The Farm, the luxury previsualization studio in Las Vegas, is now offering JustNetworking’s the.BRIDGE to power remote production workflows worldwide during the coronavirus pandemic and beyond.
A partner company of production design firm The Activity, The Farm has redefined previs as a creative and productive experience in a luxury environment that caters to customers’ every need. Now, its roster of services has expanded to include the.BRIDGE, a new technology from JustNetworking that enables remote console operation. This allows productions to limit the number of on-site personnel during COVID-19 occupancy restrictions and to access talent and facilities around the world.
The.BRIDGE is a secured peer-to-peer networking device with unique software that’s built for simplicity and flexibility and designed for users of all networking skill levels. Within minutes of bringing the node online, any number of connections worldwide can be bridged to each other: It’s as simple as joining a network and plugging in your connections.
The Farm has been beta testing the.BRIDGE and found it to be fully functional and ready to offer as a new service to customers. The.BRIDGE is expected to be officially released in Q1 2021.
“Patrick Dierson is an early supporter and valued partner of the.BRIDGE,” says Matt Geasey, who is partnered with Nick Fletcher and Josh Gregoire in the JustNetworking. “The Farm’s real-world testing data has been invaluable to us, and we are now expanding our pool of beta testing partners.”
He points out that, “remote production isn’t new: Broadcasting has been doing it for a long time. We’re combining technologies in a novel way to create a platform that puts devices online in a plug-and-play mode that lets products maintain their integrity and doesn’t require extreme expertise to give access to everyone.”
“We’ve discussed the idea of the.BRIDGE for a couple of years, but coronavirus turning the world upside down accelerated things for us,” says Nick Fletcher. “We knew the technology was possible, and we poured in the time and resources to bring it to fruition.”
“Our goal is to be the power company with everyone building what they need on top of what we provide,” adds Geasey. “We want to be the utility for anyone in the entertainment industry to interact with – from a single programmer/ operator to a giant rental company. Our platform and business model is designed to be flexible enough to accommodate everyone.”
“the.BRIDGE is a very practical solution, a very attractive option as more and more productions work remotely with lighting and media server operators and consoles in different locations,” says Patrick Dierson, President of The Activity. “Prior to the.BRIDGE it would have been cost prohibitive to hire a designated IT technician and rent a server room to achieve those same ends. the.BRIDGE takes all the complexity and cost out of the equation with a simple and efficient plug-and-play device that can control many universes of DMX and full video with almost zero latency.”
With previs for big concert tours and other live staging events at a standstill due to the coronavirus, expanding its services with the.BRIDGE has reenergized The Farm in new market sectors.
“The corporate event market is working online and virtually to produce meetings and conferences with their console operators based in remote locations,” Dierson explains. “With the.BRIDGE they can work in our completely safe, COVID-compliant environment, control their lighting and media server platforms and minimize their exposure to the rest of the production on set. It feels just as if they were in the room fully controlling everything on site. That’s quite a big deal.”
For example, Dell Technologies produced a virtual annual meeting on the East Coast while console operators provided real-time lighting control from The Farm with the.BRIDGE. T-Mobile also produced a meeting from its Seattle-area location with real-time lighting control from The Farm via the.BRIDGE.
“The feedback we got from operators was incredibly positive,” Dierson reports. “They found the.BRIDGE to be a very responsive technology, and they felt really safe going back to work in a more controlled environment here. For both the Dell and T-Mobile projects, the operators flew into Las Vegas but once they were here they stayed at a business hotel within walking distance of The Farm and took advantage of our curated meal plans and hosting.
Dierson expects any transition back to production work post-pandemic will be lengthy and will result in many new practices being adopted as part of the new normal. “The concept of remote lighting and video operators will not go away,” he says. “They will be able to make edits on touring shows at the artist’s request by coming to The Farm to use the.BRIDGE. Console operators for professional sports teams also find it a big challenge to book time in an arena; they can utilize The Farm to connect remotely with arenas and program updates and edits. The same principle applies to theme parks. the.BRIDGE technology is truly useful well beyond keeping people safe.”
“We see usage of the.BRIDGE continuing well after in-person events are back,” Geasey agrees. “The platform will remain a convenience measure and a significant cost savings for the industry.”