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Back TroubleNONLINEAR/4

A Field Guide to Digital Video
and Film Editing

by Michael Rubin
revised with Ron Diamond


Nonlinear, now in its 4th edition, is an easy-to-understand handbook about the popular world of digital nonlinear editing. It's written in nontechnical language for both professionals and students, as well as for interested bystanders. Profusely illustrated.

The first edition was designed for professionals in Hollywood's film and video industry, to bridge the chasm between film editors (older, non-technological, mechanical), videotape editors (younger, highly technical, electronic), and computer users (prosumers, cost-conscious, digital) in casual language. Today, Nonlinear has not only penetrated the professional industry, but has been expanded for consumer use. Widely used in colleges, universities, and professional organizations.

Although nonlinear editing technology began to explode in 1991, nonlinear systems had already been around for almost 5 years. Nonlinear became the Rosetta Stone of the industry: it was a universal translator -- between film and video, video and computer, computer and film. It still covers virtually everything anyone would want to know about the new world of electronic post production, without the geeky mumbo jumbo that characterizes most professional texts.

While the book is useful for anyone investigating or wishing to purchase a digital editing system, it is not meant to be a buyer's guide. It is designed not to go out of date every time a new new product is introduced or software release comes out.

It is about essentials. Fundamentals. Concepts. And language. With over 25,000 copies in print, Nonlinear is the best selling textbook on nonlinear editing in the world today.

"The absolute best book on the new film and video editing techniques and systems." --HOLLYWOOD FILM INSTITUTE

432 pp, illlus., glossary, bibliography, index
ISBN 0-937404-85-3 (2000), paperback, $39.95



1.  FIRST THINGS: What is linear editing? Buzzwords.

2.  BACKGROUND: Novice's introduction to production. The film story. The video story. History and moving pictures. A brief history of electronic editing.

3.  FUNDAMENTALS: Offline and online. Timecode. Types of timecode. The EDL. Film edge numbers. Telecine and 3:2 pulldown. Cutting film using videotape. Telecine logs. Component and composite video. Color space, gamuts, and the kitchen sink. Cabling. The digital world. Digital video. Compression. RAID technology. Digital media characteristics. Bandwidth. Pixels. Aspect ratio basics. Light and color. Typography.

4.  EDITING PRIMITIVES: What is an editing primitive? Editing time. Editing flowcharts. Computers. File system organization. Nomenclature. Primatives of editing. 3-and 4-point edits. Synchronization. Effects. Editing ergonomics. Monitors and jwindows. Timelines. Fundamental edits. Digitizing and capturing. Videotape assembliles. Printouts.

5. DISTRIBUTION: A brief review of broadcasting. The economics of revolution. Why shows cut film. Brief history of HDTV. Video on the web. DVD. Video-to-film transfers. Electronic cinema.

6.  SYSTEMS: Types of editing systems. Turnkey systems. System interface historical overview. System survey. The best system.

7.  THE REAL WORLD: Practical editing methods. Deconstructing production. Pricing. Telecine trouble. Color bars and monitor adjustment. Demo reels. Editor's bag of tricks.

8. THEORY: Horizontal and vertical nonlinearity. Interview with the author.


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