Archive for April, 2010

Partition a disk to [HFS+] & [NTFS]

Friday, April 30th, 2010


  1. Use iPartition, reduce existing HFS+ partition to half-size.
  2. Don’t create the other partition yet.
  3. Change Partition-Scheme (from GPT) to MBR
    • Otherwise the partition won’t be visible to windows.
  4. Now create the other partition, e.g. NTFS.
    • That option only became available once the partition scheme had been changed.
    • Result: [ MBR | HFS+ | NTFS ]

How migrate FCP projects between systems

Thursday, April 22nd, 2010

 By “systems” i chiefly mean file systems, but also computer systems i.e. instances of FCP.  For simplicity, I ignore here the possibility of different versions of FCP.

  • Google: [migrating “final cut” disk]
      • “You can add multiple scratch disks in FCP, or just change it to relate to your current project, or when you import the new project put the all the media in the relevant location to your current scratch disks…”
        • “When I take my portable disk to the other machine to work, rather than work from the portable disk, I want to copy the entire project folder to the other machine’s drive. It’s the main workstation where the work will ultimately reside, so my portable drive is simply the “rough-in” drive. I work from home on this drive, then take what I’ve done over to the main machine and copy everything over. “
        • “…it worked. I didn’t need to change that machine’s scratch location. I just copied the folder over, launced the project file and boom. No rendering necessary. “
      • .
  • .

2D to 3D Movie Conversion

Thursday, April 22nd, 2010

Great article by Studio Daily at, on the 2D⇒3D conversion company In-Thre  from this article I learnt that:

  • Some new movies, not just legacy ones, are being converted from 2D to 3D (stereo).  This step is being planned as part of production.  Don’t know why they can’t just shoot it in stereo (cost? maturity? conservatism?) but that’s how it is.
  • The method: a tech & manual rotoscoping pipeline (production line) where images are masked to create layers and artistic judgement is applied to the appearances of individual objects.  As one would imagine, no simple “magic solution”.  However beyond those basics they have their own patented 2D⇒3D inference algorithms operating on individual objects even at sub-pixel level.
  • Not quick or cheap: “for a 100-minute or 120-minute 2D-to-3D conversion, you would need about 300 to 400 artists phasing and out of production over about four to six months.”.  Clash of the Titans was so-processed in under half that time – possibly explaining some negative press (mentioned in the article) regarding the quality of its 3D.

The interviewee in the article was from In-Three.  Their website explains:

  • Dimensionalization is a method developed by In-Three of converting 2D content to stereoscopic 3D content.
  • There are various approaches to creating 3D content: capturing 3D using dual camera rigs, rendering 3D using dual “virtual” camera rigs within a computer graphics environment, and creating 3D by converting 2D content with processes such as Dimensionalization.
  • Dimensionalization is trademarked because it describes a patented process which gives the unique, depth, shape and perspective to each individual object on a pixel or even sub-pixel level. Throughout our process, there are a multitude of “special and unique techniques” our experienced stereo team has and continues to develop, so that you can be confident that we bring the tools and the skill to any conversion project.
  • The Dimensionalization process is covered by a number of U.S. patents. These patents make In-Three a leader in the development of intellectual property surrounding the conversion of two-dimensional films to stereoscopic experiences.

Final Cut – Online & Virtual Archive via “Quantum”

Thursday, April 22nd, 2010

The following has a nice explanation and diagram of the arrangement, showing Final Cut Server being used to interface to both online and archive material.

FCP importing AVCHD – How

Thursday, April 22nd, 2010

MacBook Pro temperature when running native OS X (Snow Leopard)

Wednesday, April 21st, 2010


  • After half an hour or so, the MacBook Pro base (top and bottom) tends to feel hotter than I’d expect, and I worried whether the innards were getting broiled or fried.  Having no previous experience to go by, some investigation was needed.  Various forums have some people claiming this is normal while others worry about the temperatures.


  • Downloaded iStat, a free widget for the Mac dashboard, that displays temperatures and fan speeds.  There are several temperature sensors and two fans.
  • Download site:
  • It looks and works (as far as I can tell) really good.  Also reports things like network traffic, which I also like to know about.


  • Despite the case feel, the internal temperatures were not too bad, typically around 65C though sometimes the CPU & GPU rose to 81C, which I think is the upper sensible limit.  At this speed, one of the fans speeds up a bit e.g. 2300 rpm as compared to 2000 typically.
  • A colleague (Matt Roberts) said chips are designed OK up to say 90C and higher, though connections can break down at around 120C.
  • Seems all within tolerance then, no need to worry.

Disk Space Usage / Inventory

Wednesday, April 21st, 2010

For Mac OS:

  • Disk Inventory X

For Windows:

  • WinDirStat
  • FolderSize

They are both pretty similar, in each case displaying filespace usage via a tree map looking like a patchwork of multicoloured PVC, each colour representing a different type of file (audio, video, application, document etc.).  Their advantage over traditional browser trees is you can see all the largest files and folders simultaneously (as a plan-view).  Tree maps (treemaps) are explained at – they are formed by subdividing in alternate dimensions (horizontal/vertical), each time in proportion to relative size of item, be it folder or file.  A variation on this, employed by the above tools, is a cushion treemap [], where shading reveals the directory structure.  A further variation is the squarified treemap [], where subdivision and grouping attempt (no guarantee of success) to make the rectangles as square as possible. (more…)

QuickTime 7.6.6 – skip/wait ?

Saturday, April 17th, 2010

Others have found issues with it.  Maybe worth skipping or waiting for a compatibility fix for pro apps in that case.

Mac Screen-Lock

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

How to get screen-lock on demand, e.g. when walking away from a machine still executing something:

<<<OS X has native screen-locking built-in; though you wouldn’t know unless you dug around. To enable it, open your Keychain Access utility in the Applications / Utility folder. Under the “View” menu at the top, select “Show Status in Menu Bar.” A black padlock will appear in your taskbar in the upper right-hand corner. Close Keychain Access. Now when you click on the padlock, you have a “Lock Screen” option in the drop-down. Selecting it will cause your screen to fade to black and engage your screen saver. Click any key to open a login / password dialog box, and you’re back in.>>>