Maintain, optimize and troubleshoot your NLE
Professional cloud workflow platform
Simplified media management

Massive Kollaborate storage boost for high-end subscribers

We've given our higher-end Kollaborate subscription packages a massive storage space boost completely free of charge. Subscribers now get the following:

Subscription Package Old Storage New Storage
Production 75 GB 100 GB
Studio 125 GB 150 GB
Studio Plus 150 GB 250 GB
Network 300 GB 500 GB
Network Plus 600 GB 1 TB

The full list of packages and prices can be viewed here.

Kollaborate is a cloud workflow platform for video professionals, centered around Digital Rebellion's post production apps. To find out more, visit the Kollaborate site, view the feature list, watch the overview video or sign up for the free 15-day trial (no credit card needed).

Posted by Jon Chappell on Jul 28 2015 to Kollaborate, Front Page News, DR News
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Complete website overhaul with new support section

Today marks the launch of a brand new website design for Digital Rebellion. This isn't just a new skin though - it's a massive rewrite from top to bottom that adds a host of useful features for our customers.

The first thing you'll notice is that it's much cleaner, organizes information more clearly and displays well on mobile devices. It's designed to get you the information you need as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Instead of being a separate section on the site, user accounts are now front and center and underpin many of the site's features. Being logged into the site saves time by auto-filling certain information and some functions such as blog comments now require an account.

We've also revamped our support section and reorganized it to make it much easier to find the information you need. Bug reports and feature requests are now handled through support tickets instead of email. This makes it easier to keep track of the current status of your support ticket.

Not only does the new site offer useful features to our customers, it's also much better for us too. Our backend was 8 years old and extremely clunky. The new dynamic site allows us to more easily update things and even automate many of the tasks we currently do manually.

This is just the first phase of the site redesign. The ultimate goal is to create a powerful foundation for delivering new features and cloud services through our apps. We will be launching additional features later in the year so stay tuned.

Posted by Jon Chappell on Jul 23 2015 to DR News, Front Page News
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Pro Media Tools 1.3.8 released with Adobe CC 2015 support

Last week we released Pro Media Tools 1.3.8, a minor update to our professional toolkit for managing media.

Adobe CC 2015 support

Pro Media Tools is now fully compatible with the Adobe Creative Cloud 2015 update.

QT Edit playback improvements

QT Edit has had numerous improvements to playback functionality including a full screen mode and JKL shortcut key support.

Other changes

  • QT Edit now identifies caption tracks correctly
  • QT Edit - Improved compatibility with FCPX XML
  • Video Check stability improvements
  • General bug fixes, tweaks and improvements

Pro Media Tools is an essential toolkit for media professionals. To find out more, view the feature list, read the user manual, watch the overview video or download the free 15-day trial.

Posted by Jon Chappell on Jul 7 2015 to DR News, Front Page News, Utilities
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Pro Maintenance Tools 2.1.3 - Adobe CC 2015 support, clean After Effects disk cache

Earlier this week we released Pro Maintenance Tools 2.1.3, a minor update to our suite of maintenance, repair and troubleshooting tools for video professionals.

Adobe Creative Cloud 2015 support

Pro Maintenance Tools is now fully compatible with Adobe Creative Cloud 2015 and we have made Preference Manager more intelligent at detecting future versions of CC.

Clear After Effects disk cache

Have you noticed that you suddenly have very little free disk space available? The culprit is probably After Effects' disk cache, which is set by default to consume up to 10% of your drive space. While that might not sound like much, 10% of a 1 TB drive is 100 GB, which is a lot of space for a temporary file cache that is only useful while AE is open.

Now you can easily clear out this cache with Housekeeper, or even schedule a basic housekeeping clean periodically.


Trash Audition plugin cache

Housekeeper can also trash Adobe Audition plugin caches, which can help to solve launching issues.

Pro Maintenance Tools is an invaluable toolset to help working video professionals get up and running again quickly in the event of a problem. To find out more, see the feature list, read the user manual, watch the overview video or download the free 15-day trial.

Posted by Jon Chappell on Jun 25 2015 to Front Page News, DR News, Utilities
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Kollaborate Server 1.3.2 and Kollaborate Encoder 1.0.1 - Python scripting, simplified sharing

Kollaborate Server 1.3.2 was released late last week, offering some great new additions to our in-house cloud workflow platform for video professionals.

Save playback position

Kollaborate Server will automatically play back files where you left off, making it seamless to switch between home and office or desktop and mobile. This is also supported by the latest versions of CinePlay for Mac and CinePlay for iOS.

This setting can be disabled in Actions > Playback Settings in the player.

Simplified sharing

It's now easier than ever to share files with clients outside your project. We've reduced the number of clicks required to share a file and made it much easier to track links across the entire project.

Plus you can get additional statistics including when a recipient last viewed the link and the timecode position at which they stopped viewing.

You can also relink to a different file so that you can silently fix problems without needing to send the person another link.

Python scripting (beta)

The Python scripting beta has been incorporated into Kollaborate Server 1.3.2. It is considered beta so we welcome all feedback. You can find more about how to script Kollaborate Server in the Scripting Guide.

Other changes


  • Project alerts - Easily see the most recent changes to a project with the project alert dropdown at the top right of the screen
  • The Users section of the player now shows the last time a user viewed a file
  • Import markers via FCPX XML
  • Marker colors are now respected when importing from FCP 7 XML
  • Right-click the Files page to add a new folder or comment stream
  • You can now add up to 25 linked accounts to your subscription
  • Various UI improvements

Kollaborate Encoder 1.0.1

We've also released Kollaborate Encoder 1.0.1 which adds support for higher-resolution encoding (you need to activate this from Kollaborate Server itself by visiting yoursite.com/beta) and offers several encoding optimizations.

Kollaborate is a cloud workflow platform designed to help you work better with colleagues and clients. Upload files to the cloud, have them reviewed by others and then export their notes back to your editing application.

Kollaborate Server gives you all of those features in-house on your own servers and storage. To find out more, view the feature list or sign up for the free no-obligation 15-day cloud trial (no credit card needed). Trials of Kollaborate Server are available on request.

Posted by Jon Chappell on Jun 24 2015 to DR News, Front Page News, Kollaborate
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5 Ways Apple Could Improve iOS 9

Next week is WWDC, where Apple will likely unveil a new version of iOS. Here’s what we’d like to see.

Improved text selection

I deliberately avoid using iOS devices in situations where I need to frequently copy and paste text because it’s extremely tedious.

Here’s an exercise to try: take a paragraph of text and try to select only one or two sentences inside it. After you select a certain quantity of text, iOS tries to help you by automatically selecting the entire paragraph. Selecting exactly the desired amount of text then becomes a battle between you and the operating system. A lot of times I just select the entire paragraph, paste it and then cut it down to what I need because it’s easier and quicker, but it’s still a step I wouldn’t have to do on the desktop.

It is also especially difficult to select the text of a link because if you tap on it, iOS assumes you either want to visit the link or copy its URL.

Proper multitasking

One big problem with iOS is that it does not have true multitasking. Some functions, such as audio playback, can take place in the background but most of the time when you switch to another app the previous app will either pause or terminate.

What this means in practice is that if an app takes a long time to do something, you cannot check email or do something else while it is processing or it will probably pause and then restart when you switch back. Consequently I spend a lot more time staring at progress bars on iOS than I do on OS X.

Dark mode

Dark mode would show system UI elements with a darker skin to stop the display appearing too bright or lighting up a dark room.

This could cause complications for third-party apps so I think it should be possible for apps to see which mode the user has selected and decide in what circumstances to honor it.

Don’t autocorrect proper grammar

I have no problem with iOS autocorrecting misspelled words but it sometimes corrects valid grammar and spelling into something that is incorrect, such as automatically correcting “were” to “we’re”.

Polish

There are rumors that iOS 9 will not have significant new features and will instead be a Snow Leopard-style polish and bug fix release. I’m less in favor of this for iOS than OS X because I find iOS 8 significantly more stable than iOS 7 and the aforementioned feature requests are problems that genuinely slow me down and turn me off the platform.

However, anything Apple can do to improve the speed of the OS is appreciated, especially on older devices.

Posted by Jon Chappell on Jun 4 2015 to Analysis, Apple, Software
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6 Ways Apple Could Improve OS X 10.11

With WWDC around the corner and a likely unveiling of a new version of OS X, here’s six improvements we’d like to see.

Finder tags

When Apple introduced OS X 10.9 they included Finder tags which allowed you to tag a file with additional metadata.

However, this is not particularly useful because the tags appear as color dots instead of text and they are very small and overlap each other. It also means you can no longer color code the entire filename, making it easy to miss color-coded files.

So my proposal is for two types of tags: color tags and text tags. Color tags affect the background color of the file in the list and can be easily spotted when scrolling. You can only assign one color to a file.

Text tags do not affect the background color of the file, even when colored, but appear in a bubble next to the filename. So you can tag it “VFX” and “Delivery" for example and anyone can see at a glance that it is a VFX deliverable. Any tags that can’t fit in can be expanded by clicking an ellipsis icon next to the filename.

Airplay video streaming

It should be possible to stream video from a Mac video player like QuickTime or CinePlay to an Apple TV. This is something that can already be done in iOS but still hasn’t made it to the Mac.

There are some solutions to this but they are very hacky and developers would benefit from an officially-sanctioned method.

Files in use

One of the most annoying things about OS X is how it frequently refuses to perform an action like moving a file or emptying the trash because the file is in use, even when you can’t figure out what’s using it and haven’t opened that file in months. This bug has existed for a very long time.

I have a theory that it may be related to QuickLook scanning the file to update its icon but I haven’t been able to exactly pinpoint it.

There are some workarounds such as copying a file instead of moving it or securely emptying the trash.

AV Foundation: Don’t treat remote files as second-class citizens

There are some very powerful tools in Apple’s AV Foundation media framework. Unfortunately many of the functions for scanning media files and extracting information are limited only to files that exist on the user’s local hard drive. This can limit the options you have for dealing with files on a remote web or FTP server.

There is no real reason for this because even though the data originates on a remote server, it still ends up in memory and/or cached to disk, depending on the situation. Because AV Foundation is built to be asynchronous, there is no reason why this data cannot be provided to an app as and when it is downloaded.

OpenGL ES / Metal

OpenGL ES is a cut-down version of OpenGL that is intended for mobile devices. Metal is a low-level iOS API by Apple intended to improve performance of graphical apps.

Because neither of these are supported on OS X, it means porting graphical apps between platforms requires a lot of work. With some parts of OpenGL ES it’s easy because all you have to do is slightly modify the name of a function, but in other cases it’s trickier because there are no direct equivalents for certain commands.

Polish

One rumor making the rounds is that Apple will forego major new features in favor of polishing and optimizing its codebase.

I feel that Apple’s software quality has slipped in the past five years and the annual release cycle means that Apple is often introducing new features (and therefore new bugs) before it has finished fixing the bugs introduced in the previous version.

The last time Apple did this was for OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard and I have spoken to many people who consider it to be the best release of OS X. In fact, more of our customers are on 10.6 than 10.7 or 10.8.

I would therefore be willing to sacrifice all of the above feature requests in favor of a massive codebase polish from top to bottom.

Posted by Jon Chappell on Jun 3 2015 to DR News, Analysis, Apple
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Rewrapping MP4 to MOV with CinePlay

I recently had a need to rewrap an MP4 to MOV without transcoding the existing H.264 video when it occurred to me that CinePlay for Mac makes an excellent rewrapping tool, despite this purpose not actually occurring to us during development.

Here's how to do it:

1. Open up the MP4 you wish to convert in CinePlay.

2. Go to File > Export.

3. Under both Video and Audio, select Don't Transcode (pass-through) and click Save.

The movie will be rewrapped to a separate MOV extremely quickly. Depending on how much video data needs to be copied over to the new file, it could be as short as a few seconds.

Posted by Jon Chappell on May 27 2015 to Tutorials, Software
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Pro Media Tools 1.3.7 - batch rotate and flip QuickTime movies

Earlier this week we released Pro Media Tools 1.3.7, a minor update to our suite of Mac media management tools.

Batch rotate and flip QuickTime movies

QT Edit can now rotate, flip and flop QuickTime movies, either individually or in a batch. This is useful if videos were shot in landscape on a phone but are incorrectly rotated to portrait. It can also be helpful in situations where a lens adapter or other camera accessory is causing video to be recorded upside down.

Other changes


  • QT Edit - Videos can now be batch rotated, flipped and flopped
  • QT Edit - Conform improvements
  • QT Edit - Improved detection of non-HFS file systems
  • QT Edit - Added an option to disable non-HFS file system check
  • Various other bug fixes, tweaks and improvements

Pro Media Tools is an essential toolkit for media professionals. To find out more, view the feature list, read the user manual, watch the overview video or download the free 15-day trial.

Posted by Jon Chappell on May 21 2015 to DR News, Front Page News, Utilities
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Kollaborate 1.3.2 - restore playback position, simplified sharing and project alerts

Kollaborate 1.3.2 is now live on the cloud, offering some great new additions to our cloud workflow platform for video professionals.

Save playback position

Kollaborate will automatically play back files where you left off, making it seamless to switch between home and office or desktop and mobile. A corresponding update for our Mac / iOS player apps will be released soon.

This setting can be disabled in Actions > Playback Settings in the player.

Simplified sharing

It's now easier than ever to share files with clients outside your project. We've reduced the number of clicks required to share a file and made it much easier to track links across the entire project.

Plus you can get additional statistics including when a recipient last viewed the link and the timecode position at which they stopped viewing.

You can also relink to a different file so that you can silently fix problems without needing to send the person another link.

Project alerts

Easily see the most recent changes to a project with the project alert dropdown at the top right of the screen.

Large thumbnails

We've enlarged the size of thumbnails to make it easier to locate and tell the difference between clips. This affects all uploads from now on but if you want to apply it to existing files, you can go to Actions > Set Thumb to Current Frame in the player.

A new Kollaborate Transfer 1.3 beta has been released with support for the larger thumbnail size. Our other uploading apps will be updated later this week.

Other changes


  • The Users section of the player now shows the last time a user viewed a file
  • Import markers via FCPX XML
  • Marker colors are now respected when importing from FCP 7 XML
  • Right-click the Files page to add a new folder or comment stream
  • You can now add up to 25 linked accounts to your subscription
  • Various UI improvements

Kollaborate is a cloud workflow platform designed to help you work better with colleagues and clients. Upload files to the cloud, have them reviewed by others and then export their notes back to your editing application. To find out more, view the feature list or sign up for the free no-obligation 15-day trial (no credit card needed).

Posted by Jon Chappell on May 13 2015 to Kollaborate, DR News, Front Page News
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