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Bill Davis
Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 2:57:43 am

My friend Darren Roarke linked this on another Facebook group.

Should be good grist for this mill, too.

http://prolost.com/blog/doors

Know someone who teaches video editing in elementary school, high school or college? Tell them to check out http://www.StartEditingNow.com - video editing curriculum complete with licensed practice content.


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James Culbertson
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 4:32:49 am

Does an app do what you need it to do in a way that is efficient and enjoyable for you? That's the only question. Everything else is extra until you need it. If you are addicted to using or playing with features you don't need there is a bigger issue involved. If an applications complexity gets in the way of simple needs that is a problem. Word, Photoshop and After Effects are very complex (perhaps even bloated) applications, but most of the time I use them for very simple needs, and they work very well for those needs. If an apps complexity gets in the way, then find another app.


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Andrew Kimery
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 5:53:36 am

Stu has a great way of taking something that could be complex and explaining it in a very clear, concise way. A hallway with doors is certainly a better than any analogy we've been able to come up with. ;)

One of my favorite applicable quotes is from Alan Kay, an accomplished computer scientist, who said "Simple things should be simple, complex things should be possible."

Feature creep certainly can be a problem but so can buying a bunch of specialized apps and then trying to incorporate them all into a cohesive workflow. I think the balancing of 'doors' is an ongoing process throughout the life of any app. Too few and people might say it doesn't do enough but too many and some people might call it bloated.

Since this is forum about NLEs, let's look at NLEs. How many today would be interested in an NLE that just cut video? No GFX. No titler. No Audio mixing. No color correction. Only the most basic export options. That would certainly remove a lot of doors but would it even be a hallway worth visiting at that point? It could be, but you'd also need to visit many other hallways for audio, online, etc., and each of those hallways would have their own doors... So are you really saving yourself any doors, or are you just putting the them in different hallways?

I think Adobe linking PPro to AE and SpeedGrade is a good example of trying to find a happy medium between doors and hallways. Dumping all of AE's or SG's doors into PPro's hallway would be a disaster so even though PPro does have some AE/SG-type doors it also has a door that goes directly to AE and another door that goes directly to SG. Adobe knows that going to SG opens up a lot of other doors (maybe too many) so they've added some more SG-type doors to PPro (the Lumetri Color Panel).

Sometimes the user is the problem though, not doors. If the user doesn't read the freaking manual they could go stumbling into doors yelling, "What the hell is this?" even though they have a guide in their back pocket telling them what the hell it is.

I remember when I first opened Color and, like most people, wondered what the hell I was looking at. Long story short, I bought Walter Biscardi's intro to Color tutorial and that changed everything. I think it was 2hrs long and Walter went through every window, button, prompt, check box, menu item etc., and described what it was for. By the end of it I felt totally confident that I could use the app (and I did on a nearly daily basis for a number of years). To use Stu's analogy, I paid for a guided tour of all the doors and it made all the difference in the world.

When do you have too many doors and when do you have too few doors? That's really up to the dev, the user base (which as we know is always unified in its needs), and time.


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Herb Sevush
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 2:09:54 pm

[Andrew Kimery] " How many today would be interested in an NLE that just cut video? No GFX. No titler. No Audio mixing. No color correction. Only the most basic export options. That would certainly remove a lot of doors but would it even be a hallway worth visiting at that point?"

Lightworks anyone?

Herb Sevush
Zebra Productions
---------------------------
nothin' attached to nothin'
"Deciding the spine is the process of editing" F. Bieberkopf


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Jok Daniel
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 15, 2015 at 9:08:04 am

Interestingly, doors were an important metaphor in the original Lightworks interface. Upon launch, you were presented with a "lobby", and any number of user created "doors" would lead into "rooms" which you could freely configure for different tasks, e.g. logging, editing, exporting or colour correction. And while the actual doors were dropped in later versions, the "room" metaphor is still in use and is one of the reasons the Lightworks UI is so fluid and malleable.


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Walter Soyka
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 10:51:02 am

This is kind of the UNIX philosophy: lots of focused little tools that you can chain together to do your work. But what does this change? In UNIX, you can't get anything done until you know a bunch of those focused little tools.

But I think for tasks of any real complexity, this just changes the frame of reference for what the hall is and what the doors are.

To Andrew's point, if you had separate tightly-focused apps for logging, editing, audio, titling, graphics, color, etc., with no option to handle them all in-app, then your workflow is now the hall, and those 6+ individual apps are now the doors. (And we don't really have the easy cross-tool integration that UNIX does for chaining tools together.)

Is there room for simple, tightly-focused tools in our industry? Yes, absolutely. Should all tools in our industry be simple and tightly-focused? No way.

Here's a question for you: how many doors are there in FCPX's hallway?

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Oliver Peters
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 11:58:44 am

It seems like this is precisely the balance Apple has always strived for and more importantly, what ProApps has and is trying to do with FCP X. But it is a balance. This may well be the point at which Resolve 12 ends up jumping the shark.

Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Bill Davis
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 4:38:20 pm

Seems to me that X is a bit like a factory with designated areas for tasks.

Where other software might be seen as more of a huge open room with hundreds of doorways, X is a bit more modularized.

You enter via the Event Space, in that, you can spend the whole day working, pre-trimming (range setting), keywording and doing other useful stuff.

When you're ready, you enter the Storyline space to complete your edit. Yes, the basic inteface has a solid handrail of rooms, like the Timeline Index, the Inspector and the Motion/Title space - but really not too many.

And many of the rooms actually function more like cabinets on the wall. Everything on the Menu Bar kinda slides open for access, then slides shut for organizational efficiency.

When you do something like Multicam - it's found in it's own room.

When you're done, you exit to the Share Room.

It's an imperfect and somewhat strained description, but it does kinda describe the way X is organized.

Know someone who teaches video editing in elementary school, high school or college? Tell them to check out http://www.StartEditingNow.com - video editing curriculum complete with licensed practice content.


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Andrew Kimery
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 5:25:54 pm

[Bill Davis] "It's an imperfect and somewhat strained description, but it does kinda describe the way X is organized."

And this is why I said Stu is so much better at metaphors. ;)

He beautifully illustrates his point with a simple metaphor about doors in a hallway while we have factories, cabinets, spaces, rooms, doors, hallways, handrails, designated task areas and, finally, a disclaimer at the end apologizing for the mess. ;)


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Bill Davis
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 7:02:55 pm

Well, Stu is explaining a concept. I was trying to relate it to a known, specific reality with tangible operations. Different things.

And rember when I use metaphors, I've learned that I will have to spend hours defending them. (Yes, likely because they are lame.) but it's still a hassle - : )

Know someone who teaches video editing in elementary school, high school or college? Tell them to check out http://www.StartEditingNow.com - video editing curriculum complete with licensed practice content.


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Andrew Kimery
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 8:08:00 pm

[Bill Davis] "And rember when I use metaphors, I've learned that I will have to spend hours defending them. (Yes, likely because they are lame.) but it's still a hassle - : )"

Metaphors are a lot like cars, Bill... ;)


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Dave Gage
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 8:22:04 pm

[Andrew Kimery] "
Metaphors are a lot like cars, Bill... ;)"


Good one.

(By the way, am I remembering correctly that about a month ago you said you hike in the S.M mountains from time to time. I live in Topanga and hike all the time. Let me know if you like to hike sometime and I can get my contact info to you.)

Dave


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Andrew Kimery
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 13, 2015 at 7:58:45 pm

[Dave Gage] " I live in Topanga and hike all the time. Let me know if you like to hike sometime and I can get my contact info to you.)"

Certainly, I'm always looking for new hiking partners. You can hit me up at adkimery at gmail dot com.


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Craig Alan
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 13, 2015 at 6:37:55 pm

Working with curious beginners I have found that. X does send you down the rabbit hole more often than ideal. Or to use the OP - they get trapped behind one if those side doors in a room unfamiliar.

X has about the same number of windows/spaces as any other full featured NLE. Some are more developed some are less.

Mac Pro, macbook pro, Imacs (i7); Canon 5D Mark III/70D, Panasonic AG-HPX170/AG-HPX250P, Canon HV40, Sony Z7U/VX2000/PD170; FCP 6 certified; FCP X write professionally for a variety of media; teach video production in L.A.


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James Culbertson
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 13, 2015 at 6:49:43 pm

[Craig Alan] "Working with curious beginners I have found that. X does send you down the rabbit hole more often than ideal. Or to use the OP - they get trapped behind one if those side doors in a room unfamiliar."

I haven't noticed beginners going down any rabbit holes unless I point them out and assign them to actually go in those hallway doors (or if they purposefully choose to explore on their own); one of the strengths of FCPX in my experience. What rabbit holes have you seen open up?


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Oliver Peters
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 13, 2015 at 7:21:31 pm

[James Culbertson] "one of the strengths of FCPX in my experience. What rabbit holes have you seen open up?"

I'll jump in and note that I frequently see beginners mistakenly open a clip in a timeline, thinking they are in the project, and merrily - and destructively - editing away.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Craig Alan
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 13, 2015 at 7:49:19 pm

For example or any of the features in the clip menu. Or having the wrong window active and wondering why nothing works. QWorE and a new clip is put on the timeline but the timeline is not now active? The windows could be a bit more obviously lit up/active. Bottom line is I don't find FCP X really that different than FCP legacy in this regard. However, I can get beginners editing a rough cut faster than legacy. The whole magnetic and primary storyline UI is a lot easier to get started with. But many keyboard shortcuts will trigger all hell breaking loose if you are not experienced.

Mac Pro, macbook pro, Imacs (i7); Canon 5D Mark III/70D, Panasonic AG-HPX170/AG-HPX250P, Canon HV40, Sony Z7U/VX2000/PD170; FCP 6 certified; FCP X write professionally for a variety of media; teach video production in L.A.


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James Culbertson
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 13, 2015 at 7:49:41 pm

[Oliver Peters] "I'll jump in and note that I frequently see beginners mistakenly open a clip in a timeline, thinking they are in the project, and merrily - and destructively - editing away."

Interesting. That does not seem entirely logical since the only way you could select open in timeline is if you are already in a timeline (at least that was the logic that made me look up that function when I first encountered it). But I can see that particular contextual menu terminology being confusing for some.

Maybe it is because I work with high school students, but I have never seen that scenario arise.


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Oliver Peters
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 13, 2015 at 9:01:01 pm

[James Culbertson] " That does not seem entirely logical since the only way you could select open in timeline is if you are already in a timeline ....
Maybe it is because I work with high school students, but I have never seen that scenario arise."


These are college film students. I don't know how they get there, but I've seen roughly 10% of the class do it in several successive years. Someone gets started cutting inside a master clip, then changes their mind and deletes everything from the timeline. Of course, now that media is gone from the master clip container and they are completely baffled. I realize you have to make an effort to get there, but it seems to happen with surprising ease.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Craig Alan
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 13, 2015 at 10:03:07 pm

Just the other day I was experimenting and opened a browser clip in its own timeline. I was just experimenting with what could be done in that space. When I was through, I deleted the clip's timeline only to discover that the clip itself was deleted from the browser. Intuitively you do not expect FC to delete all references to a piece media. For example, you can delete a clip from the primary storyline and the original media still stays in the finder and in the browser. It's one of the first things I teach students: do your deleting in the timeline not in the browser. Now that said, you can always reimport a clip from the finder assuming you kept a copy there. Which I do.

But getting back to the OP, FC is full of backdoors and sidebars and the like. Even the fact that you often have to use three windows at the same time to do certain types of edits shows a high degree of complexity in terms of interface design.

Mac Pro, macbook pro, Imacs (i7); Canon 5D Mark III/70D, Panasonic AG-HPX170/AG-HPX250P, Canon HV40, Sony Z7U/VX2000/PD170; FCP 6 certified; FCP X write professionally for a variety of media; teach video production in L.A.


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Bret Williams
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 16, 2015 at 4:58:36 am

[Bill Davis] "It's an imperfect and somewhat strained description, but it does kinda describe the way X is organized."

I think you better described resolve with it's completely separate modes/rooms off a main lobby. X is more like a jack n jill bathroom. You edit in the tub, and one door is export while the other is the event. Sometimes I forget to lock both doors. Am I right?


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James Culbertson
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 16, 2015 at 5:24:25 am

[Bret Williams] "Sometimes I forget to lock both doors. Am I right?"

Editing in X is more like dancing outside on the patio.


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 8:01:57 pm

[Walter Soyka] "Here's a question for you: how many doors are there in FCPX's hallway?"

This many:








That's why some people hate it, no matter what the doors seem horrifically unreachable, but for those that stick it out the doors all of a sudden rush to the forefront.

And then you have to step in to the light, Carol Anne.


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Herb Sevush
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 2:09:05 pm

Interesting article. To keep the analogy going, I would say it's important to know how frequently you will be visiting the hallway. If it's only occasionally - then less doors are better. If your in that freakin' hallway all day long, then I want as many doors as possible, as long as they all take me someplace I want to go.

If the hallway is for downloading clips and I only do this once in a while, I want it simple. If my job is as a bit-wrangler and I'm at it all day long, then I'll have different priorities.

If I'm using Magic Bullet Looks in my NLE (and I do) then I'll want something simpler than if I were a full time colorist using Resolve.

The article was written from a developers standpoint. From a user's standpoint I long for the software that has all the doors I need and not a single one more. In that sense Adobe is closest - it let's you add complexity by linking to other programs at your discretion.

Herb Sevush
Zebra Productions
---------------------------
nothin' attached to nothin'
"Deciding the spine is the process of editing" F. Bieberkopf


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Paul Neumann
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 4:13:11 pm

I agree. I'm most productive in Adobe's hallway. I enter through prelude and go from there. It's why I want to see media browser in every product. One Director I work with a lot picks his shots in prelude and then just leaves the project sitting on my premiere pro doorstep.


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Andrew Kimery
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 12, 2015 at 5:30:04 pm

[Herb Sevush] "The article was written from a developers standpoint. From a user's standpoint I long for the software that has all the doors I need and not a single one more. In that sense Adobe is closest - it let's you add complexity by linking to other programs at your discretion."

Every user has different wants though and that's what devs have to struggle with. Who do you listen to and who do you not listen to?


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Scott Witthaus
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 13, 2015 at 2:46:28 pm

[Herb Sevush] "From a user's standpoint I long for the software that has all the doors I need and not a single one more. In that sense Adobe is closest - it let's you add complexity by linking to other programs at your discretion."

I agree. That's what I like about X as well. Add all the doors you need through the plug-in world, nothing more. What I would like to see in X is a "door"/plugin manager, so you can turn on and off the "doors" you need based on the project. Like the old Event Manager plugin.

Adobe is close, but it's interfaces are so horrid (doing some basic AE work now and the software is really great, but the interface is just awful...worse than Premiere.) I choose to stay away from that "hallway" no matter how many doors I might like to use

Scott Witthaus
Senior Editor/Post Production Supervisor
1708 Inc./Editorial
Professor, VCU Brandcenter


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Oliver Peters
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 13, 2015 at 10:57:27 pm

[Scott Witthaus] " (doing some basic AE work now and the software is really great, but the interface is just awful...worse than Premiere.) "

Do you find Motion easier, more logical, or more intuitive?

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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James Culbertson
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 13, 2015 at 11:30:51 pm

[Scott Witthaus] "Adobe is close, but it's interfaces are so horrid (doing some basic AE work now and the software is really great, but the interface is just awful."

I find AE's interface to be sheer joy and extremely simple in practice; but I have been using it since 1995. So my sense is that this whole notion of simplicity and complexity is completely contextual. We are made to simplify even the most complex actions as a matter of basic survival and this carries into the rest of our lives.


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Walter Soyka
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 13, 2015 at 11:41:01 pm

[Scott Witthaus] "Adobe is close, but it's interfaces are so horrid (doing some basic AE work now and the software is really great, but the interface is just awful...worse than Premiere.)"

What it is it specifically that do you not like about the Adobe interfaces?

Personally, I think that the default layout is sub-optimal, and depending on what it is that you don't like, maybe I can help.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Richard Herd
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 15, 2015 at 7:34:21 pm

[Walter Soyka] "the default layout is sub-optimal"

Which default layout? Haha!

Docking panels and saving them is like being the architect (in this hallway construction metaphor). That's a bit of problem with X. They're screaming at us in German accents: "You will live in this house!" I'm all: No thanks. I want my room over there, and the bathroom over there, and the kitchen here....


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Richard Herd
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 15, 2015 at 7:32:03 pm

[Scott Witthaus] "doing some basic AE work now and the software is really great, but the interface is just awful...worse than Premiere"

I love the AE interface. I keep my left hand on the keyboard (because there are so many friggin shortcuts) and I keep my right hand on the wacom pen/tablet.


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Scott Witthaus
Re: Boy will this be a debate starter...
on Jun 16, 2015 at 1:09:12 am

[Richard Herd] "I love the AE interface."

Really? Wow. Crazy small icons, timeline view feels ancient, please give me a keyboard short cut for in and out points when adding video...the list goes on. Great results, painful way to get there. C'mon Adobe, there has got to be a better way. Who cares what Avid does, make it better! ;-) IMHO, only.

Scott Witthaus
Senior Editor/Post Production Supervisor
1708 Inc./Editorial
Professor, VCU Brandcenter


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