It’s an amazing time to be a consultant and systems integrator. Within the course of four days, we have solidified our outlook on the future of collaborative storage infrastructures, on how creative facilities will eventually move beyond their centralized storage systems, and on how the individual creative has been radically empowered in the marketplace. In short, we have hope for the creative facility. Over the next few weeks, we will distill all this learning into focused articles that will show how these roads are being paved.
When we at Meta Media step onto the show floor at NAB, we do so with Exhibition badges: that is, with the intention of observing and gathering information. What usually happens as a result, and what was true more so this year than any other, is that we find ourselves engaging with the minds behind the technologies, product lines and systems that fuel your processes and workflows. We ask hard and concentrated questions. We note the emotional responses just as much as the words we hear. We are invited to closed-door meetings and have glimpses at technologies that will be implemented from six months to three years from now. We gather different parties together to see how we can eke out partnerships and alliances that will build the last ten feet of a solution.
The reason we are upbeat is that most of what we have predicted will happen is happening. Like most paradigms these days, we have found that timing is actually more accelerated than we had anticipated. The only downside of this is that there is a tendency for our clients and colleagues to react to the changes, rather than see them in the context of a gradual migration.
We can start with a look at the diagrams of the booths (or stands, as our European colleagues call them) of the show. As we heard of the struggle of the NAB organization against the FCC, fighting for the preservation of radio spectrum for their terrestrial broadcasts, we saw the increase of booths that deal with Mobile TV and mobile distribution. It’s a great irony, therefore, that a show dedicated specifically to the needs of the broadcaster, houses within its exhibition the very paradigms that are slowly undoing it.
At booths such as Active Storage, ATTO, Huawei Symantec, Infortrend, Isilon and Promise, we saw the advent of future collaborative storage infrastructures in complete clarity. More on this in a future article.
At AJA, Blackmagic Design, G-Technology, Matrox, MOTU, and Sonnet, we saw the remarkable rush to embrace Thunderbolt (heretofore predicted by us as the guiding I/O technology going forward, in the name of LightPeak), with either working prototypes or near-release models. Again, more on this soon.
And lastly, we saw Apple rudely trying to steal the spotlight with their sneak peek at Final Cut Pro X. As we’ve mentioned before, our thoughts are mixed about this new product. There is no doubt that a new editor, developed from scratch and incorporating the latest of Apple’s technologies, was sorely needed. There is no doubt that they delivered. But a sneak peek is just that: there was no mention in earnest about ways to get material in and out of that program (which is, of course, Meta Media’s focus). We also have concerns that Apple’s current development team will not be as accessible to third party hardware, software and plug in developers, who now clearly have their work cut out to rewrite their products in order to interface with the new ecosystem that this program will foster. A more detailed article on this subject will also be on these pages soon.
So please tune in. As we say, the water is inviting and the possibilities are exhilarating. We look forward to sharing with you our thoughts in detail.