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Oliver Peters
Complexity
on May 25, 2017 at 12:05:36 am

Given the recent threads about business models and product design, does this blog post apply to Apple's philosophy behind FCPX?

https://stratechery.com/2014/chromebooks-cost-complexity/

- Oliver

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


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Bill Davis
Re: Complexity
on May 25, 2017 at 3:08:14 am

Two observations.

First, the entire Chromebook thing is this generations version of the Poleroid camera or the ink-jet printer.

In NONE of these cases do the manufacturers care particularly about profits on the hardware. They are enabling devices kept as financially accessible as possible in order to achieve a very different objective.

The poleroid camera was a stalking horse for film pack sales.

The ink jet printer - one for its ink.

A Chromebook only gains power when it's put in a classroom and drives "accounts" for all the kids using it. I suspect it will become the starter device not just for learning how to deal with the global data system, but also the gateway service for storing their communications history, their schoolwork, writings, test results, pictures, mail, etc, etc.

These things are flooding into kindergarten through 4th grade in US Schools. Have been for a few years now. And GOOGLE did that brilliantly under the banner of making hugely underpaid teachers lives easier. Sometimes, bypassing the administration totally by pitching so many perks to the teachers directly (think of the time you'll save with on-line homework, grading anywhere, 24 hour contact with your students, apps and products JUST for teachers like you!!!) that putting 30 Chromebook into a class complete with locking storage stations with charging, wireless access etc simply became the tech path of least resistance.

Those kids account will migrate as the kid changes schools. And who stores and manages that data? Google. Who has your notes, files and photos? Google. The video you shot for that report? Again, Google. Where do you link your friends to watch your starter music video? Guess.

A final note.

I've started seriously assessing the quality and believability of web links I visit, not always by just the content itself - but by the nature of the ads linked to that content. If I see junk ads (You won't believe what (famous cute actress of my youth) looks like today!) or ED drugs, I write off the whole thing, ESPECIALLY if it agrees with my prior opinions. It signals Click bait ahead. With this Chromebook story, I got ONE big ad, starring the Pawn Stars guys.

I don't think I'm going to be trusting it much as a single source since it was served to me with that type of remora ad attached

My 2 cents.

Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.


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Oliver Peters
Re: Complexity
on May 25, 2017 at 11:43:18 am

I'm not really talking about the Chromebook specifically, but rather the concept of less complexity. Does that apply to Apple's design goals for FCPX and if so, in what way? And, is it a good thing for the user?

- Oliver

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


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Robin S. Kurz
Re: Complexity
on May 25, 2017 at 12:03:11 pm

[Oliver Peters] "And, is it a good thing for the user?"

Er… how exactly is less complexity NOT good for the user??

- RK

____________________________________________________
Deutsch? Hier gibt es ein umfassendes FCP X Training für dich!


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Oliver Peters
Re: Complexity
on May 25, 2017 at 1:40:05 pm

[Robin S. Kurz] "Er… how exactly is less complexity NOT good for the user??"

With less complexity there are often fewer features. That 80% thing.

- Oliver

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


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Robin S. Kurz
Re: Complexity
on May 25, 2017 at 2:18:32 pm
Last Edited By Robin S. Kurz on May 25, 2017 at 2:19:58 pm

[Oliver Peters] "With less complexity there are often fewer features. "

The key word here obviously being "often". I'd say a stance of the 80's and 90's, yes.

Whereby, ironically, I think that ties directly into FCP X's biggest "issues".
The "Something so simple that pretty much anyone can grasp and use can't possibly be any good!" issue.
The "The definition of 'PRO' is expensive and complex!" issue.
The "If that wedding and YouTube dude are using it, too, it clearly has to suck!" issue.
The "Who is left to call ME, the master of all expensive and complex, if they're using THAT!" issue.
The "Damn you, Apple!!" issue.

😏

- RK

____________________________________________________
Deutsch? Hier gibt es ein umfassendes FCP X Training für dich!


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Scott Witthaus
Re: Complexity
on May 26, 2017 at 12:33:21 am

Is it less complexity or simply "powerful elegance"?

Scott Witthaus
Owner, 1708 Inc./Editorial
Managing Partner, Low Country Creative LLC
Professor, VCU Brandcenter


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Tony West
Re: Complexity
on May 25, 2017 at 3:22:27 pm

Does it also apply to Pr's philosophy since they just put out their canned titles?

Or SONY and PANASONIC with their full auto camera modes? Remember, anything Apple is doing, somebody else always did it first so it couldn't be them.

As far as X goes, I'm cutting a multi-cam project right now in X. I didn't miss jamming timecode in the field or syncing the shots up manually myself. Cutting MC in X is fast and easy but TC is still there if you want it.

Will some young person ask me in the future "What is jamming TC?" Maybe, but I don't care.

His article compares a product that has a lot less than a more expensive product that can do more.

The problem with the comparison is, X doesn't have a lot less than more expensive models it's competing with.

There will always be people that want to do less work, and that will always open a market for people who will.


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Robin S. Kurz
Re: Complexity
on May 25, 2017 at 5:27:52 pm

[Tony West] "Remember, anything Apple is doing, somebody else always did it first so it couldn't be them."

😜👍🏼
And "they" of course did it much better as well. Of course. Apple hasn't innovated anything.


[Tony West] "The problem with the comparison is, X doesn't have a lot less than more expensive models it's competing with."

Bingo. Nothing less, if you ask me. Whether "out-of-the-box" or otherwise.

- RK

____________________________________________________
Deutsch? Hier gibt es ein umfassendes FCP X Training für dich!


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andy patterson
Re: Complexity
on May 25, 2017 at 6:26:16 pm

[Tony West] "Does it also apply to Pr's philosophy since they just put out their canned titles?"

I believe the old titling system is still there if you want to create your own graphics although I think you can still create masks and mattes with the new Essential Graphics system. I imagine for some folks than canned effects of FCPX and Premiere Pro will work but I would rather just do it myself. Having said that FCPX is pretty complex as opposed to iMovie of Movie Maker. I like how they made the audio editing process for Premiere simpler for most productions but if you need to get more complex Premiere can still do it. That is not to say DR, FCPX and Avid do not have awesome features as well.


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James Sullivan
Re: Complexity
on May 26, 2017 at 4:39:29 pm

What I got wrong in that conclusion was the same mistake nearly everyone in technology makes: I assumed that, money being equal, having it all – or, more accurately, more than I needed – was inherently better than having less.

For me this is the takeaway from the article Oliver linked to. I always over engineer things where in reality I did not need to. Just because you have access to an Alchemist does not mean that running crappy Youtube Gopro footage through it is going to help kind of thing. Drop that clip into your timeline and double the size and call it a day. When FCP X came out though it was shown to a room full of complicated workflows that could not immediately jump on board. People got spooked and now we have a documentary about it.

I like that I can shoot stills on the device I have on me, (iPhone) and the quality will be good enough to hack out some graphics with. I like that the new Mac Pro laptop is freaking tiny and light weight, but if that were my only system it would be too clunky to work at for 12 hours straight without building it out with a monitor, full keyboard, tablet etc.

So to Olivers question, I think that Apple has done a great deal to simply things and has given more people access to being able to create stuff to the point that civilians don't know how good they have it. (Remember DV!) I just hope they keep listening to us and keep some of the important complicated bits so that when you need to reach for that tool you can without bending over backwards. I still believe that as nice as Davinci Resolve has become it is still not an AVID DS or FLAME for that matter. Having separate applications that do what they do well lets the human pick and choose. It keeps things flexible and of course requires knowing more to be able to manage such a dance. As long as I can get out of Final Cut when I need to I will keep using it. Photoshop is overkill for cropping an image but you still need it for everything else kind of thing.

Another way of saying it would be keep Fusion out of Resolve, or After Effects out of Premiere. NLE's need to be able to playback footage not be linking to a file that the second the NLE touches it, your system dies and instability keeps you from actually doing stuff.

Keep it simple, but I still want it all.



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Bill Davis
Re: Complexity
on May 26, 2017 at 5:13:15 pm

[James Sullivan] "I like that the new Mac Pro laptop is freaking tiny and light weight, but if that were my only system it would be too clunky to work at for 12 hours straight without building it out with a monitor, full keyboard, tablet etc. "

Would it?

I would have "imagined" so as well, during all those years when I sat at a Cinema Display all day long.

Today I have a nice 15 inch external display suspended directly above my laptop that I can turn on anytime I want, yet I very rarely do.

What I "thought" I'd need to create my content effectively, turned out NOT to be what I actually needed. It just took me a surprising amount of time for me to realize that.

Oh well.

Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.


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Neil Goodman
Re: Complexity
on May 26, 2017 at 10:01:44 pm

I simply could not do my job on one screen especially a 15' one at that.

I need to be able to see all my audio tracks, sometimes in the excess of 24 or more, and need to have bins, audio mixer, and whatever finder windows, and external 3rd party apps like soundminer open as well. Just isnt possible on a laptop - even in FCPX.


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Bill Davis
Re: Complexity
on May 27, 2017 at 12:17:39 am

I'll just note that in Thomas Grove Carters NAB Supermeet presentation (the later commercial edit, not so much the music video) - looks like he had the equivalent of 24 track in play too (or far more if you count the subroles hidden inside the roles he had revealed) - and didn't seem to have the slightest issue with mixing anything.

But I completely understand that it doesn't fit into the way you conceive your editing today. So I understand that it wouldn't make you as comfortable.

That was actually my point. I too was quite uncomfortable when I first started transitioning from my 30" Cinema Display to a 15" laptop screen - in my mind, it was just supposed to be a trial while I learned the software and before I switched back to a bigger desktop system.

Then, somehow, a few weeks later, I literally just stopped thinking about it.

And it's been YEARS now, and I haven't felt the loss of a bigger RIG even a little.

I think part of it is how much better screens now are in general. Resolution, response, dependability, colorimetry - etc, etc. All of them are a VERY long way from the low-res, expensive, and super expensive CRTs of my youth.

The industry marches on.

Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.


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Robin S. Kurz
Re: Complexity
on May 28, 2017 at 8:56:41 am

[Neil Goodman] "I simply could not do my job on one screen especially a 15' one at that. "

Is working on a larger screen or having a second one nicer? Pretty much a no-brainer, duh. But can one work professionally on a 15" MacBook Pro (in FCP X)? Heck yeah. I do it almost full-time and absolutely love it. I just love it that much more when I'm stationary and have a second (or even third) screen. But X is in fact optimized for use on a small screen and I'd say that really shows. Especially since v10.3. I have to have a mobile machine and am very glad to not have to buy a desktop just to be able to work comfortably.


[Neil Goodman] "I need to be able to see all my audio tracks, sometimes in the excess of 24 or more"

So, like, maybe 26?



Unless of course one shifts the goal posts, otherwise I don't see the issue. But if that still isn't enough, then yeah, you might not want to buy a laptop. Obviously. But that still doesn't mean that there are a LOT of others that are perfectly content (at least with X) with that setup, me included. Horses for courses.

- RK

____________________________________________________
Deutsch? Hier gibt es ein umfassendes FCP X Training für dich!


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andy patterson
Re: Complexity
on May 28, 2017 at 9:42:20 am

[Robin S. Kurz] "Unless of course one shifts the goal posts, otherwise I don't see the issue."

I think he might want to see the waveform.



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Robin S. Kurz
Re: Complexity
on May 28, 2017 at 9:01:47 pm

Yeah, so? One single keystroke.

Helps to actually know the app.

- RK

____________________________________________________
Deutsch? Hier gibt es ein umfassendes FCP X Training für dich!


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andy patterson
Re: Complexity
on May 28, 2017 at 11:17:03 pm

[Robin S. Kurz] "Yeah, so? One single keystroke.

Helps to actually know the app."


I know FCPX can show waveforms but you are probably not going to easily see 26 tracks with wave forms that well on a 15" laptop. That is probably what the original comment by Neil was referring to. See my point?


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Neil Goodman
Re: Complexity
on May 28, 2017 at 11:28:17 pm

Sure you can achieve that timeline view in any NLE, to get in and do editorial work on such a condensed timeline tho seems counterintuitive to me. It's not even about waveforms which would be useless at that size. It's about haveing a bigger canvas to paint with and being able to see everything clearly and accurately.


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Robin S. Kurz
Re: Complexity
on May 29, 2017 at 8:13:50 am
Last Edited By Robin S. Kurz on May 29, 2017 at 8:57:12 am

[Neil Goodman] "It's about haveing a bigger canvas"

Again: then a laptop simply isn't for you. So? That still doesn't mean it's not a perfectly fine solution for many many others (that don't use their NLE as a DAW). Having three monitors when I'm stationary does not make me any more efficient or give me more options that I don't otherwise have as well. It's a convenience and luxury. Nothing more, nothing less. The compromises are completely negligible. At least, for me, in the context of FCP that is. It may well be far worse with others. If the situation demands it (e.g. client review) I'm one cable away from monitoring etc. etc. All without sacrificing mobility and various other advantages that a setup like that grants me.

I can most certainly "do my job" on that screen, even with 26+ tracks. It lacks no accuracy whatsoever compared to any other display options or NLE. Unless you can name something? I can turn waveforms on and off as needed (even JUST for the audio group of primary interest if I want) with a simple keystroke, making it exponentially easier to focus on the actual task at hand, thanks to massively reducing visual clutter. AND I can move whatever audio, be it dialog, music, fx, VO, whatever to the top, bottom, middle as it suits my needs and current focus with one simple swipe of the mouse. That on the other hand being something you most certainly can NOT do with any other NLE and something I don't want to have to do without ever again either.

Oh, and btw… if I were to hide the "Audio Lanes" (only had them showing for demo purposes), as I usually do, then the amount of vertical space needed would be reduced even more (potentially down to just a few "tracks"), since we (thank god!) are not tied to the painfully inferior concept of TRACKS and everything can scoot together automatically if a space opens up. Again something that no other NLE (or even DAW) can offer… unless I missed some massive recent update of some other NLE.

Horses for courses, like I said.

- RK

____________________________________________________
Deutsch? Hier gibt es ein umfassendes FCP X Training für dich!


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