It’s now about two months since I was told about Animoto, when I attended the New York Web 2.0 Meetup Group event. I had a quick look, then put it aside while I dealt with a few more pressing matters.

Animoto is a web application that automatically generates videos using the New York based Animoto Productions company’s Cinematic Artificial Intelligence technology that “analyzes and combines user-selected images and music with the same sophisticated post-production skills & techniques that are used in television and film”. Even if you take that, as I do, with a grain of salt, the actual experience is great fun and may well offer a way for small business owners to produce promotional video content without that having to cost an arm and a leg.

The application takes still photos you have on your hard drive, adds music you provide or stock of theirs from which you can choose, and then puts together a video for you. For a very short one, there is no charge.

Leah Maclean’s post last week Even YOU can have video for your business gave me the first example of someone I knew testing the product. I have great respect for Leah’s combination of geek and practical business person, so I was impressed by her opinion that “this leaves YouTube for dead when it comes to small business possibilities”. And you can see the result of Leah’s own experimentation with Animoto at that blog post.

Incentive enough for me to try it out myself.

The result will not be nominated for Cannes, but it was easy – just find photos on the hard drive and upload them, as they are. No tweaking or adjusting required, or trying to comprehend esoteric technical instructions. Definitely point and click.

Here’s the result. Comments welcome. And if you think it’s really bad, I’ll just do another one.

Why not try it yourself? It could help make your website or blog really stand out from the crowd.

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