September 19, 2011

WeVideo Champagne Supernova

Yeah, we[1] have launched WeVideo! The US team even won a prize for their presentation at Demo 2011. Congratulations! I must I admit I am sometimes that boring realistic and analytical engineer - how refreshing then to have someone else to bluntly say "we will revolutionize social video editing".

We have been thinking hard around pricing, technical architecture and countless details before the launch. I might write something on that later. But now, a more practical test. People often say "eat your own dogfood" or, as I will insist on phrasing it in this case, "drink your own champagne". Anyway - use your own tools if you believe others should.

I've gone ahead and done just that. I just drove from New Orleans to NYC for my August holiday and now I created a short summary of the trip. I am a total amateur, like most of our users will be, so you will maybe not be that impressed by the resulting video itself. But I was, honestly, impressed by the tool when using it for real, not just testing some boundrary case for technical reasons.

For this 3 minute movie, it was uploaded videos and photos from 2 cameras (one mid-range SLR, the Nikon D90 and one Nikon point and shoot from 2007) and 2 iPhones, put it together in a timeline and slotted in some mp3s[2] - then uploaded a screenshot of a google map and added some transitions and texts in the tool to end up with this video:

What struck me was that after getting the raw material into the tool, the rest was really easy. Imagine how disruptive this can possibly be as bandwidth continues to grow exponentially...

The launch seems to have gone well technically so far and it has gotten nice reviews. Of course the sign-up rate (4 digit number of sign-ups in the first few days) is not quite up where we had dreamed. On the other hand if it keeps groving at a steady rate we will have the whole world as users by Christmas. :-)

Now go on to and invite some friends to edit video collaboratively - good luck! And drop me or the WeVideo team a note if you have a suggestion or find a bug - we are now in what we have defined as a public beta version and need all input we can get to get this right.

[1] - Full disclosure: I am a member of the board at Inspera, that holds a majority ownership position in Creaza AS and (directly and indirectly through Creaza AS) controls 52% of WeVideo Inc. I have also played a relatively modest role in the more practical matters of making everything you don't see (clusters of web servers, rendering farms and the like) work and scale, as a consultant.

[2] - Forgiveness, not permission. Pretty-please. The album Fuzzy by Grant Lee Buffalo is one of my all time favorites. If you do not own it in at least two formats already, go ahead and buy it in the iTunes store (or your favorite equivalent) right away!