Continuing on with the cornucopia of cool stuff marketed at LAFCPUG – the head of the Final Cut Pro project came down from Cupertino to show off the MacBook Pro with the big 17-inch display.  There was an audible sigh in the audience when he clicked on Final Cut and it loaded up the workspace in about 5 seconds.  We really are a race of magpies, sometimes.

"Steve" (again, can’t read the last name since my notes were scribbled in the semi-dark) then put the MacBook Pro through its paces, simultaneously capturing video, rendering video, editing video, and then layering on effect after effect – color correction, picture in picture … a voice from the audience called out "Push it, Steve!" – but it wasn’t until he jammed a fisheye perspective on the timeline that the Mac finally dropped a frame.

Basically this thing lives up to the hype. It just burns through tasks that would make the computer I’m typing this on (cutting edge back in late 2002) curl up into a ball and suck its silicon thumb.

Finally, came the Tascam FW-1082, which is an interesting meld of the digital and the tactile. It looks like an audio editing console, with the sliders and jog shuttle knob and all that.  But it’s got the software to allow it to work with and control video editing and motion graphics.

Basically, you hook this up to a Mac, and you can save yourself hours and hours of slave sweat labor – the effect he showed was one where you can do color correction – to tweak the levels of red, blue and green to correct for exposure problems – in a real tactile way – with the sliders, so that you can adjust a whole bunch of things at once.  This appeals to me big-time.  So often, working on the computer, I miss the whole sense feedback thing – the one that I kinda miss still when doing editing.  Back when I started with this, I knew a story was too long when I unrolled the damn thing and it hit the floor.  No so much anymore, when you’re just scrolling through screen after screen after blah blah. 

Anyway, the other thing that it does well is work with motion graphics (like Adobe Aftereffects or Flash) and does things like create keyframes on the fly.  So that, say you want the letters in a title to vibrate every time the kick drum hits, you don’t have to scroll and sync and then click and insert a keyframe and then make the effect and then go again.  This little board sells for about $600 and they gave one away in the raffle. Had I known how cool it was, I’da bought a buttload more tickets.