Michael Scott, manager un-extraordinaire of NBC’s hit comedy show “The Office,” is one of Steve Carell’s greatest creations; a train-wreck of a boss prone to chronic fits of inappropriate behavior. There’s a certain genius in his stupidity; a quirky predictability to his missteps each more embarrassing than the next. While there’s no way to repeat another person’s success, trying to break down a person’s natural flow down into its unintended parts is one way to crack the mysteries of brilliant minds. Tad Friends recent New Yorker profile does just that; instead of bringing us a cozy fireplace chat with a naturally humorous guy, the profile describes a reserved and focused man well-studied in the math of being funny.
My colleague, Freyja, and I were chatting in our office about the motivation it requires to write blog posts each week. We recommend blogging to companies who want to explore the digital landscape but getting around to eking out a mere five hundred words for ourselves is a whole other matter. Our tales of woe turned into a connection; we both had read the profile and thought about agile; a methodology used in software development. Days later Freyja had completed a post and her questions expanded my ideas about the incremental steps necessary to produce creative work of any kind.
Is your video format cutting edge? Well, you might not want it to be. While HTML5 may be a lighter simpler way for enabled browsers to read and display media, accommodating browsers without HTML5 support can be a whole project in itself.
Older browsers still require third-party plugins, like Flash or Quicktime, to display videos across the web. Luckily Flowplayer will suck in a video formatted for HTML5 and spit it out as flash, so encoding videos as h.264 will work in most cases. On the content preparation side of things though, this means updating old videos to suit new formats and reformatting takes time.
Why not just keep older videos in flash and format new videos for HTML5? Well, flash won’t display on Apple mobile devices for starters, but more importantly enabling both technologies means spending time enabling past solutions rather than optimizing for the future. Where do we draw the line?