It was another inspiring, interesting, and entertaining meeting of the Boston Media Makers , which has become carved in stone in my calendar for the first Sunday of every month. We meet at Sweet Finnish in Jamaica Plain with founder and master of ceremonies Steve Garfield. This month Steve used Mogulus studio to stream today’s meeting. It’s a little TV studio on the mac, allows you to stream live, add lower thirds, on the broadcast site you can take comments, it’s all early software, it crashed a couple of times, but it certainly points to where web-based streaming is headed. We went around the room doing updates and show-and-tell.
I mentioned that on Art Film Talk (my audio podcast) I recently posted an interview with Marshall Herskovitz on the topic of Quarterlife, a “television-style” episodic on the web that’s been generating lots of buzz in both industry and new media circles.
My show and tell this month was my Tram-50 Lavalier Microphone and its many accessories, including Rycote’s Lavalier Windjammer designed to reduce wind noise on Lavs worn on the outside of clothing. The Tram-50 delivers smooth, rich sound and was the first piece of audio gear I bought. Three video cameras have come and gone in the time I’ve owned the Tram. Good sound equipment is a worthwhile investment from which you will reap dividends for many years. If the Tram breaks your microphone budget, a good source of affordable, good quality, small microphones is Giant Squid Audio Lab.
I’ll be participating in the Web Video Summit coming up on December 10-11, 2007 at the Roosevelt Hotel in New York, on the Lights, Cameras, Sound: How to Get Great Results panel (1:00pm-1:50pm on Monday) where we’ll be discuss stratagies, tactics, and techniques for better video and sound that will not break your production budget. I offered a free conference pass to the first person who asked for it and Steve Albanese was the lucky winner. Congratulations Steve!
Len Edgerly showed us iYule on his iPhone, a 30-minute Yule Log video available for iPod, iPhone, and more. A holiday fireplace experience with crackling sounds for those on the go. Len is intersted in hearing about interesting uses of the web, video, and social media by artists. Some suggestions came up including a recent Wall Street Journal article about a visual artist using YouTube and Exit Art, an interdisciplinary laboratory for contemporary culture that explores the rich diversity of voices that continually shape art and ideas. Len has been documenting how artists and art organizations are using the web. Check out his podcast and video blog.
Bryan Person made a plug for Len’s podcast, saying “he’s a great storyteller.” Bryan is organizing monthly social media breakfasts that meets every 5-6 weeks in town or somewhere outside, network and talk, kind of on his radar are seesmic and utterz , how are these working for you? The next breakfast, Social Media Breakfast 4 will take place on Monday, December 17, 2007, from 8 to 10am at The Wine Cellar at the Mooo Restaurant in Downtown Boston.
Nate Aune from Jazkarta is building community media portals using open source software offering organizations a way to aggregate multimedia content including screencasts, he’s also recording bands, interested in promoting local boston based bands. They are building sites running on Amazon EC2, offering a scalable media cloud for your application.
Martin Freeth from Windfall Digital is a media producer from London who works on science videos, they are doing Choose Your Character, a museum exhibit project in genetics, visitors pick a card, and move through changes to your character, you learn through walking in the shoes of another person. They are also doing an IPTV story on genetics. He used to work in the BBC and set up BBC online and he dragged himself kicking and screaming into new media. Windfall Digital develops media for all platforms. He showed a wonderful one minute film titled “The Conundrum” from a series of short pieces were designed as instertitials between TV shows but now are perfect for the web. He often comes to the states where lots of good science work is being done. This is the third time Boston Media Makers has had a visitor from London.
Mark Hanser has a new web site, The Mark Hanser Show, different from his current sute, he’s getting into vlogging, exploring these woderful tools, coming to Boston Media Makers and Podcamp and learning to apply these tools as an artist and as an educator. Matt is doing the editing.
Rafael Lanfranco is working with John Coyne on Nuovomedia laboratory‘s New Americans Web Site project for immigrants in the US, they are producing media for hispanic-americans, initial focus on Peru, with content on things like how to become an american citizen, how to manage personal finances, encourage them to create their own media, build this template and move to other hispanic groups, working on alpha site right now, should be live within the next week or so. In spanish. Their model public service, advertising and sponsor support. John Coyne and Rafael Lanfranco are building MixItUp, a database to bridge between talent and companies that need the takent by building list of peolle and groups of people interested in working on interesting projects with Nuovomedia.com. They also have a group on Facebook.
Bill Wendel, The Real Estate Cafe, is working on a Real Estate Unconference and has bought an Ice cream truck he’s turning into a mobile podcasting / mapping studio for use at events like real-estate open houses. Sounds really cool.
Zach Braker, Quiver and Quill, is looking to interview people on his blog. He’s working with a business partner who interviews people on management, they are interested in the intersection of life online and life offline.
Jack Hodgson has been doing uncontrolled airspace , a weekly podcast on general aviation, the podcast is literally hangar flying. It’s a very good podcast. He’s also working on Voxci , an alpha prototype that add spoken word to the web, literally word of mouth for the web. Bryan said that bookmarks become richer when there’s an audio description to go with them. Anyone can sugn up and play with it. The main thing Jack is asking for is feedback to help them improve the site.
Tom and Reiko Beach, TRB Design, need in setting up WordPress MU. They want to support multiple gymnastic coach’s blogs. It was suggested checking out WordPress for Dummies by Lisa Sabin-Wilson, the book includes help on every aspect of installing and using WordPress and insights from bloggers who use WordPress. Steve suggests that the easiest way to learn about videoblogging is to click on the “Learn About Videoblogging” on his web site. For people just getting started, Bryan suggested the Flip camera, a.k.a. the soccer mom cam, a low cost alternative for shooting video. If your looking for a miniDV camcorder, David LaMorte and I sugggested the Canon Elura 100 becuase it’s an inexpesnive, small, easy-to-use camcorder that has an external mic input. Using an external microphone is critical for getting good sound. Len’s been happy with the Sanyo Xacti HD2, a tiny 720p camera with an external mic input. If you’re using one of the tiny digital cameras without an expternal mic input, you can always do “double system sound” (recording audio and video separately and synch them up in the editing), for example, Len suggested the Edirol R-09 and I suggested the MicroTrack II. The Samson Zoom H2 and Samson Zoom H4 are also popular choices for small digital recorders.
John Herman in the short
film The Future
John Herman has a show coming up on Thursday, he’ll be doing short-form improv with Gameboyz at the Cantab Lounge in Central Square. Also, starting on December 28 he has a new show starting, producing one man show based on the atoms in the void podcast with Sean Hurley. They have compressed 29 eposides down to a story, performed in character. Catch the show at The Player’s Ring in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, it’s a small venue, so order your tickets now. John also started production last week on Gravityland, an 18 episode web show.
Bob Sherriff is an independent producer (without a web site) in the Boston area who has started to immerse one toe into the social media area, getting into corporate videoblogs, an area in which he would like to find someone to work with clients, determine capabilities, help them publish, help them put a lot of different things into their video blogs, get into different areas, right now he’s social media light, wants to become social media hevy, develop corporate blogs for mass publication, he thinks it’s an area that is growing. Most companies still just want to get their message out, they don’t understand the two-way nature of videoblogging, but other companies get it. It will be their competitive advantage.
Some book suggestions that came up in the discussion today include: The Wealth of Networks by Yochai Benkler, The New Rules of Marketing and PR by David Meerman Scott, The Cluetrain Manifesto by Rick Levine, Christopher Locke, Doc Searls & David Weinberger, The Starfish and the Spider by Ori Brafman and Rod A. Beckstrom.
Matt Searles is ediring Mark’s new video blog and he does Asymmetric Biz Cult (a.k.a. ABC), a fascinating podcast tagged, “a new philosophy of art, mind and business.” Matt’s been doing collaborations with Mark thinking business and new media from an artsists perspective, in his words, “a rich tapestry.”
As I cleaned up these notes I listened to ABC Episode 12 Out in Left Field in which Matt talks about how his new Zoom H4 recorder which allows him now to record in the field, he’s no longer limited to recording in the studio, so this will allow him to try some new things. The episode explores what is ABC about? In a nutshell the business of media in the social media space. Around 09:46 and 13:20 you’ll hear “intros” he recorded to help express what ABC is all about. Engaging in the world through both new and traditional forms of art. At 18:00 the Matt goes into who are you? What is your personality? What is your unique approach? How do you market somethign that is so unique that there are no established channels of distribution? This is a big question for Matt. At 22:00 he goes into “modes of being” and suggests that social media is reconfiguring society. Around 25:00 he goes into organizating principles, evolution of the language, the categories that we use to put things in, something to do with idea of custom in the Heidegger sense. Trippy, interesting stuff.
Andrea Mercado is the blog co-manager of PLA Blog, the official blog of the Public Library Association She’s also the Reference and Techie Librarian at Reading Public Library in Massachusetts and author of the LibraryTechtonics blog. PLA Blog is the first blog sponsored by a library organization. She’s preparing a presentation on social media tools and came to the meeting to be inspired. She suggested checking out the Second Life Library System.
Steve Albanese, Tutorial Depot, is offering tutorials on the web available for a range of media devices. Content is geared to music technology, but he’s looking to branch out into other areas. The offer video podcast, some free and others paid. He’s also been doing a video show every Friday at 5pm called Friday Brew with friends, right now more of a fun thing, though it might go into a regular podcast at some point. He’s using the Adobe Flex player.