Josh Mellicker of DVCreators.net posted on Facebook today that it was the 12th anniversary of the release of their first Final Cut Pro training product. Congratulations are in order. It also set me off thinking back.
The first inkling I had was at NAB – my first – in 1998. I had been aware of the Media 100/Apple QuickTime/KeyGrip announcement of a year earlier, of which only the QuickTime team had delivered their part: a cross platform fully featured QuickTime authoring environment. KeyGrip was to be the software that powered Media 100’s Windows efforts, as well as having a Mac version.
As soon as I saw Final Cut Pro, I knew my days as a Media 100 enthusiast would soon be over! It was the tool to grow into and I knew from that first view that it would be a hit.
That first view of (by then) Final Cut looked much more like Premier 4.2 than what we know as Final Cut Pro now. It was Apple that gave us the – for the day – nice design (for OS 9) that we still have in Final Cut Pro 7, 12 year later.
In turn we built our first training for Final Cut Pro – The DV Companion for Final Cut Pro – and released it some months later than DV Creators, but I might be arrogant enough to think we built a different, and in our opinion, better tool.
Final Cut Pro kept ourselves and five employees going for some years. It was a fresh market and people were hungry for training support that didn’t get in their way.
I’ve built uncountable Final Cut Pro systems for clients; worked on the 40th Anniversary DVD documentary for Mary Poppins; got me some IMDB (Internet Movie DataBase) entries; set up a few movie workflows; and done some fun things, all thanks to Final Cut Pro, and the team at Apple.
But it was obvious a couple of years ago that Final Cut Pro was past its peak. By the time Final Cut Pro 7 was released I was convinced that Apple were working on a complete rewrite since March 2010.
Clearly that’s exactly what they’ve delivered. A new foundation for a new generation, and I’m as excited about Final Cut Pro X as I was about the potential of Final Cut 0.9 at NAB 1998.
For most of the Final Cut Pro user base, it’s just a change of software. For some of us it’s 12 years of hard earned knowledge that is going to rapidly turn to nothing. (To be replaced, no doubt with a whole new generation of knowledge.) For trainers and writers: their turorials and books are depreciating in value as every minute ticks down to June.
It’s also goodbye to about six of our software products. That’s a little tough because we put a lot of work into them, but when you’re in the ecosystem you always have to expect the “big guy” to occasionally inflict “collateral damage”. To be honest, if they hadn’t made Matchback Magic obsolete, I’d have been depressed.
So, a new version of Final Cut Pro affects different people differently. Thanks to Final Cut Pro – at least in part – I live in a different country than I did when version 1.0 was released and now have a completely different business than back then.
Like every other Final Cut Pro developer, I’ve got a lot of questions, but I really do like what I see as I go over and over the sneak peek ahead of my Preparing for Final Cut Pro X webinar coming up. There will be a lot of observations – little things I’ve discovered – while studying the new version. (The Seminar is free until it fills up.)