The Video Behind the Harwich Spirits Shoppe Talk Blog, Contest, BBQ

Hey!

Cisco the cat here…

Over time, we’ve gotten some questions about how we make our videos. (Just look at the tutorials in the sidebar to the right.) In a moment Panchita and I will do our best to explain… But please first understand that what works for our hardware, software, and level of expertise may not work for yours. So always keep a good backup, and don’t blame us if your system bursts into flames and chases you around the room if you try to follow in our footprints.

That out of the way, here’s what we did to make the moving pictures work via YouTube…

  1. First, we wanted to use Windows Movie Maker for editing. We’re both serious Microsoft folk and we wanted to work in WMM. Tuck that away for later reference – you’ll see why.
  2. The natural next step was to take the video using a tripod and then get it on to the PC.
  3. Once the vid was on the computer, it was just a matter of editing in WMM and then dispatching the masterwork off to the cyber ether right? Not quite…

Here are the Agents of Befuddlement:

  • Our first Flip Video produced AVI files; our current model (a Mino) creates MP4…
  • Regardless of the file type produced by the camera we still wanted to shrink the beasts and maintain some degree of quality. We opted for WMV files. (EDIT: It turns out that MP4 are smaller than WMV files.)
  • Now, my machine being an XP Media Center box, could handle both MP4 and AVI, and the native WMM could save to the WMV format. (EDIT: XP with WMM cannot handle MP4s.)
  • But, the wife’s computer (being an MS Vista brute) couldn’t handle MP4 stuff until she installed Windows Live.
  • To make the cheese even more binding, Panchita’s work computer is running XP Pro, and there ain’t no way to get that version of WMM to recognize MP4 files.
  • Add to that mess the fact that there are at least five versions of XP, and six versions of Windows Movie Maker and we’ll both see you at the bar.

I hope you can see the storm a brewing… If we were going to use Windows Movie Maker, we’re going to have to either get lucky and have the right foundation OS and WMM, or we were going to have to find a third-party app that could handle the conversion of file types for us.

Phew! I hope that makes sense!

After a ton or research, I found the solution for US. Any time an XP or a Vista machine just doesn’t want to recognize a file type like an AVI or an MP4, we just sick the free “Any Video Converter 3.07” on ’em. From what we can tell by the user reviews, and our own experiences, this is a pretty slick piece of software. Just remember, this is our own experience, and downloading can be tricky! You’re completely on your own to find and test what works for you!

But there you have it in its own discombobulated way… Get the file off the cam and into your computer. Next convert to WMV, edit, and save… Then on to SendSpace, YouTube, or whatever! (Jeepers, I hope I’ve got that series of steps right!!! Arghhh… You’ll figure it out.)

See you by the clapboard in the racks,

Two cats blogging

P.S. Don’t forget our math contest. There’s $25 bucks just waiting to be had!

P.P.S. And be sure to leave the calendar open for our free BBQ, this upcoming Sat, August 28th. We’ll start sometime in the afternoon and go ’til whenever.


Wine Glossaries

* Nat Decants: A thorough glossary from Natalie MacLean, noted wine writer, speaker, and judge.
* eRobertParker.com: “The Independent Consumer’s Guide to Fine Wines”
* GLOSSARY of Wine-Tasting Terminology (Version 1.4 – Jan. 1995): A thorough collection of definitions from Anthony Hawkins.

Beer Glossaries

* ratebeer: Now that’s a straightforward name!
* beer-pages: Roger Protz and Tom Cannavan say that “it’s all about beer”.
* alphaDictionary.com: A fine collection of Beer dictionaries.

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