iMovie Pro... WHY?

Posted by Flabasha 
Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 09, 2011 12:16AM
Loren Miller Wrote:

> But really, whether Lightworks, EMC2, Premiere,
> Avid, FCP, the paradigm is borrowed from the
> intermediate technology of video: the "four
> corners" of almost all NLE's until Randy decided
> to reinvent the wheel in iMovie 8, are the Source
> viewer, Program window, Timeline and a Project
> Browser or Inspector of some sort where clips are
> listed and organized. There you go.

I'm not disagreeing with you, but I can see ways in which some may want to improve, or at least think they are, the NLE workspace.

If you look and listen to what Apple has done and said with iOS, what's presented to the user is based on the choices/actions that are relevant at that moment. If you have a 30" monitor or a dual-monitor setup, then multiple windows that aren't always in use is fine, but if you only have a single screen, like a 13" laptop for example, it quickly becomes cramped. If you're working in the preview window, then the browser is just taking up space, and vice versa. What if the browser were as large as the current browser and preview window combined, with thumbnails that are quickly scanned through when moused over? When a thumbnail is chosen, it can either take over that window and become the browser or open on top, a la Quick Look. This is just one possibility that comes to my mind, and it wouldn't have to be forced upon every user. Just like today, you can arrange and size the windows however you desire, and you can have the clips in the browser in column view or thumbnail view also.

iOS is OS X. They didn't write a new OS. The underlying elements are the same, and I think this will hold true for FCP 8. The surface may change and new features may be introduced, but in the end, the basic functionality that we're used to should still be there.

At the end of the day, fancy bells and whistles and processing power will not a good editor make, but enhancements could certainly help remove some of the technology that sometimes gets in the way and open up the user to focus more on their creativity.
Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 09, 2011 11:21AM
The most interesting change wouldn?t be just a software change- it would be the kind of software/human interface change exemplified in all of Apples other new devices- iPods, iPads, etc. Turf the keyboard- it?s an antiquated relic. Design a software/hardware combination that really pushes trackpad or touchscreen technology and really works.

Possible? Dunno. But the whole keyboard/mouse thing is SO 20th century.

Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 09, 2011 12:56PM
Remember when "Minority Report" came out? There was a long thread saying basically that's the way I want to edit. Editors wanted an interface that was gestural. I think Apple is moving in that direction with all its OSs, particular the mobile device iOS. I'll think we'll see even more of that in Lion and I hope in FCP8.

All the best,

Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 09, 2011 01:21PM
Before we get all excited about the Minority Report interface it's wise to remember the lessons of Gorilla Arm. What's that you say?
Well, it's this and this.

Having messed around with using an iPad for performing I realized that having the control surface in the same place that you're comfortable looking at i.e. directly ahead with no tilt in the neck or back, is a terrible idea because of Gorilla Arm. The opposite, having it where it's comfortable to reach is bad for your neck and you look like the guitarist from Radiohead when he spends the whole song twiddling knobs on his floor based FX pedals and you get a good look at his hairline and shirt collar.

Sleeplings, AWAKE!
Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 09, 2011 01:33PM
The point to take away here is not the vertical screen, which is only a problem I guess if you're Walter Murch. There is no reason, as Apple has done with the iPad and its other mobile devices, to have the gestures on a horizontal surface.

Apple last year applied for a patent on a device that allows the track pad to be the width of the keyboard, essentially electronically extending the glass over the underlying components. There is no reason with this technology that you cannot have a laptop that is two glass surfaces, a horizontal gestural surface that entirely covers what is now the keyboard area, and a vertical surface that's the screen, or a glass tablet, like say an iPad, that drives a tower with a large screen.

All the best,

Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 09, 2011 02:38PM
I wasn?t trying to hijack the thread and say: ?bring on touch screens?- rather, just making the point that UI isn?t just software- it?s the whole interface. If Apple is redesigning FCP in a major way they should look at that whole UI. They should build for the future, not the past. And Apple?s new devices have cast a huge new light on just how different computer interfaces can be. (I had my 87 year old mother flicking through pictures on an iPhone the other day- the first time she?s ever touched a computer.)

So, touch screen as a central component, certainly. Big (BIG!) and level, probably. Touch screen plus jog wheel, plus a number of dedicatable buttons, maybe. But an interface that doesn?t cause Gorilla Arm or Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, absolutely.

But those are all means. My central point is that Apple should at the big picture- how editors edit, and the tools they need to do that- with the same fresh eyes they did at music players.

Whether a system as sophisticated as FCP can be run that way?dunno. Certainly not as it sits. Maybe it?s too complex and would never work. Maybe, to bring the whole discussion full circle, this is a job where iMovie should blaze the path?.

Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 09, 2011 05:37PM
Not that I don't think some basic gestures could be useful for editing but I'm not overly enamored with the idea of UI moving heavily in that direction (at least not w/the current level of the tech). Once you get past a few of the obvious ones (pinch to zoom in/out, swiping to scroll through the timeline, etc.,) you start getting into the realm of unintuitive, arbitrary gestures to do more abstract things (like linking/unlink audio) and at that point it is faster and easier to use a keyboard command (or even click a button added to the button bar). It's kinda like the controls for the Wii. Swinging the Wii-mote like a tennis racket in Wii Tennis is awesome but 'drawing' arbitrary gestures to do attacks in Mortal Kombat is lame. At that point give me a button because it's faster and easier.

One thing I would like to see in the next FCP is the floating, semi-opaque windows that apps like iPhoto, Motion and QT have.

Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 09, 2011 06:12PM
That Minority Report thing is a pipe dream. (I'd say let's call it the Iron Man interface, shouldn't we?) Does an editor really want to spend time fighting the system because it thought you were touching your earlobe to execute an edge wipe, when what you were doing was moving your hand en route to the top of your head to add a filter? Not to mention the fact that it's going to be physically far more taxing, and requires way more physical real estate, without equipment and cables in the way. And what if you take a drink of coffee and it spills onto your shirt? What will the interface interpret that as? Do you want 10 unwanted operations to occur because you just wiped sweat off your brow?

Editing and any computer-oriented work are visually stagnant activities. Minority Report and Iron Man made that virtual-interactive stuff up because it looked better. In real life, people want precision, simplicity. Icons are never as clear and direct as a button or menu labelled "File". (How many people have complained about the Snap and Linked Selection buttons? I guaranteed they'd be a lot easier to spot if they were buttons with words instead of icons.) The only reason it works in the movies is because the actor can do anything he wants -- and deviate gestures with a large degree of subtle differences -- and the post-production artists can adjust and add the visuals later. Plus, the characters talk to the computer systems as if they were humans capable of interpretation, tone, context and linguistic nuance, and the gestural commands were all reliant on that verbal communication.

Maybe some very few, very basic navigational ideas (zooming in/out, moving to another part of the screen, drag/drop) can be integrated into body motions or voice activation, but machine controls will forever be based on language, buttons, pointers. Remember when the iPod had touch-sensitive play, stop and menu buttons, which were part of the jog wheel? It was too easy to activate those buttons by mistake when rolling the wheel. They got smart and got rid of those, and put in old-fashioned physical buttons. Made the iPod far easier to work. Just because the idea is sexy doesn't mean it works.

Virtual reality is great for things like computer games, where the range of activities is extremely limited ("Action" button, "Fire" a gun, "Move", etc.). Not for things requiring precision and speed like editing, special effects, military applications etc. Watch Demolition Man sometime and see how hard it is to drive a car that's too "smart and sexy" for its own good.
Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 09, 2011 08:25PM
I was wondering when someone would bring up the iPad (2)

Wouldn´t it be cool to ditch the desktop computer and have a kick ass laptop and iPad 2

Use the iPad as second display running over WLAN to the laptop, standing up on that funky stand.

Go thunderbolt and edit RED material native on the road all in RT.

Am I dreaming?

Simple & sexy.

This is going to be an amazing time in FCP world. But I think we need to think more and, and. Rather than either or.

Speaking of which when is someone going to come up with a foot pedal to drive an editing system similar to on a Sewing machine......

Foot gestures anyone?

I for one will be taking the FCP 8/iMovie Super Pro Pill in one faul swoop.

A horse, a horse, my kingdom for a horse

Paul Murray
Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 10, 2011 11:39AM
Another reason why we might need a redesigned FCP:

After I started a thread about screen estate usage I realized that I wasn't the only one struggling with it. And people who don't seem to struggle seem to me they are doing the best with what they have and can do.
Let's remember FCP and Avid were designed in the area of 4:3 monitors... Way more vertical space than 16:9.
Why can't they use the Cmd-Tab function we have with finder that allows you to navigate between open applications to navigate from Browser, Canvas (etc) windows?....

What about the keyboard?
I know FCP and Avid were originally designed to be used with a keyboard, but now with the tablets, trackballs and fancy mice, we spend less time on the keyboard.
I mostly use my trackball and the left part of my keyboard where I concentrated my shortcuts.
My dream is to be able to use one of these fancy video game mice that have several buttons, like a trackball mice but multiplied by 5. I could have my main shortcuts right there.
Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 10, 2011 11:54AM
> Why can't they use the Cmd-Tab function we have with finder that allows you to
> navigate between open applications to navigate from Browser, Canvas (etc) windows?....

You can. APPLE-1 for Viewer, APPLE-2 for Canvas, APPLE-3 for Timeline, APPLE-4 for Browser.

I find these of limited use, though. Usually I don't just want to activate a window; I want to do something specific in a specific area of that window. But these are good for slamming home a command, for example making sure a marker goes on the timeline rather than a Viewer clip.
Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 10, 2011 12:03PM
derekmok Wrote:
> >
> You can. APPLE-1 for Viewer, APPLE-2 for Canvas,
> APPLE-3 for Timeline, APPLE-4 for Browser.

These commands just open/close/activate the window.
I use them quite a lot actually.
But the space they free up when they "disappear" isn't automatically used by the the other windows. And also they become inactive when closed.
I am talking about "hidding" the window and have it still active, like when I Cmd-Tab to go from FCP to Safari. The application is still active.
Better example would be Cmd-`
Not sure if you use it, but it's awesome. It toggles from open windows to open windows within the SAME application. This is actually what I'd love to see in FCP so the windows I don't use too often could be "pilled up" and free space
Or something like Expose...
Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 11, 2011 05:25AM
when i'm editing, it's Browser, Viewer, Canvas and Timeline.

i don't really want those windows to just disappear!
i'm using them all the time.

if you want something that can tab thru all open windows,
you can do that with Shift Apple ~

there is also a 3rd party app for that, called Witch (short for Switch)

i know one editor who loved using this in FCP,
you get an overlay of your open windows, like when switching apps,
but a bit less visual, as you can see.

personally i rarely have lots of bins open,
i tend to source my rushes from sequences.
they are in the bins too, but it's a lot easier to find what i want by scrubbing thru a timeline.

Effects work is a bit different, i guess.

"Gorilla Arm"
i hadnt heard that term before, it's good.

i used to really love cutting tape to tape with an RM450 controller.
it's a great way to work, but there are may, many LESS commands you need to execute in that environment.
there was a computer hanging off it (running Aussie designed "Shotlister" software), just like Lightworks.
The Lightworks controller was also pretty good to use, and had a computer & keyboard attached (that wasn't used very much while Editing)
but i kept thinking: i'm on a computer, i should be using this like a computer.

again, htey'd designed the software to need less commands.
FCP is verry ckick-heavy compared to those,
and that can be bad for you too...

i could work very fast on the RM450, a bit less so on Lightworks, but maybe just needed more time on it.
so im not against some sort of out-board controller, but FCP would need a re-think, perhaps.

there are those who suggest that just getting FCP to 64bit is such a mammoth undertaking that expecting anything else whizz-bang is being unrealistic.
that puts apple in a hard place as they do love to wow people.

Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 11, 2011 11:33AM
I learned a nice trick from this thread!
Better example would be Cmd-`

you can do that with Shift Apple ~

Same effect, but the Shift is unnecessary. Never heard of this one, but I'll bet it's been around a long time.
Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
March 11, 2011 11:55AM
Shift is necessary. Cmd tilde is the default shortcut for deleting markers. For the rest of the OS apps, shift is unnecessary.
Re: iMovie Pro... WHY?
June 22, 2011 08:14PM
Hate to say... "I told you so." winking smiley
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