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August Email Newsletter

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August Email Newsletter

 

We sent out the August Email Newsletter today, so if you don’t subscribe (you can sign up in the footer of the website) you can read it by clicking here.

This month’s newsletter has the latest news from CCI, including the new shop, our newest team member, LDI, Spikemark updates and the 2012 video contest. Check it out!

 

Movin’ On Up

Wow. It was only 13 months ago that Gareth made the big move out of his garage and into the new shop here in Warren, but it was a good 13 months for the company and things have become, believe it or not, crowded in here. So when a larger space opened up two doors down from us, we decided the space was too nice to pass up. This weekend Gareth signed a new lease for Unit #7 here at 84 Cutler St., and during the next 2 months, in and around our trip to LDI, we’ll be moving into a brand new space!

The new shop is 6800 square feet (up from 3200 sf, which was up from 320 sf in the garage), and has tons of natural light, a covered loading dock and a great space for the office and break room. We’ll have more space for fabrication, storage and rental gear and a semi-clean room for electronics fabrication and prototyping. In addition, we’re getting a CNC mill and a larger lathe in the fall and we’ll have the room to properly set them up.

The space will need some fit-out, mostly to separate the shop from the office (hard to talk on the phone when people are grinding 20 feet away!) and we’ll need to distribute a bunch of 30 amp 230 volt power.

It’s a really great space and we’re pretty excited about the future. I’ll put up more pics during the move and after we’re set up.



 

Introducing the newest member of our team

If you’ve been following the updates here, you’ll know that it’s been a pretty exciting spring and summer, and to handle the additional workload, we added another member to our permanent staff. His name is Tom Battista and today is his first day! Tom will be working primarily in fabrication and we’re really excited to have some more help in the shop. Tom is a recent graduate of New England Tech where he studied electronics and lives in East Greenwich, RI. So please join us in welcoming Tom to the team!

 

Spikemark 2.8.1 – now with Watchout integration!

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Folks sometimes ask us, “How can we synchronize our media server with our automation system?” Starting with Spikemark 2.8.1, we can now answer, “Easily!”

When La Jolla Playhouse needed to match moving video with moving scenery, we added a nifty new feature into Spikemark that will send out motor position information over the network to a remote Dataton Watchout 5 server. The Watchout server can listen to the stream of information that contains any or all motor positions and use that data to move video and images around the stage.

Show control screenshot

This feature is fresh, so we’d love to get feedback from everyone about how to make it even more useful and open it up to more media server applications. So head over to our downloads page, check it out and let us know how you like this great new capability!

Now you’ll know what’s in the box

If you’re eagerly waiting for your next shipment from Creative Conners to arrive, now you’ll  be able to spot it in the UPS pile. As of today we’re rockin’ branded packing tape for our product shipping. Sweet, huh?

 

New Logo for Equipment

Starting with our redesigned Showstopper Hub, we have a new design for our logo for when it appears on our electrical devices and we changed the placement on the Stagehands. We’ve separated the logo from the equipment designation (Stagehand AC, Showstopper, etc.), and we now have a 2-color logo. The silkscreen work is done by the case manufacturer, Protocase, who have been doing an awesome job with our gear.

So if you get one and it looks a little different, don’t worry – new logo, same great products!

 

 

Announcing the 2012 Video Contest!

 

As you may have heard, Creative Conners is going to LDI this year and we’re looking for videos of our gear being used in shows. We’ll be taking all the videos and putting them together to run continuously on monitors in our booth, and all the happy LDI attendees can see our gear being used in the real world.

That’s where you come in. We need more video than we currently have on our User-Generated video page, or on our Creative Conners YouTube page, so we are enticing our customers with a contest: The best video we receive before October 1st will win a $500 credit towards Creative Conners gear! So look around – you might have a video that you never sent us, or maybe your archive has a video of an automated show that you can copy. And if you’re mounting an automated show this fall, make sure to video the scenery moving. It doesn’t have to fancy – a camera phone video is better than nothing.

If you get something, send it to me at ian@creativeconners.com. If it’s too big for email, shoot me an email and we’ll figure out how to get it uploaded.

And if anyone is planning to attend LDI, please let us know – we want to make sure we see you there!

 

New Spikemark Update

 

We just posted an update to Spikemark. The new version is 2.7.0 and you can download it from our website by going to the downloads page.

The biggest news of this update is the addition of a Cue Timer. Each cue box now contains a timer in the top part of the box that begins counting down as soon as the cue starts, so you can see how much time is left until the cue is complete. Also, each movement contains a timer, and the master timer uses the time from the movement that runs the longest.

Additionally, Gareth improved the auto-repair feature and made a few UI tweaks: now the ‘Load Cue’ button in the cue box is larger and a different color, to differentiate it from an ‘Expand’ button.

As always, we encourage you to keep your software up-to-date. Download your new version today!

 

 

Ian at NATEAC

 

Last weekend I attended the North American Theatre, Engineering and Architecture Conference (NATEAC) in NYC. It was an extremely well run event that brought together architects, theatre consultants and planners, clients and users, manufacturers (like us), and lots of other people interested in where things are going in the field of designing and renovating theatres.

As Creative Conners continues to grow, we’re looking for new markets to get our gear into. One area that we’re currently focusing on is new construction and renovation. Just as we’ve established ourselves as the go-to manufacturer for Universities and regional theatres, we’d like to get more traction with theater consultants and planners so that they will specify our gear when they design new performance spaces. The NATEAC conference was a great place to find out more about the industry, what they’re looking for from automation vendors and what the processes are in these multi-year projects.

The keynote was by the great Richard Pilbrow, and there were some great sessions, including one called ‘Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Automation’, which included Mark Agar from Stage Technologies and Scott Fisher from FTSI. There were also some interesting sessions about traps and lifts, catwalks, grids and building codes.

It was a treat, as always, to meet new people and see what’s going on outside of The Ocean State. It was also great to spend a couple of days in New York City,  see some friends and eat street vendor food! Thanks to Bill Sapsis for putting it all together.

 

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