Tag Archives | Video Editing

How To: Record, Publish, and Manage “A Video a Day” of Your Child (Part II of II)

David Spark (@dspark) is a veteran tech journalist and the founder of the media consulting and production company Spark Media Solutions.  Spark blogs regularly at Spark Minute.

This article is Part II of a two-part series about how to record, encode, store, organize, and share via online and DVD a video of each day of your child’s life. The first part, over at Spark Minute, covers the basics of doing the recording and storing the video. This article covers the second part, which is the daunting process of organizing and sharing the videos.

A year ago I decided to take on a seemingly gargantuan task.

I began shooting a video of my son every single day of the first year of his life. As of today I’ve shot (with the help of my wife), produced, shared online, and printed on DVD over 400 one-minute videos (some days I produce more than one video).

When I tell people I’m doing this they can’t believe it, because they immediately think of how much work it must involve. But in actuality, given the tools we have, the cost of disk space, and just some good pre-planning and organizing (the most critical parts), it’s really not that difficult. You just have to commit to it, and do it. The trick is to not make it too difficult on yourself, so you can do it easily without it being a burden. If it’s too hard, you’ll just give up.

No matter how busy you are, there is a way to record  a video every day of your child’s life, and manage all that video. Just think how amazing it would be if your parents had recorded a video a day of you (heck, a video a year). Wouldn’t that be incredible? I’m hoping it’ll be the same for my son.

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New Adobe’s Photoshop Elements and Premiere Elements For Windows…and Mac

For years, Adobe’s Photoshop Elements and Premiere Elements have had a simple, appealing modus operandi: Provide a surprisingly high percentage of the features from full-strength Photoshop and Premiere with an easier interface and more features aimed at amateurs, at an affordable price. Adobe is rolling out Photoshop Elements 9 and Premiere Elements 9 today: They’re $99.99 apiece ($79.99 after $20 rebate) and can also be bought in a bundle for $149.99 ($119.99 after rebate). A $179.99 version ($149.99 after rebate) includes both versions, 20GB of online storage for photos and videos, and additional training materials and art.

The Elements strategy still works, and these new versions are reasonably meaty upgrades. I tried the OS X versions.

OS X versions? In the past, only certain um, elements of Elements have been available for Macs: Adobe shipped the OS X version of Photoshop Elements with the industrial-strength Bridge media management tool rather than the more consumery Organizer, and didn’t bother with Premiere Elements at all. The biggest single piece of news about the Elements 9 apps is that they’re available for Macs in forms nearly identical to their Windows counterparts.

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Roxio Creator: Cheap n' Simple 3D

Full disclosure: I think of myself as a 3D skeptic. On balance, I think its impact on the movie business is pernicious–sixty years after the first 3D boom, it remains a gimmick, not an artform. As for 3D TV, much of the enthusiasm I’ve witnessed so far comes from TV manufacturers rather than consumers, and the need to pay for all those pricey glasses still seems like an overwhelming gotcha.

Despite all that, I kind of like the approach to 3D in Roxio’s new Creator 2011, the new version of a venerable swiss-army knife package for creating, editing, and sharing media of all sorts. If you happen to be one of the few folks who own a 3D camera or camcorder, a 3D HDTV, or a laptop or monitor that works with Nvidia’s $200 3D Vision active shutter glasses, Creator ‘s new 3D features will work with them. But they don’t require any special equipment other than the pair of blue-and-red lens cardboard spectacles that come in the box, and you don’t need to know anything about 3D to give them a whirl.

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Microsoft Upgrades Windows (Live) Movie Maker

Windows Movie Maker Movie Maker–the Microsoft movie-editing application that the company has yanked out of Windows 7 and bundled into the suite known as Windows Live Essentials–is out in a new version today. LiveSide.net details the changes, which are plentiful. Microsoft also has a Movie Maker site up with even more info (which, incidentally, requires Silverlight).

When Microsoft announced it was removing Movie Maker, Windows Photo Gallery, and Windows Mail from the OS last September, I thought it was a great idea, even though the name “Windows Live Essentials” continues to confuse me. (Windows Live is Microsoft’s name for Web-based services with at least a tangential relationship to the OS–except when it decides to apply it to downloadable traditional software such as Movie Maker.) Bundling applications with Windows was ninety percent downside: They tended to fester, rarely showed much ambition,  and were basically uncompetitive with the best apps from other companies. (Worst-case scenario: Windows Paint, which has changed remarkably little in almost a quarter of a century…although the Windows 7 version does get a new interface.)  I haven’t tried the new Movie Maker yet, but I’m glad to see that it’s on its own upgrade regimen–and hey, it even beat Windows 7 to the market. (The new version works with Windows Vista and 7, but not XP.)

Here’s a screenshot:

Windows Movie Maker


Secrets of Managing your Flip Video Collection

[David Spark (@dspark) is a veteran tech journalist and the founder of Spark Media Solutions, a storytelling production company that specializes in live event production. He also blogs and does a daily radio report for Green 960 and 910 KNEW in San Francisco at Spark Minute.]

Flip MinoIf you use a Flip video camera like I do, (here’s a photo of my Mino HD with a design of my company logo on it) you probably also have quite a collection of videos that are being managed with their video management software. If you have the old Flip Video software, you should upgrade to the new FlipShare software for free. It does much better management of your videos and it’s considerably faster.

But when I installed the FlipShare program it moved all my videos! The “My Flip Video Library” is still there and all the folders I created in the Flip Video program are there as well, but all the videos are gone. All that’s left in each folder is a video that says, “The videos which were previously located in this folder have been imported into the NEW FlipShare software. To view or edit your videos, open the new software.”

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