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This is about video, but the results will surely filter down to our department(s):
 
Engineers are teaching upscalers to recognize different kinds of scenes, and fill in missing pixels by using neural networks. Samsung is trying to build this AI into consumer sets. TV Tech article.
 
Ultimately of course this depends on the quality of the AI training. But low-cost engines are getting faster, and there's a lot of training capacity available. So it's sure to grow.
 
Here's the thing: if this becomes the standard in a few years, and content providers start using more compression to save money, because they know the viewers have AI upscaling...
it'll be almost impossible for a director to come up with a new look for a show!
Once a show goes into distribution, if consumer sets haven't been trained for that look, the sets will force the new footage to match something they already know!
 
Think of it as 'mandatory auto-tune' wrecking all the great jazz singers of the past...
 

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And furthermore...

 

I sent the TV Tech article to a local SMPTE friend of mine. His reply

Quote

...a solution to a problem that does not exist yet...

 

which got me thinking about what's really happening:

 

There are two "problems", both economic: 
1) Samsung (and others) want to be able to brag about 8k, so they can sell another generation of sets. We've reached the practical limit of how big a screen folks can put in their living rooms, and today's sets don't wear out. So manufacturers need some new feature to drive next year's sales. 
Ditto Netflix, Amazon, AppleTV, Disney, and all the other new streamers: they need some competitive hook to say they're better than the others. How about 8k?
 
2) Bandwidth isn't free. And it'll get even more valuable, now that the FCC has decided that Net Neutrality is a commie plot. So those streamers will be looking for some way to squeeze their vaunted 8k down a 4kbps pipe. 
 
If a cheap single-chip NN in the viewers' sets can turn SD into 8k, it'll be a win-win! At least, for everybody other than filmmakers and viewers.

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Didn’t those turds learn their lesson with all the default motion blur nonsense?

 

Here’s an idea, maybe they scale back their sales quotas and work to invent something new that is worthy of our hard earned money.  Maybe they got spoiled with the introduction of flat screen TVs, forcing every TV watching schlub  in the world to buy new sets and subsequent better/thinner/higher res every year after. Technologies can plateau and maybe we’re there with flat screen TVs? What’s wrong with making shit that lasts and not chasing unnecessary upgrade sales. An actual idea... How about better smaller projectors so we don’t have to have a big dumb ugly black plastic rectangle taking up space and collecting dust.

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On 10/9/2019 at 4:05 PM, Jay Rose said:
 
Here's the thing: ..
it'll be almost impossible for a director to come up with a new look for a show!
 

 

Does this mean, “no longer the choice between blue/grey and brown/orange” (yippee!) or,

”only a choice between blue/grey and brown/orange” (hmm, no change then ...)

 

J x

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