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Re: Photoshop CS6 Beta released, with magnetic timeline!

COW Forums : Apple FCPX or Not: The Debate

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Walter SoykaRe: Photoshop CS6 Beta released, with magnetic timeline!
by on Mar 23, 2012 at 2:52:35 pm

[Dominic Deacon] "The magnetic timeline is essentially the same as editing in tracks locked, ripple mode in other editors. It's not that revolutionary."

I disagree. I think FCPX's magnetic timeline is revolutionary. It's a complete rethinking of an edit's data model, and it's a sudden and drastic change.

The classic timeline data model is all about placing clips freely in absolute time. The clips have no codified relationship to each other.

The FCPX timeline data model is hierarchical: there are parent/child relationships between clips. You get FCPX's magnetism "for free" because a child clip's location in time is relative to its parent; it has no concept of absolute time by design.

This is a major engineering change that affects the way you edit with FCPX. Editorial now involves explicitly managing the relationships between clips in an edit in a way that doesn't exist with other apps. FCPX is built for defining the relationships between clips, not defining their position in time.

The term "magnetic timeline" pulls together a bunch of ideas: clip connections, collision avoidance, lanes as auto-collapsing tracks, object models (primary storyline, secondary storyline, connected clips) and relative time. They're interrelated, but with a different data model, they wouldn't all be required [link].

I love clip connections. I think that's a great idea, and I think an NLE should be able to track the relationships between clips when an editor asks it to. Given clip connections, I think a form of collision avoidance makes sense. It's the auto-collapsing timeline, object models and relative time that give me the heebie jeebies.

Back on point, I agree with the others: Photoshop CS6's timeline is rippling, not magnetic.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
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