CAT | The Business of Production
Maybe I’m pushing this subject a bit hard, but I really believe we are on the cusp of a wide range of human activities being taken over by smart algorithms, also known as Machine Learning. As well as the examples I’ve already mentioned, I found an article on how an “AI” saved a woman’s life, and how it’s being used to create legal documents for homeless (or about to be homeless) in the UK.
Stephen Galloway writes at The Hollywood Reporter:
The majors are still the first port of call for any significant project; they still have an unparalleled ability to get that project developed, cast, shot, marketed and into theaters; and despite extraordinary technological and economic change, they haven’t allowed any upstarts to challenge their hegemony.
He then goes on to document the changes that Amazon and Netflix have wrought on the “old bastions of Hollywood Power.”
All of which is good news: more outlets lead to more production.
Avid Media Composer has always been great at tracking metadata. Without accurate timecode, Media Composer would have never become established. Over the years Avid have continued to add metadata support to the app.
Reading an Avid blog on Spanish Broadcaster RTVE’s technical deployment in Rio, I was struck by this:
All of the cataloging and indexing process will be carried out by means of an autometadata software developed by the Corporación itself, which will enable the use of metadata provided by OBS and those selected by TVE’s documentary makers.
I’d love to know more about what the “Corporation” has done. Maybe we can set up a meeting for October when we’ll be back in Barcelona!
Spoiler alert: they use a lot of Avid technology!
Google today launched a new API to help parse natural language. An API is an Application Programming Interface, that developers can use to send data to, and get a response back. Natural Language Parsing is used to understand language that is available in computer-readable form (text). Google’s API joins an increasingly long list of very smart APIs that will understand language, recognize images and much more.
A lot has changed since I last wrote about Advances in Content Recognition late last year.
It’s hard to imaging but between them Amazon and Netflix plan on spending $8 billion on original content in 2016.
Amazon is expected to spend $2 billion, subsidized by Prime subscribers
Netflix’s subscribers will finance $6 billion in original programming.
Combined that would be 60 movies with a $100 million budget each. (Typically 400-500 movies are released by studios every year.)
Or 3000 ‘hour’ television episodes assuming a $2 million an episode budget. (Some would be higher, some lower). At 23 episodes a season, that’s one season for 130 different shows.
In this episode I get to spend a lot of time talking about the background the Lumberjack System, in the context of the very unsexy topic of workflow, particularly automating the workflow. I share many of the background decisions related to Lumberjack System – our logging and pre-editing system for Final Cut Pro X – including why it’s limited to FCP X.
Other topics include automation; Digital Heaven’s announcement of SpeedScriber; how Lumberjack has developed based on user, and use, feedback; the post NAB development of noteLogger; Prelude LIveLogger and the Premiere Pro ecosystem and NLE market shares; how development resources are allocated.
Adobe revealed record quarterly earnings on March 17th, with $1.38 billion in quarterly revenue ($5.5B annualized) and 4.252 million Creative Cloud subscribers (us included).
Of course, Adobe is strongest in document handling and photography but every subscriber has access to the entire Creative Cloud suite. I believe the integration between the video and audio apps is one of Adobe’s strengths in the creative TV, film and video space.
If I had to place an educated guess, I’d say there are more active Premiere Pro CC users than Media Composer active users, but not as many as Final Cut Pro X.
According to an article on MacRumors today, Apple is negotiating with Studios and Producers to create original programming for Apple TV. Two thoughts.
Apple have long created their own content by running music festivals and recording the performances.
It’s been a long time coming, but I thing it was inevitable. Back in late 2009 I postulated on What if Apple or Google simply bypassed Networks and Studios? My conclusion then:
Clearly, either Google or Apple could destroy the existing content production industries without borrowing or risking their business. Just what leverage do the current middlemen really have?
It’s a strategy that’s working well for Netflix and Amazon.
My year seems to have three major themes: sucking while learning, family history video and small production kit. Along the way there have been 13 episodes of Lunch with Philip and Greg.
If there was a theme to 2015 in production technology, it would be that this was the year of more. More pixels – 4K and beyond; more dynamic range with HDR video; more field of view as VR establishes; and more programming sources as Netflix et. al. become fully fledged ‘networks’.