Kitplus - The TV-Bay Magazine

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COMMENT Today, video clips weigh nothing, distribution is free on YouTube and HD-quality cameras fit in your mobile phone. And there doesn’t seem to be any wires anywhere. Ten years ago, HD was still a hoped-for dream for most of us. Mobile phones were the size of shoes. And editing? Well, a cut is a cut. But most of us were editing on G5 systems and rendering was something that would allow you to read an early issue on tv-bay from cover to cover while waiting to complete a Gaussian Blur for a 30-second commercial. Color grading was for the rich; and supervised by editors with absolutely nothing to do except watch render bars for days at at time. Though, happily, the days where it took 30 seconds to render a Gaussian Blur to a single frame of video using a G4 computer were, fortunately, three years in the past. During the last ten years, SD was replaced by HD, which was overshadowed, but not yet replaced, by 2K,4K and beyond. Ten years ago, the Mac Mini was introduced along with the iPod Shuffle. (The iPod itself celebrated its fourth birthday that year.) Ten years. Time passes and technology doesn’t stand still. While Cinema Displays first shipped the year before, dual-core computers were still a year in the future. Over the last decade,CPUs exploded from single processor to multi-core, multi-processor calculation behemoths. The Motorola chip in the original Mac had about 200,000 transistors. The Core 2 Duo in 2006 had about 291 million. The 12-core CPUs in the new Mac Pro have about 4.2 billion. (It is worth noting that the Guidance Computer for the Apollo moon missions in 1966 held a whopping 12,300 transistors contained on 4,100 cards!) A cut is still a cut, but today we expect all our effects in real-time. CPUs are now supplemented with GPUs containing close to ten billion transistors. Not just simple Gaussian Blurs, but full-3D all-singing-and-all- dancing effects. Real-time - full-color - 4K. Right. now! Sheesh. Impatient much? 52 | KITPLUS - THE TV-BAY MAGAZINE: ISSUE 100 APRIL 2015 Media devours storage. Ten years ago, the first 500 GB hard disk was introduced by Hitachi. The first terabyte drive was still two years into the future. The first practical SSD drive was years in the future. Most drives were connected via FireWire, which limited speeds to about 80 MB/second. Today, affordable RAIDs are approaching speeds of 2 GB/second. And we still complain that our storage is too small, too slow and too expensive. Ten years ago, an hour of SD DV video required 13 GB to store while uncompressed 10-bit SD DigiBeta soaked up 96 GB. Today, AVCHD requires about 10 GB to store an hour of HD media, while a variety of RAW 4K formats are clocking in around a terabyte per hour to store. There is no such thing as “too much storage.” A hard disk today is either empty or full. Ten years. Time passes and technology doesn’t stand still. What can we expect in the next ten years? I haven’t a clue. Image resolution will continue to increase, but will our eyes be able to perceive it. Storage speed and capacity will continue to grow, but we will still never have enough. Computers will get faster, screens larger, software more capable - and complex. But the basics of storytelling won’t change. The tools we use to tell stories with pictures will alter so dramatically that ten years from now, on the 20th anniversary of TV-Bay, we’ll look back on these times and wonder how we were able to get any work done at all. Time passes and technology doesn’t stand still.