Hello! I’m Samantha Stocks.

I’m a writer based in Bristol, UK.

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Category Archive: Press releases

  1. iStrategy Conference Announces its Best Ever Speaker Lineup

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    Zuckerberg, Wales, Everett and more – it’s iStrategy’s best ever speaker lineup!

    Bristol, UK, 12 October, 2011: The leading digital media conference, taking place from 25-16th October at Park Plaza Amsterdam Airport in the Netherlands, hosts over 30 of the industry’s leading speakers and will include interactive workshops, live interviews, and valuable networking opportunities.

    Randi Zuckerberg, former Head of Marketing at Facebook, will deliver the opening keynote. “iStrategy’s European Conference offers attendees the leading edge needed to develop world-class integrated marketing strategies,” she says.

    “It is truly an honour for me to deliver the opening keynote session at iStrategy’s European Conference on October 25. I look forward to exploring the future of online branding, as well as providing best-in-class strategies and tips for successful brand positioning in the digital landscape,” she adds.

    In this valuable session, Zuckerberg will share her top ten tips for maximizing your brand on Facebook, reveal which brands are the best at maximizing their social connections, and help you to speak your ‘future brand’.

    Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia, will deliver the final keynote session. He will cover the fundamentals of the Wikipedia model, and reveal how open-source, open-content technology is changing the face of the internet.

    In addition, 29 other industry leaders from companies such as Microsoft, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google, Spotify, Orange, Rovio, Heineken and more will be speaking and sharing their insights on leading social media techniques and technology. Topics will cover social media, mobile marketing and applications, display advertising, online advertising, email marketing, web analytics, e-commerce, and content strategy.

    The conference will facilitate coffee breaks, lunches, and even a gala reception evening in order to facilitate face-to-face networking opportunities with your peers and industry pioneers.

    Unlike many other conferences, iStrategy believes that quality, not quantity, is what is most important. Limiting the number of attendees to 300 senior marketers, the conference adds value by ensuring a more intimate and interactive experience.

    With the very best speakers, the very best content, and the very best networking opportunities, iStrategy is the social media conference that your business strategy can’t afford to miss.

    To register, please go to www.istrategyconference.com

  2. Blackmagic Design’s Optical Fiber Takes Gold in Berlin!

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    Mini Converter Optical Fiber keeps broadcasting on track at the 12th IAAF World Championships in Athletics Berlin 2009 

    Cheshire, UK, 11 September 2009 - Higher, further, faster – challenges set to broadcast engineers and athletes alike during the 12th IAAF World Championships in Athletics Berlin 2009™! When Jamaican athlete Usain Bolt smashed the 100m World Record, live feeds of the race were being distributed for miles in an instant thanks to optical fibre.

    Several miles of broadcast cabling, 120 cameras, 40 Blackmagic Design Optical Fiber Mini Converters and Blackmagic Design’s Studio Videohub were among equipment put through their paces last month, during the live HD broadcast of the Championships to 203 countries!

    German media service provider Incast were tasked with supplying live video feeds to 3,500 journalists in the press gallery, main media centre, and International Broadcast Centre, to the host broadcaster BERTA and the Berlin Olympic Stadium. Incast also provided connection for the giant LCD screens inside the Olympic Stadium, and also at the Brandenburg Gate for the Berlin Marathon staged on 20th September.

    Managing Director of Incast Andreas Wolf explains, “All live feeds went into the main control room of the host broadcasters’ International Broadcast Centre, which was 400 metres away from the stadium. With 12 SD-SDI and 2 HD-SDI signals running at such long distances, we decided to use optical fibre cabling, as it enables much longer distances and is more affordable than conventional SDI cabling.”

    Incast opted to use Blackmagic Design Optical Fiber Mini Converters to convert between SDI and optical fibre signals. From the optical fibre converters, the SDI signals went directly into the Blackmagic Design Studio Videohub. “This slim router provided an elegant solution,” enthuses Wolf. Digital signals were converted to analog feeds for Cable TV, to the digital encoding and to the giant LCD screens to provide an unforgettable live viewing experience for the 6,000 spectators in the Olympic Stadium and to thousands more around the Brandenburg Gate for the Berlin Marathon.

    “The Blackmagic Design Optical Fiber Mini Converters offered three major advantages”, describes Wolf. “Firstly, SD and HD signals can be converted with the same unit and without manual switching. Secondly, the possibility to convert in both directions, optical fiber to SDI and SDI to optical fibre, provided the additional flexibility that we needed. Finally, we consider the 40 converters we used as an investment in our future as they are fully 3Gb/s compatible.”

    Commenting on Incast’s success Blackmagic Design’s Simon Westland, Sales Manager EMEA, said, “This was a hugely important and high profile project, and a demanding test of these products. For our Optical Fiber Mini Converters to be used at an event of this magnitude is really exciting as it demonstrates how optical fibre is a practical and affordable solution today”.

    About Incast

    Incast (Internet & Broadcast) Broadcast Engineering is specialised in providing and processing signals at major events and is working in broadcast planning as well as in production.

    Latest major projects include:

    • Sonnenklar TV technical supervision
    • EURO2008™ signal delivery and production of Media TV and Stadium TV in all eight stadiums
    • FIFA Confederations Cup South Africa signal delivery and production of Media TV and Stadium TV in all four stadiums
    • 12th IAAF World Championships in Athletics Berlin 2009
  3. Stunning Visuals Are Blackmagic

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    Blackmagic Design products are integral to Space Digital’s workflow

    Manchester based VFX post-house Space Digital produce high quality visuals for major film, television drama, comedy and commercials in the UK. Artists at Space Digital have contributed to a number of prestigious BAFTA and RTS award winning productions, including three BAFTA award winners, and have even collected an RTS award directly for Best Visual Effects.

    Projects have included popular UK dramas such as Ashes to Ashes, Survivors, Paradox and Small Island. In order to produce such high quality visuals for these high-profile television dramas, Space Digital have opted for equipment from Blackmagic Design.

    “Blackmagic Design products are an integral part of our workflow here,” explains Gary Kelly, VFX artist at Space Digital. “Blackmagic are clearly a forward-thinking company, and one of only a few that truly excel in bringing products and solutions to a market that were previously out of reach for smaller studios like ours.”

    All compositing stations at Space Digital have Intensity Pro cards, which allow them to monitor their work on a shared, full HD screen using the video out modes in Nuke. Prior to this set up, all compositing stations at the facility required a second monitor to view, but the Intensity Pro has eliminated this need.

    Blackmagic Design’s DeckLink HD Extreme card is used in the finishing suite to monitor on a 50-inch plasma screen for client viewing via the card’s HDMI output. “We love our DeckLink HD Extreme because of all the options that it provides us with; a high level of connectivity, audio, and deck control.” Kelly describes. “One great feature is its ability to down-convert to various video sizes via the built-in down converter, so we can monitor in SD and HD for viewing on our external client monitor during offline editing.”

    Space Digital make the most of the card’s ability to capture and playback DPX sequences using Blackmagic Design’s Media Express 2.0 straight onto external monitors without needing to convert. “We also take full advantage of the DeckLink’s ability to play out realtime 4:4:4 to our external display, which is vital in compositing work and grading processes,” says Kelly. “All of our Blackmagic cards have been extremely reliable and we have never had a card fail on us.”

    The setup in the finishing suite at Space Digital consists of a Mac running Nuke and Final Cut Studio with DeckLink HD Extreme and is connected to the Blackmagic UltraScope in the finishing suite via the card’s SDI output. The setup is used for online and colour grading via Apple Color to monitor and maintain picture quality. “This is not only essential for broadcast standards,” explains Kelly, “but also for our own self-enforced in-house standards.”

    Workstations at Space Digital run from Final Cut Studio to Nuke. With Nuke’s new ability to view work via Blackmagic Design capture cards, Space Digital artists now have the ability to monitor with the UltraScope from start to finish.

    Simon Blackledge, Head of Post Production at Space Digital, said, “The UltraScope really is an important addition to our setup here at Space. It enables us to monitor exactly what we are producing, from TV commercials using Final Cut Studio to high end VFX, so we can be confident in our images without needing to hire more expensive options.”

    “Most importantly,” explains Blackledge, “the UltraScope is far less expensive than other scopes available on the market, which means we can have one permanently in-house; so where previously we’d rent scopes externally for our bigger jobs, we now use it on every single job, no matter what the size or the budget of the project.”

    Space Digital continues to work with the biggest indies and broadcasters in the UK today and are currently working on a new UK drama and two new feature films.