In honor of the start of the Beijing Olympics, we've decided to make it "China Week" here on the Common Craft blog. In a lot of ways, China was where we first started to experiment with video. We bought our first video camera (a Sony DCR - PC 1000) in Hong Kong, just before spending about a month in mainland China in 2006. Over the time in China, we edited and posted our first "real" videos. This week, we'll share a few of those videos and some stories from our time there. It's stuff you... Continue Reading
I'm not sure how this happened, but there is an error in the original version of the "Electing a US President" video. The original version says that there are 3 congressional districts in Kansas. As we discovered today, via a nice email from Gerry Deman of Kansas, there are actually 4 districts. Here's what we're doing about it:We have created a new, corrected version of the video. It's embedded below and we have replaced the video on the original blog entry (and embed code) with this new... Continue Reading
This evening we've taken the wraps off the new CommonCraft.com and we'd love your feedback and help. The biggest change is the new and improved video Store, which is fashioned after the shopping experience on sites like NetFlix. As I've said before, we see the Store as the centerpiece of our future business and we're so excited to have a foundation on which we can build. To go with the new Store, we've made a video (below) that explains the way our video licensing works. "Common Craft... Continue Reading
Apparently, May 1st is RSS Awareness Day! I had no idea such a day existed, but it has it's own site at RSSday.org . Thanks to the nice folks at dailyblogtips.com for making our RSS in Plain English video part of the site - and day for that matter. I agree that RSS is one of those special technologies. It has the potential to positively impact virtually every Internet user at no cost. A big problem is awareness - it's hard for people to see how it could impact them until they give it a try.... Continue Reading
A couple of weeks ago, we announced The Common Craft Store. It was a pretty soft roll-out, but was a huge moment for us. Not only did it mark the end of a lot of preparation, but a new business model. So far, so good. Plus, the more-ready-for-prime-time Store will soon be coming to an Internet near you. A big part of preparing to open the Store was making new versions of each video in both Windows (.wmv) and Mac (.mov) formats. This gave us a chance to make improvements across the library... Continue Reading
What is the point where many projects get off track? We think it's when decision making becomes a burden. Indecision, lack of ownership and unclear reasoning often means stasis and frustration. Over the past year, and likely through traveling together, Sachi and I have evolved a system that helps us be productive without wasting time. It's a system of ownership - of being personally accountable for the small decisions that contribute to the overall goal. Early in the process, we talk a lot... Continue Reading
Via Laughing Squid and Andy Baio at Waxy.org, who is creating digitized version of old VHS tapes. This makes me wonder if people, 12 years from now, will look back at our videos and laugh, saying "Hah! Can you imagine? That's what they thought blogs and RSS were all about! Sheesh!"
From the description on the video page, this is: A video that Saatchi Moscow created and produced for Google to attract more Russian people on GMail. Visually, it's a bit like our videos, but in a giant format. Instead of pieces of paper, they are using giant pieces of pre-printed fabric. The video is quite artful and well done. Isn't it funny too, that it's by Saatchi and Saatchi instead of Lee and Sachi? Thanks to Bruno for sending over the link!
Kent Nichols is the co-creator or Ninja Master of Ask-a-Ninja, which I'm quite sure you know about. I recently discovered his Twitter feed and blog and since, I've learned a lot from his perspectives on disrupting Hollywood, the business of new media, and the web video industry. His no-nonsense and opinionated style really makes it clear where he stands, and I often agree. Plus, he's full of smart advice for content producers. Recommended. On a side note, the story of my connection with... Continue Reading
CBS is starting to integrate whiteboard-based explantions into the news. We first heard about it being used on the show Sunday Morning, where I imagine the lighter content seemed more appropriate. Thanks to Ron for the pointer to this video. Just recently, the same team of Josh Landis and Mitch Butler were paired with Katie Couric on the Evening News to explain the superdelegates. You can see the video on this post. It will be interesting to watch how the mainstream media reacts to these... Continue Reading