The Hooligan Project - Intro

The Hooligan Project is a Rollerblading video that I worked on at the end of 2011. You can see the whole video here. I was responsible for the Editing and Motion Design and also shot a small bit of the video. 

If you have any comments or questions you can find me on Twitter @Flugo

Launching Applications, Beautifully Fast

Aug 29 2012

Software used in Tutorial: OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.1)

For years I have been using various Application Launchers to open up Applications on the Mac. I have gone between Spotlight, Alfred, Launchbar, and long ago used my favorite of the group Quicksilver. They all seemed to serve similar purposes with some more powerful than others. I loved the speed and visual appeal of Quicksilver but that has gone through various developer starts and stops over the years. Alfred is visually appealing as well but didn’t seem quite as powerful as Quicksilver. Launchbar even though powerful was always too visually unappealing and too small of a user interface for my own taste. However, the main need for me was simple. Open Applications fast. The crucial part of course was getting those Applications up and running as fast as possible, but the visual appeal is what kept me coming back for more.

Spotlight

Keyboard shortcuts are usually the fastest way of accessing different things on the Mac. Like most Mac users I am used to opening Spotlight using the simple Command+Spacebar shortcut. This immediately launches Spotlight and I am able to quickly start typing to select the item I am looking for. That is fast and of course a nice way of finding items stored anywhere on your Computer or Network. The problem for me is that it is not as fast as some of the other options mentioned earlier. I also find that the Spotlight interface is too small and not too impressive looking. The last thing is that it searches everything from files to folders, music, pictures, videos, etc. What if all I want is to open up an Application? Wouldn’t it be faster to just search through the Applications only? This is what I found myself using Spotlight for ninety-five percent of the time anyway.

Dock

You might be thinking, “Why not just use the Dock?” Well, the Dock is a great place for the most used Applications, but most people do not leave ALL of their Applications in the Dock. It is also mouse/trackpad driven so that tends to be slower than keyboard shortcuts. Another problem is that I like to hide the Dock when I am not using it which introduces another obstacle in my way of opening an Application quickly.

Launchpad

Another option Apple recently introduced is Launchpad which debuted with Mac OS X Lion. Launchpad is an iOS inspired Application launcher that is a simple, visual way for Mac users to launch an Application without having to go into the Finder. It is visually beautiful but much slower than any keyboard shortcuts or Application launchers mentioned earlier. Once again it is mainly a mouse/trackpad driven process which will slow you down. With OS X Mountain Lion Apple added some new improvements to Launchpad including an all new Search field. This is where I found the magic to fast, beautifully visual Application launching.

Using Launchpad with Keyboard Shortcuts

In OS X Mountain Lion you can change keyboard shortcuts in your System Preferences under the Keyboard preference pane and you can do this for just about any keyboard shortcut system wide. Among the options are the ability to change what keyboard shortcuts you want to use to open Spotlight as well as Launchpad. By default and mentioned earlier, Spotlight uses Command+Spacebar as the shortcut. Launchpad can be accessed many ways such as using Hot Corners, clicking the Launchpad icon in the Dock, finding it in the Applications folder, Spotlight, etc. By default there is unfortunately no keyboard shortcut to open Launchpad. I decided to change this.

First, I went into the Keyboard preference pane in the System Preferences and changed the keyboard shortcut for Spotlight to Option+Spacebar. Then, I added the shortcut Command+Spacebar to open Launchpad. So now when I hit Command+Spacebar this brings me directly to Launchpad. The nice thing about the new Search field in Launchpad is that I have the ability to immediately start typing which narrows down what is visibly available to select inside Launchpad. This allows me to find just the Application I want to open. When I type in enough letters to get to the Application I want to open I simply hit Return. That’s it.

Command+Spacebar, type the first few letters of the Application you want to open and hit Return.

It really is that simple.

I am really happy that this works the way it does. It is now my new favorite, extremely fast, and visually beautiful way to launch Applications on the Mac.

Thanks for reading.

If you have any comments or questions you can find me on Twitter @Flugo

Deinterlacing and Changing Field Dominance in Final Cut Pro X

Aug 22 2012

Software used in Tutorial: Final Cut Pro X version 10.0.5

Deinterlacing and Changing Field Dominance in Final Cut Pro X is a quite a bit different than in previous versions of Final Cut Pro. This tutorial shows how to find and change the settings for Deinterlacing and Field Dominance for a single video clip or a group of clips.

One thing you will notice right away is that Deinterlacing is no longer a “Filter” as it was in Final Cut Pro 7. The way to Deinterlace a clip or a group of clips is now a setting in the “Inspector” panel. The first thing you will need to do is select a clip or group of clips in your Event Browser or Timeline. When you have something selected go ahead and click on the “i” on the right side of the screen to open the Inspector.

FCPx Inspector

At the top of the Inspector there are three tabs for Video, Audio, and Info. We want to select the Info tab. 

FCPx Three Tabs

In the Info tab we get the Basic View of your metadata by default.

FCPx Basic View

Now if you have one clip selected you will see information about that one clip at the top of your Inspector.

Clip Info

If you have multiple clips selected you will get a message saying “Inspecting xx Items” based on how many items you have selected.

FCPx Clips Info

In this “Basic View” you will notice there is no Deinterlacing option or any Field Dominance Override choices. For this we have to change the “Basic View” drop down menu at the bottom of the Inspector to the Settings View.

FCPx Switching Views

When you open the Settings View you will see some new information populate the Inspector. There are two options we want to look at. First the Field Dominance Override.

FCPx Field Dominance Override

Here we have the choices for setting the Field Dominance to either Un-modified, Progressive, Upper First, or Lower First.

FCPx Field Dominance Choices

The next choice we have is the Deinterlace checkbox. It is simple, you can check it to Deinterlace your clip or clips that you have selected or leave it unchecked to leave the selection as is.

FCPx Deinterlaced Checked

FCPx DeinterlaceWell there you have it folks. An easy solution for changing Deinterlacing and Field Dominance in Final Cut Pro X.

Thanks for reading.

If you have any comments or questions you can find me on Twitter @Flugo

Motion Graphics Demo Reel 2011

Client work and personal projects up through 2011.

Music by: Brendan Joyce
Brendan on Soundcloud - http://bit.ly/TOXICBEATS