Life of Me: The Conversion

by - April 19, 2011

Combine what was last week with what this week is bound to be work-wise and I'm sure that's what I'm going to look like by the weekend.

Let me fill you in on life as of late. The following equation will sum it all up nicely.

Work = Life

The station I work for is right smack dab in the middle of the first phase of a total systems conversion. That phase consists of a transition from one script-writing system to another.
Training began last week. It hasn't been terrible, but as I've noted in previous posts I'm not very technologically-savvy.

So these training sessions have pretty much transported me back to my college days of sitting in Dr. P's Technologies in Journalism class, except the directions aren't in step-by-step form and there's no music from the 1960s playing in the background.

And here's the big difference - I don't understand why anything is the way it is. Back then I at least knew the ins and outs of the programs we were working with. Now I'm in a world that's only semi-known to me. My print origins are definitely showing, I'm afraid.

I've been the nerd in the sessions taking notes, writing down every little step so I'll have a manual of sorts to guide myself through my newscasts.

I have one more training session to attend on Wednesday, and then we go live with this new program on Thursday.

And then I'm off to the beach on Friday to destress. If only I can make it til then.

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  1. I know what you're going through, Ashton. When I started as an anchor in 1971 the newscast consisted of a talking head reading from a stack of papers. The only other video source was a 16mm film reel. The only graphics we had were captions typed on carbon paper which the director superimposed over the film. No videotape. No live shots. No green mat for keying the weather map. By the time I finished as a news producer and moved over to the entertainment division to have fun shooting rock videos and commercials the news was fully teleprompted with video cartridge carousel, electronic graphics, chroma-key, multiple live shots - most of the early basics of what you have today. It took lots of learning and adjusting. Many old timers resisted change. It seemed overwhelming at first and there were bugs to be worked out, but eventually it all came together and became routine...the new normal. It will happen that way for you, too. Take care and know that I am wishing you well, dear friend!

  2. I agree that it will soon seem as though we've been doing it this new way for years... it's just the 2 weeks leading up to the transition that are tough. You're learning a new system while still operating on the old. And for non-tech-savvy people like me, keeping the 2 separate can be a bit of a challenge.