David Pogue Interview: Revolutions In Homemade Movies

We are interviewing David Pogue, author of one of my personal favorite Mac books, Mac Secrets and iMac for Dummies. You can read my first interview with Mr. Pogue at MacCreator.

The Mac Observer [TMO]: Your book iMovie 2: The Missing Manual has just been released (I think. Amazon says "December 2000", but they have not shipped it to me yet.) What do you see as the most important improvements to the book in version 2?

David Pogue: Two words: Glenn Reid. Heis the man who wrote iMovie and iMovie 2 -- the lead engineer, and I was lucky enough to have him serve as technical editor for the book. In addition to expanding and revising the book for iMovie 2, I was able to incorporate about a hundred really cool tips, tricks, and undocumented features, thanks to Glennis assistance.

And, needless to say, he also corrected a TON of errors. :)

TMO: What do you see as the most important improvements to the iMovie software in version 2?

David Pogue: The biggest news in iMovie 2, for my money, is the fact that you can edit on a TV or your camcorderis LCD panel. This is huge -- it totally bypasses the jerky/blurry compromise you have to make when using the onscreen monitor window.
And, of course, the new audio features arenit anything to sneeze at...

TMO: I am watching a documentary (American Movie. Recommended) about a young man in the Northwest with a dream of making films. And he does. And his life is a big struggle to come up with the huge costs associated with filming on film. Digital Video changes that in a big way. Do you think iMovie II has the power to make an actual feature movie (say for a DVD), or should one expect to shell out for Final Cut Pro right off the bat?

David Pogue: iMovie 2 can absolutely handle it. Thatis not to say that Final Cut Pro doesnit offer features unavailable in iMovie; it does. But what counts in a film is content, plot, character... not split-screen effects; iMovie is easily up to the task of producing DVD-quality movies, if the original footage was intelligently shot, lit, and recorded.

TMO: This is a verbatim repeat of a question I asked you after the release of the first Missing Manual for iMovie 1.0. but I think the answer will be different:) How about publishing? Video tape, I wouldnit know how to get that produced, and it seems rather... dated, I guess. Do you know if one can get DVDs made for reasonable money?

David Pogue: Yes, everythingis different now; Appleis SuperDrive, a recordable DVD drive available in next monthis new Power Macintosh models, changes everything.

"iMovie 2: The Missing Manual" walks you through the process of creating DVD discs the old way: $5,400 for a Pioneer DVD burner, $2,500 for the authoring software, $40 per disc.

Now hereis Appleis way: One $3500 computer with built-in drive; free software; $10 per blank disc. For iMovie fans, the world will never be the same. At last, we have a way to distribute our finished flicks without suffering the indignity and quality loss of a conversion to VHS tape!

Fortunately, this book looks like itis another big hit, which means Iill be able to revise it every few weeks, as it goes back to press for more copies. You can guess what the first revision will be... :)

TMO: Thank you, David!

Get iMovie 2: The Missing Manual now!

Yours, Eolake

Eolake Stobblehouse is a contributing editor to the Mac Observer, specializing in cultural matters, and comes to us by way of MacCreator. Send him your comments and tips.