Goodbye Machinima, Goodbye Amateur Movie Making, Hello “Casual Video Tools”

Casual Video Tools – the natural partners to Social Media, and the antidote to frustration and irrelevance.

nVidia say “speak visual“, I say “casual video tools” will let us all do that.

We have an interesting world emerging in amateur digital animated video self expression. Have  look around at what is being created in tools like

IMVU – video here
Meez – video here
Avatarme

Then we have interesting creativity slowly growing around loyal communities in

xtranormal – video here
kloseup – video here
zencub3d – video here
tvnima – video here of their new face generating video tool šŸ™‚
bigstage – video here
moviestorm – video here
iclone – video here
anim8or – video here
Alice 3d – video here

Those are just a few of the amateur packages for 3D animation (sorry, 2D and clunkier 3D fans, I left you out as mostly irrelevant), each has a few tens of thousands of users and some dedicated fans

Then there are the pro-sumer and professional packages, which can turn out the most amazing, professional level animation

Adobe Director – video here
Daz3D – video here
blender – video here
maya – video here
3DSMax – video here
softimage – video here

… the only downside of those is having to go to art school for 3 years to learn how to use them. Actually that is only one downside to them. There are more – for instance: needing a “ninja” PC, several colleagues, and taking out several bank loans for the additional editing and post production software that inevitably acretes around them before you have a video to show.

Did I hear someone say “machinima“. Well, if you like in-jokes, self-selecting audiences and the endless, relentless frustration of not-quite-being-able-to-do-what-you-want then go right ahead and make machinima in any game engine you choose. Just don't expect it to be anything other than a small cluster of “knowing” fans who will ever understand your art.

(notable exceptions, Overman, Michelle, etc can now step in and prove me wrong if they want)

Casual video is the answer for the vast majority of humankind. Well, the human kind who have a GHz or two of processor power, reasonable broadband access and a starting point in their head for their video.

Casual video is simple and deep.
Casual video is browser based, but not slow to respond.
Casual video is fun, but not trite or overly stylised to the point of silliness.
Casual video is drag and drop, but it helps educate and illuminate.
Casual video empowers self-realisation, and never seeks to “reprogramme the user”.

Now, having staked a claim on the title of Casual Video Tools (c) me, 2009, I need to go do something else for a while.

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