Linux – This Picture Says It All

Is this the future of a University?

If the prediction from Gartner Inc. is correct, then 80 per cent of Internet users and Fortune 500 enterprises will be participating in some type of virtual world. The Virtual World Design Centre at Loyalist College has been awarded the Colleges Ontario Innovation Award for 2008. As the first Canadian college to establish an on-line campus, Loyalist College in Second Life is recognized for the innovative learning opportunities it provides students. Loyalist College’s development in Second Life helps meet students’ demand for a new value equation that is significantly affecting the learning culture. Students are engaged in the learning process as active participants, collaborating to ensure content is timely, relevant and memorable. The role of the institution shifts from purveyor of information to facilitator.

Ohio University’s has a Second Life Campus as well. This video outlines its concept.


SMPTE Toronto’s BOOT CAMP III: Advanced Technologies—Beyond HD

Its that time of year again when much of Toronto’s Film and Television technical community will make their annual pilgrimage to Las Vegas for NAB 2008. With the light shining on Las Vegas over the next week or so, I think that it is important for the Toronto Film and Television technical community to mark their calendars for May 14 and 15, 2008. That will be the dates for the 16th Toronto Technical Seminar and this year it’s titled BOOT CAMP III: Advanced Technologies—Beyond HD.

Priced at $99 for SMPTE members, the two day Technical seminar represents both a tremendous opportunity to learn and an incredible bargain. The last two technical seminars that occurred over the last couple of years sold out for good reason. The content of those seminars was extremely relevant as the conversion to HDTV was well underway in most of the area’s television enterprises. With the standards and practices now well entrenched in the community, this years seminar theme will focus on technologies that go beyond HDTV.

This years speakers, many of them the top technical people in their fields, have been challenged by the organizers to talk about what’s in the future and what the engineering community needs to know when it comes to the future communications and motion imaging technology.

And this year the BOOT CAMP has some new twists. Two HARRIS sponsored keynote sessions are planned. At last nights SMPTE Toronto Meeting it was announced that Mark Schubin, the well-known television engineer, historian, podcaster & journalist will be one of the keynote speakers. As well, Bill Buxton, Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research and former Chief Scientist of Alias Systems will present a keynote. Buxton, who is a designer and a researcher is concerned with human aspects of technology. Both Buxton and Schubin are guaranteed to provide some unique observations into the greater context to which all of the Engineering community works and the role that they play as it relates to technology.

Another highlight of BOOT CAMP III will be the Wednesday evening tradeshow. Its purpose is to allow for the display of some of the advanced technologies presented at the daily sessions.

In reviewing the confirmed speakers I’m looking forward to a number of presentations. ARRI is flying in Dr. Hans Kiening from Germany. Dr. Kiening worked from 2004-2005 as R&D project manager of “ARRISCAN” and is currently responsible for ARRI’s Project 4K+. Dr. Kiening is a specialist in the field of image analysis and sees that the debate about 2K vs. 4K in professional postproduction is awash with expectation, prejudice and contradictory information. In recent presentations he’s focused on making technically-grounded appraisals of the issues.

Eric Heidendahl of Canwest Mediaworks will be presenting a paper. Eric worked on the groundbreaking digital newsroom project where Global Television relies on ORAD virtual set technology at its regional stations, controlled remotely from four production “super centres” that the company is building in Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary and Toronto. It’s a model that centralizes control rooms up to 3,000 km away, and relies heavily on remote control and robotics for production.

Another confirmed speaker that I always learn something from is Charles Poynton. He graduated with a degree in Mathematics from Queen’s University and later studied at the Ontario College of Art. In his long and distinguished career he has contributed to the design and build of the digital video equipment used at NASA’s Johnson Space Center and he introduced color management technology to Sun Microsystems in the early 90’s. He has contributed to many SMPTE and ITU-R standards, including Rec. 601, SMPTE RP 145, SMPTE 170M, and Rec. 709. He was the document editor for SMPTE 274M, the foundation for all of SMPTE’s HDTV studio standards. He’s no stranger to public speaking as he has organized many popular courses and seminars, including HDTV Technology at SIGGRAPH 91, Concepts of Color, Video and Compression at ACM Multimedia 93, and color technology courses at SIGGRAPHs from 1994 through 2004. He now works as an independent contractor, specializing in the physics, mathematics, and engineering of digital color imaging systems, including digital video, HDTV, and digital cinema (D-cinema).

Sitting on the organizing committee I can tell you that the quality of papers and speakers that will provide for the bulk of the content are outstanding. In fact the topics and the people are so good the Organizing Committee is challenged with the awesome task of trimming the content down. Expect a jam packed agenda.

The seminar will take place at Ryerson University’s George Vari Engineering and Computing Centre in a state of the art 330 seat theatre. Up to date information on BOOT CAMP III and information on how you can register can be found at

I’d suggest you get yourself registered. BOOT CAMP III: Advanced Technologies—Beyond HD is bound to be a good one.


Apple’s Final Cut Server Finally Ships!

Apple® announced today that Final Cut® Server for Final Cut Studio is now shipping, just in time for the National Association of Broadcasters conference that starts next week. Final Cut Server a software solution that provides media asset management and workflow automation and is a scaleable server application that catalogs large collections of assets across multiple disks and SAN volumes. It allows for viewing, annotation and approval of content from anywhere using a PC or Mac®. It was scheduled to be released last summer.

Thanks boingboing – 8640 Page Hits Over 24 Hour Period This Week

Thanks to a post by Mark Frauenfelder on boingbong this week, the bit-bucket blog received over 8640 page hits in a 24 hour period. Most of the traffic. Most of the traffic hit the Creative Lab posts on the blog.

Red Will Reveal SCARLET! Will SONY Release the F35 4K Camera? Cooke Has Packaged RED Lenses. But What is Panasonic Going To Do? Will All Be Revealed At NAB 2008????

CINE ALTAI’ve been spend time over the last two weeks preparing my annual trip to the National Association of Broadcasters Conference (NAB). For those who have never been to the show it’s where all the latest and greatest technology surfaces related to the various aspects of broadcasting. Over the past few years the show has become much more production oriented from a content creation perspective. With the emergence of 4K digital Cinema camera’s (aka RED Digital One, DALSA etc.) over the past year and a growing interest from the broadcast community on mobile media these will be the two area’s I’ll be focusing on at NAB. Don’t be surprised if you see a deluge of postings on this blog about NAB over the next week as I prepare for my annual sojourn.

Since Digital Cinema (4K) is on my list I’ve discovered that last November SONY announced an agreement with OMNIBUS JAPAN Inc. to supply Sony’s high-end “F23” line of “CineAlta” digital cinema cameras, as well as the “F35” newly launched in Japan. I’ve found a number of obscure references to it on the Internet and it appears that this new member of SONY’s CineAlta family will shoot on an imager that matches a 35mm film frame….

On another front the Red Digital Cinema Camera Company, another Digital Cinema camera manufacturer, has posted that it plans to reveal details about “Scarlet”, a pocket professional digital cinema camera.

Red continues to garner a lot of “community” interest around their technology. Since the technology hit the street some months ago in Toronto everybody has been talking about the camera. I see that Cooke Optics has joined the revolution as it now offers The Cooke RED Set which is a special package of four S4/i lenses that offers a range of focal lengths from 15 to 100mm.

In reviewing the list of 2 and 4K camera manufacturers I don’t see Panasonic! I expect NAB will reveal more of the Digital Cinema story….


Intel’s 2nd Generation Classmate PC (CMPC) Announced

Intel has announced its 2nd Generation Classmate PC (CMPC). These PC’s termed termed “Netbooks” are competitive models to the OLPC (One Laptop Per Child) computers. Compared to Intel’s first Classmate PC they have enhanced features such as longer battery life, are more rugged, water resistant keyboards and provide good shock absorption. They are being made available in mature markets as well as emerging markets.

Intel’s Vision Of The Next Generation Of Visual Computing – Model Based

The reason these video’s are surfacing on my blog is because the Intel Developers Forum is on this week in Shanghai, China. With the forum comes some insight into the direction Intel is taking with its various procesor lines. One area that Intel is pushing is the next generation of Visual Computing that is possible with its multicore processors. The video (below) titled “Makin’ Chips Work for You” provides an overview and insight into the kinds of real time Visual Computing possible when the worlds of video and metadata are combined in a multi-processor computer environment. They call it “Model-Based Computing”.

Check out the the real time cloth simulation, real time digital water, real time motion tracking with standard camera’s and a real time video editing application where the editing is accomplished automatically in this video…..

Video – How INTEL’s ATOM Processor Is Powering The Next Generation Of Mobile Devices

Last Friday Intel’s Uday Keshavdas assisted in a video as he was packing up for his trip to Shanghai for the Intel Developer Forum. The video provides insight into the new mobile devices that the Intel ATOM is powering. The video (below) shows new devices, a silicon wafer that has 2500 ATOMS on it and he opens up a mobile Internet device to show where the Intel Atom processor fits.