Thursday, December 26, 2013

iMovie, We Hardly Knew Ye

So you may be wondering why I am writing a post the day after Christmas. Let me tell you. My daughter was (correction, still is) helping her boyfriend put together a series of DVDs of his family movies that had been on VHS for Christmas presents. Which meant, of course, that I was helping them.

First off, we used El Gato's EyeTV 250 Plus to convert the VHS tapes to digital format. Next, we converted the resulting MPG2 files to MOVs to bring into iMovie. Later, I found out I could directly export from the EyeTV software right to an iMovie '09 project. Oh well, live and learn. Anyway, so we imported them into iMovie. Since the recent promotion of Apple's new and free upgrade to OS X Mavericks, all the iLife and iWork applications also were already updated to their new versions. And that, my friends is where the story actually begins.

"Streamlined, simplified and easier" for first-time users! How about "feature stripped, crippled and annoying" for previous users? Because of Apples' abandoning of optical drives in their current computer line-up, they felt it necessary to remove features related to disc burning in their movie editing app. I mean really, who needs to burn DVDs anymore when you have YouTube and Facebook and Vimeo? Ah, that would be me, and probably thousands more who want to share their videos with others not with the current social network crowd.

So, no sharing function with iDVD (iDVD, what's that?). No direct burning to disc. No chapter markers for creating disc menus. Seriously? If the video needs chapter markers it's too long to upload and too long to hold people's attention? C'mon, I may be getting old, but I don't think the demise of the DVD is here just yet. And to completely abandon it for, from what I can tell from all the press, is merely aesthetics, is ludicrous! Who cares how thin an iMac is? It's a desktop! My current 27" iMac with optical drive looks just fine, thank you very much. And while Apple is making its current line of computers svelte, it's making the owners' physical desktops littered with keyboards, trackpads, mice, external DVD burners and hard drives. Yeah, baby!

What did I do next? Went to my trusty Time Machine backup and restored a copy of iMovie '09 to my optical drive-equipped iMac. Ahhh, that's much better. So much for upgrades. I don't think I have ever complained this much about an Apple related product. Now is the winter of my discontent. What about you, are you feeling left out in the cold by Apple?

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!