Video is a big part of what we do here, and we’re always looking for new fun ways to highlight SparkFun’s product line with the help of some movie magic. If you’ve ever watched a SparkFun video, you probably recognize a few of the faces in this photo. That’s me in the middle there with the ugly beard. To the right of me, donning much cooler facial hair, is Nic. We are SparkFun’s videographers, and every week we get together with the rest of the lovely people in this photo to come up with all the video content we’ll produce for the next two weeks. The folks kneeling in front of us are Shawn Hymel, Sarah Al-Mutlaq, and Nick Poole. These three make up SparkFun’s creative Technologists, and they are responsible for building the majority of the demos featured in SparkFun’s videos. Over the last 6 months we’ve really ramped up our video output, committing to 2-5 videos per week. Let’s look at some of the stuff we’ve been up to, and see how the rest of this amazing team fits into the video process!
From left to right (top row): Pam, Casey, Rob, Me, Nic, Pete, Jim, Dia. Bottom row: Shawn, Sarah, Nick.
The Friday New Product Post
Most of you will recognize the FNPP as SparkFun’s video bread and butter. This is where we give you, the viewer, a firsthand look at the exciting new stuff coming out on a given week. Usually hosted by Rob, the friendly beard to my left in the photo, the FNPP has undergone a lot of changes in the last few months. Moving to a new building meant building a new studio, as well as divvying up some of the on-screen responsibilities. The FNPP is only one part of Rob’s many responsibilities here as SparkFun’s main catalog guru, so expect to see more of the other technologists filling his shoes from time to time. Nick, Sarah and Shawn put their all into making sure we have fun demos and compelling video content each week, so while we all know and love Rob’s video hijinks, keep in mind that it takes a village to make a good video, and try not to disparage our hard-working technologists while you’re worshipping at the altar of beard.
These are videos that feature a specific SparkFun product. These videos typically get featured on the SparkFun homepage, as well as product pages for those given items. On weeks where we might be a little light on products for the FNPP, or if we feel some products deserve a little extra attention, these one-offs are the perfect solution. Expect to see more of them in the future.
According to Pete
Back by popular demand, it’s SparkFun’s Director of Engineering Pete Dokter! Pete took a brief hiatus from video duties over the last year, but he’s back and goofier than ever. Pete specializes in describing some of the more high-level fundamentals of electronics and circuit design. Look for Pete’s electronics lectures to grace the SparkFun homepage on a monthly basis.
In this video series, SparkFun’s TechStyle specialist Dia teams up with Nick Poole to show off SparkFun’s awesome wearable and e-textile offerings. If you’ve ever wanted to build anything like a flex-sensing bicep cuff or a conductive touch paint wall, then ElectriCute is for you!
Jim and Pam
Jim and Pam are our engineering video duo. These two specialize in featuring some of SparkFun’s flagship products, such as the SparkFun Inventor’s Kit for Microview, or the Digital Sandbox. These two are always coming up with awesome demos and clever pranks. Expect to see a lot more of them in the future.
Casey is our resident robotics wizard. If you’re looking for the right servo for your project, advice for building your own battlebot, or information on hooking a flamethrower up to the MiP, Casey is the one to ask. Casey will be tackling Robotics 101 duties, as well of a number of one-off videos in the near future.
Simple Sketches is our newest video series where we highlight some of the more basic sensors and components SparkFun offers. These videos are each a few seconds long, and provide a simple visual example of a component’s most essential functionality. We also provide the example code for each sketch so you can build along at home.
These are only a few of the exciting things we’re doing with video at the moment. We also have a lot of other fun stuff to check out, like our SparkFun Live video series. We’re also ramping up both our live and recap footage of this year’s AVC, and we are looking forward to announcing a new video series next month! Without giving away too much, we can guarantee it will appeal to all you fans of “things” out there. If you happen to find yourself in Chicago next month for the 2015 IRCE conference, I’ll be giving a talk on all things video production for internet retailers. Stop by and say hi, and as always stay tuned!
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