Archive for the ‘cloud computing’ Category

Adobe Creative Cloud: More Thoughts

Saturday, June 9th, 2012


    • {The following is a variety of viewpoints from various people.  I don’t necessarily agree with any of them but do regard them as useful thought-provokers. }
    • You “rent” the software, rather then first buying it, then continually paying for upgrades to new versions.
    • I’m gonig {going} with the non-cloud version of CS6 also. I don’t like the idea of an expiring software package, in the event that I don’t want to spend another $600 next year.
    • Alternatively, maybe Google and Microsoft will see this as an opportunity to offer some competition, because what I dislike even more than expiring software is having to keep up with files across ten different web sites. Someone needs to invent a “cloud drive” standard and then everyone needs to build their apps to function with any “cloud drive”.  Google is getting close with their new Google Drive and a selection of third party web apps that can use it for storage.
      • About the Google thing, remember that anything you put on the Google drive is owned by GOOGLE, and they can use it for anything at all that they see fit. Trusting Google with your work is insane.
        • Google says in its disclosure. “You retain ownership of any intellectual property rights that you hold in that content. In short, what belongs to you stays yours.”
        • Urban lagend {legend}, fear mongering. Google (and YouTube and Widows SkyDrive and Amazon Cloud) assumes a LICENSE to your work for the legal protection of being able to move and disperse it throughout their servers. And in the case of YouTube to change the format.
    • My own inclination would be to stick with the suite license. I have no faith that Adobe won’t just screw everything up.  … Another consideration. Some editors want their edit systems isolated from the internet. Cloud service won’t be so good if that’s what you want.
      • You don’t need to stay connected all the time. But if you’re not going to be connected maybe you don’t need the cloud service.
    • The one nice thing about Adobe’s Creative Cloud is that you can install both the Mac and Windows version for the same membership price. I have a Windows 7 desktop but a Mac OS X Lion laptop so this would benefit me. Of course, Adobe could have just been nice and allowed my desktop license to work on both platforms like other companies do but that’s another story
    • The turnoff for me … is the FORCED yearly upgrade. It says you can keep the version you lease for one year, then you must upgrade. Patches are installed by you (just like now), but your software license (appears) to expire a year after you initially get it.
    • …the cloud concept is not beneficial unless you like being beta test guinea pig.
    • …remember when all software was owned lock-stock and barrel by the hardware companies. (You couldn’t buy a computer, you had to lease it from the manufacturer). You paid an annual maintenance fee and the owner (DEC, IBM, etc) maintained the hardware and software.  In that scope, things haven’t changed much. We still pay an annual or biannual “fee” in the form of software upgrades. Personally I prefer the old “Rent the Software” model because if it didn’t work, you didn’t pay, and bugs got fixed really fast.

Adobe Creative Cloud – Expectations & Reality

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

What is it?  Not the “ubiquitous computing” I first imagined.  Marginally handy in some ways, possibly more risky in others, e.g. if forget to exit on one machine (e.g. at work) then will it be accessible on another machine (e.g. at home or remote location)?  An in any case, how sustainable will it be?  My recent experience with Adobe CS Review makes me slightly wary…

What I expected was something more like the Kindle model, where I could install apps on as many devices as I wished, albeit with reduced functionality on weaker devices, and to have only one project open at a time, identically visible (apart from synch-delay) on all of those devices (maybe auto-branching where synch failed, with expectation of future manual pruning/re-synching).

Then there’s rendering – I’d expect that not to be counted as “usage”, instead usage should be actual user-interaction.  The technical model could be a thin client for user interface, sending commands to processing engines (wherever, even on another machine, e.g. to run a muti-core / CUDA desktop from ipad or iphone) and at the same time “approval requests” to Adobe Central, but with some degree of “benefit of the doubt” time-window so as not to delay responsiveness of the application.  They could then even respond to attempted beyond-licence actions with piecemeal license-extension options, e.g. “Provided you pay in next working day or two  for temporary additional subscription” option (defaulters get credit score reduced).  Why let inflexibility get in the way of capitalism?

Unfortunately, in the words of REM, “that was just a dream”.  Instead activation is restricted virtually to the same degree as the non-cloud variety, that is to two computers (main & backup or work & home etc).  The only extra freedom is that the two computers need not be the same operating system – e.g. can be mac and windows – a nuisance restriction of the traditional non-cloud model.  And rendering counts as usage.

It is possible to deactivate one of these computers and reactivate on another but if this happens “too frequently” then a call to Adobe’s support office is required.  It’s slightly more complicated in practice but that’s the essence of it.

Might give it a try though.  Like I said, it could be marginally handy, and marginal is better than nothing.


Avid MC5

Saturday, May 15th, 2010

From article “NAB 2010: AVID MEDIA COMPOSER 5.0” of 2010-04-25 at [], as of 2010-05-15:

  •  Avid Media Composer 5.0 now works with the Matrox MXO2 Mini (not main or LE), not for capture, but for monitoring on a large monitor.
  • New advanced Avid Media Access (AMA).
    • This new version of AMA now allows Avid MC to access Quicktime files directly, and allows MC to EDIT those QTs without converting or transcoding them. So things like ProRes, the new Canon XF codec…they are directly accessed via AMA and you can just start editing them right away.  For example from files recorded on a KiPro unit or a QuickTime-based camera.
      • But move the files, and the connection is broken.   So, if you want to work with the footage natively, then move it to the folder you want it to reside in on your media drive, then import.
      • A possible FCP+AVid workflow: Utilize FCP to capture the footage (ProRes), use AMA to import that footage into AVID MC 5.0…edit (e.g. by Avid-only editing people) …then send that sequence back to FCP (via Automatic Duck) linking to the original media…send to Color to color correct, then output from FCP?
    • This also includes native RED files. Media Composer can edit them without the need to transcode.
    • You can adjust the color of the footage before you bring it over…apply a general look while you edit.
  • A FCP look&feel approximating mode called Smart Tools mode.  Can toggle between this and Classic mode.
  • AVCHD import. Before now you had to use third party applications to convert the footage to DNxHD, like ClipWrap. Not anymore. Now you can import the AVCHD footage directly into Avid MC via the IMPORT feature.  (But) there are multiple types of AVCHD (can it cope with them?).
  • Audio improvements:
    • You can now SOLO and MUTE on the timeline.
    • You can now access the Audio Suite plugins directly from the timeline.
    • And (for screen update speed) you can turn on Audio Waveforms on SELECT TRACKS ONLY.
    • You can now make a stereo pair appear as only ONE TRACK on the timeline. This works for stereo sound effects too.
    • Direct access to many audio suite plugins directly on the timeline. No need to go digging in the Audio Tool for them.

The  [] article also reported something about Avid remote editing using cloud computing, but that sounds to me like a whole other topic.

Cloud Computing and Amazon’s EC2 Service

Saturday, January 2nd, 2010

Amazon lets a system admin type person rent time/space/bandwidth on Amazon’s Cloud Computing network, “Elastic Compute Cloud”, EC2 (which also sounds like “Easy-To”).  It costs e.g. about 10 cents per hour (depending on selected level of service).

  • Maybe useful for CGI generation?

Setup is fiddly, but this tutorial explains how to do it from command-line, including some pragmatic tips:

Here’s an easier way, via web-based GUI:

Generic intro to Cloud Computing: