Long version

Aalto Studios has many Facilities: places where people can get resources, instruction and advice. For people experienced with these types of facilities, like our Mini Studio, it can be easy to figure out how to use it for their project.

But for most of Aalto, who are not media professionals, we need to lower the threshold and make entry a bit easier. So in addition to just saying “Here’s the Mini Studio” we can highlight what can be done in there. Such as “A lightboard video”, or “A photo shoot”. In our internal terminology, we call these things ‘Products’.

This works great for professionals, too. Being clear regarding what we can deliver is good.

Products are promises we’re prepared to make, things that we have experience of doing and that happen frequently enough to be given a name.

Not everything needs to wrapped into this idea of products. It may well be that some facilities rarely do the same thing twice.

Short version

So in short, a product is:

  • Something that the general Aalto population could understand
  • Something that we know how to support and even write guides for
  • Something that happens often enough that it actually can be named
  • or Something new that we’d like to offer people and see if it works

Example

The A Pod is a new facility for sound and video production. To make things easy for both us and the users, we’ve outlined a couple Products to help people understand what the Pod is.

  • Give the Product a descriptive name. “Two person audio interview”
  • Describe in a couple of sentences what it means. “Our easy-to-use Rodecaster Pro interface lets you record sound to a memory card without needing to fiddle with a computer. The high quality microphones and sound proofing of the pod help achieve studio quality in the recording.”
  • Build and test to make sure it can be done.
  • While building, you can write User Guides for this process, or for some technical aspects of the facility. “Recording sound using the Rodecaster Pro”, “Controlling air conditioning noise in the A Pod”.

This will end up in something we know works, that we can stand behind and promise to people and in this case, can result in self service use with documentation. At some point in the future, we can look at “Two person audio interview” and the other products, and see how to improve them.

This is needed for communication

I’ll add new product boxes based on this information from you, preferably through your team lead. Send it in any form, or if you like a more hands-on approach, see instructions later in this document.

  • A name that’s tight and could be understood by a non-professional, even if the product in question is strictly high end.
  • A description of how this can be achieved in the facility in question. Listing relevant technology, or requirements such as materials, permits, costs and staff requirements.
  • A photo showing relevant activities, spaces or outcomes. (We crop photos to a cinematic 21:9 wide screen ratio, compose your shots accordingly. The bigger the better, 3840 x 1646 is the site default but I welcome even larger originals)
  • Name one facility where this product gets listed in.
  • Choose which of these apply:
    • Self Service (possibly required permit, but requires no staff)
    • Supported (needs staff helping in setting up and during use)
    • Produced (is planned and managed by staff)
    • Training (the product is a course or instructional event)
    • Consultation (the product is expert advice and guidance)
    • Costs something (the product is not free of charge)
    • Is available for partners (for outside Aalto clients)
  • Contact for inquiries
  • Method for booking

Existing products of different kinds

The definition is very flexible. Processes, events and consultation all can be products.

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For the adventurer

You already have a user account on our website, based on your Aalto email. However, you need to request a password from https://studios.aalto.fi/wp-admin , the sign-in address for our site. I can assign rights for editing existing products, guides and pages, and you can create new one’s by yourself. I can run an online clinic for those of you interested.

For the legendary adventurer

We can co-develop functionality to automate, present, sync and otherwise mangle data from/to other sources. This is pretty heavily customized already.