Monday, August 2, 2010

Making Video on Vacation - Pre-Preparation Helps

I'll be taking a trip in a few days. From experience I do know that I don't want to lug a lot of stuff. Now is the time for me to finalize what I want to do and what I'll need.

What Do I Want:

  • To travel light and not run the risk of losing something.
  • To shoot video and photos
  • To upload a bit of stuff but not to be trapped in a hotel room doing it.
  • Have fun.
What Have I Got?

My Ubuntu Remix notebook computer. Leaving the PC laptop home this time. I have installed a Linux based program called Open Shot Video Editor. This is an intro video by CarlicusLinux that demos the software.

It can edit .avi videos. That is the good news. The bad news is that my Kodak Z1285 still camera that records 720p high definition video saves in .mov format. My Canon FS200 records in MPEG-2 using a .mod extension. Not sure that it can handle those formats so I need to check it out before I go.

Here is How I Can Make It Work

One idea is to go commando and just upload short videos w/o editing. I do like to put my blog title on my videos but it isn't absolutely necessary. I can do that for the .mov videos. Not really going to work for the .mod files.

Well, maybe if I re-name the extension to .mpg but still, that could be a honking huge file.

A few days ago I wrote about the Danisoft Online Video Converter. There are other web application video converters as well.

I'm thinking I shoot a video up for conversion to .avi and then bring it back down for minor editing and then upload. Now because I know that .avi files can be honking huge I'd have to limit myself to very short videos. No more than two or three minutes.

This might be doable. Worse case scenario, I bring everything home.

Other things I'm keeping in mind:

I'm bringing a small lightweight tripod because I will be recording in presentation/demonstration settings. Indoors tripods are great but outdoors, unless they are really small they can be a pain to carry.

If you have optical image stabilization on your camcorder and you are moving then use it. If you have a tripod and are recording remember to turn it off.

I have a web based e-mail application that I use for travel communications. I don't want to download any cooties or nasties. I don't want to make my primary e-mail account vulnerable to mischief, trolls or the icks.

I am going to a convention with 2,500 tech savvy women. I know for a fact that BlogHers have made hotel IT people weep. There will be serious demands of bandwidth. Tweeting, uploading to Flickr, YouTube and thousands of blogs.

If the hotel has listened then this should not be a problem. If the hotel has not listened or learned from the bones of those that came before then there might not be Wi-Fi or wired Internet access.

It has happened. In that case, I'll go with the flow.

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