June 27, 2008

Okay, So I Shot the Moon on My Amazon Wish List

(Beyond the real "hail, Mary" of putting the Amazon Kindle on there.)

1) But I certainly don't need two of those cheap, cool video cameras. It's just that I couldn't decide whether (should I have a rich , web-savvy aunt whom I don't yet know about) I would rather have the Aiptek A-HD 720P 5MP CMOS High Definition Camcorder, or the Flip Video Ultra Series 60-minute Camcorder.

It seems that the Flip is more compact, but I like the fact that the Aiptek has a fold-out screen that allows you to monitor how the footage is coming out a bit better, without (apparently) increasing the bulk significantly.

Also, the Flip 60-minute has a one-hour limit on it. Period. If you forgot your laptop, or don't have time to download the existing vid right then and there, you're SOL. With the Aiptek (if I'm reading the specs right), if you run out of space you throw in a new card, get the rest of the footage you want, get on with your life, and download the vids that night.

2) Related question: I do want to do a bloggers' talk show with some of the SoCal folk, so does anyone have any idea how difficult it would be to electronically alter someone's fact after the footage were taken? Ideally, I'd prefer to simply repace this one deep-cover blogger with an avatar, but I realized I need a motion-capture suit and a computer-graphics lab to achieve that.

Is there cost-effective technology that would simply allow me to pixillate her face, or would I have to make her wear a stupid mask, and give her her own mike? Thoughts?

Oh, yeah: and my birthday is on July 9th. Cash works, too: or a used desktop monitor for my MacBook that I can use for watching movies thereon. Actually, my very favoritest thing would if you bought Blogads from me.

Posted by Attila Girl at June 27, 2008 12:27 PM | TrackBack

Video editing software can blur the faces. Download a free-trial version if you don't already have it. I would use After Effects. Duplicate the layer and draw a mask around the target head to be pixellated. Then apply the Mosiac or Blur effect to the masks.

If you haven't shot it yet, have the guest in heavy shadows (or strong back lighting) and adjust the camera accordingly (to ignore that information).

Posted by: Darrell at June 27, 2008 07:27 PM

Hey AG,

First time reader (happened to find you via a technorati search on Kindle ;-)

I have the Aiptek A-HD+ (it adds a very cool 60FPS mode tht is almost surreal to see). It's a little bulky, but the ability to throw in a cheap 8GB card and get HOURS of HD recording is pretty sweet. And in a pinch it captures semi-sorta-decent stills. The main downside to me (and this is true of all the low end stuff) is no image stabilization, so your video can come out kinda shaky. But I hear the new Adobe apps have added a mode to smooth that out.

You can find reviews and info of all sorts here: http://forums.steves-digicams.com/forums/view_forum.php?id=92

Good luck o

Posted by: Richard at June 28, 2008 09:40 AM

Woops, hit the wrong key there. Good luck on picking one out :) If you have any Q's, feel free to mail me (comments aaaattt richard goodwin dootttt commm)

Posted by: Richard at June 28, 2008 09:44 AM

Thanks, Richard! Now all I need to do is find that rich aunt and bump her off.

Or, you know--get one of those . . . what do you call them? Oh, right: jobs . . . ;)

Posted by: Attila Girl at June 28, 2008 10:31 AM

does anyone have any idea how difficult it would be to electronically alter someone's fact after the footage were taken?

Heh. At first I thought it would be easy; just do a voiceover. Then I realised it was a typo. Took me a while, though :)

Most video editing software allows you to specify a region of the video for pixellation/distortion effects. VirtualDub is a good free one, for instance. Assuming that the face doesn't move around all over the screen.

Posted by: Gregory at June 29, 2008 07:15 PM

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