Post Magazine

December 2014

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Page 41 of 51 40 POST DECEMBER 2014 OUTLOOK CONTENT MANAGEMENT O OUTLOOK O OUTLOOK n the past fi ve years, evolving tech- nology has dramatically changed how movies and television are created and consumed. The entertainment industry is no longer black and white – theaters vs. home television. With Ultra HD, IMAX, streaming services, etc., it's now a veritable 3,840x2160 pixels resolution of options for both producers and viewers. Let's look at what's ahead for 2015. 4K: It took the industry 20 years from the fi rst introduction of high defi nition television to its wide-spread adoption. We're now past the HDTV era as the industry and consumers alike turn to 4K or ultra-high-defi nition. I predict acquisi- tion, post, and eventually broadcast, will move quickly to adopt 4K for a couple of reasons. It's getting aff ordable, but more importantly, content providers like Netfl ix will use 4K over the top as diff erentiation. OTT video distribution will be the wedge that HDTV never had to force adoption. Stereoscopic 3D: Stereo 3D fi lms is a quickly-fading trend. The cost of produc- tion and distribution are higher, and the buying public is showing unwillingness to spend extra at the box offi ce. Never fear, stereoscopic 3D is a cyclical trend. It's come back in one technological form or another roughly every 15 years. Object Storage: It won't greatly aff ect the wider industry, but will have a serious impact on content distributors. As more and more viewers turn to streaming services and as studios are pressured to digitize their back catalogues, video re- positories will continue to grow at an ex- ponential rate. As such, object storage will play a signifi cant role in allowing studios and distributors to more effi ciently store and globally manage their repositories. Private Cloud: Virtualized, private cloud applications will play a major role over the next 12 months. More accurately, the post and broadcast markets are adopting virtu- alized infrastructure for a variety of tasks. For example, the Nvidia Grid appliance provides extreme graphics power to virtual desktops, and Adobe Anywhere reference architectures provide high bit-rate video editing functionality to virtual clients. These and more IT-centric virtual environ- ments will provide good capital expense and operational fl exibility benefi ts. Public Cloud: Ultimately, the public cloud isn't designed with media apps in mind. However, for temporary, com- pute-intensive jobs, like converting a library of fi lms or programs for mobile platforms, the public cloud is perfect. Flash Storage: Despite 5-to-10x the performance for some workloads, the higher cost of fl ash will see it continue to be relegated to database and fi le system metadata in 2015, while hybrid fl ash/hard disk drive storage systems become the dominant storage platform for the industry. ears ago when the advertising industry was converting from fi lm to HD, we heard many wishes for a single HD standard. While I understood where that urge was coming from, I resisted that line of thinking because it seemed shortsighted. The truth is, standards will always evolve with emerging technology. What's more interesting is that some approved standards, such as Apple Pro Res, don't represent the best deliverable quality, but yet are widely accepted because as a compression format, they solve the current bandwidth limitations. However, even with a unifi ed standard, you would still have delivery and optimi- zation issues. More importantly, there's the need to consider the many diff erent screens all requiring unique aspect ratios. Given that (and the singular standard pipe dream), Hiccup Media emphasizes creative approach and storytelling above everything else. Each screen has a dif- ferent audience, and we view this as an opportunity for creative companies. For us, the idea comes fi rst, then the approach, and fi nally the workfl ow. Our fi rst priority is always storytelling that is customizable across all usage and plat- forms. Whether delivery is for Web, TV, cinema, mobile, social, tablet, laptops, or kiosks, each brings numerous decisions that are made every step of the way, from pre-production to delivery. These decisions become a lot easier when you forge a creative approach that elevates the content beyond a rigid "deliverable." As clients begin to embrace this way of thinking, Hiccup's role begins to shift from a mere vendor to a creative partner. This means starting projects with an in-house creative team that looks at all deliverables as having the potential to be cross-platform — to be adapted, ver- sioned, extended, snipped and imitated. Preparing it for that has to be a fore- thought, not an afterthought. Filmmakers, advertisers, videogra- phers and every kid with a digital SLR are trying to shoot the best quality. That's what drives an industry mindset to constantly do better work. Within ad- vertising and entertainment, many learn to dance all over again each time a major technology launches. Better tools will always become available. Having the op- tion to choose is a benefi t, not a burden. While there is a lot to consider, it is clear that creative agencies and produc- tion and post houses can no longer sleep soundly thinking of themselves as facilities. Clear, defi ned deliverables and specs are appealing to just about anyone in post, but they need to be second to high-level concepts that guide the work from script to each and every screen. Once in place, the tools and technologies become exciting choices rather than burdensome workfl ow decisions. BY JASON DANIELSON PRODUCT AND SOLUTION MARKETING NETAPP SUNNYVALE, CA WWW.NETAPP.COM BY MICHAEL CRUZ CREATIVE DIRECTOR HICCUP MEDIA NEW YORK CITY WWW.HICCUPMEDIA.COM MEDIA & ENTERTAINMENT TRENDS SO MANY SCREENS OUTLOOK DISTRIBUTION O OUTLOOK O OUTLOOK I Y

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