The case against using flash for multimedia content – Redux

It never ceases to amaze me that multimedia storytelling workshops typically want to use something like Soundslides to deliver a finished multimedia story.

originally posted my opinions around NOT using Flash based content as your primary delivery method, and now it appears even more so that Flash is not the best solution as a primary delivery method.

Don’t get me wrong, SoundSlides is a great tool for producing photofilms, but the reality is, iphone/ipad users are growing, and they don’t display flash based content – read why Apple chose to go down this route.  Visit Youtube or Vimeo, and your brower referrer switches to an HTML5 version of a video.

That’s not an option when using SoundSlides or any other Flash based post production delivery tool.

Deal with it

It’s critical that multimedia journalists get comfortable with using video editing applications on their laptops to put their stories together.  Mac users, either Imovie or FCPX. Windows,  Adobe and SONY both have what would be considered “Consumer” products that are more than capable of producing finished pieces that can then be output to h.264 mp4 – which is the preferred file format for inclusion into a blog or website and is cross platform.

For windows users specifically, SONY Vegas Movie Studio Platinum is probably the best application for the money for photofilm post production.  For less than $125.00, you can edit audio in addition to laying your images with audio on the Vegas timeline.  No other software package offers as much for the price.  Plus, if you have the need for including video into your project, you’re already set up to do so.

Why anyone would exclude Ipad/iPhone viewers by using Flash as their primary delivery platform is beyond my comprehension.  Flash is a great platform, but it’s become readily apparent, that html5 is going to be the eventual way to deliver multimedia content.  Adobe Edge is already in public beta.  In my opinion, this portends of things to come.

As much as photographers hate the idea of having to be tech geeks, the nature of our profession REQUIRES that we have a certain level of technical compentence in order to do what we do.

Get over it and realize it’s in your best interest to not take the easy way out.  Learn to use a proper video editing application – even if you’re only producing photofilms.  You’ll be glad you did.

Community Visual Journalism Site Launched

Taking a cue from David Hobby, aka @Strobist, and his community visual journalism site HoCo360, today I launched a LaneCounty360 in the same paradigm as David’s philosophy for covering his area of Howard County in Maryland.

LaneCounty360 will cover my home area of Lane County, Oregon.  After struggling with various limiting layout options from Blogger, Tumblr and WordPress free hosting, I elected to get the domain name and self host on WordPress.  The site is elegant and simple.  No fancy banner ads or effects, just a curation of moments in time with possible captions to describe a moment from around the Lane County Oregon area.

For those local followers, I hope to have your support in developing a following and if you have any local story ideas that are unique, please shoot me an email via the Tip Us page or you can also follow via twitter at @LaneCounty360.

My deepest thanks to David Hobby for helping me find a compass point.

ThinkTANK Photo Sling-O-Matic 20 Review

ThinkTANK Photo Sling-O-Matic 20

If you want a camera bag that you’ll enjoy taking with you – in my opinion, get the ThinkTANK Photo Sling-O-Matic 20 bag!

This isn’t a typical review of the features of the Sling-O-Matic 20 as I’m writing this review from more of a usability standpoint.

Needless to say, once UPS delivered the bag, opening the box and looking it over I knew I had my day to day bag to carry my essential gear anyplace I go in my errand running, street shooting and more.

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