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E Making Videos


Sometimes you will want to prepare a video for presentation. The procedure to do this depends on the equipment you have available and the desired quality of the production. This appendex discusses some options.

E.1 Basic Facilities at the ATNF

The ATNF has video recording equipment connected to the workstation phoenix. This equipment is not capable of producing high-quality (i.e. broadcast standard) videos, but it has the advantage of being located at the ATNF, and so is convient to use.

Once you have produced your movie, you need to purchase a VHS video cassette and use the video recorders supplied. When playing the movies, it is advisable to use the -fullscreen command-line option for the kvis and xray tools. This will make the image display window take up the entire screen. You should see a button labelled Raise somewhere which allows you to place the displayed image above all other windows. By clicking the right mouse button you can lower this window again, and get back your control panels.

E.2 Using Sydney University VisLab Facilities

The University of Sydney has created a commercial visualisation laboratory. They are able to make high-quality broadcast standard VFS and Betacam videos. All you need to do is provide them with a sequence of numbered images in a supported format.

VisLab also have facilities to convert from many popular image formats to a format their machinery requires, but this will cost real money. Instead, you should produce files in ``Targa TrueVision'' format, which they will be able to use directly. The karma2ppm command-line utility may be used to produce this format.

The image size required by VisLab is 720 pixels horizontal and 576 pixels vertical. Note that you need to leave a border of tex2html_wrap_inline5280 inside this otherwise some television screens will chop the outer parts of your movie.

You would need to use the following parameters for <karma2ppm>:

converter           "ppmtotga"
extension           "tga"
out_height          576
out_width           720

You would then type something like:
karma2ppm mymovie image

and you would get a sequence of numbered images starting from 1, such as:


Try to keep the filenames to 8.3 lengths (i.e. 8 characters for the first part and 3 characters for the extension). This avoids any potential problems with some (broken) operating systems.

These files are already compressed, so further compression is probably not worthwhile. Write these images onto a tape or CD-ROM and take it to VisLab. It is recommended that you attend the video recording session in person, in case there are problems. You may find that the colour balance, intensity or contrast is different on your workstation screen than on the television screen. Aborting the process early if there are problems will save you money.

Rememember: it's your video. Nobody knows exactly how you want it to appear except you.

next up previous contents index Karma Home Page
Next: F Acknowledgements Up: Karma User Manual Previous: D Annotation File Format

Richard Gooch
Tue Dec 26 15:27:11 PST 2006