Meerkat Takes SXSW by Storm, Openshot for Linux and Intel’s Education Hub

Posted on March 24, 2015

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This year’s hottest new mobile app is called Meerkat and it promises to turn live broadcast video on its head.

Meerkat

South by Southwest Festival in Austin, Texas was taken by storm this year by a video live streaming app Meerkat looking to turn the world of mobile video and live broadcast on its head. Viral video is the holy grail of socially shared video and the chances of getting a global hit look to have increased, due to the ease that users can post video to Twitter. It has only been a short while since Twitter users could attach video to Tweets and now Meerkat looks to have given social its first killer video app.

That cuts both ways obviously. More content, more dross, but for media and events planners and anyone interested in creating either an organisational or personal news brand this will be huge. Of course there will be plenty of opportunity for people to weary of the easy availability of live mobile broadcasts, but great content will always be great content. Big winners will be those that can broadcast the spectacular, the witty and urbane, the thrilling real time news or sport, and even the games players (Twitch.tv claims figures of 45 million gamers for its action replays from games console hotshots).

There Must be a Katch
Meerkat scores high on social interaction and sharability. Video is streamed live to a Twitter feed where followers can interact with (and no doubt influence) what’s happening. Add the hashtag phrase #katch to video and the Katch service will automatically upload the live stream to Youtube and tweet you a link once it is processed. Seriously taking some of the legwork out of social, and to be fair that is what most people have been waiting for. Techcrunch gives the inside investment story on Meerkat and the Independent talks about the likelihood of always being live.

Katch

Here are ‘The Rules of Meerkat’

  • Everything that happens on meerkat happens on Twitter.
  • Streams will be pushed to followers in real time via push notifications.
  • People can only watch it live. No reruns.
  • Watchers can restream any stream to their followers in real time.
  • Scheduled streams will be distributed in the community by their subscribers.
  • Your own streams can be kept locally on your phone, but never on the cloud.
  • Everyone can watch on web.
  • Be kind.

OpenShot Video Editor
Linux users may suffer from a fragmented market and the perception that the operating system may be hard to manage or install (not true, although there are many flavours of Linux), but they have the drop on Windows and Mac users because of Openshot – a free and fully featured video editor. Openshot for Linux offers users the ability to edit multiple tracks of audio and video, add titles and transitions, rescale and trim or cut clips, mix audio and grade colour, plus it has support for multiple video file types. For that sort of functionality you have to fork out hundreds on PC, though arguably editing apps for mobile devices are a snappy alternative.

To be honest, it’s worth taking an older PC or laptop and installing a Linux OS and Openshot as a dedicated video editing system. What have you got to lose, but your chains?

Intel education hub

Intel’s Connected Learning Environment
Technology firm Intel has built a learning hub for the classroom called the Intel Education Content Access Point, designed to help educators store, manage and publish digital content, specifically in schools where connectivity is bad or intermittent. It can be preloaded with lessons and other teaching resources and connected to via wireless, cables or cellular communications. The box is powered by an Atom processor and has 500Gb of storage onboard.

Five hours of battery back-up means that even during a power cut the hub will work (other devices maybe less so). Intel has a number of kits for STEM education and by using additional components, teachers and students can build soil sensors, connect a school weather station to the Internet of Things, and build robots to measure the force of objects. By focusing on building the curriculum around digital components, Intel has also introduced resources for coding and cyber-welfare. Check out the Intel Education site for more information and the Idea Showcase for some of Intel’s ideas for lesson plans.

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