Adequate time and efficient planning is required for multimedia production, which assures that the project will be proceed smoothly and certainly ensures that the information reaches the target audience. Following are the phases for development of complex multimedia projects.
1. Conceptual Analysis and Planning
The process of multimedia making begins with a conceptual ignition point. Conceptual analysis identifies a appropriate theme, budget and content availability on that selected theme. Additional criteria like copyright issues also are considered in this phase.
2. Project design
Once the theme is finalized objectives, goals, and activities are drawn for the multimedia project. General statements are termed as goals. The specific statements in the project is known as the objectives. Activities are series of actions performed to implement an objective. These activities contribute to the Project design phase.
Based on the planning and design, it is necessary to develop the project. The following are the steps involved in pre-production:
Budgeting for each phases like consultants, hardware, software,travel, communication and publishing is estimated for all the multimedia projects.
5. Multimedia Production Team
The production team for a high-end multimedia project requires a team efforts. The team comprises of members playing various roles and responsibilities like Script writer, Production manager, Editor, Graphics Architect, Multimedia Architect and Web Master.
6. Hardware/Software Selection
All multimedia Application requires appropriate tools to develop and playback the application. Hardware includes the selection of fastest CPU, RAM and huge monitors, sufficient disc for storing the records. Selection of the suitable software and file formats depends on the funds available for the project being developed.
7. Defining the Content
Content is the “stuff ” provided by content specialist to the multimedia architect with which the application is developed, who prepares the narration, bullets, charts and tables etc.
8. Preparing the structure
A detailed structure must have information about all the steps along with the timeline of the future action. This structure defines the activities, responsible person for each activity and the start/end time for each activity.
In the multimedia application, after the pre-production activities, the production phase starts. This phase includes the activities like background music selection, sound recording and so on. Text is incorporated using OCR software, Pictures shot by digital camera, Video clips are shot, edited and compressed. A pilot project is ready by this time.
The complete testing of the pilot product is done before the mass production to ensure that everything is in place, thereby avoiding the failure after launch.
If it’s an web based product, its functioning is tested with different browsers like Internet Explorer, Chrome, Mozilla and Netscape Navigator. If it is a local multimedia application on a LAN it must be deployed in the server for testing purpose. After the testing process are over, the product is incorporated with valid suggested changes.
User documentation is a mandatory feature of all multimedia projects. The documentation has all the valuable information’s starting from the system requirement till the completion of testing. Contact details, e-mail address and phone numbers are provided for technical support and sending suggestions and comments.
12. Delivering the Multimedia Product
Multimedia applications are best delivered on CD/DVD or in the website . In reality various challenges are faced while delivering through internet, like bandwidth problems, huge number of plug-ins required to play audio and video and long downloading time. Finally, a multimedia application is delivered in a more effective way by the integration of two mediums CD-ROM/DVD and Internet.
Managing team members in a way to get maximum outcome with high degree of efficiency is mandatory in multimedia production. The fine quality high-end multimedia production application requires a specialize team comprises of the following members:
1. Production Manager
In a multimedia production, the role of production manager is to define, and coordinate, the production of the multimedia project in time and with full quality. The production manager should be an expertise in the technology expert, good at proposal writing, good communication skills and budget management skills. Also must have experience in human resource management and act as an efficient team leader.
2. Content Specialist
Content specialist is responsible for performing all research activities concerned with the proposed application’s content. Program content refers to projects information, graphics, data or facts presented through the multimedia production.
3. Script Writer
Video and film scripts represents a linear sequence of events. The script writer visualizes the concepts in three dimensional environments and if needed uses the virtual reality integration into the program.
4. Text Editor
The content of a multimedia production always must flow logically and the text should always be structured and correct grammatically. Text and narration is an integrated part of the application.
5. Multimedia Architect
The multimedia architect integrates all the multimedia building blocks like graphics, text, audio, music, video, photos and animation by using an authoring software.
6. Computer Graphic Artist
The role of Computer Graphic Artist is to deal with the graphic elements of the programs like backgrounds, bullets, buttons, pictures editing, 3-D objects, animation, and logos etc.
7. Audio and Video Specialist
The roles of these specialists are needed for dealing with narration and digitized videos to be added in a multimedia presentation. They are responsible for recording, editing sound effects and digitizing.
8. Computer Programmer
The computer programmer writes the lines of code or scripts in the appropriate language. These scripts usually develops special functions like developing the software to give the size and shape of video windows, controlling peripherals and so on.
9. Web Master
The responsibility of the web master is to create and maintain an Internet web page. They converts a multimedia presentation into a web page. Final multimedia product is ready for consultation is a joint effort of the entire team. Initially, the production manager identifies the project content, while the web master provides access to a wide range of community through web-services.