Kill Hollywood?

As a mixture of film & tech – the Setkick team is particularly interested in Y-Combinator’s request for new startups to Kill Hollywood.

Now this doesn’t mean destroy all films, or burn all clapperboards – YC is asserting that the traditional Hollywood models of studio-dominance, distribution, and political power is dying out. It’s time for new blood to step up and put it out of it’s misery – not *just* because it’s time for it to go, but also so that on Hollywood’s way out it doesn’t continuously resort to acts like SOPA in order to maintain it’s old business model.

Setkick - Kill Hollywood?

Y-Combinator’s “Kill Hollywood” stance is not just an everyday blog post. It’s much more powerful than that.

YC holds a lot of sway in the tech and startup community, and when they release a ‘Request for Startups’ it means they are actively looking to fund startups that focus on this niche.  When this request happens, techies/entrepreneurs everywhere put down their phones and take notice.

It’s safe to say there are now hundreds of people around the world thinking – and acting on – new ways to “kill Hollywood”… and get funded by YC.

We have always felt there is a new wave passing over Hollywood, and it is refreshing to hear others talk about how they too see the old ways of the industry are less and less sustainable, and how it needs to be shaken up.

Setkick is focusing on project management for productions, and in this niche alone there are many processes that need to be looked at again with some modern objectivity.  We are not trying to replace 100 years worth of scheduling and production processes; we are simply trying to bring them up to speed, and take advantage of the technologies we have today.  Setkick increases the efficiency of these processes and creates the ability to collaborate on them by leveraging the cloud, and deploying this information to mobile devices.

The digital and mobile paradigm is opening the doors to a new breed of filmmaking.  ”Crowd-sourcing”, “crowd-funding”, “cloud-based” and “mobile computing” are no longer just buzzwords for the tech industry.

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Setkick & Startmate

Startmate and SetkickSetkick is very happy to announce that we have been accepted into Startmate – an amazing Sydney based incubator. Startmate is co-op of sorts, providing mentorship from 25 of the smartest guys in Australia & the world. They accept a small bunch of startups each year (8 this round), providing free office space for 3 months, weekly meetings with the mentors, and some seed funding to help us do what we do best – Setkick.

So tomorrow the Setkick team are jumping on a plane to Sydney, and embarking on 3 epic months of customer & product development. We plan on getting a lot of great features out the door very soon, and also putting a focus on customer feedback and requests.

We will be learning all we can from those that have walked this path before, and focusing 100% on making SK the best possible tool it can be.

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What has been going on with Setkick?

Setkick - Customizable Calendars and ReportsGreat question! We are just finishing off the final 2 of our initial features:

  1. Customizable Calendars
  2. Reports

Being able to customize your working week is a must for any film – 5 day, 6 day weeks, holidays, travel times – all this needs to be taken into account when calculating a schedule for shooting, or generating daily reports.

On reports, that is the other half of what we are finishing up. Fully customisable reports, viewable on the web or downloadable in PDF format. For distribution to crew, or simply just to print and put on your fridge – reporting on your project is the final output of managing a visual production through Setkick, and the circle is complete!

(on the right is a preview of the dialog for managing project calendars, and also a snippet of a ‘Day out of Days’ report – showing what Cast members are working on what days)

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Pick up a camera. Shoot something. No matter how small, no matter how cheesy, no matter whether your friends and your sister star in it. Put your name on it as director. Now you’re a director.
~ James Cameron

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Learning has never been so much fun! We are currently undertaking alpha testing with Setkick. At the risk of sounding like a doting parent: it is akin to watching you baby walk for the first time.
Setkick alpha testingAlong with remote alpha testing, we are also doing a lot of ‘hands on’ testing – where we are physically in a room with the user, recording both a screencast, and a video of their behaviour/expressions etc.

Watching people use Setkick is so telling, and watching people’s responses who use sub-optimal alternatives on a daily basis (e.g excel spreadsheets & email) is heartwarming.

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Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
~ Arthur C. Clarke

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One very cool side effect of using Setkick on an iPad, is that there is no longer any need to print things out such as the production schedules, production reports, or daily callsheets.

in 1993, Sony pictures alone consumed over 103 million sheets of paper, 700 million sheets of paper per year, in the US alone*… now that’s a lot of paper.

* Source:  ’Sustainability in the Motion Picture Industry’ report by UCLA institute of environment.

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Lean & mean

As we are buried deep in programming land at the moment, all our blog posts are very geek-centric (but to be honest… most of Setkick is a bunch of geeks anyways).

We are edging super close to our alpha testing, and will probably be unveiling Setkick in all it’s early-alpha-glory to a bunch of lovely Vancouverites in the coming week.

Personally, im super excited about any type of *real* feedback. (This is may change if they all hate it of coarse) – but I know how important it is to build what your customers want – not what you think they want. So lets wait and see… 

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Setkick - New name and new logo

You might have known us as Eastwood but for legal reasons we thought it might be safer to come up with a name that doesn’t involve one of Hollywood biggest legends.

We’re psyched about our new name and the timing for the transition couldn’t be better as we’re reaching the launch of our first round of private beta.

A little bit more patience until we can officially drop the curtain and show you what we’ve have been working on.

Long live Setkick!

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