New version available (6.21) available for download

Today we uploaded Fast video cataloger 6.21 and it is available for download.

There are lots of improvements since my latest blog update. The largest major improvements have been around the integrated video player. The end result should be increased video quality as well as better support for multiple screens.

Recent improvements to video player

  • The “direct video player” video player option, that should be the safest option for playback, now uses evr instead of vmr9. That change should result in higher quality output and faster playback.
  • Improvements to the threading should have fixed a few possible causes for freezes. For example, we should be able to handle a few known driver/codec issues a bit better with blank output instead of a frozen program.
  • Multiscreen support for the video player. It should now be possible to drag the video player window from the main window to the secondary window with a different resolution.
  • Respect “pause” state. If you pause a video and then click on a thumb the video will jump to the selected time but won’t start playing (this behavior can be controlled from the videoplayer preference ).

Recent improvements to video playlists

  • Now you can add to playlist from the scene search results.
  • Playlist has a more compact view in addition to the previous one, right click in the window to select view.

Other improvements

  • New video index option to rotate thumbnails 90 degrees if it has a rotate metadata. This is useful for videos taken with iphones. For this to work you need the settings to extract meta data from the video and the option to autorotate thumbnails. To play the videos correct you also need to use a video renderer that reads the rotation metadata and does realtime rotation. MadVR is one renderer that does that.
    Options for autorotate video thumbnails

  • If you capture a frame through the capture camera icon in the player that thumb will be selected after capture.
  • Add folder should now be quicker, especially with folders that contain encrypted videos.
  • Add videofile now accepts multiselection.
  • Updated ScriptInterface.cs to reflect latest version of the api.

Managing photos and video images for your video files

Images and video files

Fast video cataloger lets you manage any type of photos together with your video files.

In Fast video cataloger, everything starts with a video. Fast video catalog is far from a traditional photo viewer program.

For photos, this means that you link photos to videos and that photos are filtered for the video.

We call photos stored in Fast video cataloger for companion images.

Companion images can be any type of digital image in jpeg or png file format.

What companion images you want in your catalog depend on the application. If you have a catalog of normal play films, like a movie you would find at imdb. Then, typical companion images are probably cover images, posters, pictures from the release party.

If you use Fast video cataloger for your company. Then, the companion images could be images shot at meetings and presentations, photos of a whiteboard, people in the meeting and so on. For these applications remember that you can also add extended video properties. In that way, it is possible to link other file types to your videos.

Type of images that fast video cataloger can handle

A companion image is any type of image set to a video. A companion image can be set as cover a front or back cover for a video. We also have the concept of Actor portrait image and Actor companion image.

How to add photos to your catalog

The easiest way to add images to a catalog is to add them automatically when you add a video to your catalog. You can control if and how companion images are added from the preferences. The program can automatically add companion images that are stored in the same folder or subfolder relative to the video file.

The companion image browser has a button to rescan a folder structure. Use this if to add companion images to a video that was scanned without images.

You can also go into the repair function and do a scan to find companion images in a subfolder to videos that are not in the catalog.

Add companion images by dragging the image files to the companion image window.

Video companion images

Browsing photos for a videos

The “companion image browser” window displays thumbnails of the companion images for the selected video. The “preview image” window shows the selected image (and you can zoom with the mouse wheel).

The “Cover” window only shows the front and back cover image for the video.

The “Companion & Cover image” is a more compact window that combines the above three windows into one. It shows a scrollable list of thumbnails. When you move the cursor to the bottom of the window it lists all companion images. The currently selected image is displayed in the same window.

In the “Attract cover images” window you can see a slideshow of random cover images for all videos in your collection. There is also a setting in the preferences, “Include Companion images”. When this is checked you will get all companion images for all videos, not just covers.

Attract window

Nice things with companion images

If you have companion images setup for a video you can move it in the file organizer and the companion images will move with the video files.
Right-click in the “companion …” window you can select to use a cover image as the image to represent a video in the video catalog (for example a cover).

Video Wall in Fast Video Cataloger

The Videowall is meant to provide a massive preview of your entire catalog at once. It loops through all your video scenes in all your videos from start to end, all in the same window if it fits.

Video wall gives you an animated overview of your current search results. Attract video wall shows a random selection of videos from your entire catalog.

The Videowall is a great tool for quick overviews and can be used to get a first grasp of the content of the catalog holds for content or if you are looking for something special among lots of videos. For example, if you have over a hundred of long surveillance videos you might want to look at them all at once just to figure which ones to really look into.

Once you find something interesting simply double click to get all the video scenes(Video scenes or thumbnails are shortcuts to time in a video) for that video. From the Video Scenes window, you can start playing directly from each scene that you find interesting, just by clicking them.

Fast Video Cataloger 6.1 released with virtual video editing and extended thumbnail properties

I am more than happy to announce that Fast video cataloger 6.1 is now available for download.

Download the latest version from the download page

Virtual video editing

In version 6.1 it is now possible to create virtual videos by combining sections from videos in your collection. It is basically an advanced playlist maker that allows you to create playlists of whole video clips or just a part of a video. You can use this to make a quick early draft before doing video editing or just play like a normal video. The playlists are not altering video files in any way and you can make playlists of videos in different formats and resolutions instantly without doing any type of re-encoding that would lead to quality loss. It is also super quick.

Video playlist window

Create a new virtual video playlist from the playlist window and then select a current playlist. There are three basic ways to populate your video playlist.

  • Add whole video clips to the playlist by right-clicking a video and selecting “add to playlist”.
  • Add a video segment by right-clicking a thumbnail and selecting “Add to playlist”. Doing that will att the segment from the time of the selected thumbnail to the next one. If you hold down shift while selecting add to playlist you simply add a short segment (you can select the length from preferences) from the time of the thumbnail to the playlist.
  • Right-click the camera icon in the video player to add a clip from the time where the video player is currently in the playing video.

You can re-order your clips with drag n drop after they have been added.

Extended thumbnail properties

Another new function in version 6.1 is the ability to add extended properties to thumbnails and to use that in searches. You could, for example, add a description to each thumbnail explaining the scene in words. Access this functionality from the video details window.

We have extended the scripting interface so you can leverage these new functions in your own custom solutions and we have added some more samples to give you a good start when doing your own video solutions based on fast video cataloger.