Videos now put business in picture

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 01 June, 1993, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 01 June, 1993, 12:00am

AS Video cameras become more sophisticated, they are starting to play an increasing part in office automation.

This is especially true for cameras that have still photographic functions and can be linked up to personal computers.

Jardine Office Systems (JOS) has a new range of Canon videos that can provide these functions, including the Still Video Camera , which can shoot and instantly display still pictures of professional quality.

''Using the camera, one can shoot still pictures in colour, store these on a two-inch erasable and interchangeable video floppy disk, and display them on either a television or video projector,'' explained Mr Ken Siu, manager business imaging systems department of JOS.

The camera also acts as a desktop publishing (DTP) unit and pictures can be fed directly on to either an IBM-compatible personal computer (PC) or Macintosh, for image editing and processing.

The processed images can then be stored on a video floppy disk and shown on television.

''For instance, you can take a picture of a product sample, enlarge its major features, add explanation text and even modify the colour mix,'' Mr Siu said.

''Usually, this editing process can take days with a more conventional photo developing, scanning, and computer imaging process,'' said Ms Grace Ng, business planning executive of JOS.

''Now, you can complete the whole process and be ready for presentation in a matter of minutes, as the images can be fed directly from the camera to the computer for processing,'' she said.

The Still Video Camera's partner is the Video Visualiser, which acts as an overhead projector using still video technology.

''While an overhead projector only accepts transparent sheets produced in advance, Canon's Video Visualiser accepts all kinds of material, including three-dimensional (3-D) objects, photos and transparencies.

''It can then display these on television or on video projectors,'' Ms Ng said.

''The high resolution images can also be fed into a PC or Macintosh for desk-top publishing,'' she said.

''The advantage is that one can easily add text, graphics and colour on slides and transparencies for an impressive presentation, using its overhead projectors.

''As both the still video equipment is highly portable, one can easily take it to and use at sales pitches, board meetings, exhibitions, product demonstrations, technical training, educational displays and so on,'' Ms Ng said.

Since the digital images captured by the still video camera can be processed with DTP and CAD/CAM (computer-aided design and manufacturing) software, it easily lends itself to such applications as the production of newsletters, catalogues and the like.

It can also act as an imaging database, to store personnel and inventory records with detailed visual images.

''The Video Visualiser can be used as a 3-D object colour scanner, with fast scanning capabilities,'' Ms Ng said.

''It can transmit these 3-D images to remote sites through a video conferencing network.'' The high resolution images captured by either the still video camera or a video visualiser can printed on a colour laser copier (CLC).

Mr Siu said that JOS was one of the region's largest supplies of information technology products and services, and the company could offer its clients total solutions.