Thursday, January 08, 2009

Pogue on the expo

David Pogue reports on this week's Apple Expo and the (fairly low-key) new announcements.
You can watch Phil Schiller's keynote here. (I am still stunned to be watching flawless streamed video in HD! Wow.) *
As you may know, Phil replaced Steve Jobs this year for keynote speaker. And it's the last year Apple is at that expo. I'm guessing Steve does not feel so well as he sounds, otherwise why would he miss his last year on the keynote stage? (Last even he was preciously little time on the stage too.)

Anyway... I am often a little shocked to find how few of technological advances I had predicted. I guess it shows there's lots new under the sun yet.
For example, iMovie '09's killer feature: software image stabilization! Pogue writes:
"This program can do an insanely great job of turning a bouncy, jerky handheld camcorder shot into something smooth and level (following a long period of analysis; let it run unattended while you go get lunch). I tried it on about five different clips, some of which were VERY unsteady. It works so well, a couple of observers complained that it looked unnatural; the floaty SteadiCam feeling is so noticeable, it doesn't look like home movies anymore. No big deal; you can double-click a stabilized clip to open up an intensity slider that you can adjust to back off the effect."

*Update: I see that now, not only don't I have a delay restarting the stream, but I can click on a future point in the stream, and there's still no buffer delay! Kool. Maybe now Quicktime buffers far ahead while I pause. It didn't used to, only last year if I paused there were often long delays on starting again, and sometimes connection failures.
... Hmmm, I don't know about buffering, because if I pause the stream, I can see downloading data stop too. So I wonder where QT gets the data to start immediately at any point. I guess my connection to Apple's server is just so darn fast the buffer is nearly superfluous. (I do have a fast connection now, it's often in the Tb range, particularly with Apple's great Akamai servers.) Impressive.
... Great, no sooner had I written this than I started having problems with stutters and QuickTime "quitting unexpectedly" as Apple calls it. Ah well.

No comments: