» Posts Tagged ‘webvideo’

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google drive cloud storage syncing file sharing service desktop mobile appUntil recently, Google Drive didn’t necessarily have more going for it than similar services like Dropbox. Tight integration with Gmail makes permissions management a breeze, and the real-time collaboration abilities offered by Google Docs is arguably revolutionary. Drive’s desktop syncing app has always felt a little tacked-on, though, whereas Dropbox’s version has felt truly native since day one. In any case, Google recently made what may be the most convincing point of argument yet to use their cloud app by expanding its storage pricing system exponentially. In other words, the $10 I used to pay monthly for 200 GB now gets me 1 TB. In what TechCrunch calls cloud “storage wars,” that kind of upgrade is a pretty big deal. But as filmmakers, why do we care? More »

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Google ChromecastSince Google released Chromecast last year, the little ‘HDMI dongle’ has had two big things going for it — Netflix and YouTube. Of course, given its simplicity and ridiculously low price of $35, it hasn’t had much going against it either. Even with some creative work-arounds via Google Chrome ‘tab casting,’ Chromecast’s downside has been its short list of natively supported apps — despite subsequent support for Hulu, Pandora, and HBO GO. Well, all that’s changed, because Google has announced the public release of the device’s SDK. In short, this turns what was a very exclusive party into a fiesta that any developer can join. Many more native apps are sure to follow, but how can this benefit filmmakers? More »

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HEVC-High-Effeciency-Video-Coding h265What might seem like a boring announcement on the surface, is very important for the future of the web, and more specifically, 4K video. MPEG LA, the group that handles licensing for H.264 — and now the HEVC codec — have worked with major companies on a new licensing agreement to settle any royalty issues for using the codec. While the agreement isn’t 100% final yet, at least there are now guidelines going forward about who will be asked to pay for the usage of the codec. Click through for more on this announcement and how it may affect you. More »

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Video thumbnail for youtube video Buffering Bummer: Are Bitter Broadband Providers Handicapping Netflix & YouTube? - nofilmschoolIt’s probably no surprise to anyone that Netflix and YouTube dominate the domain of web video. Any video viewer is also probably used to watching those please wait, buffering circles go ’round while waiting for their videos to load. Tuning in to such sites during peak hours, it’s no wonder why video can take a while to buffer, right? According to a recent post by Ars Technica, there’s a bit more to buffering (read: suffering) than what may be immediately obvious. The real bummer is that web video doesn’t have to be so slow, at least in some cases. But, due to disagreements between ISPs and major media services, sometimes it is. More »

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Video thumbnail for vimeo video 'Video on Instagram' - nofilmschoolThis doesn’t have to be confusing, so let’s briefly recap: various apps and services have quested to achieve the status of being the ‘Instagram of Video.’ Instagram, of course, is known for essentially being the ‘Twitter of Photography.’ Twitter itself has stepped up as a favored contender in this quest with its 6-second-maximum micro-video service Vine. Now, Instagram itself is offering ‘Video on Instagram,’ which allows up to 15 seconds maximum micro-videos. All of which is — well, good — and hopefully fun, but how viable are these apps for the creation of artistic content? More »

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Of all the filmmakers of all time, few can claim the sheer volume of titles to their name as Roger Corman — never mind his other accomplishments. The 87-year-old director, producer, writer, and occasional actor is still active in his 60 year film career, during which he has coached countless high-profile auteurs, fostered the careers of several notable actors, and earned a 2009 Honorary Academy Award. He has also already denied services such as Hulu streaming rights to his extensive ~400 film canon even for an offered $5-6,000 per film (to be paid to him) — but has agreed to launch “Corman’s Drive-In” as a $4/mo paid YouTube channel in the summer. Read on for more details. More »

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youtube spaces studioInevitable as it was, YouTube has finally rolled out the initial phase of its first ever attempt at paid subscription content. The 30 channels offered in this ‘pilot program’ span a wide range of demographics and subject matter — which is to be expected from the place where a vast majority of web video lives. Especially judging by these first 30 channels, this news likely won’t have no-budget filmmakers screaming anything about a ‘self-distribution revolution,’ but it certainly offers a more direct line of monetization for content owners than ad-based revenue. Viewers can try out any of the channels with a two-week free trial, and they start at $1 a month. Read on for more details. More »

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While H.265 has been approved as the next-gen lossy delivery codec, we’re still watching a vast amount of video in H.264. In fact, even when H.265 sooner or later takes its place, videomakers will still be dealing with many of the same basic compression principles at work. Knowing all the variables of a delivery encoding job can help optimize bit efficiency, ensure the highest possible quality of media, and reduce the visibility of artifacting such as banding. Read on for a look at what drives the quality-to-compression ratio of your lossy-encoded delivery video, and how you can even ‘trick’ it in some cases. More »

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As promised, the team behind VHX is steadily working to change the independent film distribution landscape. Veteran experience in populist collaboration and the building of Vimeo means VHX understands web video, audience interaction, and tracking social trends. Can it really work? The likes of NPR and Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl (as director) think so, joining the ranks of non-fiction VHX-powered releases like Indie Game: The Movie. VHX has also empowered documentary filmmakers spotlighting the ‘hacker’ community Anonymous, and the creators of the controversial BitTorrent tracker The Pirate Bay — even with the latter doc’s simultaneous free release through YouTube and BitTorrent. More »

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Technology’s progression sometimes moves with consistent momentum, and sometime comes in spurts. For instance, processors of mobile devices regularly decrease in size and price with relation to power — while, at the same time, the speed of your internet connection may not change much at all for several years, and make a great leap whenever it does. Both of these tendencies of advancement seem to inform High Efficiency Video Coding, A.K.A. H.265the successor to that other codec with which we’re all quite familiar (H.264). Improving efficiency by around double, H.265 aims to set the standard for the next decade in video streaming and encoding — and it’s going to ease mobile data congestion and likely make 4K a reality much sooner than many would have anticipated. More »

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There’s no doubt that things can get a bit confusing regarding non-integer frame rates — a decimal-specific frames-per-second count isn’t exactly an intuitive aspect of video. Of course, beginners can’t learn such distinctions if they’re going unspecified — a fact Vimeo has recently (and finally) addressed in updating their compression guidelines. Even more importantly, Vimeo is slowly but surely raising the quality ceiling in its encoding of your media — albeit in audio-only, in this case. More »

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I wasn’t really expecting to have to refer to the theoretical ‘Instagram of Video’ for another while — major choices for mobile users are already in place and ‘in the running’ for such a title, and it could be a while before everyone in the discussion unanimously declares one app the victor (if ever). The Verge (seemingly in a nod to comments) acknowledged YouTube as the elephant in the room for these apps, because even on iOS where the YouTube app is read-only (well, watch-only — no uploads), the service is the megalith for easily-socialized video. A complete YouTube experience is already native on Android (again, YouTube is Google is Android), perhaps to the chagrin of recent Android-joiner Viddy. A new development may totally shift the dynamics of this interplay, however: Google just yesterday released YouTube Capture for iOS. More »

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If you’ve been wanting make your own web series, you no doubt have been wondering about production logistics, storytelling, and crowdfunding, among other things. Luckily, Seattle-based filmmakers Tyler Hill and Brendan Davis have just been through this process in completing the first season of their web series Glitch. I sat down with them to discuss what roles they took on during production of the series, how they ran their Kickstarter campaign, various aspects of storytelling, and more (Full Disclosure: I’m friends with writer/producer Brendan Davis). More »

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Augmented Reality has been slowly making its way into our lives, mostly in the form of demo videos, games, and Google’s forthcoming Glass project. But Aurasma is a cool little app that puts the tools to create AR content into the hands of everyone, and has implications that could put an interesting twist in filmmaking for the web: More »

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Much is being made of The Confession, an original web series starring Kiefer Sutherland that just concluded on Hulu after premiering in March. The hype isn’t limited to the show itself, instead centering on reports that it has already turned a profit through Hulu’s free ad-driven model. There are plenty of additional revenue streams available for the show, and so the question on everyone’s mind is: does this mean original web series are a viable business model now? Because back when Zack Lieberman and I won the Webby for The West Side, that was not the case. Every studio we met with felt that the online revenue streams were not mature enough to support a decently-budgeted web series, with or without recognizable stars. Is The Confession a “watershed moment?” More »