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Information Philosopher

NewMedia Lab


From 1994 to 1998, Bob Doyle was Digital Video Editor of NewMedia Magazine and the Director of NewMedia Lab in Cambridge at the Desktop Video Group.

He wrote cover stories on PC Capture Cards, Hard Drives for Video, Desktop Video, Non-linear Editing (with Jeff Sauer), Web Servers (with Sam Murphy), and Serving Dynamic Pages (with Derek Doyle).

In 1994 DTV Group's labs in Cambridge became the home of NewMedia Lab, doing digital video testing of hardware and software for NewMedia magazine from 1994 to 1999.

Bob Doyle, the first director, and Jeff Sauer, the second director of NewMedia Lab, wrote many articles for NewMedia Magazine on DV camcorders, non-linear editing systems, video hard drives, multimedia projectors, and dynamic web publishing systems.

Bob and Jeff developed a diagnostic test tape to evaluate the performance of video capture cards that converted analog video to digital. They tested 18 PC capture cards and Bob wrote the 14-page article Windows Video Capture Cards with the help of several DTV Group members. Bob and Jeff prepared the feature table and supervised testing by Mike Bergman, Ted Carroll, Leo Cierpial, Peter Pinch, Will Martins, Peter Stassa and other Desktop Video Group members.

Bob and his son Derek Doyle converted the NewMedia Lab article into a NewMedia Lab/DTV Group CD-ROM with the results of the capture tests, a comparison of various compression codecs, and a tutorial on digital video.

In 1995 came the introduction of the MiniDV digital video format and Apple's FireWire for noise-free transfer to a desktop video editor. Analog camcorders were obsolete, capture cards no longer necessary, and all the compression schemes were replaced by the MPEG-2 based DV format.

The DTV Group helped Bob do a roundup of 13 DV camcorders from the $23,000 Sony DSR-130 to the tiniest JVC GR-DV1. It marked the end of analog camcorders for professional work. The study produced an 11-page article for NewMedia entitled "Shooting Stars: A Digital Video Revolution".

The Desktop Video Group helped do the testing for other cover stories like "Hard Drives for Digital Video" in 1995 and "Real-Time Video Editing" in 1996. "Desktop Video" was the main theme of a whole issue of NewMedia magazine that was distributed widely at the 1998 National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show.

14 Hard Drives for Digital Video Real-Time Video Editing Desktop Video

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