News Stories

David is quoted in Variety article about the iPad

David Wertheimer, CEO of USC’s Entertainment Technology Center, calls the iPad “a powerful opportunity for print media publishers to provide a new generation of readers a new kind of product that they may be willing to pay for. And if those publishers can figure out how to take advantage of the unique, interactive, multimedia capabilities of the device, the publications could take on a whole new relevance to young consumers.”Another surprise: much of the demo was devoted to showing off the iPad as a device for creating content, not just consuming it. Apple gave demos of iPad versions of its word processing, spreadsheet and presentation software, and priced the apps aggressively at just $9.99.

But David Wertheimer, CEO of USC’s Entertainment Technology Center, notes: “What it does for entertainment media is not quite as clear (yet).” He calls it “definitely the most impressive personal media platform out there,” with “loads of potential to be the must-have personal media environment,” but it doesn’t yet run Flash videos, which are a Web staple, and its future really depends on what app developers do with it.

If they embrace iPad as they have the iPhone, which already has 140,000 iPhone apps — all of which will work on the iPad — “You may just find this category of product becomes as important as a television,” Wertheimer says.

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NetworkWorld pickup of PC World story quoting 3DTV study

Research into what consumers want has begun in earnest. Sony is partnering with CBS to study what audiences expect from home 3D. Last year the Consumer Electronics Association and the Entertainment Technology Center released a study in which 50 percent of surveyed consumers said they would pay more for a 3D TV; 40 percent of the respondents preferred 3D to 2D.

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Data & Analytics Project

The Storytelling Cipher: Mapping Precise Story and Character Mechanics to Box Office Returns

Our Data & Analytics Project held “The Storytelling Cipher: Mapping Stories & Characters to Box Office Revenue” Tuesday, December 6, 2016 at the USC School of Cinematic Arts.

This study leverages the Dramatic taxonomy of film narrative to infer which scene-level character and story attributes generate more box office returns, by genre. We are extending this study to ads and movie trailers.

The project researchers used machine learning to map 70+ story attributes for 300 films to their box office returns to extract which story mechanics or character features in film generated the most revenue. This was the first time granular story and character mechanics have been used to predict box office returns, which opens up many avenues to make more data-driven creative and development decisions throughout the industry.

What’s a good story? The question has been hanging without a scientific answer since the dawn of man. It seems that a story’s lack of clear mathematical structure and universal taxonomy would relegate such classification of stories to the qualitative – and highly subjective- empire of critics and … people.

Until now.

The event presented results from the research, discussed applications for the development and creative process, and outlined next steps.

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