Panasonic has a wealth of know-how in editing master discs, and has been helping to produce discs of major films since early in the DVD era. These efforts have received considerable praise from Hollywood film studios.
So what kind of new technologies are at work now, in BD-ROM editing? What new surprises are in store for movie and image enthusiasts?
We asked one of Panasonic's disc editing professionals, Masahiro Oashi, to answer these and some other questions.
Software & Solutions Development Center
Semiconductor Company Corporate System LSI Division
All editing work other than the editing of the original movie itself is called authoring. To be specific, this includes planning the overall disc organization, designing, producing, and unifying the necessary screens, and any other steps necessary to complete the master that is used to produce discs for the market.
We established DVD authoring centers at the Panasonic Hollywood Laboratory (PHL) in the U.S. and in Roppongi, Tokyo, and launched our DVD authoring services in 1996. We then upgraded these facilities with the most advanced BD-ROM equipment, and began offering BD-ROM authoring services in the summer of 2006.
Blu-ray Java™ applies the Java programming language, a global standard, to the Blu-ray Disc standards. Using this technology to produce Blu-ray Disc media makes it possible to create extremely versatile menu screens and added-value content, such as special feature cuts. These kinds of things weren't possible with DVD. Panasonic, which has considerable experience in Java applications, developed the basic technologies for Blu-ray Java™.
Yes, for example, there are menu screens with vivid colors and eye-catching motion, and pop-up menus. You can search for certain scenes or dialogs, select from two different story versions, and play shooting games. You can also assemble a mini-clip with only your favorite scenes, and watch them all together. For example, you can put together only the scenes in which a favorite actor appears. You can also take part in shooting games set against a fighting scene from a movie. There are so many ways to enjoy BD media, far exceeding the possibilities of the DVD age.
I'm afraid it would be difficult to show you actual screens here, but I hope you'll go and see them in a store near you. In addition to seeing the beauty of the Blu-ray Disc images themselves, please check out the menu screens.
Not really. Blu-ray Java™ is a new technology, but it skillfully blends existing editing processes together. Blu-ray Disc authoring will feel familiar to anyone who has DVD authoring experience.
Blu-ray Disc Production Steps
Exactly. They can use Blu-ray Java™'s unique, high-level graphic functions to create content that simply wasn't possible before. In that respect, I think there are many elements in Blu-ray Java™ that'll bring out the creativity of the people using it. The Blu-ray Disc standards are full of technologies that enhance the enjoyment of HD images at home, but they were also developed with media producers in mind -- as seen, for example, in functions that produce sophisticated results with relatively simple operations, and a host of copyright protections.
Blu-ray Java™ has an increased data capacity for titles and soundtracks. Types of content that could barely hold two language tracks before can now have three or four, all on a single disc.
Panasonic is an industry leader when it comes to know-how in the area of authoring technologies for digital content. We'll be taking full advantage of this expertise as we continue to produce HD media.
Video players that have Blu-ray Disc compatibility are gradually increasing today, and as this wave continues to grow, more and more companies will be releasing movie titles on BD-ROM discs. I hope everyone can soon enjoy a wide variety of BD-ROM entertainment.