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Expelled and metadata

So, I happened to catch the movie Expelled from Ben Stein yesterday and while I could wax philosophic on it for an extended period of time, I will rather limit most of my comments to the my thoughts about metadata and how it can help such films get done more quickly in the future.

All right, let me first say that the documentary film was very interesting and fun to watch.  It also stayed on topic and was fairly representing both sides of the topic.  I was impressed at how the movie stayed on the issue of how evolutionary is stifling opposing points of view which is contrary to the scientific method.  They didn’t discuss the case for ID at all, which I found intruiging.

However, I digress…

While I was watching the film and trying to keep 20 some odd boys and girls in line at the movie theater (I was a chaperone for one of my children), I was struck at how well the film was edited.  Hats off to Simon Tondeur, the editor.  It was juggling an enormous amount of interviews as well as keep tons of material both scripted and ad-libbed by Ben Stein.

This brings me to the real point of this post.  With the flow of the movie and all of the disparate material being brought together as a cognizant whole, I was struck by how the use of metadata could help movies of this type be done more quickly in the future.  At NAB, we did a technology preview that would read audio in the video and transcribe it to words – essentially creating time-related metadata.  I was thinking that Simon could have used this technique to quickly find a list of clips that were relevant.  He could search the word "eugenics" and find all the clips that mentioned it or referenced it in their takes.  The likely case was that Simon, Ben and the rest of the team were either sifting through the clips and tagging the right ones or more probably, manually entering metadata like "eugenics," "professer XYZ," etc. 

The more I think about this, the more I understand how important metadata is for creating and distributing content in a quicker, more efficient fashion. What do you think – will metadata be important to your workflows in the future?

[DR Update – I have closed off comments on this one entry.  Why?  Well, though I received some very interesting comments about the point of this post, I also received some that were trashing all kinds of things, not worth mentioning.  As the admin for the blog, I can choose what goes up and what doesn’t, but I take the freedom of speech thing very seriously.  So, after some internal thought I decided that I wouldn’t publish the good only but close off comments altogether.  This is a shame, but I thought the best thing to do.]

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