fairlight and Ultimatte with existing Blackmagic products?

Dan May: We have not. Both of those deals were done really shortly before IBC, which for some reason always tends to be the case with these announcements. The ink is still wet when we show up at the show. For right now, both of these acquisitions, the plan is that we are going to let things simmer, as they have been. People who were already customers, or been with the sales channels, or support channels, are going through those same channels. It is going to be a “continue as normal” while we get into the details, of what do we have, and what are our plans going to be?

Dan May: The good news is now we have a track history, where people can look back and see success in all these acquisition, and all of them are difficult, and different. Certainly when we did the first Da Vinci acquisition, you definitely understood why where was scepticism or doubt, or confusion, about what Blackmagic was going to do. But here we are some seven years later, more people are going to look at this and say, why there maybe some questions about where we are going, there is still a lot more faith instilled into where things are going to go. But what those details actually are, we would all love to turn around say, look there is a $300 Ultimatte and it comes with a resolve and a camera, because why not, Blackmagic does those things. Obviously we have to dig down into the core infrastructure, of what both of these product lines have, where we think they can go, and really dig into what those next steps are going to be.

Dan May: Right now it is a really excited to have both these teams on board, it’s exciting, and both companies have been doing great work for so many years. We think that all parties involved are going to benefit, and ultimately, having faith in what is going to come, the users are going to be the ones to see the great outcomes of this. I’m really looking forward to, when we do get to those steps, I’m sure there is going to be a lot of excitement out in the market place.

Larry Jordan: In spite of the fact that I’d like you to tell me the next six companies Blackmagic is going to acquire, so I could sort of get ahead of the curve. What criteria does Blackmagic consider when deciding whether to acquire a company? What is it looking for?

Dan May: Well there is no obvious answer, that is like, hey we are going to be able to make something happen. Different things will be things like, when we see a business that has success, and generally they reach a point where they reach some kind of challenge that they cannot overcome alone. Sometimes that can just be as simple as, the cost of business is obviously high for anyone to be successful in this market place, but the things that Blackmagic does really well when it comes to the way we are organized, the way our marketing is, the way our organization has this powerhouse built behind it. That takes a lot of pressure of some of these companies that are built around a core engineering group that have a great technology, but don’t necessarily have the muscle to get to a wider audience. A lot of these products and our industry, has been prophecated on needing to sell expensive hardware because the market place will only bear so many users to maintain a business model. Ultimately, Blackmagic models a much different structure than that. We are a big believer in bringing more people to the table, being able to empower more users, and that means that we have to have the muscle and infrastructure to sell a lot more units at a lower cost. That is much more difficult to do if you have not built your company to be like that, or if you are not sure if your product can get there.

Dan May: So a big thing of what we are looking at when we look at some of these directions are, if there is a company that has a great technology and has found success out there, then maybe the metrics do not make as much sense in 2016 as they did in 2006, let’s say. Sometimes Blackmagic’s marketing development and muscle that we have through our infrastructure, can lead the two into a new beginning for those technologies. That is a big piece, kind of a starting point, but these have all been difference, they have all brought different things to the table. But usually the core piece is that that core technology is really good, has been validated out there in the market, and then it comes to what we think we can do with it.

Larry Jordan: I was looking over my press releases from IBC, all 753,000 of them, of which most were from Blackmagic, you guys announced a bunch of stuff that didn’t involve acquiring a new company. What were some of the big announcements at IBC that were not acquisition based.

Dan May: The two that jump out to be the most significant, we did announce a new Teranex AV product. We did announce Teranex mini 4k model, as far as new hardware is concerned, we did have a number of press releases. Some of them were software updates with DaVinci Resolve and Fusion which is always great to see those moving forward. We have tried to cut back on announcing products that we have ready to get out the door, so we only have two hardware announces, Teranex AV and the Decklink mini 4K. The mini 4K is really quite simple to get their head around, it is another Decklink, a long standing product family that we have. We wanted to introduce a low cost, small profile, Decklink card that is simply a HDMI in, or HDMI out to have 4K, we find so many people only need one direction, looking for that low cost solution to use with their software application. It doesn’t really come much easier as far as what this product is, than the Decklink Mini 4K model. At $200 and shipping at the show.

Larry Jordan: The Teranex interests me, that is a format converter, what is the Teranex AV in a paragraph?

Dan May: So the Teranex AV, Teranex is that up down cross converting type of product. What we really wanted to focus on is building a product more for those AV professionals that have specific needs that maybe your broadcast truck, or your post production guide does not need. A lot of that has to do with a latency that is involved in doing these conversations in switching. Obviously if I am in a post-production facility, and I am just trying to say, look someone brought in this data cam and I just need to make it Ultra HD. The fact that I’m not switching between different formats, and latency is not really an issue, and different broadcast needs. Usually I am always converting X to Y. But in the AV space, there is a lot of changes where, I need this to go to that, and this to change to this, and I need those projectors, or these TV’s and displays, where that latency and sync is all such a big deal that there is extra processing power that needs to be built into these products to be able to handle that. So the Teranex AV is really focused on that kind of space, where I am trying to do these kind of conversions, I thought 3 Gig SDI and 12 Gig SDI and a bunch of HDMIs and I need to know that whatever I am going to do, not only am I going to have that higher quality, and higher standard. But I need to know that latency is erased, so that we don’t have screens doing odd things, or various things that typical broadcasting and post production products would do. So that is the key bit here, it is very similar as some of our other Teranex expressing the light, offering writing cross conversions. The big thing there is the processing power that is needed is super low latency.

Larry Jordan: Any interesting camera announcements?

Dan May: Right now our big camera thing is still that we have done our data launch of the 4.0 software which we were showing at NAB, we launched that a few weeks. We have just done another updated, which was well received by customers. Just adds a great new functionality and usability to the Ursa mini cameras, and it is great to be able to put so much customer feedback into these. So no new hardware announcements, but we are enjoying the success of Ursa Mini being able to have this new software out in front of customers, and taking that feedback and putting it right back into the product, for people to feed this immediate reaction to the software development.

Larry Jordan: For people who want more information about Blackmagic products, where can they go on the web?

Dan May: They can always find us at HYPERLINK “http://www.blackmagicdesigns.com” www.blackmagicdesigns.com

Larry Jordan: Day May, is the President of Blackmagic Design US, and Dan, it’s always good visiting.

Dan May: Appreciate it, I always like doing the interview good job.

Larry Jordan: Laura Blum is a filmfestivals.com blogger a thalo.com contributing writer, and a discerning film critic. Hello Laura, welcome back.

Laura Blum: Thank you so much Larry.

Larry Jordan: Last week we began talking generally about new films. Looking at the Arab Spring, which was a series of protests and riots, which began in Tunisia in the winter of 2010. This week I want to get more specific and take a look at a film called, As I Open My Eyes. Tell me about this.

Laura Blum: So Larry it is really the most textured drama of the new wave that we were talking about last week. This wave of social dramas and genre of films. You have now fiction added to, what had been the first wave, let’s say. Which was more documentary. So As I Open My Eyes, made by Tunisian film maker Leyla Bouzid. What is interesting is that it unfolds in the summer prior to Tunisia’s jasmine revolution that was December 2010. So what interests her is that she is not tracking what is going on in the streets during the revolution, she was moved by the Why? Of the revolution. What was so oppressive and unfair in the lives of the characters, that would push them out to the streets to bring down the Ben Ali dictatorship?. So it takes place on the eve of the revolution.

Larry Jordan: What is the significance of treating these dramatic events dramatically rather than from a documentary point of view?

Laura Blum: We are now able to protect with the protagonists that allows us a way to really empathise and feel like we are in their shoes. Yes of course it is always going to be a different culture and there is a learning curve there, but let’s take the protagonist of As I Open My Eyes. She’s an 18 year old free spirit with crazy wild hair, and funky clothing, her name is Farah. She has just been tapped to be the lead singer in a band, where she is hot on rocker dude Borhene. So there is a love affair there, we can all relate to that. She is considerably less charmed by her mother’s strict rules, and fear mongering. And we can talk about that.

Larry Jordan: We are centring back to a mother daughter relationship, why is that so important?

Laura Blum: It is interesting in this particular context, the mother has a very strict sense of how Farah should carry on. Both socially and in her case, she wants Farah to forget about music, and particularly the bands provocative protest songs, which are very dangerous. She wants her to study medicine. But girls just want to have fun, these days, not so much in the traditional way. Farah is stick to death of everything being off limits, so again, things are particularly off limits to women, in this traditional view. This protagonists name is Farah, and it means joy, in Arabic. Which becomes ironic, as the worst of her mother’s paranoia turns out to be justified. So really it is a coming of age story where the age guiding Tunisia is marked by police abuse and the monitoring of ordinary citizens. It is more acute, we feel it more, by the vulnerability of this woman.

Larry Jordan: There is another film in the genre called Sand Storm, tell me about that one.

Laura Blum: Yes so Sand Storm is a particularly interesting film as well, it comes out of Israel, made by a Jewish Israeli woman, Elite Zexer. Made with a Jewish Arab crew. It is set in a Beduin village in the Negev. Like Farah, the wilful teen at the center of Sand Storm, her name is Layla. She has a secret heart throb too. Her father Suliman does not approve, I mean this guy, Suliman, on the one hand he has nurtured Leyla’s education, he has given her driving lessons, he has even given her a cell phone. But he is forcing Leyla into an arranged marriage, which is considerably less modern.

Larry Jordan: These are some wonderful specifics, but what I am interested now is, how can film makers take what is happening in these narrative films, and turn it into new films? What I would like to do is bring you back next week and look at how these films have influenced production financing in the areas. Is that ok with you?

Laura Blum: I would love to thank you.

Larry Jordan: Laura Blum is a blogger for filmfestivals.com and a contributing writer for thalo.com. Laura thanks for joining us today.

Laura Blum: My pleasure.

Larry Jordan: Ned Soltz is an author, an editor, an educator and consultant on all things related to digital video. He is a contributing editor for Creative Planet, a moderator on Two Pop and Creative Cow forums, and a regular here on the Buzz, which makes me always grateful. Hello Ned, welcome back.

Ned Soltz: Hello Larry, always good to be back. We have missed a week or two, so always good to be back in the swing of things.

Larry Jordan: Well it is time to get an update, because I know you have been following the news out of IBC, especially regarding what is happening in cameras and lenses. What are you seeing?

Ned Soltz: Well the first thing I was seeing out of IBC, which is totally unrelated to cameras and lenses is more of the trend toward IP. A good example of that is new tech, introducing an entirely IP based control room, or live control situation. As well expanding their software based NDI protocol. So essentially, what we are going to be seeing, in terms of broadcast as well as production facilities, even small production houses. Is the use of IP technologies to be able to share resources. Any kind of cameras that might be on that IP network, can be available to anybody else on that particular IP network. Whether locally or remote. As well as other sources, graphics. I think we are entering a very very new world right now with the expansion of IP. And I am using New Tech as an example because their NDI protocol, their several communication protocol’s, seems to be getting a lot of traction with a lot of third party vendors coming along. As well as their whole new production switch, it’s an area to be watching for. Because I think regardless of where we are, whether individual shops, or part of a larger organization, we are just going to be seeing these new trends, and communication of devices with each other.

Larry Jordan: The only problem I have got with IP is, it requires all new hardware, all new converters and rewiring your entire shop. Which for many people is not trivial.

Ned Soltz: New Tech tried to address that with its solution, in that it can also be backward compatible. With legacy coax situations and installations. But yes, ultimately to go totally IP there will be total rewiring of facilities. So it is an investment but I think it is a trend that we are going to be seeing, more and more of over the coming years right now.

Larry Jordan: Interesting, I am also interested in what kind of flexibility it provides. We will talk about that in the future. I want to shift gears back to lenses. What is happening in lenses?

Ned Soltz: Lenses has been fascinating this time, because we are starting to see a whole new range of lenses. We have been shooting with this less expensive large sensor cameras and essentially using still lenses on them. Or if we don’t use still lenses then we are going into much more expensive cine lenses. Now there is an intermediate level of lens. Which is marketing at a cine lens. Something available generally in EF or PL mounts. Sometimes individually, sometimes the mounts are interchangeable, depending on the product. But we are seeing lenses, let’s say the $3500 to $14000 range. With longer throws for focusing, with better cine glass, with larger elements which are more precise, so let’s focus breathing. Both in terms of primes and in terms of zoom lenses and we saw a number of introductions at IBC this year, in that area.

Larry Jordan: Well James DeRuvo, during the Doddle News update, mentioned also that there was a number of announcements at Photokina. What caught you attention?

Ned Soltz: What caught my attention at Photokina was three specific cameras. One right now, in reality, the Sony Alpha 99 ii, which will be shipping in a month or two. Which is incorporating the same sensor as the mirrorless Sony A7R ii, but it is a mirrored, although fixed mirrored camera. New auto focus system, Slog 2, Slog 3, for video shooters, extraordinarily fast auto focus, but that auto focus doesn’t carry over into video functions.

Ned Soltz: A definite advance in the Sony Alpha line. As well as the prototype announced of the Panasonic GH5, which is very exciting. With internal 4K video, 4K 60p video shot internally, I mean, that has got a lot of excitement ahead of it. As well as Olympus’ entry now, into 4K video. All of these are prototype cameras for some time next year, but certainly great developments and certainly welcomed by GH4 shooters, and other Micro Four Thirds shooters, that is going to be very exciting next year to see that development.

Larry Jordan: So camera technology is not dead?

Ned Soltz: Oh by no means, only the tip of the iceberg.

Larry Jordan: Ned for people who want to keep track of what you are writing, where can they go on the web?

Ned Soltz: Well the best place is Creativeplanetnetworks.com or redshocknews.com both of those are going to be airing articles.

Larry Jordan: Ned Soltz is the writer that seems to be everywhere. Ned thanks for joining us today, we will talk to you soon.

Ned Soltz: Thank you Larry.

Larry Jordan: Scott Page is a musician, technologist and serial entrepreneur. He currently serves as the CEO of Ignited Network which is a start-up music accelerator. Focused on teaching artists how to think like a start-up. Hello Scott welcome back.

Scott Page: Hi Larry, good to talk to you again.

Larry Jordan: Well we are at the end of our five step process, the space process, which we can follow to grow our business. Just to summarise, the letter S stands for Story, and it is how we describe our business and our passion to others. P stands for Plan, it is a method for setting goals, for ourselves and our company. A stands for Army, a group of people committed to expanding our brand. C stands for Conversion which gets people to convert their interest in us, into buying our products. And that leaves, just one letter, E.

Scott Page: E stands for Education, and this one is really important because in order to implement the rest of the space model, we have to get educated. Marketing has shifted more in the last three to five years than it has in the last 50 years. We now have the ability to go direct to consumer in a different way, we can talk to our customers, so we now need to learn how to use these new tools that are so important for the new independent, kind of, contact creator businesses. So what do you do? How do you do that? I am always amazed how many people do not really use Google in the right way. All you have to do is start asking questions.

Scott Page: My first thing that I would tell these, find the thought leaders, the people that really understand your business and start following them and learning. You can go online and you can type in, like last week, talk about conversation funnels. Type it in, and you will find tons of information on that. Start looking and finding different folks that you can gain knowledge. I have a couple of sites that I would recommend. One is called Hubspot. And Hubspot is a company that has online marketing services, but what they have in there is a tab called the Academy Tab. In there is over a hundred free ebooks, ebooks like How to Use Twitter for Business, How to Run a Facebook Ad Campaign. All the types of things you need today to really understand, how to reach and target your audience and convert. There is another one I want to bring up, Copyblogger.com. One of my favorite sites of all time, this is all about content marketing and how to write compelling copy. It’s my favorite email, I would suggest signing up to their newsletter, and getting that everyday. So it is really about finding those folks, that have great information, and can help you learn the different things that you need to really succeed today in this new world of how marketing works.

Larry Jordan: So education is not for our audience, the education is for ourselves?

Scott Page: Exactly, because it is so different now than I was before. Marketing used to be a different thing, now we have the ability to do a lot of these things ourselves. There are so many wonderful tools out there to help you, but if you do not know about them, and you are not educated, you are going to have a hard time figuring this stuff out.

Larry Jordan: So, Story, Plan, Army, Conversion and Education. A five step process to growing a business. Scott this is very cool. Where can people go on the web to learn more about the stuff you are doing?

Scott Page: Go to Ignited.network that is no dot com, just ignited.network.

Larry Jordan: And Scott Page is the CEO of Ignited Network. Scott this has been a great visit, thank you so much for your time.

Scott Page: Thanks again, Larry, talk to you soon.

Larry Jordan: Here is another website I want to introduce you to, doddlenews.com. Doddle News gives you a portal into the broadcast, video and film industries. It is a leading online resource presenting news, reviews and products for the film and video industry. Doddle News also offers a resource guide, and crew management platforms specifically designed for production. These digital call sheets, along with their app, directory and premium listings provide in depth organizational tools for busy production professionals. Doddle News is a part of the Thalo Arts Community, a worldwide community of artists, film makers and story tellers. From photography to film making, performing arts to fine arts, and everything in between, Thalo is filled with resources you need to succeed. Whether you want the latest industry news, need to network with other creative professionals, or require state of the art online tools to manage your next project. There is only one place to go, doddlenews.com.

Larry Jordan: Boris Yamnitsky is the founder and president of Boston based, Boris FX. His company creates effects and graphics tools for the video, post production, and broadcast industries. He founded Boris FX in 1995, and currently they have more than a million users. Hello Boris welcome back.

Boris Yamnitsky: Hi Larry.

Larry Jordan: So I just want to hear the news directly. What did you announce at IBC?

Boris Yamnitsky: Well our biggest news was the acquisition of GemArts and the Sapphire product line.

Larry Jordan: Why did you acquire GenArts?

Boris Yamnitsky: Well it is a fabulous product, we have been working side by side for so many years. I am a big fan of the company and their products, and we have been working the same market, same customers. There is a lot of synergy, a lot of momentum that is very beneficial for both companies in this merger. I usually refer to it as a merger, because it is basically a merger of the minds and the merger of the teams, and technologies that make up all these products.

Larry Jordan: Well you have been working side by side for so many years, why suddenly change your thinking and bring them on board?

Boris Yamnitsky: Actually the idea is not new, it has been bounced around for years. We just thought it was the right time, and right opportunity and of course, both companies jumped at it.

Larry Jordan: I was just reflecting, you started the company in 1995, and for the first ten years, give or take a little bit, you were happily moving along doing your own thing. Then in 2014, you merged with Imagineer, and now in 2016 you are merging with GenArts. Is this a new focus on acquisitions rather than internal growth?

Boris Yamnitsky: It is both. We are always interested in other companies and what other teams are doing in the industry. Obviously we would like to benefit from more than just our internal development team. At the same time our internal development team have done very nice really, in the sanctity of time. Moving our product lines along. So it is a dual strategy. But it works very well for our business.

Larry Jordan: So what happens to the GenArts team?

Boris Yamnitsky: We are all going to be working out of Boris FX headquarters in downtown Boston. Side by side. This is a very exciting opportunity because just this morning we had an engineering conference call, where engineers from Imagineer who are working out of the UK, Cambridge office, so GenArts and the Boston office of Boris FX, were all sharing ideas about plugging integration, about technology, about knowhow, and for me personally it was very very exciting me to hear this happening, and the brightest engineers in the space all essentially working under the same roof.

Larry Jordan: GenArts is best known for Sapphire, which has been around for a long time. Are you going to leave Sapphire as a standalone product, or is it going to get integrated into Boris Continuum Complete, or whatever that becomes in the future?

Boris Yamnitsky: There is obviously no plans to change any of the existing brands, or existing product lines. What will happen though is a lot of the technologies that are on both sides, or I should say all three companies, will be leveraged, will be shared between the products. We have already successfully proven that strategy with integrating Mocha tracking into the Boris Continuum. In the end our customers will benefit from this merger.

Larry Jordan: How about existing GenArts customers, what do they need to do? What do they need to know? And should they be nervous?

Boris Yamnitsky: They definitely should not be nervous, as a matter of fact, Sapphire announcement about a week ago, and shipping is scheduled within days. If anything they should expect more integration, more features, better performance and in the end better solutions, in the product they know and love.

Larry Jordan: Earlier in the program we talked to Blackmagic about their announcements at IBC, where they acquired both Ultimatte and Fairlight. You have been acquiring recently both Imagineer and GenArts, is consolidation where the industry is headed right now?

Boris Yamnitsky: It is not so much consolidation, and I want you to think for a moment that both Mocha and Sapphire are the best. Very well developed and fast moving products. They actually represent the future of this market. These are not slowing down or undervalued products, these are really the flagships of the market.

Larry Jordan: So you don’t think consolidation is the future?

Boris Yamnitsky: I do not think so. It is not just about consolidation, it is not just about putting several companies or products in the same space. It is leveraging the technology, it is taking advantage of teams working together, sharing their knowhow, sharing their experience. Plus there is a lot of advantage in smaller companies joining together, not so much in smaller companies joining a very large company, but smaller companies when they join together, every company has to have a website and all kinds of marketing and sales tools, expenses and trade show booths. So all this can be put together under the same roof and resources can then be channelled in more productive ways. So there is a lot of benefit for the companies and customers.

Larry Jordan: I know that the big announcements was the acquisition of GenArts, but you also made some other IBC announcements, what is happening elsewhere with Boris and Mocha?

Boris Yamnitsky: I think our biggest news at IBC, was the announcement of Mocha VR, and that is our layer of foray into the emerging VR space which is very exciting. It is a brand new direction for the company and for the group of the companies, and both products. We are very active and working in this space, and very excited, to be early adaptors of this technology. Mocha VR is going to be pretty amazing, and at the same time, we announced more support of DCC.

Larry Jordan: What can we look forward to in the future, what do you think next year is going to hold? What trends are you watching at the moment?

Boris Yamnitsky: On the market in general there is definitely going to be more visual effects used, in both production, broadcast, film. That is the general trend, and I just know that our group of companies and that Imagineer, Boris and GenArt will be very well positioned to address the growing need for visual effects. With three excellent product lines, Mocha Boris Complete and the GenArt Sapphire.

Larry Jordan: Boris, for people that want more information on the web, where can go?

Boris Yamnitsky: They can definitely go to HYPERLINK “http://www.borisfx.com” www.borisfx.com there is also HYPERLINK “http://www.genart.com” www.genart.com and HYPERLINK “http://www.imagineersystems.com” www.imagineersystems.com

Larry Jordan: Three websites and no waiting. Boris Yamnitsky is the founder and president of Boston based, Boris FX Boris it is always fun visiting with you, thank you very much for joining us.

Boris Yamnitsky: Thank you very much Larry for having me.

Larry Jordan: We will continue our look at announcements from IBC next week, as we talk with the CEO of Cooke Optics about their latest cine lenses. It has been an interesting exploration of IBC, not only new technology and new products, but new spins on existing technology, which I find fascinating. I want to thank our guests for this week, Dan May of Blackmagic Design US. Boris Yamnitsky of Boris FX. Ned Soltz with Creative Planet. Laura Blum with Thalo Arts. Scott Page, Ignited Networks and James DeRuvo with Doddle News.

Larry Jordan: There is a lot of history in our industry, and it is all posted to our website at digitalproductionbuzz.com. Here you will find thousands of interviews all online and all available to you today.

Larry Jordan: And remember to sign up for our free weekly show newsletter that comes out every Friday. Talk with us on Twitter at dpbuzz and Facebook at digitalproductionbuzz.com.

Larry Jordan: Our theme music is composed by Nathan Dougie Turner with additional music provided by smartsound.com. Text transcripts provided by Take 1 Transcription. Visit take1.tv to learn how they can help you.

Larry Jordan: Our producer is Debbie Price, my name is Larry Jordan and thanks for joining us for the Digital Production Buzz.

Larry Jordan: The Digital Production Buzz is copy write, 2016 by Thalo LLC.

Digital Production Buzz – September 22, 2016

Join host Larry Jordan as he talks with Dan May, Boris Yamnitsky, Ned Soltz, Laura Blum, Scott Page, and James DeRuvo.

  • Blackmagic Design Discusses Their IBC Announcements
  • BorisFX Discusses Their IBC Announcements
  • Thalo Arts: Arab Spring (Part 2)
  • New Cameras, Lenses and IP/Video Workflow Announcements
  • Startup Artist: Use SPACE to Grow Your Business (Part 5)
  • DoddleNEWS Update: GoPro and Photokina

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Listen to the Full Episode

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Buzz on iTunes

Guests this Week

Featured Interview #1: Blackmagic Design Discusses Their IBC Announcements

Dan May
Dan May, President, Blackmagic Design, Inc.

Blackmagic Design shakes up the industry… again. Dan May, president of Blackmagic Design/US, discusses their major news at IBC: they acquired Ultimatte and Fairlight.

Featured Interview #2: BorisFX Discusses Their IBC Announcements

Boris Yamnitsky
Boris Yamnitsky, Owner, BorisFX

BorisFX made major news earlier this month at IBC by announcing their acquisition of GenArts. Combined with their recent merger with Imagineer Systems, this makes BorisFX a major supplier of effects software. Founder and president Boris Yamnisky joins us tonight to explain why they found GenArts attractive.

Thalo Arts: Arab Spring (Part 2)

Laura Blum
Laura Blum, Blogger, FilmFestivals.com

Laura Blum, blogger for FilmFestivals.com, continues her three-part series on feature films about the 2010 Arab Spring uprising. What’s interesting is how each of these films showcases society through the eyes of the family.

New Cameras, Lenses and IP/Video Workflow Announcements

Ned Soltz
Ned Soltz, Contributing Editor, Creative Planet, Ned Soltz Inc.

Ned Soltz, contributing editor at Creative Planet, looks at new trends in lenses that surfaced at IBC earlier this month. What does this mean for the future?

Startup Artist: Use SPACE to Grow Your Business (Part 5)

Scott Page
Scott Page, CEO, Ignited Network

Scott Page, CEO of Ignited Networks, has found a way to help creative artists of all types grow their business. He calls it “The SPACE Process.” Tonight, we wrap-up our conversation by looking at the last step: Education.

DoddleNEWS Update: GoPro and Photokina

James DeRuvo
James DeRuvo, Film and Technology Reporter, DoddleNEWS

James DeRuvo, senior writer for DoddleNEWS, presents our weekly DoddleNEWS Update.

Transcript: Digital Production Buzz – September 15, 2016

Digital Production Buzz
September 15, 2016

HOST
Larry Jordan

GUESTS

Al Mooney, Product Manager, Adobe Systems, Inc.
Michael Karg, Founder and Managing Director, The Interview People GmbH
Laura Blum, Blogger, FilmFestivals.com
Scott Page, CEO, Ignited Network
Cirina Catania, Founder and Lead Creative, The Catania Group
James DeRuvo, Film and Technology Reporter, DoddleNEWS

===

Larry Jordan: Tonight on The Buzz, we look at some of the big announcements coming out of IBC. We start with Al Mooney, the product manager for professional video at Adobe. He joins us to explain Adobe’s latest announcements on collaboration, virtual reality and the creative cloud, and then he explains what they mean.

Larry Jordan: Michael Karg co-founded the Interview Company in 2007 and since then it has expanded until it has outlets in more than 80 countries. Tonight, Michael joins us to explain what his company does, and how they’ve been so successful.

Larry Jordan: Laura Blum, contributing writer for Thalo.com begins a three part series on films of the Arab Spring. This uprising began in 2010, and now is filtering into feature films.

Larry Jordan: Scott Page continues his five part series on growing a successful creative business using his SPACE process. Tonight he looks at converting fans into dollars.

Larry Jordan: And after nine years, we’re saying goodbye to supervising producer Cirina Catania. We look back at the last decade of The Buzz and think about some of her favorite interviews.

Larry Jordan: All this, plus a DoddleNEWS update with James DeRuvo. The Buzz starts now.

Announcer: Since the dawn of digital filmmaking – authoritative – one show serves a worldwide network of media professionals – current – uniting industry experts: production, filmmakers, post production and content creators around the planet – distribution. From the media capital of the world in Los Angeles, California, The Digital Production Buzz goes live now.

Larry Jordan: And welcome to The Digital Production Buzz, the world’s longest running podcast for the creative content industry covering media production, post production and marketing around the world. My name is Larry Jordan.

Larry Jordan: Well, like any bee in the spring, each fall IBC pushes our industry in a new direction, and tonight is the first of two shows looking at the major announcements at IBC. This week we’re talking with Adobe Systems. Next week, we’ll talk with Blackmagic Design, Boris FX, Cooke Optics and Ned Soltz. Between acquisitions and new products, there are major changes this month. Also something we learned as we researched The Buzz audience. We said a better understanding of film criticism improves the films that we create, so we invited Laura Blum, film critic and writer to become a regular on the show to expand our coverage and our creative thinking.

Larry Jordan: These are times of change in our industry and for this show. After nine years we’re saying goodbye to our long time producer, Cirina Catania. It’s been a long, exciting and eventual trip and we get to chat with her one more time, tonight.

Larry Jordan: I also want to remind you to subscribe to our free weekly show newsletter at digitalproductionbuzz.com. Every issue, every week, gives you an inside look at The Buzz quick links to the different segments on the show, and curated articles of special interest to film makers. Best of all, every issue is free.

Larry Jordan: Now it’s time for a DoddleNEWS update with James DeRuvo, the senior writer for DoddleNEWS. Hello James, what’s the latest?

James DeRuvo: Hi Larry. Well, the big story this week is Lytro CEO Jon Karafin saying that the company is working on a handheld version of their light field cinema camera. It’s that iconic rectangular shape tube camera and what it can do is it can capture all the light available in 3D space and it enables you to adjust everything from focus, ISO to shutter speed, aperture, depth of field, you can adjust it all, after the fact, after you take the picture and after you make the video. They came out last year with a … model.

Larry Jordan: OK, so we’ve got a possible light field camera which can be handheld. What else do we have for news?

James DeRuvo: Atomos updated the Shogun Inferno external monitor recorder this week. It can now record 4K 60 and it comes with AtomHDR engine with ten stops of dynamic range and the seven inch ultra-bright monitor has 1500 nits so you don’t even need a hood to view it in bright daylight. It shoots in several different kinds of RAW and wide screen and 4:3, and it’s a really super cool external monitor recorder that’s really ridiculously bright.

Larry Jordan: You know, I’ve been thinking, we’ve got a lot of production stuff, but is there anything that helps us get the scripts written?

James DeRuvo: Well, Final Draft released their version ten this week.

Larry Jordan: Oh wow.

James DeRuvo: And the big takeaway is that you’ll be able to collaborate in the cloud with anybody around the world, so it’s like having a virtual writer’s room and it comes with the ability to have a bird’s eye view of your story structure through Story Maps, Beat Boards and Structure Points. And you can jump in and out between any point on the script, move things around, and it has really cool new features. The one I really like though, it has Alternate Dialog options that you can actually save in the script file, so that if you want to just see where your dialog can take you, you can actually use different dialog and see how it plays. And it’s on sale right now for 30 percent off until September 26th, so you can pick it up for 169 bucks, or 79 bucks for an upgrade.

Larry Jordan: Yes I know, but the thing that was impressive to me, is I had to drag you away from your computer tonight to be able to do this report. What’s the latest on social media?

James DeRuvo: Well, social media history is being made this week because tonight, Twitter for the very first time is streaming the NFL. So go to Twitter right now, and watch the New York Jets play at Buffalo Bill’s, live in HD and it’s gorgeous.

Larry Jordan: I’m surprised I was able to get your attention at all for this report tonight. That’s very impressive.

James DeRuvo: Well I’m ready for some football Larry.

Larry Jordan: You know, one of the things that impressed me about that light field camera, is that not only can you focus it after the fact, it actually records a 3D picture, so you can get a sense of walking around the image as opposed to just a standard 2D picture. I’m really excited about what this handheld camera can do.

James DeRuvo: Yes but the big challenge that we’re going to have is that the file sizes are 400 gigabytes per second of video. So it requires this ridiculously huge supporting trailer that has servers in it to do all the recording. It’s going to be quite a challenge to get all that down into a handheld feature. But if they do, it could really change the way we make movies.

Larry Jordan: And James, what website for people that want to stay current with you?

James DeRuvo: All these stories and more can be found at DoddleNEWS.com.

Larry Jordan: That’s DoddleNEWS.com. James DeRuvo is the senior writer and James, thanks for joining us, we’ll talk to you soon.

Larry Jordan: I want to introduce you to a new website, Thalo.com. Thalo.com is an artist community and networking site for creative people to connect, be inspired and showcase their creativity. Thalo.com features content from around the world with a global perspective on all things creative. Thalo is the place for creative folks to learn, collaborate, market and sell their works. Thalo is a part of the Thalo Arts Community, a worldwide community of artists, film makers, and story tellers from photography to film making, performing arts to fine arts, and everything in between. Thalo is filled with resources you need to succeed. Visit Thalo.com and discover how their community can help you connect, learn and succeed. That’s Thalo.com.

Larry Jordan: Al Mooney is the senior product manager for professional video at Adobe. He’s responsible for the overall strategy of video editing and content creation from mobile to desktop. And he has been busy this week. Hello, Al welcome.

Al Mooney: Hey Larry, how you doing?

Larry Jordan: You know, it’s not how I’m doing, it’s how you’re doing. First you’re a new father. Second you go to IBC, and third you change the world with all your announcements. Have you had any sleep in the last week?

Al Mooney: I actually, to be honest with you, cheated this year. My beloved daughter came six weeks early and so I did not go to IBC I think for the first time in 15 or so years. I relied on my wonderful team mates to tell our exciting stories for me. Yes, being a new father is a bit too much of a handful to travel to Europe.

Larry Jordan: Well many congratulations.

Al Mooney: Thank you so much.

Larry Jordan: So let’s get right to it. What did Adobe announce at IBC?

Al Mooney: So as usual we went to IBC with a whole host of new things to reveal for our digital video audio products. New features are coming to pretty much all the key products. If I start with Premiere Pro, we had a really exciting thing, which is a whole new way for creative people to work together, as we’re seeing more and more the desire to collaborate across boundaries, across borders. So we revealed a new piece of technology which is based on something we’ve had before called ‘Anywhere,’ and this is a thing called ‘Team Project.’ Basically, what this lets you do is, as a user of either Premiere Pro or indeed Prelude or After Effects, instead of working on a project which is locally staged to your machine, you work inside a team project. That’s something that we host on Creative Cloud, and it means you’re able to collaborate across the different disciplines, and work fundamentally on the same project. It’s very powerful. It’s a deep collaboration service, does all the things you’d need it to like version control, conflict resolution, all of that stuff. You can work with centralized media if you’re in that kind of a workflow, or indeed local media. You can even use Creative Sync, which is our Creative Cloud technology for enabling people to sync media, to work with proxy files to ensure everyone’s got the same pieces of media locally synchronized. To work together, every time you’ve done something, you single click, upload your changes, single click for those guys, downloads those changes to them and we can all work inside that same project that’s managed remotely. So that’s a really powerful new way of working with team members.

Larry Jordan: Well you’re calling these reveals. I would call them announcements. What’s a reveal mean to you?

Al Mooney: We just use the term reveal because basically when we go to these shows, we are talking only about the features, we’re not discussing things like timing or pricing. It’s just a slightly different piece of terminology. That’s the word we’re encouraged to use so I’m just making sure I play the right game.

Larry Jordan: So you’re using reveal to say this is features, but you haven’t announced ship dates and pricing yet?

Al Mooney: That’s exactly what I’m saying.

Larry Jordan: Well, does Team Projects, which is a wonderful piece of collaboration software, does that require Adobe Anywhere, because the hardware specs for Adobe Anywhere are pretty steep?

Al Mooney: That’s a great question, and I should have mentioned it. No, that’s the beauty of it, or one of the many beauties of it. Absolutely no additional hardware is required and even better than that, no additional knowledge. That’s the great thing, the After Effects person sits in front of After Effects, Premiere Pro person, Premiere Pro. Prelude, Prelude. Really, there’s about two or three pieces of new UI, a little share icon and a little download changes icon, things like a history slider, so you can go back to previous versions. But you’re just using the same machine you were using on the previous version and we’re managing everything in Creative Cloud. So there’s no new costs for hardware whatsoever.

Larry Jordan: Well as soon as somebody says they’re managing stuff on the cloud, we read every day about new hacks to cloud services from the rich and famous, down to the small and insignificant. What’s Adobe doing to assure security for our media and our projects?

Al Mooney: Well I think the most important thing to answer about that is if you’re talking to media organizations, generally their primary fear, paranoia, or whatever, is the media itself. So, Marvel don’t want their stuff stolen for example. But the great thing is, because this is working fundamentally with local media, as I say if you’re on a shared storage infrastructure you can still do this, but we’re not doing anything with media. All we’re doing is managing a database that understands who the users are on a certain team project, and what changes have been made. Of course this is all encrypted at a very high level, Adobe is constantly looking at ways to improve security and it’s extremely important to us. But in terms of what’s up there, really it’s just fundamentally encrypted edit decisions and so on, so there really should be no concern about losing important crucial pieces of media at all because we just don’t deal with media. That’s something that’s local.

Larry Jordan: So to get a picture of this in my own head, if I’ve got a team of editors working centrally off a server, what you’re allowing them to do is to share information about their projects, but the media is still stored internally on the server?

Al Mooney: That’s precisely correct. So those guys would need a connection to the internet obviously, such that they could use the Creative Cloud service to manage all the collaboration. And like I say, that’s what changes have been made in the comp, what changes have been made in the edit. There’s a title here. All those kind of things, everything except the media. So if I was in a facility working on shared storage, that’s one way of doing it. But like I say, the other thing is you can just keep local copies. Now if you want, you could use Creative Cloud to sync those pieces of media, that’s an option you have. But we’re not telling you you have to do that. As long as everyone has access to similar media, there’s a thing called the ‘Media Management Panel’ which lets every user link directly to their similar repository of media, and then once again, it’s really just all about sharing the changes and the decisions that you make creatively.

Larry Jordan: Philip Hodgetts said last week as he was talking about this, that this is really the one last strength that Avid Media Composer has. That now Adobe is going head to head with Avid on collaboration. Do you see it being directly comparable?

Al Mooney: I’m not going to say it’s directly comparable. The way Avid have done it is not the same as us. We’re very much leveraging what we have with the Creative Cloud and that back end. But I will say that the fundamental notion of making it easy for people to work together is something that’s extremely important to us, and you’ve seen this with various other things in Creative Cloud too. Things like libraries, like creative sync and making it very easy for people to share their creative ideas and so on. It’s hugely important to us, so that’s what it’s all about. Making it easy for people to work together wherever they are.

Larry Jordan: Before I change the subject to virtual reality, because you mentioned libraries, I have to ask, can we now put video up to a library?

Al Mooney: That is still not supported right now. We know people want to do it, but there’s some technical issues that we’re overcoming. You can have your stock video as part of the library, but in terms of using libraries to share actual pieces of video media, it’s currently still not there I’m afraid, but like I say you can use things like Creative Sync, shared folders within there to overcome that problem. So there’s ways over Creative Cloud to share media, it’s just not something that’s inside libraries right now.

Larry Jordan: Well tell your engineers to have it working by Tuesday would you please?

Al Mooney: Certainly Larry, anything for you.

Larry Jordan: What’s happening to virtual reality?

Al Mooney: VR is fascinating. As you know, it’s been such a juggernaut in the industry, I’m so excited that we adopted it when we did. People are really using Premiere a lot to make VR content, and so what we’ve done this time is focused on making it easier to get started and just make the experience a lot more pleasant. So whereas in the current shipping version you need to tell us what you’ve got, you need to tell us that it’s a piece of VR media, you need to tell us what kind of VR media it is. Is it monoscopic, what kind of stereo etcetera? All of that goes away with the next release, so we have a model which we call ‘Auto Detection,’ so we’re just going to read method data in that media. We know it’s VR, you’re going to import it, you’re going to throw it on a sequence, and then you just need to click the VR button to start working. So just taking those multiple steps of having to wrangle settings away from the user, have them be able to just get being creative straight away, is one big thing.

Larry Jordan: Go ahead.

Al Mooney: We’re also enabling people to hide those controls, so we have pan and tilt controls in the interface, but actually we’ve found that what most people do is they like to click and drag directly on the media that is intuitive to them, it’s the way people expect to work. So you can hide those VR controls and just make that VR media even bigger. Loads of other things, but I guess those are the two directly obviously user facing features.

Larry Jordan: What’s happening with After Effects?

Al Mooney: After Effects is all about performance. They’ve done a whole bunch of stuff recently. As you’ve probably seen, all the last releases have been about performance. The support for Team Projects is in After Effects as well. They have the brand new 3D renderer, they’ve got the Maxon C40 standard render in there, that’s a fast multi threaded 3D renderer, and it lets you do things like text extrusion, beveling, advanced 3D inside After Effects that’s fast and easily accessible to people who maybe haven’t used 3D before. It’s faster, a lot more use of the GPU, in general, in terms of what’s happening, within a comp, but also a lot of their effects are now being imported to the GPU. I think it’s four, I need to check, but I believe four new effects come to the GPU so you’re going to feel that it’s snappier, more responsive. Things like playing back footage, whereas we used to need you to cache frames, now for the vast majority of source footage that you’re playing back, you hit play and it’s just going to go. So snappier, faster, new 3D renderer, all about performance this go round.

Larry Jordan: I was watching a video where Carl Solay is making faces to his monitor. What’s going on with Character Animator?

Al Mooney: And what wonderful faces they are. I wanted to export those frames and keep them as my desktop image. Character Animator has come on in leaps and bounds. I’ll just call out a couple of really exciting things that’s happened with that. For those of you who don’t know Character Animator allows you to animate characters simply by moving your face in front of your camera. It’s very powerful and it’s being used far and wide. So the live ‘Simpsons’ episode that aired a couple of months back, Homer Simpson himself was being driven by Dan Castellanata via Character Animator. Things like Cartoon Donald Trump and stuff like that you’ve seen on late night TV, all using Character Animator. So that’s really exciting in itself. A bunch of new features as well, the most notable one is we’re now going to have dynamic link support for Character Animator. That means instead of having to export your project as a piece of footage, bring it in to Premiere Pro, you can have that, if you will, live connection so you’re going to bring it in as if it’s a piece of footage, any changes you make are just going to update in real time, just like they do with After Effects.

Al Mooney: Really important is a new file type for Character Animator, the dot puppet. It gathers everything you need into a single place so it makes it much easier to share with your team members and so on. Improved things like eye gaze, being able to record eye gaze movements separately. It’s always such a fun thing to talk about this. Improvements with performance in general with big puppets as well, so big things happening there too. We’re really excited by Character Animator. Like I say, the way it’s being used is just tremendous, so exciting to watch.

Larry Jordan: You’re improving the audio in Premiere. Are you migrating the audio engine from Audition into Premiere?

Al Mooney: What we’ve done this time is we’ve introduced a lot of new audio effects in Premiere Pro. They are the same audio effects that appear in Audition and that does a bunch of things. Firstly if you’re a Premiere Pro user it means you’ve got new well performing great sounding high DPR UI effects. That’s important, we needed to modernize our audio effects in Premiere, and we’re really done that. It also means that your workflow from Audition improves automatically. We’ve done a lot with Audition improving its workflows with Premiere Pro recently, supporting things like dynamic link, … frames and so on, but now if you use those effects in Premiere Pro you pass them over to Audition, you’re going to see those effects perfectly brought over. So really we’ve been focusing on making the effects layers as similar as possible to improve integration between the two applications.

Larry Jordan: So when are you going to ship all this stuff?

Al Mooney: I am not at liberty to answer that question, you know that, I can’t believe you asked me. No, if you look back at the way we’ve done it, you can probably get a fairly good idea, but right now it’s all about the features, we’re just telling our wonderful customers what’s coming next and hopefully sooner rather than later.

Larry Jordan: And where do they go on the web to learn more?

Al Mooney: There’s two places you should go. There’s adobe.com, all the information’s there, and also just Google ‘The Creative Cloud Blog’ and see all of our videos and blog articles that detail all of these things that are coming soon.

Larry Jordan: Al Mooney, senior product manager for professional video at Adobe, thank you so very much, we’ll talk to you soon.

Al Mooney: It’s always a pleasure Larry, take care.

Larry Jordan: Bye bye.

Larry Jordan: Laura Blum is a filmfestivals.com blogger, a Thalo.com contributing writer, and a former film and television development executive with Sony BMG. Hello Laura, welcome back.

Laura BLum: Happy to be here.

Larry Jordan: I’m interested in your thoughts about a new wave of films looking at the Arab Spring which was a series of protests and riots that began in Tunisia in the winter of 2010. What are you seeing?

Laura BLum: What we’re seeing Larry are a lot of films. We’re five to six years after the Arab Spring, and we’re starting to see something of a new wave of social dramas and genre movies.

Larry Jordan: How did the media first cover the Arab Spring?

Laura BLum: You saw a lot of documentaries at first so anybody with a smartphone took to the street, and folks were out there filming what was going on. So what you saw was just a spate of you are there documentaries. They went viral, you and I saw them, and they also made the rounds at festivals. A lot of these came out of Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, other countries, and I absolutely loved a wisecrack that Variety put over which was “Democracy did not always win out, but documentary absolutely did.” I just thought that really summed it up.

Larry Jordan: How did narrative films borrow from the original documentaries at this time?

Laura BLum: They were dealing with a lot of the underlying issues, some of the contradictions and frustrations that triggered the upheaval in the first place. You’ve got some themes like tradition versus rebellion, political and or world surveillance, cultural pressures of shame and fear, individual freedom versus collective responsibility, and it’s fun to watch that a lot of the new film makers are millennials and they are pushing back against social restrictions.

Larry Jordan: How did the films portray this push back against social restrictions? What cultural pressures were these films dealing with?

Laura BLum: Some of the films I actually want to talk about, one in particular is ‘As I Open My Eyes,’ by a Tunisian film maker. It, like the other films I want to talk about, centers on mother daughter relationships. So you have a lot of these tensions and some of what’s going on here is in order to portray the larger society, in this film and in a lot of the other ones, this film unfolds in three acts. You’ve got family, society and poverty. And the film maker, Layla Bouzid, said, and I quote, “To solve the problems of society, you have to start with the family.”

Larry Jordan: But why mother daughter relationships? Why not father son?

Laura BLum: Great question Larry. Women are the repository of honor in traditional Arab society. And of course that’s changing, but there’s still a very firm bedrock there where women are how a family feels honor, and conversely, shame.

Larry Jordan: You know Laura, there’s a lot more to talk about with these films because I’d like to get a sense of some individual examples of new narrative films on the Arab Spring. Can we bring you back next week to talk more specifics?

Laura BLum: With pleasure.

Larry Jordan: Laura Blum is a Thalo.com contributing writer and a filmfestivals.com blogger and Laura, as always, it’s a delight having you on the show. Thanks.

Laura BLum: Thank you.

Larry Jordan: Scott Page is a musician, technologist and serial entrepreneur. He currently serves as the CEO of Ignited Network which is a start up music accelerator, focused on teaching artists how to think like a start up. Hello Scott, welcome back.

Scott Page: Hi Larry. Good to see you, good to be back.

Larry Jordan: It’s always wonderful to hear your cheerful voice at the other end of the mic. We are in the middle of a conversation on what you call the SPACE process. This is a five step process that we can follow to grow our business. We’ve learned so far that S, which stands for story, is how we describe our business and our passion to others. P, which stands for plan, is a method of setting goals for ourselves and our company. A, which stands for army, is a group of people committed to enabling our brand to grow. So what does C stand for?

Scott Page: C is the big one, it stands for conversion. And this is where I find most all these businesses or these small artist owned businesses fall down. They know how to make stuff, but they don’t understand how what they call conversion funnels work. And today we have all these new techniques, we have science now in data to tell us how do we move somebody through the process. So conversion funnel is really like the first time you get to talk to somebody, you invite them, and let’s take an online conversion funnel. If you find somebody online and you send them to a landing page, they at least got to the landing page, and then we want them to do something, we want them to convert. We want them to give us their email, so whatever the copy landing page says, we get them to input their email. Now we have their email, the next step is what’s the welcome email? They’ve just got onboard it, they signed up to whatever your offer was, now the next funnel is the welcome email, or the welcome experience. And then that needs to lead into the next thing, what am I going to offer? So how do I move people through the funnel to build trust, because to get people to buy and to get people involved in what you’re doing, a lot of times it really takes the trust. So these conversion funnels are techniques that are now well defined, and I suggest that anybody out there listening to start with just Google conversion funnels and start learning how to use those. But the converting part of getting somebody to actually pay for your product, is where it falls down and we now need to use the science that we have to really help us go through that.

Larry Jordan: Well we’ve talked about the fact that we need to build trust between our audience and us, so that they feel comfortable buying whatever product it is that we’re selling. What should we not do? What tears down conversion rates?

Scott Page: Being too forceful in the beginning. You’ve got to be very careful about ‘the ask.’ And what I mean by that, a lot of times, the first thing they ask is go buy something, go do something, so the key is to build that trust through the relationships, through the conversations you have, and once you can build that trust people will then do it. So the most important thing is not to try to be hard sell right out of the gate, because that usually turns people off.

Larry Jordan: So it sounds like what a conversion funnel is a series of steps that we can follow that bring people into the fold until they finally feel comfortable opening up their check book and sharing it in our direction?

Scott Page: Absolutely, and again, this is very well defined, and you can start learning how these conversion funnels work. But that technique and that understanding is really important.

Larry Jordan: OK, we’ve got four letters. We’ve got one to go. Can we bring you back next week to wrap it all up and discuss the letter E?

Scott Page: Let’s do it.

Larry Jordan: Scott, where can we go on the web to learn more about you?

Scott Page: That’s Ignited.network.

Larry Jordan: Scott Page is the CEO of Ignited Network at ignited.network, not .com, ignited.network. Scott Page, thanks for joining us today.

Scott Page: Thanks Larry.

Larry Jordan: Here’s another website I want to introduce you to. Doddlenews.com. DoddleNEWS gives you a portal into the broadcast, video and film industries. It’s a leading online resource, presenting news, reviews and products for the film and video industry. DoddleNEWS also offers a resource guide and crew management platforms specifically designed for production. These digital call sheets, along with their app, directory and premium listings, provide in depth organizational tools for busy production professionals. DoddleNEWS is a part of the Thalo Arts Community, a worldwide community of artists, film makers and story tellers. From photography to film making, performing arts to fine arts, and everything in between, Thalo is filled with resources you need to succeed. Whether you want the latest industry news, need to network with other creative professionals or require state of the art online tools to manage your next project, there’s only one place to go. Doddlenews.com.

Larry Jordan: Michael Karg is the founder and managing director of The Interview People, started in 2007 with his partner Matthias Wuerfl, The Interview People was highlighted as one of the 50 most innovative start ups in 2012. Hello Michael, welcome.

Michael Karg: Hello Larry.

Larry Jordan: So how would you describe The Interview People?

Michael Karg: Well The Interview People is a niche agency. We provide text and images to media worldwide. Magazines and newspapers can come to our platform and look for a content, be it features, interviews or images. And they can license it then for their publication.

Larry Jordan: It’s almost like stock footage except you’re doing interviews rather than images.

Michael Karg: Yes that’s right. We ourselves don’t do the interviews. We receive interviews done by journalists working for publishers that we incorporate with, or freelance journalists who submit their interviews to our platform and we offer it to the media.

Larry Jordan: Why did you decide to start the company?

Michael Karg: Actually it all started with Matthias. Back in the day he was a freelance journalist himself and he has done a lot of interviews with pop stars and musicians, and as a freelancer he started from the beginning to look for magazines, mainly in Germany, who were interested in those interviews. Then the idea came up that we could do this on a broader basis, internationally, not only with his content but also with content from others. And from then we also decided that we approach publishers, and came up with many UK publishers like the Telegraph, Times, Independent, and they were actually quite eager to participate. They run their own syndication department, but we have quite a good approach and connection to the market through many magazines, so we are incorporating with them now for years, and have a lot of very good content.

Larry Jordan: Are all of your interviews designed for print? Or do you do audio or video interviews as well?

Michael Karg: Actually they’re all designed for print. However, all our interviews that we receive from freelance journalists are all on tape so they would also be suitable for radio and when we started the whole thing we not only approached the print market, and the digital online market, but also the radio market. But we found it was very hard to actually market interviews in the radio market because firstly there are a lot of small radio stations who would be interested, but somehow lacked the budget, or also already have quite good services. So we focused then on the print and online market.

Larry Jordan: Who are some of your typical customers?

Michael Karg: Typical customers are international magazines like Marie Claire, Elle or Playboy, and also national newspapers all around the world. But we also have a lot of smaller publications which are quite successful in their territories, so we are not only going out to the English speaking market or the German speaking market, but we have climbed more than 80 territories, so it’s always exciting seeing which languages the content appears in.

Larry Jordan: 80 countries. That’s a lot of distribution.

Michael Karg: Absolutely. It’s not like we have 100 clients in every country. Sometimes it’s just one client, but like in Mongolia, for example, we had one client. But yes, it’s always nice to receive the copies and see the credit printed in foreign letters.

Larry Jordan: How do you get the interviews? I know that you started with Matthias’ work, but how do you get interviews now? Are you soliciting freelance journalists to send them to you?

Michael Karg: Yes, on the one hand we’re incorporating with some freelance journalists for years now, so it’s routine now that they send through their content and we offer it. On the other hand, we’re incorporating with publishers and scan their content on a daily basis and see what kind of content they have, then we pick and go from there.

Larry Jordan: What types of interviews are the most popular?

Michael Karg: Celebrity interviews from movie business and also music business, but we found also that the fashion industry gains a lot of attention, so there are a lot of fashion designers or models which are quite popular for editors. But we have a lot of interviews with people from the arts, literature, politics, sports, especially now with the Olympics for example, Usain Bolt’s interview was highly sought. So it’s a very wide range of interviews that appeal to the market.

Larry Jordan: It sounds like these interviews are not breaking news, but more evergreen, where they’re not dated, you can run them at any time? Is that true?

Michael Karg: That’s correct yes. We did deliberately not focus on any news because the news market has some big players like Reuters, Bloomberg, and they operate on a very large scale. So for us it’s simply not manageable to get the news, and the name defines that it’s just for one or two days and that’s it. Our content is actually more long term. Sometimes we even sell interviews which are from last year because it’s an interesting interview, if there’s timeless quotes, if things haven’t changed that much they are still worthy, so for us it’s better to have this long term content. I mentioned we have a lot of magazines, and they have to prepare their magazines for example, now for December. So when they print the interview, it should still be somehow important and newsworthy too for the readers.

Larry Jordan: Is there a type of interview that is in demand that you can’t get enough of, you wish you could have more of a particular type of interview?

Michael Karg: Not really. I have to say that in the course of all the years we’ve built up a large network. It’s never enough of course, but I would say we have a really good portfolio. On the other hand, we are always eager to receive interest so if anybody has interesting interviews or story that they have written, they are absolutely welcome.

Larry Jordan: And if they do, and if they submit them, can they make money from your site?

Michael Karg: Yes, absolutely. We have a 50/50 share with our freelance writers, so whenever we make a deal, we report this deal to them, we send them a status report, and at the point when we receive the money from our client, we forward the freelance journalist their share.

Larry Jordan: What are your plans for the future? What’s the next step?

Michael Karg: Actually we’re just working on a new content program, because in recent years the market has got more difficult, and we found that some publishers are interested in content but don’t have the budget. So we try to find new ways that we can still offer the content to publishers, but monetize it maybe in a different way, so we’re working on a model where we’re taking a third partner from the advertising industry, because what publishers do have is ad space, and so, maybe we can monetize content via this way.

Larry Jordan: For people who want more information about your company, where can they go on the web?

Michael Karg: They can just go to HYPERLINK “http://www.theinterviewpeople.com” www.theinterviewpeople.com.

Larry Jordan: That’s all one word. Theinterviewpeople.com. Theinterviewpeople.com and Michael Karg is the co-founder and managing director for The Interview People, and Michael, thank you very much for joining us today.

Michael Karg: You’re very welcome, it was a pleasure talking to you Larry.

Larry Jordan: Cirina Catania has been producing The Buzz for the last nine years, and has booked almost 1400 interviews for this show during that time. But what you may not know, is that she’s also a successful writer, director, journalist, and tech evangelist. She’s a former senior marketing executive at MGM UA, and United Artists, and is one of the original co-founders of The Sundance Film Festival. Hello Cirina, welcome back.

Cirina Catania: Hi Larry. Boy we have some history don’t we?

Larry Jordan: I tell you, we do indeed. You know, it’s a delight to welcome you back to the show, but I’m truly sad to announce that you’re moving on to greater things. What’s happening?

Cirina Catania: I know. Well we’re still going to be in the same big sandbox. For the last five months I’ve been struggling with data hacks that I had, and in the process of that, I really started examining what I was doing. I’m a very creative person, and like all creatives we have to renew our sources of inspiration and look for new beginnings so I decided that after all these years, especially with the new owners of The Buzz, you and Stephen Ross and Page and all our wonderful new regulars, and then with Debbie Price really ready to step up, if I was going to do it now’s the time, so I am headed out into some new places. Big ideas, big spaces right?

Larry Jordan: Sounds wonderful, but let’s take a look back for just a second. What were some of the highlights in producing the show, aside from the lost sleep?

Cirina Catania: Even if you’re making a film, you still have to do The Buzz and you don’t sleep for 48 hours at a time. Yes, that was fun. Oh I don’t know, I think back at all of the discoveries that we made. Just finding people who were starting out and watching them grow over the years. People like Philip Bloom or iOgrapher or even Frame io that’s going after a $10 million investment source now, and look at Rampant Design and people like Wes Plate with Auto Duck. I looked at my key ring today and I saw the beer opener with the duck on it. So you know, watching people that I can find in my research and through friends, and bringing them on The Buzz and introducing them to our listeners and then over the last nine years watching them grow. You know, when we first started The Buzz, Soundcut was on version six probably?

Larry Jordan: Version four.

Cirina Catania: Version four, my goodness. So Apple, and Adobe and all of those companies have really grown. It’s just watching history unfold I think.

Larry Jordan: You have a gift for being able to spot trends before they become a trend. I’ve always been amazed at that in you. As you look at it, how has tech and media changed over the last ten years? I mean, you produce shows on a regular basis, what’s struck you?

Cirina Catania: I think it’s changed a lot because we’ve gone from using large crews to using smaller crews. The budgets have shrunk and I think that clients are wanting more for less and that’s been stretching a lot of creatives, and I think we’ve tried to be as helpful as we can on The Buzz to help them monetize what they do. Help them understand that they’re not alone, and can give them guidance with new tech and the gear and the gadgets that we all love so much. So I think we’ve been able to help.

Larry Jordan: If you had to prognosticate on what’s going to happen in the future in media, what would you guess?

Cirina Catania: I really think the more things change, the more they stay the same. We’re going to have creatives doing their best to tell stories as best they can and using whatever new technologies develop. It might be new cameras, it might be 4K, 8K, 10K, 100K, it really doesn’t matter. The techniques might change, but it’s still all about storytelling, and I think that the world of creativity’s not going to change. And that’s why I really want to keep being a tech evangelist out there and working with my team at Lumberjack and you know Blackmagic’s coming to New York to talk. I’m going to the all American high school film festival at the beginning of October. Yeah, working with young people and mentoring, as I get older then I can turn around and mentor other people and go to user groups and watching people come up to you afterwards and answering their questions and seeing how excited everybody is. Also, being able to finish my film., that’s going to be really nice. But, hopefully, you know, we can still do The Buzz once in a while.

Larry Jordan: Oh I would be sad if that didn’t happen. And thinking of that, nobody can take your place, but we have a new producer who’s going to be wearing the producer hat.

Cirina Catania: Yes, I’m very excited. Debbie Price, there’s nobody better. She’s been producing NAD for several years now so everybody knows her, she’s been with you for something like 11 years. I can’t think of anybody better, and that’s another reason why, if I was going to make this transition, now’s the best time to do it. You know, I feel like my baby has grown up and is going off to college, and there’s some great professors going to take really good care of her.

Larry Jordan: Now you’re forcing me to wear a clean shirt. For people that want to keep track of the films when you finally get them done, and the other projects you’re working on, where can we go on the web to keep track of you?

Cirina Catania: Go to thecataniagroup.com and that’s my last name, thecataniagroup.com.

Larry Jordan: And the supervising producer of The Buzz and film maker in her own right, Cirina Catania is the head of The Catania Group, thecataniagroup.com. Cirina, giant hug, thank you for all of your hard work.

Cirina Catania: Thank you Larry.

Larry Jordan: Take care, bye bye.

Cirina Catania: Hug back to you and thanks to everyone that’s helped over the years.

Larry Jordan: Take care.

Larry Jordan: You know, it’s a time of change in the industry, and it’s a time of change for the show, but I think there’s some really exciting things coming that I’m looking forward to seeing and I wish Cirina the very best, and I wish Debbie great success as she takes over from some very very large shoes.

Larry Jordan: I want to thank our guests tonight, Al Mooney from Adobe Systems, Michael Karg, The Interview People, Laura Blum, filmfestivals.com and Thalo.com, Scott Page, Ignited Network, James DeRuvo, DoddleNEWS and the inimitable Cirina Catania with The Catania Group.

Larry Jordan: There’s a lot of history in our industry and it’s all posted to our website at digitalproductionbuzz.com. Here you’ll find thousands of interviews, all of them online and all available to you today, a capsule of the industry for the last ten years. And remember to sign up for our free weekly show newsletter that comes out every Friday. Talk with us on Twitter @DPBuZZ and Facebook at digitalproductionbuzz.com.

Larry Jordan: Our theme music is composed by Nathan Dugi-Turner with additional music provided by Smartsound.com. Text transcripts are provided by Take1 Transcription. Visit Take1.tv to learn how they can help you. Our producer for tonight’s show is Debbie Price with assistance tonight from Cirina Catania.
Larry Jordan: My name is Larry Jordan and on behalf of all of us, we wish Cirina the very best, and thank you for joining us for the Digital Production Buzz.

Digital Production Buzz – September 15, 2016

Join host Larry Jordan as he talks with Al Mooney, Michael Karg, Cirina Catania, Laura Blum, Scott Page, and James DeRuvo.

  • Al Mooney Shares Adobe’s Latest Announcements
  • “Interviews R Us” – The Interview People
  • Narrative Films of the Arab Spring (Pt. 1)
  • Use SPACE to Grow Your Creative Business (Pt. 4)
  • Supervising Producer Cirina Catania Says Farewell!
  • The Latest from DoddleNEWS

View Show Transcript

Listen to the Full Episode

(To download the show, right-click Download and click “Save Link As…”

Buzz on iTunes

Guests this Week

Featured Interview #1: Al Mooney Shares Adobe’s Latest Announcements

Al Mooney
Al Mooney, Product Manager, Adobe Systems, Inc.

Adobe made big news at IBC with announcements on collaboration, virtual reality and the Creative Cloud. This week, Al Mooney, product manager for professional video at Adobe, joins us to explain what they announced and what it all means.

Featured Interview #2: “Interviews R Us” – The Interview People

Michael Karg
Michael Karg, Founder and Managing Director, The Interview People

Michael Karg and Matthias Wuerfl co-founded The Interview Company in 2007. Since then, it has expanded until it has outlets in more than 80 countries. Tonight, Michael joins us to explain what his company does and how they’ve been so successful.

Narrative Films of the Arab Spring (Pt. 1)

Laura Blum
Laura Blum, Blogger, FilmFestivals.com

From the protests and riots starting in Tunisia in December, 2010, the Arab Spring uprising first generated documentaries. Today, as Laura Blum reports, narrative feature films are examining these events in new ways.

Use SPACE to Grow Your Creative Business (Pt. 4)

Scott Page
Scott Page, CEO, Ignited Network

Scott Page is a musician that specializes in growing companies. For the last few weeks, he’s been sharing his five-step “SPACE” Process that enables your creative business to grow and succeed. Tonight we discuss Step 4 – Conversion.

Supervising Producer Cirina Catania Says Farewell!

Cirina Catania
Cirina Catania, Founder and Lead Creative, The Catania Group

After 9 years of dedication to the show, we say a fond farewell to our longtime Supervising Producer: Cirina Catania. She is moving on to some major new projects, so, tonight we have one last chance to catch up and say good-bye.

The Latest from DoddleNEWS

James DeRuvo
James DeRuvo, Film and Technology Reporter, DoddleNEWS

In this week’s DoddleNEWS update, James DeRuvo talks about more announcements from IBC that have the media world excited!

Transcript: Digital Production Buzz – September 8, 2016

Digital Production Buzz
September 8, 2016

HOST
Larry Jordan

GUESTS
Tom Andersen, Co-Founder, Palmer Andersen
Philip Hodgetts, President, Lumberjack System
Maxim Jago, Director, MaximJago.com
Ned Soltz, Contributing Editor, Creative Planet Network
Scott Page, CEO, Ignited Network
James DeRuvo, Film and Technology Reporter, DoddleNEWS

===

Larry Jordan: Tonight on The Buzz, since the dawn of email we’ve been accumulating thousands and thousands of messages, but how do we keep track of all those important business communiques? Tom Andersen, the co-founder of Palmer Andersen, has developed Email Archiver Pro. Tonight, discover how this utility can help you regain control over your electronic correspondence.

Larry Jordan: Next, Philip Hodgetts travels to Amsterdam to share his thoughts on what to expect tomorrow, when the IBC 2016 trade show opens. And, thinking of IBC, Ned Soltz, contributing editor to the Creative Planet network, continues by sharing his thoughts on what new camera gear we can expect.

Larry Jordan: Then, producer director Maxim Jago reports from Venice, Italy, about the ongoing Venice Film Festival. This show has grown in importance over the years, especially for independent filmmakers, as Maxim explains.

Larry Jordan: Next, Scott Page continues his five part series on growing a successful creative business using his SPACE process. Over the last two weeks, Scott has explained the letter S and P, and tonight we discover what A stands for. And, as always, James DeRuvo wraps up the week’s news in our DoddleNEWS Update. The Buzz starts now.

Larry Jordan: Since the dawn of digital filmmaking…

Voiceover: Authoritative.

Larry Jordan: …one show serves a worldwide network of media professionals…

Voiceover: Current.

Larry Jordan: …uniting industry experts…

Voiceover: Production.

Larry Jordan: …filmmakers…

Voiceover: Post production.

Larry Jordan: …and content creators around the planet.

Voiceover: Distribution.

Larry Jordan: From the media capital of the world in Los Angeles, California, The Digital Production Buzz goes live now.

Larry Jordan: And welcome to the Digital Production Buzz, the world’s longest running podcast for the creative content industry, covering media production, post production and marketing around the world. My name is Larry Jordan.

Larry Jordan: Well, it’s an exciting week for filmmakers. Yesterday, Apple announced the new iPhone 7 and 7 plus, featuring a greatly expanded camera and, tomorrow, the IBC trade show opens in Amsterdam. Tonight’s show provides a variety on both of these events.

Larry Jordan: IBC is always an interesting show. It’s one of the two major events in our industry each year that many developers use to announce, promote and release new products. It’s our second largest trade show, and the largest one in Europe. It’s filled with conferences, news and exhibits that we’ll be hearing more about over the next several months. Now, I don’t expect anything revolutionary, rather I expect IBC to continue to the rapid evolution in cameras, storage, virtual reality and graphics processing that’s become an accelerating trend over the last few years, and we’ll have more on this throughout tonight’s show.

Larry Jordan: I also want to remind you to subscribe to our free weekly show newsletter at digitalproductionbuzz.com. Every issue, every week, gives you an inside look at The Buzz, quick links to all the different segments on the show, and curated articles of special interest to filmmakers. Best of all, every issue is free. With our first look at IBC, here is James DeRuvo with a DoddleNEWS update. Hello, James!

James DeRuvo: Hello Larry! Well, fasten your seatbelts because, even though IBC hasn’t started yet, we already have a ton of IBC news.

Larry Jordan: Well, what’s new with IBC?

James DeRuvo: Well, Adobe recently announced a new Creative Cloud update, which focuses on key projects collaboration. You’re able to edit through multiple edit workstations through the use of proxies and notifications keep track of changes and conversations so everybody stays on the same page. There’s a live text feature through After Effects, that enables you to make last minute title changes without the need of re-rendering, and Adobe has expanded its HDR10 support. In After Effects, there’s an automatic detection and monoscopic and stereoscopic video for virtual reality and, for the use of the new character animation utility, they now are able to share puppets through a .puppet file which contains all the character attributes and details.

Larry Jordan: Very cool.

James DeRuvo: Then over at Sigma, which is one of those lens brands that’s like a Visio of lenses. There’s real high performance for a very affordable price, and they just announced eight brand new lenses that are divided up into three separate categories: a high speed zoom category, a full frame zoom category, and a high speed prime category. In the high speed zoom category, they are announcing an 18-35mm T2, a 50-100mm T2, and the in the full frame zoom line, a 24-35mm T2. Then for the full frame high speed prime line, they’ve got a 20mm, a 24mm, 35mm, a 50mm, and an 85mm, and all of those lenses are at T1.5, so they’re screaming fast.

Larry Jordan: Alright, so we’ve got Adobe and Sigma, what else is new?

James DeRuvo: Panasonic also announced the VariCam Pure, which is essentially a VariCam 35 that will house the new Codex V2-Raw recorder in a combined modular fashion. The hybrid camera will only shoot in 4K Raw, at frame rates of up to 120fps, and it comes as a direct response to customer demand for being able to shoot in uncompressed Raw at those high frame rates.

James DeRuvo: There’s no word on when the VariCam Pure will be available or how much, but insiders say that users of the VariCam 35 now will essentially be able to just add the V2 Raw recorder to their camera when it comes out later this year and have a similar configuration.

Larry Jordan: Well, there’s a lot more announcements coming from IBC. We’ll have more from this on Ned Soltz and Philip Hodgetts later on in the show, but I want to take a step back and look to yesterday. What struck you as most significant in Apple’s announcements?

James DeRuvo: Well, Apple’s announcements were basically all around cameras. The new camera of the new iPhone 7 is going to have a new six element lens, with an F1.8 aperture setting, so it’s going to be pretty fast. You’ll be able to have a lot better performance in low light. It’ll also have optical image stabilization, and the iPhone 7 plus, which is the larger twin, is going to have two rear facing 12MP cameras. One is a wide angled lens and the second a 56mm telephoto, so you’ll be able to have 2X optical zoom and a 10X digital zoom. But the killer feature is coming in a firmware update later this year, where Apple promises that shooters will be able to have a shallow depth of field and … for the first time in the iPhone’s product line. But that’s only going to be in the new portrait mode for stills. I really don’t think that’s going to impact the video portion of the camera until probably next year when they introduce the iPhone 7S.

Larry Jordan: Could be fun. There’s lots of stuff both coming from IBC and more things to learn about Apple. For folks that want to keep track of what the news is in our industry, where can they go on the web?

James DeRuvo: You can find all these stories and others at doddlenews,com.

Larry Jordan: And senior writer for DoddleNEWS is James DeRuvo, and James, thanks for joining us today. We’ll talk to you next week.

James DeRuvo: Okay, Larry.

Larry Jordan: Take care, bye! I’ll be back with Tom Andersen right after this.

Larry Jordan: I want to introduce you to a new website, thalo.com. Thalo.com is an artist community and networking site for creative people to connect, be inspired and showcase their creativity. Thalo.com features content from around the world, with a global perspective on all things creative. Thalo is the place for creative folks to learn, collaborate, market and sell their works. Thalo is a part of the Thalo Arts community, a worldwide community of artist, filmmakers and storytellers. From photography to filmmaking, performing arts to fine arts, and everything in between, Thalo is filled with resources you need to succeed. Visit thalo.com and discover how their community can help you connect, learn and succeed. That’s thalo.com.

Larry Jordan: With a background in cosmology and particle physics, Tom Andersen is a serial entrepreneur who has spent two decades writing a series of successful and well-reviewed Macintosh and IOS applications. He’s the co-founder of Palmer Andersen, and has developed an interesting utility called Email Archiver Pro. Hello Tom, welcome!

Tom Andersen: Hi, and thanks for having me.

Larry Jordan: It’s my pleasure. Tom, let’s start with an easy question: how would you describe your company, Palmer Andersen?

Tom Andersen: Well, we do sort of a little bit of everything. We actually develop websites for customers like magazines and we develop web applications for all sorts of different businesses, and then we also do a couple of things on our own and one of the bigger ones, as you know, is Archiver. We do a couple of other applications on our own like our Lead Assign and Spotdox applications. I guess we’re going to talk about Email Archiver today.

Larry Jordan: We do indeed, but I have another couple of questions for you. You’re the Chief Technology Officer, why did you decide to found the company?

Tom Andersen: We used to be in Toronto and I found myself out of the city working by myself, and I basically started a very small office with a friend of mine who is more on the design side of it, James Palmer, and we decided to start a company together and hire a few people, and now we have an ongoing little concern in our small lakeside town here in Thornbury.

Larry Jordan: Well, you’ve mentioned that one of the products that you’ve created is called Email Archiver Pro. What is it?

Tom Andersen: Well, what it does is it takes an email account or a whole company’s email account and turns them into PDFs. What that does is allows it to get out paper quality archive of all your email, and people use that for various reasons, like getting a backup that they can count on, because PDFs will be a digital archive format for many decades to come, and sometimes people feel that their email is just sitting in the cloud and one bad keystroke or something like that and it’s just gone. So this allows some companies and individuals to get control of that.

Larry Jordan: Who would you continue a target customer?

Tom Andersen: I guess we have a couple of target customers. One is just a person who wants to change their email account from say, a Hotmail account, to an Office 365 account, or something like that. They may not have the technical expertise to run the whole import and export of the email on their own, and if they go and try and hire someone to do it, it will cost them a lot of money and at the same time they don’t want to take a chance and lose all that information. This allows them to get it all down on their computer and then maybe try and do the conversion, and if it works it works. If it doesn’t, they’re okay, because they still have all the information safely on their computer and organized in file folder format of PDFs and all the attachments are all exported out into folders. So that’s one kind of customer, and then the other kind of customer is small to medium size offices that need to archive their emails for reasons like business rules or laws that force you to make sure you have archives of your emails. Some of our competition, I guess you could say, for bigger companies and medium size companies is more along the Oracle sales person kind of thing, where you’re talking a lot of money before you get started. We have an app that you run on a Mac and enter in a bunch of email addresses.

Larry Jordan: I was looking at your website and thinking about this, and we’re going to talk pricing in a moment, but it’s totally affordable for individuals as well as companies. I’ve got say three computers, and I may be sending email to the same email account, but from different computers, can you pull all that information and consolidate it, or do I need to have three versions of your application, one for each computer?

Tom Andersen: Well, usually you can just run it on any computer. It doesn’t even have to be the computer where your email is on, but it depends on what your email habits are and how long you’ve had an email habit. I find a lot of people who have been, like me and probably you, who have been doing emails for decades, some of the email is just on their computer and it’s nowhere in the cloud. What we do for that kind of email is vital. We pull it out of Apple Mail or wherever it’s sitting and turn it into PDFs so that it really exists somewhere. Then the other thing we can do is connect to an IMAP account, just given the authorization for that, and then download and convert the emails into PDFs on the fly like that. So there’s really multiple ways of getting your email into it.

Larry Jordan: One way is it reads the stuff that’s on the disk, and the other way is it acts like its own email client, goes up to the email server and says hi, give me whatever you’ve got?

Tom Andersen: Right, exactly. So the first time you run it, it might take a few hours or so to generate 10-50,000 emails and then the next time you run it, it just generates the 200-300 you’ve gotten in the last day or so.

Larry Jordan: You’ve seen my email collection! What platforms does it work on?

Tom Andersen: It’s a Mac only product. We are actually thinking about doing a web version, where there is no app to download, you just go on the internet and use it, but there’s a few hurdles to cross for that. I think we’ve got a handle on that, and we’re looking at that next year.

Larry Jordan: Well emails, at least on Apple Mail, and they vary from application to application, each email is an individual file stored on your computer. When we consolidate them using Archiver Pro, are they separate PDF files, which means the file size is going to balloon, or do you put them into single documents, or how does it work technically?

Tom Andersen: Each email will turn into a PDF and then if it’s got attachments those attachments go into an attachment folder of the same name as the PDF, and we name the PDF with the date and the subject of the email. There’s a few options there. But then what happens with the size of it, as I thought too when I was writing it that it would be a lot bigger, but for a typical person’s email who gets some attachments and that kind of thing, it actually is about the same storage size as the original mail file because the individual little text emails go from being 1K to say 10 or 15Kb for a PDF, but the attachments get unpacked from the bin hex way that they are, and they actually shrink by 30 percent. Those are your multi-megabyte photos and everything, so it ends up balancing out. It depends, obviously, exactly what kind of emails you’ve got. The other thing about Apple’s email format on disk is that it’s basically a cache, and Apple has been trying to hide it from their users and that kind of thing, and even us, over the years, so it’s not something you should think of as being your email but it’s rather Apple’s own private format for each file. They do have export options, but it turns them into an MBox file, which isn’t something that most people want to deal with.

Larry Jordan: So when I archive my emails, am I losing access to them in the email program, or are they actually duplicated?

Tom Andersen: Sorry, I should have pointed that out. We are 100 percent a read only company, and we make PDFs and we never erase them, so it’s an archive tool.

Larry Jordan: And the original emails remain, and I would have to delete them manually?

Tom Andersen: Yes, exactly, because there are just too many issues. Like if a user made an archive and they thought it was done and it wasn’t done, and then you know, we don’t want to delete anything! That’s up to you. If you go through and you make 40,000 and then you say “Oh yes, I have 40,000 emails in here, everything looks good,” then you go through and delete … it only take a few minutes, from your email account. That’s how we recommend dealing with it.

Larry Jordan: I should mention that these PDFs are fully searchable, which is a good thing, because I dream of getting my email organized and planned and searchable. That’s my dream, and I will probably be dead before I actually achieve that, but it sounds like this is a good place to start.

Tom Andersen: Yes. Customers like law firms and that kind of thing use us to sometimes archive a whole account or sometimes just one folder of emails for a specific client or specific project, and that allows you to take the archive of those emails and pour them into the same finished product at discovery or whatever it is, that you can send off to people, and then you have it all in one package, a record of all our correspondence over the course of the project. So we have a lot of people who do it for those reasons.

Larry Jordan: How have you priced it? How much am I investing?

Tom Andersen: The single copy is $39,99, and that’s for most people. It does five emails and it will do 500,000 emails if that’s what you have in those five email addresses. Then we have a business version that is 30 email addresses, and its $100, and then we have an enterprise version, which is basically the same as the business version. It’s unlimited email addresses, but basically the enterprise is $500 because it includes enterprise level support.

Larry Jordan: Cool, and this is in the Mac App Store, or do we get it from your website?

Tom Andersen: It is in the Mac App Store. You can buy it from our website or the Mac App Store. I kind of prefer our own website, because we make a little bit more, but also the Mac App Store has an architecture lockdown that makes it harder to write applications like email archiver. It’s the same app right now, but I can’t say what Apple will do in the future. It seems that sometimes they change their mind on certain things.

Larry Jordan: One more quick question. You develop a lot of different applications. What technology trends are you keeping your eye on now? I say that because IBC is tomorrow, and we’re always interested in what the new stuff is.

Tom Andersen: I guess I’m a developer so I look at development trends. I think the next biggest trend is this Swift language in the server space at Apple, and I think that my frustration when I write server software is that the tools just don’t compare to when I write desktop software in Swift for Mac apps and IOS apps. With Apple teaming up with IBM, they’re going to be pushing this Swift technology, and what it allows us to do is build these web apps that are just going to be so much faster and so much easier to debug and build and everything. I’m really excited about that. For me, that’s a big thing coming up, but there’s lots of other things too.

Larry Jordan: Cool! Tom, for people that want more information about Email Archiver Pro, where can they go on the web?

Tom Andersen: Well, that’s simple. Just go to emailarchiverpro.com.

Larry Jordan: And the co-founder of Palmer Andersen, the company that wrote Email Archiver Pro, is Tom Andersen. Thanks for joining us today.

Tom Andersen: Thank you for your time and thank everyone for listening.

Larry Jordan: Our pleasure. Take care, bye-bye.

Tom Andersen: See you!

Larry Jordan: Maxim Jago is a film director, a screenwriter and an author, who splits his time between filmmaking and speaking as a futurist. He is also the Chief Innovation Officer at filmdo.com and a mentor for new filmmakers, and he is on the road. Hello, Maxim, welcome back!

Maxim Jago: Hello, Larry, it’s lovely to be speaking with you.

Tom Andersen: I have to ask, where are you?

Maxim Jago: I’m in Venice. I’m actually on the Lido at the Venice Film Festival.

Larry Jordan: Now we’re talking Italy here, not California, correct?

Maxim Jago: That’s right. I’ve still never been to Venice Beach. I hear the ice cream is good there, too.

Larry Jordan: The ice cream is amazing, but the architecture is totally different! Why are you at the Venice Film Festival?

Maxim Jago: Well, usually at this time of year I’m on my way to Amsterdam to speak at IBC, but we’re working hard to build up the public awareness and raise the finance for ‘Jolie’s Garden,’ our feature project, so I’ve come over to Italy. It’s my first time at the festival; I’m a regular at others, but this one I think will be a regular visitor for in the future.

Larry Jordan: Well, the Venice Film Festival has been growing over time. What is it that attracts you to it?

Maxim Jago: I read it’s the oldest film festival in the world now, and what’s interesting for me is, if you look at the films that come out in festivals like Sundance, maybe Sundance Toronto and here in Venice, they have a great emphasis on the visual, a great emphasis on the cinematography, on the composition, the art direction, and so we felt that it was a good festival to make a proper connection with.

Larry Jordan: Are they focusing on a particular genre of film, or are they screening everything?

Maxim Jago: Well, they’re screening everything. In fact I’ve just come out of a screening of a beautifully restored presentation of Woody Allen’s ‘Manhattan.’ But what’s interesting for us as well, is this is a festival where they’ve fully embraced and incorporated 360 film into the festival. They’ve been having screenings and what was billed as the first 360 feature film, which is a VR film, ‘Jesus 360,’ a film about Jesus the Messiah, which has been screening in specially designed theatres with 30 swivel chairs and headsets so that people can experience the story in VR. I haven’t seen the film, but they absolutely meant it. You know, it’s a serious story that’s told earnestly, and apparently people find it very moving. So they are fully embracing very new technology and new mediums in addition to it being a very well-established classic film festival.

Larry Jordan: Have you watched any of the 360 films? Can they actually tell a story using VR 360?

Maxim Jago: I haven’t watched the 360 films here at the festival, but I have seen other 360 films. You absolutely can tell a story. I think that the dramatic mechanism is the same as immersive theatre, and as long as you understand those rules you can make films using this new medium. It’s actually very freeing. Interestingly, I saw a film by Amir Naderi, ‘The Mountain,’ and he won a Glory to the Filmmaker award for it. It’s not a 360 film, but it’s interesting, because it’s very immersive, and it’s very emotional, with very little dialogue, really just about the texture. A friend of mine, Tom Paul, did the mix for it, and it’s all very much about the audio. That’s something that I think is really wonderful about this festival is that it places emphasis on films which are more experiential and not necessarily classic narrative.

Larry Jordan: For people that are interested in learning more, the Venice Film Festival’s website is labiennale.org. You’re heading on to IBC, but for people that want to keep track of you, Maxim, between now and then where can they go on the web?

Maxim Jago: I’m maximjago.com, pretty easy to find. The film we’re developing, ‘Jolie’s Garden,’ is joliesgarden.com.

Larry Jordan: And that’s Maxim Jago, a film director and producer and screenwriter. Thanks for joining us today.

Maxim Jago: Thank you so much, Larry, lovely to speak to you.

Larry Jordan: Ned Soltz is an author, editor, educator and consultant on all things related to digital video. He’s also a contributing editor for Creative Planet, a moderator on 2-Pop and Creative COW forums, and a good friend to the Buzz. Hello Ned, welcome back!

Ned Soltz: Hello, Larry! Good to be with everybody tonight.

Larry Jordan: Well, we are glad to have you with us because, you may be surprised to know, that IBC starts tomorrow and, in case it doesn’t come as a surprise, what’s the latest news in cameras…

Ned Soltz: Well, with all of the press releases that have been coming across the desk and all the articles I’ve been writing the last day or two, I’m not surprised about IBC at all! So we’re seeing camera introductions in the Canon C700, that was a surprise that came out of nowhere for everybody.

Larry Jordan: Last week.

Ned Soltz: Last week, right. But we’re also seeing a lot of lens introductions, and I think that’s also speaking to some interesting trends right now. Specifically I know we’ve already talked about the Sigma line that’s coming out, the Cine House lenses, and the zooms and the primes.

Ned Soltz: Zeiss has had a number of announcements this week already, with 21-100mm lightweight zoom, and a T2.9-3.9 and again, we’re looking in the $10,000 range for that, as we are with the full frame Novus lenses, 15 and 18, at 135mm, and they’re in the under $3,000 range. Lenses that are suitable for still as well as for prime work and video.

Ned Soltz: The most unique of all of these, though, are these Angenieux EZ series. The EZ1 and the EZ2 are being marketed by Angenieux in cooperation with Band Pro, that had some aspect of development, I’m certain, in the whole project. Basically each of these, the EZ1 and EZ2 have interchangeable lens elements which allow them to either be a Super 35 or a full frame. So the EZ1, for example, in the Super 35, is a 30-90mm T2. You change the lens element out, and they have a YouTube video of how to change it and, of course, the technician makes it look very easy, and I know the moment I would do it I’m going to have screws all over the floor! The cat will eat them, and I’ll be combing the litterbox for the screws! But it then can be exchanged for a rear element that turns it into a 40-135mm T3.

Ned Soltz: Likewise, their EZ2 is a 15-40 T2 in a Super 35 format. Change out that rear lens block, and you have a 22-60mm T3. Now we’re probably talking in the $20,000 plus range here.

Larry Jordan: Well, I could say that a lot of new lenses are coming into focus.

Ned Soltz: Oh, they are coming into focus, but also what’s coming into focus here is, I think, a certain maturation in the industry, and the recognition that, for many uses and many applications, we can use our relatively inexpensive 35mm still lenses for video, but those that are really looking for high quality or high production value are really going to have to look to the cine lenses. The excitement of Sigma is, I dare say, these are going to be a little more popularly priced, but we’re still at the $3,000 plus range.

Ned Soltz: But again, the other thing I tell people is they will begin to shy away at these prices, you don’t have to own it!

Larry Jordan: That’s true.

Ned Soltz: They’ll be shipping over a lot of gear these days. You’re probably far better off, if you do have a shoot on that level, of renting that lens and building that cost into your production. On the other hand, I know a shooter that had a significant gig with the PGA, for example, and so it was certainly economical of him to own, in his case, a very nice Angenieux zoom in the $20,000-$25,000 range, but he was using that every week in PGA. But by and large, rental is a possibility, so I think there’s an excitement there.

Larry Jordan: And Ned, we don’t have an entire evening here!

Ned Soltz: Well, we got a lot of lenses, that’s the problem.

Larry Jordan: What’s happening with Convergent Design?

Ned Soltz: They’ve got this unique upgrade to the Odyssey or the Apollo, that they’re calling Titan, which effectively allows you to shoot in 4K, output that to your Apollo or to your Titan and then create three shots out of that, and then a fourth shot for Alpha. So you bring in the 4K signal, you’ll get a representation on the screen of the full image, and then you can create two windows that effectively, at HD resolution, and you can switch between all of them just by pushing or dragging either a cut or a dissolve, depending on how you set that. So essentially you can use one camera for a multicam. We’re doing a lot of that now, where I know I shoot a lot of 4K for HD delivery, and just reframe in post. Now a lot of that can be done right on the recorder, and it’s not even permanent, because you’ll get the ISO’s of all of this, and then Titan will write an EDL to your SSDs, so you can bring that EDL into any of your NLEs and make adjustments accordingly and have all of those cuts that you’ve done in the recording device. That’s going to be a $1295 add-on to your Odyssey or Apollo, but they’re going to have an introductory special of $995.

Larry Jordan: And what’s happening with Sony? I understand there’s some big news coming.

Ned Soltz: Well, they have a press conference on Friday morning, and I do know of a couple of things that are going to be announced there that I really can’t talk about right now, so you’re just going to have to watch the Sony conference at 9 am CET, which East Coast is 3 am, but for you guys over on the west coast, California, that’s going to be midnight.

Larry Jordan: I will have my feet up on the sofa and some popcorn ready to go.

Ned Soltz: Right, and you’ll see what they’re doing. You know, the one thing that I do know for sure that my Sony folks have told me, and that I’m cleared to be able to say, is there’s not going to be an F5 or F55 replacement announced tomorrow, nor is that really even on the immediate horizon. So we can put that to bed. Those cameras are being constantly improved through firmware v8, and the F5-55 will ship on the 15th of September, as well as the new AXS-R7 recorder, which will have the dual slot recording as well as the XOCN compressed 16 bit codec.

Larry Jordan: And Eric in our live chat wants to know if VR is going to be as prevalent at IBC as it was at NAB?

Ned Soltz: That’s a good question. I know KIA got some announcements that they are doing about an SDK for their little device that looks like a tortured Princess Leia. That’s all I can think of when I see that KIA device. You know, I think it’s there, I think the potential is there. It’s not going to reach its full potential until somebody really discovers how to create true narrative work in VR, and then to be able to distribute it publicly. I think we’re going to see it, and Adobe’s already announced that a future version of the Creative Cloud is going to be greater VR support. It’s there, it’s a player and I’m sure we’ll see more development of it at IBC than we did at NAB this year.

Larry Jordan: Very cool. Ned, for people that want more information about what you are thinking and writing, where can they go on the web?

Ned Soltz: Well, they can first of all these days go to redsharknews.com, and creativeplanetnetworks.com as well. So that’s two places where I hang out and can be seen.

Larry Jordan: Thank you, Ned Soltz, contributing editor for Creative Planet, now owns Red Shark as well. Ned, thanks for joining us today, we’ll talk to you soon.

Ned Soltz: Goodbye.

Larry Jordan: Bye.

Larry Jordan: Scott Page is a musician, technologist and serial entrepreneur. He currently is the CEO of Ignited Network, which is a start-up music accelerator focused on teaching artists how to think like a start-up. Hello Scott, welcome back!

Scott Page: Hey Larry, it seems like we just did this!

Larry Jordan: You know, we are in the middle of a conversation on what you call SPACE, the five step process that we can follow to grow our business. S stands for Story, and it’s how we describe our business and our passions to others.

Larry Jordan: The letter P stands for Plan, which is to set measurable goals that we can use to determine where we’re headed as a company and whether or not we’re meeting them, but what’s the letter A stand for?

Scott Page: That stands for Army, and what I mean by that is when we did Monty Python and we launched Pythonline, one of the first things I did was build the Python army. What I did was put out a cattle call to all the fans, all the super fans out there, and said I need a Photoshop guy, I need a video editor, I need some bloggers. I built that army, and that army became my content and marketing engine, and it really didn’t cost me anything, so what I try to teach artists or content creators is you need to build your army first. Those are the early adopters, those people, and bring them into the fold and basically be able to start using. So it’s really looking at the influencers, because I believe influencing the influencer is one of the great tools that you can use to kind of help grow your business. So building your army is really finding those people that are passionate, figuring out how to get them involved in your content creation, and have them be part of your marketing engine.

Larry Jordan: Well it’s easy to say, but it’s hard to do. How do we find them, and then how do we convince them to sign up?

Scott Page: Well see, that’s the trick! Here’s the deal, finding your super fans is really critical. So if you are a content creator, and you have your social media, you want to find those people that are constantly talking about your content, retweeting your content, sharing your content and finding those folks. The second thing is just look around you. You know, one of the things I tell artists is that you’ve got fans that come to the club every week, and I’m saying do you know what they do? We found one artist, they started asking, and they said well, I found one guy’s a web developer, another one is a copywriter, so I was able to talk to them, put a plan together and actually bring them into the fold. But if you don’t know what your fans are doing, it’s very difficult to know what to expect and what you can actually do. You really have to put up some kind of value proposition for them, but you can definitely find those folks that care about your stuff and bring them into the fold. It’s interesting how many of them will really like to get involved.

Larry Jordan: So you’re asking them to work for free. How do you convince them to give you a hand?

Scott Page: Well, it’s not necessarily for free. That’s part of what you have to do as a business owner is figure out some sort of value proposition for them. I’ve seen it where some people have looked and found super fans that will work and do things, and they’ve even given them equity. I’ve seen them give them perks. I know with Monty Python we were giving away signed posters, we were giving away tickets to different shows. So you have to find some way to create value for that person, right? So it really depends on your business and what you can bring to the party.

Larry Jordan: Scott, we’re three letters in, we’ve got two more to go. Can we bring you back next week to talk about what the letter C stands for?

Scott Page: Absolutely. That’s the one where most people really fall down, and that’s a really critical one, and that’s called conversion.

Larry Jordan: And we will talk about that next week. For people that want to learn more about you, where can they go on the web?

Scott Page: Ignited.network

Larry Jordan: And Scott Page is the CEO of Ignited Network, and Scott, thanks for joining us today.

Scott Page: Thanks, Larry!

Larry Jordan: Here’s another website I want to introduce you to: doddlenews.com. DoddleNEWS gives you a portal into the broadcast, video and film industries. It’s a leading online resource, presenting news, reviews and products for the film and video industry. DoddleNEWS also offers a resource guide and crew management platform specifically designed for production. These digital call sheets, along with their app, directory and premium listings, provide in depth organizational tools for busy production professionals. DoddleNEWS is a part of the Thalo Arts community, a worldwide community of artists, filmmakers and storytellers. From photography to filmmaking, performing arts to fine arts and everything in between, Thalo is filled with the resources you need to succeed. Whether you want the latest industry news, need to network with other creative professionals or require state of the art online tools to manage your next project, there’s only one place to go: doddlenews.com.

Larry Jordan: Philip Hodgetts is the CEO of Intelligent Assistance and Lumberjack System. Even better, he’s a regular contributor to the Buzz. Hello Philip, welcome back!

Philip Hodgetts: Hello, Larry.

Larry Jordan: Philip, where are you right now?

Philip Hodgetts: Well, I am in a beautiful apartment in Amsterdam waiting for IBC to start tomorrow, and I love IBC because it’s an excellent reason to come to Amsterdam! It’s also a great way to learn about what’s going on in the technology space. It’s become the European counterpart to NAB in Las Vegas in April. Generally what gets announced in April gets shipped in September at IBC. It always used to be that way, anyway.

Larry Jordan: I was struck by that. IBC is the second largest trade show in our industry, and NAB in Las Vegas, as you mentioned, is the largest, but it seems like products, even more than they were in past years, are announced at NAB and then they don’t actually ship for about six months and they’re shipping at IBC in September. Do you think that’s an increasing trend?

Philip Hodgetts: It certainly has been a fairly prominent trend over the last couple of years. I guess there’s this push to get their message out there as quickly and early as they can in order to try and capture the space before they get competitors into it, so they announce it at NAB. But generally what they’re announcing at NAB is somewhat unformed, or not fully finished yet and, certainly, we have announcements at IBC that are not really fully finished and we’ll probably talk about this in a minute.

Philip Hodgetts: It also is a very different trade show, because it’s in Europe and not in the United States, and it appeals to more Europeans. You know, there are differences in culture, plus the fact that IBC goes for one extra day than NAB means that it’s a more relaxed pace and it just generally seems to be quieter. We don’t have quite as many booths that are competing in volume with the adjacent booths. So I tend to like it as a show better than I like NAB, and I like Amsterdam a lot more than I like Las Vegas.

Larry Jordan: Well, you made an interesting comment I want to follow up on. What are the cultural differences between a trade show in Europe and a trade show in the States?

Philip Hodgetts: I think it’s predominantly, that it is quieter, that people seem to be more polite. There’s no huge crowds in the aisles. Occasionally around a Black Magic or an Adobe booth there’ll be a crowd formed for a presentation, but overall the aisles aren’t as crowded, the booths aren’t as busy. You can get more face time with the people you want to talk to, and it’s just generally a more relaxed pace and that makes it more pleasant.

Larry Jordan: Amidst this relaxed pace and fewer crowds and more pleasant environment, what are some of the announcements you’re looking forward to hearing tomorrow?

Philip Hodgetts: I’m really looking forward to getting onto the Adobe booth and seeing a demonstration of their new team collaboration tools. This is what I was referencing to at the beginning. This is a pre-announcement of something that will ship later in the year, so we’re not seeing a finished product yet, but I find it very exciting to see where they’ve gone with Adobe Anywhere on the Mercury streaming engines to Adobe Anywhere on your local SAN infrastructure and now to this team product, which is another variation that runs on their cloud server and proxies, but also locally, and you can have multiple copies of it, and you can map file paths so that the drive that I have doesn’t have to have the exact same name, same location as the media files as the drive that you might have, but we can share projects and edits backwards and forwards.

Larry Jordan: I’m seeing an increasing emphasis on collaboration. I get a lot of press released before IBC starts, and collaboration is clearly one of the themes, not only between individuals and individual teams, but across companies, and collaboration between software. I’m very curious to see what you see at the show tomorrow.

Philip Hodgetts: I certainly will be looking out for it. Although I won’t get to the show probably until Monday, because of other things that have been happening in our schedule, but obviously anything to do with collaboration and particularly metadata and collaboration is going to be something that I’m interested in. It’s really the last unique feature that Avid’s Media Composer has that prevents other NLE’s taking over that segment of the market. I don’t think any NLE is going to take over that segment of the market quickly, but at least if there are shareable bins and shareable projects that people can collaborate on and, of course, in the Adobe world you can collaborate on After Effects and Audition projects as well through this team tool. So that’s a little bit more than you can do in Media Composer but, until we have that outside Media Composer, there’s no chance that people could substitute any other tool, and so I’m excited to see that Adobe are adding another choice to the mix.

Larry Jordan: Last week, we talked about Paul Babb – he’s the CEO of Maxon US – about his expectations regarding new announcements in virtual reality and augmented reality. Are you expecting anything there?

Philip Hodgetts: I’m sure there will be announcements in virtual reality and augmented reality. It’s a very interesting field, particularly, I think augmented reality over virtual reality. I see a bit future for virtual reality, but I also see a lot of hype. I see it having lots of applications outside narrative feature film, because what seems to happen is although you’ve got all this 360 or 180 degree view, people settle down and watch about 20 percent of the overall area that’s available to them once they’ve got over the novelty of it. The problem with virtual reality in a narrative setting is that a director has worked very, very hard, the director and editor together, to make you look where they want you to look when they want you to look there. Virtual reality is the exact opposite of that, so there are going to be some serious challenges for the way it works in narrative, but it’s going to be great for telepresence things, for gaming and for a range of other uses. It’s going to be fabulous.

Larry Jordan: You let this little thing drop a little earlier in the interview that your schedule has changed. What exciting news do you have?

Philip Hodgetts: Well, about a week before we left to fly over here, I received a phone call, ironically while out in the yard chopping up some branches, inviting me to the IBC Insight Forum, which is a new addition to the show this year that is trying to attract new delegates to the show and give it more diversity in geography and industry segments. So it’s a sea level opportunity – and seal level is the chief executive or chief operating officer or chief financial officer or a chief technical officer, that level of person. Because my registration says Chief Executive Officer they thought that I was important and they invited me onto this Insight Forum, which is going to be a great networking opportunity and also includes a full pass to the show.

Larry Jordan: That’s very exciting. Thinking about exciting, what are you doing at IBC itself? What are you companies doing?

Philip Hodgetts: Both companies are going to be participating in the Final Cut Pro X tour event which is in Spaces Zuidas, which is right near the IBC venue; it’s a short walk around the corner. It’s a very nice space. It’s expanded a lot from last year. There are two days of presentations, on Saturday and Sunday from about 10 until 4.30 and I’ll be doing one of those presentations on Saturday, showing some of the features of Lumberjack and how quickly you can put together and get results from a series of testimonial style interviews, and just generally talking to people about how we can improve our apps, how they are using them and what else we can help them do to make their life easier. And of course, on Sunday night is the Supermeet which, as you know, is a great group of people, because you’ve presented there in the past. It’s an exciting way for video enthusiasts in Europe to get together and share in the insanity that is the Supermeet. And it’s the best food of any Supermeet, absolutely! You’ve got to get your priorities right! I think it’s definitely the best food of any Supermeet!

Larry Jordan: If the food’s good, the event is good. We had a chance to talk to mike Horton and Dan Berube last week, and they have really showcased a wonderful show, so I’m sorry that I’m not able to attend, so watch for both of us. By the way, you’ve mentioned something a couple of times. Tell me what Lumberjack does.

Philip Hodgetts: Lumberjack is a real time keywording and pre-editing set of tools for Final Cut Pro X. We took the idea of keyword ranges and ran with that so you can create this keyword ranges during the shoot or with other tools after the shoot on existing material. It also pulls together things very quickly. So what I’ll be demonstrating on Saturday morning is how I’ve taken a series of three interviews that I logged, make one single multicam clip – two cameras, one audio angle – for the entire hour and a half of the shoot and then send that to Lumberyard. Lumberyard, which is where logs get processed, of course, and Lumberjack is called that because it’s a logger at its core. From Lumberyard you immediate get back not only each of the interviews identified by the person, but also a set of string-outs based on the content of the keywords. So all of the keywords, all the “Why did you get into singing?” keywords go together in one timeline. “What are your biggest problems?” go into one timeline. So pretty much you timeline keywords together, every timeline that you start working on. Then I wrap up that demonstration by showing how we can take multiple different shoots and bring the same keyword string-outs to the multiday shoot. At the heart that’s what Lumberjack does, it just makes that organizational and pre-editing setup much, much simpler.

Larry Jordan: For people that want more information about Lumberjack, where can they go on the web?

Philip Hodgetts: Lumberjacksystem.com will show you everything you want to know, and it will even show me singing its praises with a link right from the home page.

Larry Jordan: Philip, for people who want to keep track of you, where can they go on the web to read your latest thoughts?

Philip Hodgetts: philiphodgetts.com is where I write regularly and, of course, intelligentsystems.com is where you can find out about those…

Larry Jordan: That’s philiphodgetts.com, and the Philip Hodgetts himself, CEO of Intelligent Assistance and Lumberjack System, thanks for joining us today.

Philip Hodgetts: My pleasure.

Larry Jordan: There’s going to be lots of new coming out of IBC this week and, between the Buzz and Doddlenews.com, we will keep you covered. I want to thank my guests this week: Tom Andersen, the CTO of Palmer Andersen; Philip Hodgetts, the CEO of Intelligent Assistance and Lumberjack System; producer/director Maxim Jago; Scott Page, the CEO of Ignited Networks; Ned Soltz, contributing editor for Creative Planet; and James DeRuvo, the senior writer for DoddleNEWS.

Larry Jordan: There’s a lot of history in our industry, and it’s all posted to our website at digitalproductionbuzz.com. Here you’ll find thousands of interviews, all online and all available to you today. And remember to sign up for our free weekly show newsletter that comes out every Friday. You can visit with us on Twitter @DPBuzz, and Facebook at digitalproductionbuzz.com.

Larry Jordan: Our theme music is composed by Nathan Dugi-Turner, with additional music provided by smartsound.com. Text transcripts are provided by Take1.transcription. Visit take1.tv to learn how they can help you, and if you haven’t read one of our transcripts, you’ll find it a really great way to get a quick summary of every show and find exactly the information that you want.

Larry Jordan: Our supervising producer is Cirina Catania with assistance from Debbie Price. My name is Larry Jordan and thanks for joining us for the Digital Production Buzz.

Larry Jordan: The Digital Production Buzz is copyright 2016 by Thalo LLC.

Digital Production Buzz – September 8, 2016

Join host Larry Jordan as he talks with alks with guests Tom Andersen, Philip Hodgetts, Maxim Jago, Ned Soltz, Scott Page, and James DeRuvo.

  • Save, Search and Archive Your Email
  • A Look-Ahead to IBC 2016
  • The Venice Film Festival 2016
  • New Cameras Expected at IBC 2016
  • Use SPACE to Grow Your Creative Business (Pt. 3)
  • The Latest from DoddleNEWS

View Show Transcript

Listen to the Full Episode

(To download the show, right-click Download and click “Save Link As…”

Buzz on iTunes

Guests this Week

Featured Interview #1: Save, Search and Archive Your Email

Tom Andersen
Tom Andersen, Co-Founder, Email Archiver Pro

Since the dawn of email, we’ve been accumulating thousands and thousands of messages, but how do we keep track of all those important business communiqués? Tom Andersen, co-founder of Palmer Andersen, has developed Email Archiver Pro. This utility allows you to save, search and archive your email collection, as Tom describes tonight.

Featured Interview #2: A Look-Ahead to IBC 2016

Philip Hodgetts
Philip Hodgetts, President, Lumberjack System

Continuing our preview of IBC 2016, Philip Hodgetts reports from Amsterdam on what he expects to see as the trade show opens tomorrow.

The Venice Film Festival 2016

Maxim Jago
Maxim Jago, Director, MaximJago.com

Producer/Director Maxim Jago reports from Venice, Italy, on the increasing importance of the Venice Film Festival to independent filmmakers.

New Cameras Expected at IBC 2016

Ned Soltz
Ned Soltz, Contributing Editor, Creative Planet Network

IBC 2016 is here and Ned Soltz, contributing editor for the Creative Planet Network, takes a look at some of the gear being announced at the show, including Zeiss lenses and an important update from Convergent.

Use SPACE to Grow Your Creative Business (Pt. 3)

Scott Page
Scott Page, CEO, Ignited Network

Scott Page, CEO of Ignited Networks, has found a way to help creative artists of all types grow their business. He calls it “The SPACE Process.” And, in tonight’s segment, he explains Step 3 – your Army.

The Latest from DoddleNEWS

James DeRuvo
James DeRuvo, Film and Technology Reporter, DoddleNEWS

With IBC once again upon us, James DeRuvo returns with a look at what to expect at the show, including news from Adobe, Panasonic and Sigma as well as the latest on the iPhone 7 and 7plus. All this in his weekly DoddleNEWS Update.

Transcript: Digital Production Buzz – September 1, 2016

Digital Production Buzz
September 1, 2016

HOST
Larry Jordan

GUESTS
Paul Babb, President/CEO, MAXON
Michael Horton, Co-Host, DigitalProductionBuzz.com
Dan Berube, President, Boston Creative Pro User Group
James DeRuvo, Senior Writer, DoddleNEWS.com
Laura Blum, Curator/Journalist, Thalo.com
Philip Hodgetts, President, Lumberjack System
Scott Page, CEO, Ignited Network

===

Larry Jordan: Tonight on The Buzz we turn our attention to the IBC Expo in Amsterdam which starts next week. As the second largest expo in our industry, we’re expecting a lot of new announcements. We start with Paul Babb, the CEO of Maxon US. Tonight, Paul shares his thoughts on the latest trends that he’s expecting at IBC along with announcing a brand new release of Cinema 4D.

Larry Jordan: Next, the latest supermeet resurfaces again at IBC. Producers Mike Horton and Dan Berube join us to explain what they have planned. And just how much free stuff they’ve got in their world famous raffle.

Larry Jordan: Laura Blum concludes her two part series on how disability is portrayed in film and TV with several examples of who’s doing it right, and who’s doing it wrong. Scott Page continues his series on SPACE, a five step process designed for creative folks to enable their business to grow and prosper. And as always, we have James DeRuvo with the latest DoddleNEWS update. The Buzz starts now.

Announcer: Since the dawn of digital filmmaking – authoritative – one show serves a worldwide network of media professionals – current – uniting industry experts: production, filmmakers, post production and content creators around the planet – distribution. From the media capital of the world in Los Angeles, California, The Digital Production Buzz goes live now.

Larry Jordan: And welcome to The Digital Production Buzz, the world’s longest running podcast for the creative content industry covering media production, post production and marketing around the world. Hi, my name’s Larry Jordan. September 2016 marks the start of our 17th year in production. Our first broadcast was September of 2000 and hosted by Steve Martin and Ron Margolis. Now that was a long time ago.

Larry Jordan: Since then we’ve presented more than 450 shows. Back then the state of the art was DV tape and standard definition video. Final cut was less than one year old and we were all struggling to figure out how to capture and store video on hard disks. Hard disks were so small and so slow that we needed two rates; one for video and a second for scratch files, while it took more than 30 seconds to add a blur to one frame of standard definition video.

Larry Jordan: How our industry has changed. Who could have envisioned just 17 years ago that the film industry would be all digital, that working with 4K images is now routine, and that high quality video can be easily edited in real time on laptop computers? And the Buzz has been there every week to cover it all. By the way, I want to invite you to subscribe to our free weekly show newsletter at DigitalProductionBuzz.com. Every issue, every week gives you an inside look at The Buzz, quick links to all the different segments on the show, and curated articles of special interest to film makers, and best of all, every issue is free.

Larry Jordan: Now it’s time for a DoddleNEWS update with James DeRuvo. Hello James.

James DeRuvo: Hello Larry.

Larry Jordan: So what’s the big news this week?

James DeRuvo: Well the big news just rolled out today is Canon introduced the new Cinema EOS C700 cinema camera. It comes in either EF, PL or B4 lens options, and although it doesn’t have the 8K sensor that was rumored, it is going with a Super 35 4.5K sensor, which can shoot 4K RAW at up to 120 frames per second, using the new external Codecs CDX recorder which is coming out in the spring. You’ll also be able to get an optional global shutter sensor add-on and you’ll be able to shoot in 4K, RAW, ProRes and Canon Log 2 and 3.

Larry Jordan: 4K ProRes and what?

James DeRuvo: Canon Log 2 and 3.

Larry Jordan: Oh my goodness. What’s the retail price and did they announce a ship date?

James DeRuvo: Retail price is starting between $28 and $30,000, depending upon whether you order the EF or the PL mount. The B4 option is going to cost you a little bit more, around $6,000, and it’ll start shipping in December of 2016 with the global shutter version available a month after that. And if you’re planning on shooting in 120 frames per second, the support for the Codecs recorder will come as a firmware update in the March of 2017.

Larry Jordan: So a whole lot of different options here. Now it sounds like they’ve almost reduced the price on something. The price feels low. Is that true?

James DeRuvo: Yes, actually the biggest feature of this camera’s probably the fact that it’s dropping the price of the C500 by $3,000, so now you can buy a 4K C500 camera for about seven grand.

Larry Jordan: So what else we got that’s news this last week?

James DeRuvo: Well, yesterday the FAA enacted Part 107 of their new Drone Operation Rules. This is going to require commercial drone pilots, especially those working with aerial cinematography, to be certified through passing a ground school test, and having a mandatory background check. Now the good news about this is, is that originally the FAA was going to require all drone operators to have a pilot’s license. This has altered that, so now you just need to pass a test. You’ll also have to register your drone through the FAA if it weighs between 0.55 and 55 pounds, and you’ll have to follow some standard drone operation rules which includes no flying at night, keep your drone within a line of sight, and do not fly over crowds. But the good news is they’re also going to offering waivers if you do have to do some night time recording, you can get an FAA waiver by filling out the proper form and submitting it to the FAA for approval.

Larry Jordan: And for people that want more information, where do they go on the web?

James DeRuvo: You go to HYPERLINK “http://www.faa.gov” www.faa.gov.

Larry Jordan: Now, unless you’re dead, Apple’s got something happening next week. What’s our next story?

James DeRuvo: Unless you’re dead, or you don’t care, the iPhone 7’s going to be announced next week at their annual fall iPhone event, and it’s going to have some really cool features for mobile film makers, including a dual rear facing camera array. It’s going to have one camera that shoots in color while the other shoots in black and white. That’s, this is the rumor. And what that is going to enable the iPhone to do is gage the distance between the subject and its background. So guess what? We may get Bokeh with the iPhone 7.

Larry Jordan: Wow. Is Apple going to be streaming the event for people that want to watch it online?

James DeRuvo: Yes, they’re going to be streaming it at apple.com. Now traditionally, sometimes it’s not the prettiest of streaming, but it will be streamed. Everybody will either be picking up a live stream or doing a live blog. And I’ll be doing a live blog through DoddleNEWS so you just check our Twitter feed, and you’ll be able to follow along.

Larry Jordan: And for people that do want to follow along, where can they go on the web, and where do they go on Twitter?

James DeRuvo: Well, it’ll be @doddleme or doddlenews.com.

Larry Jordan: That’s doddleme.com and James DeRuvo is the senior writer for DoddleNEWS and James, thanks for joining us today. We’ll talk to you again next week.

James DeRuvo: Alright, we’ll see you then Larry.

Larry Jordan: Take care, bye bye.

Larry Jordan: I want to introduce you to a new website, Thalo.com. Thalo.com is an artist community and networking site for creative people to connect, be inspired and showcase their creativity. Thalo.com features content from around the world with a global perspective on all things creative. Thalo is the place for creative folks to learn, collaborate, market and sell their works. Thalo is a part of the Thalo Arts Community, a worldwide community of artists, film makers, and story tellers from photography to film making, performing arts to fine arts, and everything in between. Thalo is filled with resources you need to succeed. Visit Thalo.com and discover how their community can help you connect, learn and succeed. That’s Thalo.com.

Larry Jordan: Paul Babb is the President and CEO of Maxon US as well as a graphics software technology expert with more than a decade of experience in 3D animation, visual effects and motion graphics. With IBC coming up, we thought Paul would have an interesting take on what to expect, so I get to say hello Paul, welcome back.

Paul Babb: Hey Larry, thanks for having me again.

Larry Jordan: It is always fun visiting with you. I always learn something, but let’s start with the basics. Describe what Maxon does.

Paul Babb: Maxon, we develop a product called Cinema 4D which is a 3D animation product used for motion graphics, visual effects, scientific and architectural and engineering visualization, all that good stuff.

Larry Jordan: Well that’s the good stuff I want to talk about because you live in the world of graphic arts. What trends are you expecting to see at IBC?

Paul Babb: You know, the same trends I’ve been seeing at all of our shows here. A lot of VR.

Larry Jordan: Is it going to be VR or AR and is there much of a difference from the perspective of a person like yourself?

Paul Babb: Well for me, everybody knows that I’m a big fan of AR. I think AR is going to be the trend where we’ll ultimately go, but the big buzz right now is VR because it’s a little closer. AR still has some time to go, other than a few things we’re getting to our phone and those types of things with AR. It hasn’t quite matured as far along as DR has currently.

Larry Jordan: I was just reflecting. September marks our 17th anniversary of being a show, so I don’t want you to go back that far in time, but if you look back over the last five years, what do you consider to be the biggest technological breakthroughs in terms of motion graphics and why do you think it’s important?

Paul Babb: Wow, that’s a good one. Well for us, it was very much the incorporation of 3D into motion graphics. I’d say the last ten years or so, we’ve done a lot of piggybacking on after effects, and the work that those folks do in providing them an easy path to incorporate 3D into that workflow. That was really exciting and a huge boost for us just in the types of graphics you’re seeing in television nowadays, especially the broadcast motion graphics. The type of work they’re doing is just phenomenal. I mean, it’s creative, technical, artistic, it’s amazing stuff.

Larry Jordan: Well I think all this has also been unlocked with the power of graphics processing cards, because those have really given us the horsepower that we need to create this stuff, true?

Paul Babb: Absolutely. That is the thing that people are able to be more creative than they used to be because the hardware and the software can service that creativity.

Larry Jordan: Well let’s shift gears a little bit. Maxon creates software for artists, and as you look at your customers, how much of their success is fuelled by the technology you create? How much by their own creativity? And how much by old fashioned business sense?

Paul Babb: Wow, that’s a great question. I think it’s different for each person. I think there are those people that have that blend of technological knowledge and creative skill and can wield that into some amazing stuff. I think there’s a lot of technicians out there, I think there’s a lot of people who know how to use the tool and they know, especially in motion graphics, they can get the work done, but maybe not as innovative as some of those people that are a little further along. And frankly, business sense is probably a great subject because it takes a certain skill to be a freelance motion graphic artist. We’ve seen some people be very successful at it, and we’ve seen some people not be so successful at it. And it really is a melding of so many different skills, not just the creative and the technical skill. Technical, there you are, you’re your own IT as well as if you’re working from home. But also that business acumen, that ability to keep clients happy, to communicate with clients, to be able to approach a job. There’s just so many aspects to it, I admire these guys.

Larry Jordan: It is not an easy road because creativity and running a business are not necessarily the same thing, and you have to wear multiple hats.

Paul Babb: Absolutely, and it really does take a certain type of personality. I have seen people that are incredible artists just not be able to cross over into that business relationship type of situation, and they’re better off in a studio where somebody’s going to take care of that for them. And then there are those that can hop from studio to studio, and their freelance tends to be more about working with studios, but the ones that can manage their own business as well as do the creative and the technical work is pretty special.

Larry Jordan: We’ve got a segment coming up later on the show, Scott Page who’s an entrepreneur himself and a creative musician, has developed a five step process called SPACE that allows people to think about how they can grow the business side of their business. So after they’ve finished listening to you, be sure to listen to that segment from Scott.

Paul Babb: Absolutely. I think I want to listen to him …

Larry Jordan: We’ve watched Maxon grow over the years, and I’ve had great delight in all of our conversations. One of the things that struck me, is Maxon’s emphasis at trade shows, presenting artists who are using your product. Why is this face to face contact between your trade show audience and your artists so important?

Paul Babb: Well, my father was a programmer, and my mother was an artist. So I was very exposed to those worlds very early. My father actually worked on computers in the very early stages, late 60s, early 70s, and there are times when we have done feature demos where we would get up ourselves and show off a new feature of the product. It’s just not as interesting, and while we know our way through the program fairly well, we’re not artists. I can show you the paintbrush, I can tell you what kind of strokes it makes, and I can tell you why the paintbrush is really good. But I’m not the best painter in the world. And ultimately, what you want to do is inspire the people that want to use the tool, to be creative and do it themselves. And who better than the artists who are inspiring us? I mean, they’re inspiring us to improve the tool, they’re inspiring us to create tools that will facilitate them even more. And so what we have found over the years is that community has been incredibly important to us, but also bringing those evangelists, bringing those top artists in who can sort of help people along. And bless them for coming out and sharing their tips and techniques.

Paul Babb: Boy, I’ve been in this industry for 20 some odd years, and there was a time when artists at that level would never share their tips and tricks. They felt that those were proprietary and something that they honed, and that people would need to figure that out by themselves. I love the fact that our artists are so interested in getting out there and helping each other. You probably don’t spend a lot of time on these communities, but it’s amazing to watch people helping each other, giving each other tips, giving each other feedback, offering links to resources and things to help each other.

Larry Jordan: Why so much of this emphasis on face to face and trade show appearances when you’ve got Cineversity which is your artists and your training, and it’s all online?

Paul Babb: Well I think there’s always value in face to face. I mean for me, going to the shows, spending time with artists outside of email and a few phone calls when they’re doing tutorials for Cineversity, the discussions about the work that they’re doing, and finding out about them personally, there’s those types of things as well. But also we bring in new artists all the time and we get to meet new people. These are people we don’t engage with on a regular basis. I think some of the business that we get done with other businesses, when you can sit down and hammer out ideas and concepts and get things set up, I don’t think you can replace that face to face opportunity.

Paul Babb: Actually I wrote a blog about this for the Maxon website blog. I wrote a blog about how important it is for people to get out to trade shows because I think you would probably hear from the people that we bring out to present for us at the shows that the one thing they’ll tell you is the opportunity to spend time with these other artists and exchange ideas and there’s a little bit of fandom too. Some of these guys are in awe of some of the people that they can get to see in person. And think about it. A lot of these guys are working at home, alone, you know, in a vacuum by themselves. Maybe a little communication online, maybe something on the phone, but for the most part, they don’t get to engage with other artists at that level. And so it makes for interesting dinner conversation too. When you hear them talking about how to recreate the reflections on glass or the shadows on something, it can get amusing.

Larry Jordan: Well thinking of creating reflections, gets us back to technology. Maxon announced a new version of Cinema 4D today. What’s the new news?

Paul Babb: We announced it at SIGGRAPH, and we’re showing it off, but we actually just started shipping today which is great. People are really excited. There’s motion tracking in the motion tracker, so getting objects inside of live footage. They added … refracturing which sounds very technical, but basically you can blow things up, dice and slice them in multitudes of ways and it’s all non-destructive, so it makes the work a lot easier, and also there’s all kinds of great new materials and shading things. Light reflections you were talking about, there’s a new shader that creates that rainbowy oily effect on water. So you can make bubbles, and oil slicks and fingerprints on cars and those types of things. There’s new modeling tools, a new knife tool, just a whole host of great tools in this round. We’ve gotten so much excitement from this release this year.

Larry Jordan: Well announcing is wonderful, but shipping is my favorite part of it the whole process.

Paul Babb: And shipping with all the features we promised. That’s a good one too.

Larry Jordan: What projects are best suited for Cinema 4D? For an artist that wants to start playing with it, what would be a good way to get started with it?

Paul Babb: Well, we are definitely well known for our motion graphics. I don’t think you can beat us in the speed and ease of use in terms of motion graphics, and the integration that we have with the Adobe Suite, as you know we have a bundled version. There’s a light version bundled in with After Effects, so even after effect users interesting in playing with 3D, they can dive right in, it’s already in there for them inside of after effects. Motion graphics is great. We’re seeing a lot of these people in motion graphics, leading individual effects. We have a lot of people doing more and more visual effects, that’s why we’ve added the motion tracker, and the object tracking in there so that people can branch out into that. We’ve already had a lot of people utilizing it for matte environments in a film setting or a movie studio setting, so that’s been great. But really what’s interesting is, you’ll find that a lot of our artists do a lot of different work, like we were talking about before, these freelancers. They might do a little visual effects, they might do a motion graphics piece for a TV station, interstitial or a bumper. They might do some movie titles. They might do medical or scientific animation as well, or stills. Imaginary Forces was presenting at NAB and they’re well known for their motion graphics, but Jeremy was showing some great work he had done for a cover of National Geographic. So they’re really artists, and they’re using our tool to create different types of art.

Larry Jordan: And for people that want more information about your tool, where can they go on the web?

Paul Babb: They can go to Maxon.net.

Larry Jordan: And Paul Babb himself is the President and CEO of Maxon US and Paul, thanks for joining us today.

Paul Babb: Thanks for having me Larry.

Larry Jordan: Take care, talk to you soon.

Paul Babb: You too.

Larry Jordan: And have a good show. Bye bye.

Larry Jordan:Laura Blum is a film and events curator as well as a Thalo.com contributing writer, filmfestivals.com blogger, and former film and television development executive with Sony BMG, and best of all, she is a regular here on The Buzz. Hello Laura, welcome back.

Laura Blum: Thank you Larry, great to be back.

Larry Jordan: You know the last time we talked with you, we spoke about the creative community’s response to issues surrounding disability, and you brought up a new show called ABC’s Speechless. What makes this so important?

Laura Blum: What’s really a step forward on it, is that the character who has CP, cerebral palsy, in this show, himself actually has cerebral palsy. So we’re avoiding what’s called crip face or disability drag, which is the casting of an able bodied actor in a disabled role. You think Tom Hanks in ‘Forrest Gump’ or Dustin Hoffman in ‘Rain Man,’ Sean Penn in ‘I’m Sam.’ Micah Fowler is not the first disabled actor to be cast in a disabled role, far from it. TV audiences saw RJ Mitte in ‘Breaking Bad’ and Marlee Matlin in the ‘West Wing,’ and the reality show, ‘Born This way,’ follows people with Down’s Syndrome. Interestingly, a few months ago I interviewed Gail Williamson, who’s a talent agent for performers with disabilities and she told me she used to get about six requests a year for talent with intellectual disabilities. Now she gets about three to six a month.

Larry Jordan: Laura, give me an example of a film that got it wrong.

Laura Blum: Let’s talk about ‘War Dogs’ which recently opened. It tells the somewhat true story of two friends who became arms dealers for the US army. These two swaggering 20 somethings ultimately win a $300 million contract, but they are total losers when it comes to offensive language like the R word. And I actually gasped in the movie theater when the word retard reared its ugly head and I couldn’t help but think of the 2008 movie ‘Tropic Thunder.’ You’ll recall Robert Downey Junior’s infamous line, “Everybody knows you never go full retard.” So the R word surfaced in that movie at least a dozen times. It was supposed to be funny, but not everybody was laughing.

Laura Blum: A few months ago, I interviewed Timothy Shriver of the Special Olympics, and he recalled the campaign that he helped launch after ‘Tropic Thunder,’ and he and others were pressing members of Congress for a resolution to condemn what they termed “hate speech” … for other things too, stepped up support. But it’s interesting to talk about that right now when the summer Paralympics are about to hit Rio. And the whole world will be watching and it really makes us wonder, how do the games resemble films about people with disabilities, like what’s in common there?

Larry Jordan: Well who is getting it right?

Laura Blum: There’s this really wonderful documentary that opens in October on Netflix which is a place to get some of these smaller things. It is called, and the title matters, ‘Aspergers Are Us,’ and it’s executive produced by Mark and Jay Duplass. It features four guys, all of whom are ‘Aspies,’ which is how they refer to themselves. They have Aspergers, and they created a comedy troupe called ‘Aspergers Are Us.’ The film asks, is it OK to laugh at autism? And, well, they are. So for anybody who’s thinking, aren’t these guys supposed to be non-communicative, emotionally illiterate loner nerds, the film will really invite a re-thinking of stereotypes. They know who they are, how they’re wired, and they own it. They have agency, you don’t feel sorry for them, you admire their dry, offbeat sensibility, and their original takes on things.

Laura Blum: The New York Times debuted last week a column called ‘Becoming Disabled.’ It asks, “Roughly one in five Americans live with a disability, so where’s our pride movement?” But what I wanted to really say about Aspergers Are Us, is film is, in isolated cases, doing their pride films.

Larry Jordan: Laura, some interesting things to think about and it’s always a delight having you on the show. Laura Blum is a blogger for filmfestivals.com and thanks for joining us today.

Laura Blum: Thank you so much Larry.

Larry Jordan: Scott Page is a musician, a technologist and a serial entrepreneur. He’s currently the CEO of Ignited Network, which is a start up music accelerator focused on teaching artists how to think like a start up. Hello Scott, welcome back.

Scott Page: Hi Larry, great to be back again.

Larry Jordan: You know, last week, we began a conversation on what you called SPACE which is a five step process that we can follow to grow our business. And the first letter, S, stands for story which is how we describe our business, but more importantly our passion to others. What’s the letter P stand for?

Scott Page: That stands for plan. And this is one of the things that I think is really important for artists today because if you think about it, we’re actually all 24 hour broadcast networks. We have that ability now. We have access to our audience, we have access basically through virtual free distribution. All these different ways that we can get out there. But having a plan to be able to run your network is really important, and one of the things that I’m a big proponent of is what is called the lean start up principles. And the lean start up movement is really about how to reduce risk and not run out of resources. And one of the tools that they have which is my favorite tool, is a thing called the lean canvas. And the lean canvas is a one page business plan. You can go to leanstack.com and you can actually create a canvas, which is really a one page business plan. This plan is a really fast way to kind of get yourself organized. You go in, there’s nine questions in that plan, and you fill it out and it gives you the tools that you need to start thinking through how your business is going to run. I think this is one of the things that most artists, especially a lot of content creators don’t really think through because they think they’re building just content creation, but really in today’s world where you’re literally a 24 hour broadcasting network, you have access to all these people on mobile devices 24/7. You can get your content out, you can post any time. You really need to start putting together a plan and part of the plan is building out your kind of media calendar. And that media calendar is like, if you think of yourself as a broadcast network, we all know that NBC knows what’s going to be on Thursday at five o’clock right? They know in advance.

Larry Jordan: Mm hm.

Scott Page: Artist and content creators need to think the same way and build their plan and put together their organized content into these sort of media calendars so that I know on Thursday I’m going to do this post. Friday its Follow Friday, so I’m going to post content on that day or Throwback Thursday. So you’ve got to really organize your media into a plan. Also, having kind of a long term plan of thinking about, where’s my business going to be over the next 18 months, once you have this plan in place it really helps define where your business and where you’re going. So I really recommend this. It’s one of my favorite tools on the planet. And I would also recommend reading a book called ‘Running Lean,’ by Ash Maurya, which is really the principles of how to create products and run your business, and this can give you some great insights on how to do that.

Larry Jordan: Should we include goals in our plan?

Scott Page: Oh absolutely. One of the things that we do is we constantly measure, test and learn, build and learn. So, we always are testing and validating what we’re doing and each one is a goal, to finally test. So, with the plan when we set up, I usually set up an 18 month strategy, we put it in 30 day increments so we can see how we’re doing every 30 days. So having a goal, knowing where you’re going, and testing and validating is really very important. That’s a big part of the lean start up principles.

Larry Jordan: Scott, SPACE is a five step process. We’ve covered story and plan. Can we bring you back next week to talk about the next letter in your acronym?

Scott Page: Let’s do it.

Larry Jordan: And where can we go on the web to learn more about you?

Scott Page: You go to ignited.network.

Larry Jordan: And Scott Page is the CEO of Ignited Network at the ignited.network. Scott, thanks for joining us today.

Scott Page: Thanks Larry.

Larry Jordan: Philip Hodgetts is the CEO of Intelligent Assistance and Lumberjack System but even better, he’s a regular contributor to The Buzz. Hello Philip, welcome back.

Philip Hodgetts: Thank you for that welcome.

Larry Jordan: It’s good to hear your voice again. Philip, we got some sad news this week, what happened?

Philip Hodgetts: Yes, it’s kind of a sad time to be on The Buzz because Scott Sheppard who was a pioneer in internet podcasting before there was the infrastructure we have now with podcasting, before there was an Apple podcast directory. Before any of that, Scott was one of the founders of this democratization of broadcasting, so that anyone who’s got an idea for a show could get it online and start to build an audience. Long before YouTube and long before podcasting, so it’s kind of sad that Scott is no longer with us.

Larry Jordan: That’s a shame. Have you worked with him?

Philip Hodgetts: Yes, I first met Scott in the escalator in the Moscone West coming down after a fire drill when we were all told to get out during a conference. He and I ended up on the escalator together, started talking and then shortly thereafter I was a regular guest on his Inside Mac Radio, bringing the Mac video perspective to the show. And then of course Scott really brought his broadcast background to help us when we transitioned from DV Guys to the modern form of the digital production bias. He was a good advisor, a good friend, and he helped make The Buzz happen.

Larry Jordan: If I remember correctly, he did more than just make The Buzz happen, he provided the hardware for it to happen in the first place, correct?

Philip Hodgetts: Well he certainly helped with that. He guided me on what I should buy, but of course at that point in time I couldn’t just go out and buy the best of everything, so he guided me into what would get me on air, what would give me the best results, and of course the most expensive item, the all important phone hybrid to connect the phone into the audio system, Scott loaned me his spare … because you know, at that time, ten years ago, $600 or $700 for a basic introductory hybrid. And that was the most expensive component and Scott loaned it to us for six months before we had the wherewithal to buy it from him.

Larry Jordan: It’s interesting, thinking back, this September marks the 17th anniversary of The Buzz, and I know you hosted it for five or six years yourself before I had the pleasure of taking it over. But it’s the people that we meet and even more than the folks we chat with online, that make the biggest impression, at least for me. Relationships still seem to be important. Is that a true statement for you as well?

Philip Hodgetts: Absolutely. I cherish the relationships that I’ve formed, and it’s one of the things that has been a great joy in doing the Lunch with Philip and Greg series, which you can find at lunchwithphilipandgreg.com where literally, we’d just take somebody we find interesting to lunch and record it with a couple of Go Pros and some H1Ns. And publish that, and it’s been a great way of finding the people behind the name. You know, it’s a little bit beyond saying, “Hi, how you doing?” at a conference and catching up on Facebook. You learn things about people that you never knew about their background and how they got to be where they are, what their non-work interests are. So these people that we meet are I think what makes the whole thing worthwhile.

Larry Jordan: And thinking of meeting people, very quickly, you’re traveling to IBC. What’s happening there?

Philip Hodgetts: IBC is where we’ll meet a lot of friends from Europe and we’ll be taking part in the Final Cut Pro X tour event which is adjacent to the RAI, the main venue. And the supermeet there as well, we’ll be at a table then and talk to people about intelligence assistance or Lumberjack system, or the food in Amsterdam. I’m happy to do all of that.

Larry Jordan: And a website for people to go to learn more is?

Philip Hodgetts: It’s philiphodgetts.com, that’s probably the easiest, or intelligentassistance.com.

Larry Jordan: That’s philiphodgetts.con and Philip Hodgetts himself is the voice you’ve been listening to. Philip, thanks for joining us today.

Philip Hodgetts: My pleasure. Have a good evening.

Larry Jordan: Take care, bye bye.

Larry Jordan: Here’s another website I want to introduce you to. Doddlenews.com. DoddleNEWS gives you a portal into the broadcast, video and film industries. It’s a leading online resource, presenting news, reviews and products for the film and video industry. DoddleNEWS also offers a resource guide and crew management platforms specifically designed for production. These digital call sheets, along with their app, directory and premium listings, provide in depth organizational tools for busy production professionals. DoddleNEWS is a part of the Thalo Arts Community, a worldwide community of artists, film makers and story tellers. From photography to film making, performing arts to fine arts, and everything in between, Thalo is filled with resources you need to succeed. Whether you want the latest industry news, need to network with other creative professionals or require state of the art online tools to manage your next project, there’s only one place to go. Doddlenews.com.

Larry Jordan: Mike Horton and Dan Berube are the co-producers of the supermeet, that legendary multi-media extravaganza, music repeating which has been travelling around the world for, I don’t know, five or 6,000 years. Hello Mike, good to have you with us.

Mike Horton: Hey Larry, good to be back.

Larry Jordan: And Dan, good to have you with us as well.

Dan Berube: Hello. I feel 6,000 years old.

Larry Jordan: Mike, it is good to hear your voice again, especially on The Buzz, and Dan it’s always a delight having both of you on the show. Mike, how would you describe the supermeet?

Mike Horton: Gosh, how would you describe it? It is a gathering of likeminded people in the digital movie making world. People who are in production and post production and want to get together and network, and learn something new. On stage we have lots of the newest software and hardware demos, and out in the trade show area is the place to hang out, meet one another and learn from other companies who just happen to be our sponsors.

Larry Jordan: Dan, it probably is a little less than 5,000 years, but how many years have you and Mike been producing supermeets?

Dan Berube: Holy wow, well Amsterdam, we’re in our ninth year. We’ve been doing supermeets for about 15 years. 15 years in cat lives, that’s 5,000 years.

Larry Jordan: At least, maybe more.

Dan Berube: No it’s been quite a journey and I think the pedals to the metal, I think we still got some years left in it.

Larry Jordan: Well I hope so, they’re way too much fun to have you guys fold your tent and slip away into the night. But Dan, why did you decide to start supermeets in the first place?

Dan Berube: Because I love Mike.

Dan Berube: Well I think it was all part of just basically we wanted to connect with more people. You know, other than with our user groups, and we had the fantastic opportunity way back in Vegas when five of our groups, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, oh what’s the third and fourth one?

Larry Jordan: San Francisco.

Dan Berube: San Francisco. And so we just had this name called Boss Chiller, which I had to put all the user group names together, and it was at the Hilton and even before that, there were some meetings where groups were getting together and it was happening at San Francisco and what not. You said tenth, but it really is kind of like a big top for film makers to get together and really get their fingers on the pulse of what’s happening at the time, because just like the internet, supermeets grow and change dramatically almost every other supermeet.

Larry Jordan: Well Mike, thinking about that, what’s on tap for the supermeet at IBC? First, where and when is it, and then second, what have you got planned?

Mike Horton: It’s on Sunday September 11th. It’s always on a Sunday and this year just happens to be September 11, and we have on tap a really good show. First of all Black Magic. We’ll be bringing on a cinematographer who just did a documentary with the URSA mini. He’s going to be talking about using the URSA mini, showing footage and showing his work with Resolve. We’re also getting back into VR with Editor Duncan Shepherd who just happens to be here from Los Angeles. And he did a series of documentary shorts for this music video called Pure McCartney VR, and it just happens to star Paul McCartney, and directed by the wonderful Tony Kaye and he used Final Cut Pro X in that, so he’s going to play that up and he’s going to show everybody how he edited these VR documentary shorts.

Mike Horton: And then we’re going further into VR with Milica Zec and Winslow Turner who are being presented by HP and they did a VR experience called Giant which if you actually watch a little bit of it online, it’s quite intense. Takes place during the Bosnian war and one little location. It’s very immersive. Also, Adobe will be there showing the latest and greatest, and Sam Mestman of Lumaforge will be showing the ShareStation along with Ronnie … That’s going to be a real fun demo. Also fayteq which is out of Germany has got this plug in called fayIN, which is a motion tracking and compositing plug in and they’re going to show off that. Then of course we have our world famous raffle which has got a gazillion dollars worth or Euros worth of prizes.

Larry Jordan: Well I’m going to talk about the raffle in just a second, but Mike, a question for you. There’s so much training and so much information on the web, why should someone attend an event like the supermeet?

Mike Horton: Dan and I get asked this all the time. Why should they do that? It is the networking opportunity. Again, it’s like minded people and you’re going to meet somebody there hopefully, if you have the courage to go up and shake their hand and say hello, and it’s what we always say, if you do have that courage that person that you do shake the hand of, might change your life.

Dan Berube: It’s also like a user driven presentation, so it’s not something you typically get in training. You know, add one plus one equals two on the stage, and see how these tools are used.

Mike Horton: Yes, I mean if somebody’s got a problem, they get up on stage and they say here’s how to solve your problem using this, or this technique that I found, or this tool that I found. And you can learn a lot from that, and it’s also just a fun night to hang out with each other.

Larry Jordan: Mike, the other thing is, in addition to the stage show, at least at NAB supermeets, you would have small tables that have exhibits there so that people can go up and ask questions of. It’s like a mini NAB or a mini IBC. Is that still happening with IBC this year?

Mike Horton: Oh yes. We have two. Supermeets are always this way that we have the theater, and then we have what we call the digital showcase and out in the digital showcase will be 19 little tables and those sponsors who basically pay for this event, will be showing off their stuff and without these sponsors there just wouldn’t be any supermeets.

Larry Jordan: Dan, tell me about the world famous raffle.

Dan Berube: Oh yes. Well since we updated the website, we have close to 73 million Euros. 73,000 Euros in prizes. And we have a door prize. We always do a door prize with HP to give away a 15 inch HP Zbook.

Larry Jordan: Wow.

Dan Berube: Which is eligible to the first 500 people that show up, or before six o’clock whichever comes first.

Mike Horton: Actually that’s 300 people. 500 people in Vegas, 300 people in Amsterdam.

Dan Berube: Right. That in itself is a pretty big value. We always have our staples, AVID, Adobe, we’ve got this wonderful VR starter pack from The Foundry which is like 10,000 Euros, and a Game Artist Starter Pack which is another 3,000 Euros or something like that. Lumaforge is giving away a 24 terabyte Jellyfish HD RAID which is over 8,000 Euros. I mean, it’s amazing what we have going. We have anything from software to hardware, lots of hardware this time actually.

Mike Horton: Yes, lots of hardware.

Larry Jordan: That is very cool.

Dan Berube: People who fly into the supermeet they’re going to be flying back with some hardware. Yeah.

Larry Jordan: Well I have attended many of your famous raffles, and what you manage to get a crowd to do, and get them on their feet and cheering for these prizes is just a piece of stage theater that cannot be adequately described in words. It can only be witnessed.

Dan Berube: That’s the wonderful thing we love about Amsterdam because those people aren’t afraid to get up and show their appreciation.

Mike Horton: Well I remember the first time we did it in Europe at IBC in Amsterdam. We didn’t know what was going to happen but they knew, they took right to it. I mean they did a bigger show for us than NAB.

Dan Berube: Yes. They’re wonderfully creative and crazy people and I love them all. That’s why we love the Amsterdam supermeets so much.

Larry Jordan: Mike, are there still seats?

Dan Berube: I’m amazed at how many people want to pick up Michael, toss him around.

Mike Horton: Yes, exactly. We have a few pictures of it too.

Larry Jordan: Michael, are there still seats left?

Mike Horton: There are still seats left and all you need to do is go to supermeet.com and click on the buy ticket and, if you’re listening very carefully, you can save five Euros off the 15 euro price.

Larry Jordan: How?

Mike Horton: By using promo code DPBVIP and that’ll save you five Euros.

Larry Jordan: Say it again because I love saving money.

Mike Horton: DPB, which is digital production buzz, VIP. Very important person. Digital production buzz, DPBVIP, and that’ll save you five Euros.

Larry Jordan: You are so amazing at how you come up with these coupons. It’s just…

Mike Horton: Yes, I know, it’s really creative isn’t it?

Larry Jordan: Mike, you got about 20 seconds left. If you could tell people one thing to make them come to the supermeet, what would you tell them?

Mike Horton: Gosh, fun.

Dan Berube: Bitterballen.

Mike Horton: You get really good food, fun, networking and honest to goodness, there’s something might happen that night that’ll make your career. But you don’t know until you get out of the house.

Larry Jordan: That was very cool. Mike Horton and Dan Berube are the co-producers of the supermeet and have been doing it for the last 15 years. Gentlemen, thank you so very much for your time, and I wish you a great show.

Dan Berube: OK well thanks for having us on Larry.

Mike Horton: Thanks Larry.

Dan Berube: I hope to see you soon.

Larry Jordan: I look forward to both of that. Thank you, take care.

Dan Berube: Alright, see you later.

Larry Jordan: Bye bye.

Mike Horton: Bye.

Dan Berube: Bye.

Larry Jordan: I love talking to folks like today’s show. It’s always a fun time. I want to thank our guest Paul Babb, the CEO of Maxon US. Mike Horton and Dan Berube, co-producers of the supermeet. Laura Blum, blogger for filmfestivals.com. Scott Page, CEO of Ignited Network. Phil Hodgetts, CEO of Intelligent Assistance, and James DeRuvo, senior writer for DoddleNEWS.

Larry Jordan: There’s a lot of history in our industry and it’s all posted to our website at digitalproductionbuzz.com. Here you’ll find thousands of interviews, all online and all available to you today. And remember to sign up for our free weekly show newsletter that comes out every Friday. You can talk with us on Twitter @DPBuZZ and Facebook at digitalproductionbuzz.com.

Larry Jordan: Our theme music is composed by Nathan Dugi-Turner with additional music provided by Smartsound.com. Text transcripts provided by Take1 Transcription. Visit Take1.tv to learn how they can help you. Our supervising producer is Cirina Catania with assistance from Debbie Price.
Larry Jordan:My name is Larry Jordan and thanks for joining us for the Digital Production Buzz.

Digital Production Buzz – September 1, 2016

Join host Larry Jordan as he talks with Paul Babb, Michael Horton, Dan Berube, James DeRuvo, Philip Hodgetts, Laura Blum, and Scott Page.

  • Motion Graphics & IBC Preview
  • Supermeet: IBC Preview
  • Portrayals of Disability in Media (Pt 2)
  • Grow Your Creative Business with the “SPACE Process” (Pt 2)
  • A Tribute to Podcast Pioneer Scott Sheppard

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Guests this Week

Featured Interview #1: Motion Graphics & IBC Preview

Paul Babb
Paul Babb, President/CEO, MAXON
Paul Babb is the President/CEO of Maxon/US, as well as a graphics software technology expert. Tonight, he shares his thoughts on the latest trends he’s expecting at the upcoming IBC trade show in Amsterdam, along with announcing a new release of Cinema 4D.

Featured Interview #2: Supermeet: IBC Preview
Supermeets are a world-wide user group meeting. Founded and produced by Michael Horton and Dan Berube, Supermeets give us a chance to see, learn and talk about the latest technology. Tonight, Mike and Dan join us to showcase what’s happening next week at the Supermeet: Amsterdam.

Michael Horton
Michael Horton, Co-Producer, Supermeet
Dan Berube
Dan Berube, Co-Producer, Supermeet

DoddleNEWS Update: Canon C700, Drones, and the iPhone 7

James DeRuvo
James DeRuvo, Senior Writer, DoddleNEWS.com
Canon announces the C700, Drone rules change – again, and the iPhone 7 has cool new dual cameras. James DeRuvo, senior writer for DoddleNEWS has the latest in this week’s DoddleNEWS Update.

Thalo Report: Disability in Filmmaking – Getting it Right (Pt 2)

Laura Blum
Laura Blum, Curator/Journalist, Thalo.com
Laura Blum is a film and events curator, as well as a blogger for FilmFestivals.com, and very involved with the Pacific Rim International Conference on Disability and Diversity. In part 2 of her series on portraying disability in media, Laura concludes with a look at which specific shows are doing it right…or wrong.

A Tribute to Podcast Pioneer Scott Sheppard

Philip Hodgetts
Philip Hodgetts, President, Lumberjack System
In an industry built on relationships, Philip Hodgetts has a tribute to a friend and mentor who just left us: Scott Sheppard.

The Creativity Business: Use SPACE to Help Your Business Succeed (Pt 2)

Scott Page
Scott Page, CEO, Ignited Network
Scott Page is a musician and serial entrepreneur. He is also passionate about enabling creative businesses to grow. Tonight, in part 2, he continues describing his five-step “SPACE Process” that enables your creative business to grow and succeed.