Updated: 4/14/2005; 9:14:17 PM.
Don Brittain's Weblog

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Reading List

You can tell a lot about a person by checking out the books they like to read.  For example, I know my book interests complement my professional career choices in many ways.

I've been seriously involved with three start-up companies in computer graphics.  This is because my interests lie with enabling the creative process (graphics, in the case of my profession), using technology (mainly computers) to do so, and seizing real world opportunities in innovative, profitable ways (hence the appeal of start-ups).

Lots of my favorite books touch on these areas either explicitly or (even better) in some sort of interdisciplinary fashion.  Without further ado, here's the list (which will certainly grow and morph over time!)

12:13:06 PM    comment []

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Brand Promotion in the Post-Tivo Age

There are some very big companies that aren't totally thrilled with the rapid emergence of "the customized digital media experience".  And no, I'm not talking about just the RIAA and MPAA.

The New York Times published an article about the problem this weekend.  And CNET News covered the topic from a different angle last November.

The problem is this: along with the ubiquity of digital media comes the easy ability for people to skip commercials on live broadcasts and/or grab commercial-free copies of their favorite shows soon after they air.  Although this makes for a more pleasant end-user viewing experience, it throws the whole economy of show-production on its ear.

In addition to cutting off the advertising revenue used to fund production, it also cuts off the traditional ways to promote brands to the critically-important 11-25 year-old demographic. 

For some ideas on how brand promotion will evolve, click here.

1:38:33 PM    comment []

Saturday, January 29, 2005

Repackaging Media Leads to New Uses

Digital media has been readily available since CDs became popular more than a decade ago.  However, it wasn't until the MP3 file format came along that the digital audio revolution really started to change our lives.

Click here to read about how this same sort of revolution will affect visual media.

9:15:13 PM    comment []

Monday, January 17, 2005

Media Production in the new Digital Lifestyle

The pervasive role of digital media in an emerging "all digital" lifestyle has been getting a lot of press lately.  We're presented with articles on portable music players, wireless media centers, and digital video recorders.  People carry around camera phones, DV cameras, and MP3 players that also record audio.

Thus, one obvious question would be "What are we doing with all of this personal digital media that were gathering and creating?" 

Click here for my thoughts.

11:00:51 AM    comment []

Friday, January 14, 2005

Predicting the Future: Extrapolate or Interpolate?

There has been some discussion as to the benefits (or not) of enhancing a business presentation with "special effects".

Although that is an interesting topic in its own right (click here for Apple's positioning on this issue) it is predominantly dealing with the "micro" issues regarding using rich media for presentation purposes.

What I'd like to delve into today is more of a "macro" approach to this topic.

In that regard, the question might be: What will a typical business presentation look like 5 years from now?

Click here for my thoughts on this.

10:19:56 AM    comment []

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Is Eye Candy good or bad?

Joshua Blake expressed some conflicting feelings regarding the use of animation and transitions in presentations. 

This brings up the general question of whether adding OfficeFX-like "eye candy" to a presentation is a good thing or a bad thing.

Of course, the answer depends on what you're trying to achieve.

For my opinions on this, click here.

11:56:46 AM    comment []

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

OfficeFX: Steak or Sizzle?

After reading my response to his comments regarding OfficeFX on Robert Scoble's blog, Joel Barciauskas challenged me to start my own blog to carry the discussion further.

"So come on Don, start a blog! Id love to hear what you have to say, since you clearly believe in what you are working on. I dont know much about PR, but Scoble has put a human face on Microsoft for me. You can do the same for your company, I think."

Joel was right that I do believe in what I'm working on, and I do have some strong feelings about visual communication, information presentation, and interactive media in general.  So, here I am jumping in to the blog world starting with these topics.

Although my interests and future posts will wonder far from discussing Instant Effects' OfficeFX product, since that was the topic that got this thread started, that's where I'm going to start too.

If this is of interest to you, please follow this link to the complete write up.

1:01:09 PM    comment []

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Don Brittain is CEO of Instant Effects, a software company specializing in making high-quality state-of-the-art visual effects available for everyone to use.

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