What’s happening and what’s next at Simian?
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March 8, 2011
PRLog (Press Release) - Groundbreaking media management platform features powerful new ways to share video, capture user analytics and collaborate on content creation.
Simian announced today the launch of version 2.0 of its industry-leading, web-based multimedia platform for creative companies in the advertising, film, television, music and interactive media industries. Revamped design and streamlined functionality gives more power to production and creative teams and bolsters support for sales and marketing. Simian 2.0 highlights include feature-rich project workspaces, enhanced analytics, social syndication, metadata tagging, website integration and custom presentations.
Development of Simian 2.0 was driven by customer feedback and market demand for one easy-to-use platform to build, manage, present and analyze a range of creative deliverables from media files to documents. “Companies want to save time and increase productivity. It doesn’t make sense to use a dozen different software applications for a dozen different tasks,” states Jay Brooks, co-founder of Simian. “As an integrated platform, Simian 2.0 replaces such random tools with one feature-rich portal that improves accessibility to the workflow and increases collaboration for the entire creative team.”
Simian Projects features an expanded toolset for collaborating on video, images, audio, documents and rich media. Role-based logins and secure link sharing make review and approval efficient. In addition to workflow tools, Projects also includes a Microsite builder which allows non-technical users build dynamic websites using predesigned themes to present content in new and exciting ways.
Simian Reels features an expanded interface and simplified toolset so that everyday users can build and distribute media reels with ease. It boasts a highly evolved analytics tracking system that gives users critical data on who, what and how media assets are being viewed and shared.
Simian Media Library includes a customizable asset manager for cataloging digital assets. Media files can be categorized, credited, and tagged for easy search and retrieval. Existing technical metadata is also imported and displayed in the same interface. Simian’s video transcoding allows clips to be shared across multiple platforms and devices.
Additionally, the system provides simple tools for managing online access to media assets. Uniquely, Simian allows users to share direct links or instantly post media directly to Facebook, Twitter and other social sites to support their sales, marketing and promotional efforts. For users who wish to use Simian as their video host single videos can be embedded or Simian’s API can be used to power an entire media portal.
Feb. 3, 2011
Scoble highlights the fact that Simian is a new kind of project collaboration system for the creative industry. Co-founders Jay Brooks and Brian Atton demo the software and discuss the three key components they had in mind when they set out to develop the next generation of Simian: user experience, content sharing and scalability.
The first thing subscribers will see is a completely redesigned user interface that reflects actual workflow. New and improved reel analytics, dynamic microsite creator and extensive social casting features will give users a big boost in sharing and distributing videos. And the platform and underlying infrastructure of Simian was completely updated for future scalability
"The new Simian framework gives us the power to be nimble and implement user feedback quickly," says Brooks. "Also, we're poised to continue to lead the marketplace with innovative features that our creative clients are demanding. We're prepared to support them and stay ahead of the pack."
Sept. 7, 2010
Steve Jobs may have a personal vendetta against Flash, but his most recent rants has sparked new discussion about HTML5 within the developer community. Will it become the dominant rich media delivery method on the web? What does that mean? How will it affect user experience?
First things first, a lot of existing Flash-based websites won’t work on Apple devices (iPhone, iPad), but more importantly, it sends a message that all standards on the web should be open.. This is great for web developers but challenging for larger corporations and IT departments. Standardizing on a delivery and presentation strategy means web developers and SaaS providers can use a technology that "might" work on all browsers and devices. Pure HTML5 applications will require a modern browser, and I’m not talking IE6, IE7 or even IE8. Only the latest BETA versions of Firefox support HTML5. Apple claims Safari supports HTML5, but closer inspection decries the hype. Many of the HTML5 examples presented on the Apple site use proprietary Safari hooks to achieve desired user interface effects. This is great if you are developing only for Safari, iPad and iPhone users, but for sites and applications with further reach (pretty much anything), it’s useless. That leaves us with Google Chrome which could be the only HTML5-compliant browser that isn't trying to oversell. It follows standards, ‘nuff said. In the coming year, I predict Chrome will eventually replace Firefox as the alternative browser of choice based on one simple point¾Firefox has become bloated and unstable. My once favorite browser now crashes randomly on seemingly simple sites. Very disappointing.
What I believe to be the most exciting feature of HTML5 is the video support. No more plug-ins! The HTML5 video tag allows developers to pipe in video files without the need for complicated plug-in detection and cross-platform checks, browser-specific hacks and all the baggage that comes with trying to create a consistent user experience across browsers and platforms. The browser just handles it. This is a godsend for anyone trying to develop for the desktop and mobile environments. However, there is one BIG caveat. In the past few years, the H.264 Codec has nearly become the industry standard for video, making it the predominant codec for film, commercial and post companies. The problem - Firefox will not support the H.264 code for the HTML5 video tag. The issue is that Firefox takes on the traditional role of IE (Special Case) However, as I am writing I have just seen this: http://www.mpegla.com/main/Pages/Media.aspx -- the licensing fee for H.264 has been waived! The real question is whether Mozilla Foundation will scorn the move or support it. It doesn't look promising: http://www.zdnet.com/blog/hardware/mozilla-unmoved-by-royalty-free-h264/9499.
SVG & Canvas
What it all means
The developer community embraces technologies that are cross platform, widely adopted and easy to use. HTML5 is already changing user experiences on the web and expanding its reach to platforms. Along with HTML5, related technologies like JQuery are starting to drive new development and newly created sites, thus solidifying its place on the web. HTML5 is here to stay.
March 24, 2010
Simian is back from Austin where we attended SXSW this year. This was a huge year for interactive, there was a lot of great discussions about new platforms and modes of online communication and networking. One of the major topics was Open Video. Video is the new language of self expression, and the idea of Open Video is to give all users the power to access, manipulate and create content.
As video becomes a native element of the web, it points toward more support of open standards and HTML5. The user experience with video is amplified by layering the web over video. HTML5 doesn't break the web - the bits are free to manipulate. HTML5 is in direct competition with Flash and Silverlight but since it’s an open standard and not vendor based, it has a massive shot at winning.
A core focus of Simian is to connect the creative community in the process of content production. Exploring the newest advancements in technology will help us evolve our application to help you produce material more efficiently and grow your business. Look for more information on how technology will advance content creation and transform business models.
On a side note, it was just plain cool to be a part of the huge energy at the conference. Attendance was double from last year and industry celebs and digerati were everywhere. @garyvee was throwing secret wine parties, @Kevinrose, @scobelizer and @BrianSolis were mingling with us regular folks. @aplusk was at the Speakeasy .. and the girls AND the guys were trying to snap pics to post on Twitter. There were nerd fights abound and the energy was great. I could go on for hours about the parties and panels, so if you want to create a back channel off this post, let me know.
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