Evan Luzi, who runs the camera assistant blog The Black and Blue (and who also wrote a guest post here on NFS), takes a look at the crucial but unheralded position of data wrangler. The data wrangler is the person on set who is responsible for making sure that what gets recorded on camera makes it back to the editor without any data loss or corruption. This is not an action-packed video, but if you might find yourself doing work in this position it's a nice and informative behind-the-scenes commentary. There, I warned you: I don't want to hear any comments of "this was boring!" Hmm, that wasn't a very good front page teaser. Well, check it out anyway:
Oh, and Evan doesn't typically work in this capacity, but the right job came along so he took it. In my own case, I've never been hired as a data wrangler, but there was one Sony SRW-9000 shoot on which I was supposed to be the Camera A operator -- but then the DP decided he wanted to operate and, not wanting to displace the B or C camera guys, I hopped over to the vacant position of data wrangler (someone had forgot to hire one -- oops). Here's Evan's take on the gig:
If you think this was boring, keep in mind we're all here to learn. Right? If not, I'll have Evan throw a sword:
Video is no longer available: www.youtube.com/watch?v=FsqJFIJ5lLs
Also check out Julio's notes in the comments, which are an excellent summation of Evan's tips.
Personally, one of the ways I'm planning on saving some money on the data wrangling for Man-child is by putting to use the new Thunderbolt interface. It should speed up transfers and remove the need for complex cabling (and a huge cart). Of course, I bought a laptop right before the interface started appearing on Mac laptops. Ah well.
From a comment on the video (the first one, I mean), I found out about a $99 data wrangler app called ShotPut Pro. There's also a Windows version; both offer wranglers and wranglettes the ability to "verify file-by-file sizes, MD5 or CRC checksums, or byte-to-byte comparisons of your media copies to ensure they exactly match the originals." When you want to be absolutely certain that you can format your camera's shooting media without losing anything, that sounds like a good thing. Anyone have any experience with ShotPut Pro?
[via Wide Open Camera]