The present and future of post production business and technology | Philip Hodgetts

CAT | Metadata

I recently commented on the importance of metadata for rights management during distribution. While cleaning my email inbox I revisited a story from late last year, on how over-the-top content providers (generally niche) can use metadata from social media and other sources to help grow their audiences.

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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!

A few days ago I wrote about metadata’s application to distribution. A recent panel discussion at the Rights and Metadata Madness conference outlined some of the challenges and case studies from Rovi, MLB and Viacom outlining their metadata needs and the practices they’ve developed to deal with them.

The article is worth a read, but I’ll highlight the challenge outlined by Michael Jeffrey, VP of market solutions at Rovi:

A feature-length movie with a sports theme and containing content that includes music from other properties can have assets from 20-50 separate entities.

And each of those entities can have restrictions on what the maker of that movie can show, he said, adding that it’s possible you can’t show any beer cans or can’t use an actor in any promotions.

Now let’s add the formatting, duration, and other issues from my earlier post!

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.

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The Final Cut Pro X Creative Summit is on again in October this year.

Three days of cutting-edge training on the latest FCPX and Motion.
Hear directly from Apple Product Managers. Learn from top industry experts.

Apparently I slip in as an ‘industry expert’ with these sessions

10:30am Saturday Using Transcripts in FCPX
10:30am Sunday    Production Kit in a Bag

Greg and I will also be showing the Intelligent Assistance Software apps, and will have some amazing things to show with Lumberjack System.

Use this discount code to save $125.

Use this discount code to save $125.

Jul/16

18

Production in the Cloud

Metadata is one of the most useful tools we have, if we have the tools to use it! Aside from the obvious problems when no metadata is gathered during the shoot, or insufficient metadata is gathered, other issues arise because there are not always tools in the production chain that use the metadata that has been gathered!

A recent student film was used as a template by the Entertainment Technology Center at USC with the purpose of realizing the long-hoped for promise of production metadata, with some fairly ambitious goals.

The results are interesting and important, particularly considering that this is what I would categorize as Technical metadata, rather than Content metadata.

 

Although my focus is very much on metadata for production, and in particular Content Metadata, there’s a whole other area of metadata for distribution, built around the EIDR ID and fleshed out largely by Rovi. But there’s another area where metadata will likely have to apply: distribution deliverables.

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We were discussing metadata in Final Cut Pro X after dinner last night, as one does, and Greg challenged me to think about the difference between Roles and Keywords (Ranges).

I’d spent time thinking about how best to translate metadata from Lumberjack into FCP X before we gained organizational folders for Keyword Collections in an Event, and was mildly surprised we didn’t have anything we thought would map well to Roles.

And that was the last time I thought about it until last night. It took a minute or two, but then it hit me, and it was totally obvious why there was no place for Roles in a “logging and pre-editing” tool.

Keyword Ranges (and Collections) are for organizing Clips.

Roles are for organizing a Project (timeline), and I guess for exporting information to Producer’s Best Friend where we make good use of Role information.

Just over 7 years ago I started identifying the types of metadata that would be useful in post production. One that particularly excited me was derived metadata: using a computer algorithm to derive useful information for use in post production. At the time the only example I could suggest was deriving location and type of location from GPS data.

We can now add another: Magic Keywords in Lumberjack System. Magic Keywords are derived from transcripts and are an addition to Transcript mode, added to Lumberjack at NAB 2015.

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I first wrote about derived metadata back at the end of January 2009. Derived metadata uses computer analysis to derive metadata from the video source. There are now technologies for speech-to-text, meaning extraction, facial detection, facial recognition, emotion detection, image recognition, and more. One company has been accumulating these somewhat diverse technologies: Apple.

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