APPLE FINAL CUT PRO: Apple Final Cut Pro X FCPX Debates FCP Legacy FCP Tutorials

Re: DaVinci Resolve 8.1 -- now with FCPXML roundtrip support

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Jeremy Garchow
Re: DaVinci Resolve 8.1 -- now with FCPXML roundtrip support
on Oct 17, 2011 at 4:08:20 pm

Thanks so much, Walter. Excellent post.

[Walter Soyka] "When Apple introduced XMEML with FCP4 in 2003, they didn't do away with the industry-standard EDL. However, XMEML offered significant advantages for interchange over straight EDL, so other developers in the industry began building solutions around it. This meant improved interchange with applications that chose to support FCP explicitly, but there was still the industry-standard EDL to fall back on. Apple played nicely with the industry, and the industry played nicely with Apple."

But wasn't EDL in there to begin with? Wouldn't it be fair to say that in 2004 EDL was a more common language? Do you still use EDL today? Just curious as to how people might still use it. I am not saying it's invalid, I am just wondering. AS far as Apple playing nice with the industry, I guess I don't get it. Resolve can't export an EDL, so is DaVinci not playing nice either? You can get an XML, an FCPXML and and AAF out of it, though.

[Walter Soyka] "Resolve may support FCPX, but FCPX doesn't support Resolve."

Please explain. Does Avid support Resolve? Isn't this the idea of interchange languages in the first place?

[Walter Soyka] "I do take issue with Apple dropping industry standards that they used to support in order to promulgate their new format. FCPXML is based on an entirely different data model than every other editorial-related app in the industry uses, and Apple has put the task of dealing with their design decisions into the lap of every other developer in the industry which wishes to allow their products to interchange with FCPX. Of course, they are well within their rights to do so, but to claim this is somehow good for developers and end users seems strange."

Again, it goes back to a specialized or generalized system. Why should Apple have to write and support a part of the system when less than 1% of the users are going to use it? Don't you think that time is better served developing the application and underlying XML language? Take Red for example. They have taken it upon themselves to make a conform tool for their footage. RCX is pretty sweet. It accepts interchange languages, and spits out interchange languages, and also conforms your offline QTs back to the R3ds. It's the only program that can properly trim R3Ds that I know of. They understand that their users might need to do these sort if things, and they released this software for free. They are taking responsibility because they know that other people might not have to. It allows all NLEs to edit how they need to fit their workflow (MXF, AMA, Native, Qt proxies, whatever) and then bring that back to the conform tool called RedCineX and then either export or finish, or do what you need to do.

[Walter Soyka] "[Jeremy Garchow] "Apple has a pretty decent developer relationship going. They have leveraged that relationship to everyone's advantage."

I don't think this is true at all. Apple had a large third-party ecosystem because the the size of the FCP install base made it an important development target -- but that doesn't mean that Apple makes it easy to develop for FCP or FCPX."

Yes, I should have been more specific. I was using the App Store/iTunes App model, not necessarily video plugin/workflow developers.

Here's why I think Apple hasn't let in very many 3rd party developers to FCPX.

Very simply, the system wasn't ready.

As of now, AV Foundation is still a really new venture, and I'm not sure if it's quite complete. I am not a developer so I don't understand the limitations, but I know they are there, just ask a developer! :) It seems to get better with every Lion release. I think that Apple released a purposely hobbled FCPX because the underlying frame works aren't in place to let developers go to town, or at least let them go to town in a way that Apple is comfortable with. I know, it wasn't the smartest way to go about things, but I truly think they were waiting for OS features to be completed.

[Walter Soyka] "Adobe pre-announced the move for After Effects from 32-bit to 64-bit. This architecture change required all plugins to be updated, and Adobe gave early access and assistance to developers so that their products could be ready for launch. Adobe understood the value of their huge third-party developer ecosystem. Red Giant was able to prepare for AE CS5; they were surprised by FCPX and a huge advantage was seemingly given to Noise Industries, who did have launch-day products."

Yep, I get it. Apple's system wasn't ready for this level of involvement. For better or worse. I think they had to make some corporate type decisions, and what we are seeing is a result of those decisions.

And let's talk about AE for a minute. Yes, AE supports a lot of plugins, but you have to write a plugin, and then we have to buy that plugin, it is the perfect example of 3rd party support to make an application all that you need it to be. Without the relatively recent addition of PPro interchange, you can't get anything in to AE without third party help (XML, OMF, EDL, etc), and you still can't get anything out of except media exports (no data interchange). So while it does do a great job of somethings, it's not as open and extensible as even FCPX as a stand alone application. Does Adobe not play well with the industry either?

[Walter Soyka] "Apple has no history for allowing this kind of truly open development. I'm not saying it couldn't be done, but sadly, I don't see anything in FCPX that suggests that this sort of extensibility is part of Apple's design.

It's possible that there really was no grand plan here."

Is there really no history? What about fxplug? or fxscript before it? Or before that it was the AE script or whatever it's called?

I do think that it's not ready yet, but I do think it will be there. Apple doesn't talk about things until they are ready. So I think there's a plan as I don't think that Apple operates without one, it's just not ready to be enacted quite yet.

Thanks again, Walter, for keeping this going.


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