Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Sort of Off Topic: Movie Studio Software

Since I can't say anything about what I've learned about the next versions of Revit, AutoCAD, Vault, Productstream and Inventor - I'll do an off topic post.

I thought I'd blog about something else I'm working on - my family's personal Christmas-card-on-DVD... I've been using Sony's Vegas Movie Studio software to put together a year's worth of still pictures and a few video segments - and then put it all to music. It's a laborious task - this year's version will probably run 20 minutes, and I'll have 20 hours into creating it...

The Payoff
I start by slogging through the layout, order, theming and titles (which is 95% of the work). But then comes the music - and suddenly, what had seemed like a dull slideshow that even our parents would not want to watch - is transformed into something really, really cool. I sit back and watch the video, spellbound. I AM STEVEN SPIELBERG! (OK, perhaps more accurately I'm Cameron Crowe, leveraging the music unapologetically to tell the story and connect with the audience).

The Take-away
In any case - it leaves me wondering - why can't CAD software be like this more often? Where's the payoff that makes me feel like I've created something timeless and incredibly cool? Yes, in my previous post I joked that "I am Frank Gehry" - but that was comparatively minor (for a comparatively minor effort, as well)... I suspect that reducing the hurdles involved with visualization and animation might go some of the way towards reproducing "that feeling". But somehow I suspect that until we can hook our CAD software to music, we won't get the emotional leverage that I get from making a movie. It's an interesting thought...

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