It then turns out that iMovie 08 understands how to pull off movies from a DVD-based camcorder, which happens to be the same as inserting an unprotected DVD in the slot-in drive, which is great! Unfortunately iMovie'08 apparently very frequently crashes when reading such DVD's and it also happened for me when trying.
The stack trace looks like:
0 com.apple.MPEG2PSRADPlugin 0x1ab531a5 0x1ab51000 + 8613
1 com.apple.Foundation 0x969f1a07 -[NSObject(NSKeyValueCoding) valueForKey:] + 135
2 com.apple.proapps.MIO 0x1a14e8ed -[MIORADClipDataSourceContainer clipID] + 61
3 com.apple.proapps.MIO 0x1a140d04 -[MIORADClip valueInMetadataFileForProperty:] + 158
4 com.apple.proapps.MIO 0x1a13d9d4 -[MIORADClip inTC] + 56
5 com.apple.proapps.MIO 0x1a13e1c5 -[MIORADClip durationTC] + 41
6 com.apple.iMovie7 0x00027812 0x1000 + 157714
7 com.apple.iMovie7 0x00027736 0x1000 + 157494
8 com.apple.iMovie7 0x00025ebc 0x1000 + 151228
9 com.apple.iMovie7 0x0001ecf8 0x1000 + 122104
10 com.apple.Foundation 0x969cdf1c _nsnote_callback + 364
11 com.apple.CoreFoundation 0x956448da __CFXNotificationPost + 362
12 com.apple.CoreFoundation 0x95644bb3 _CFXNotificationPostNotification + 179
13 com.apple.Foundation 0x969cb080 -[NSNotificationCenter postNotificationName:object:userInfo:] + 128
14 com.apple.Foundation 0x969d48c8 -[NSNotificationCenter postNotificationName:object:] + 56
15 com.apple.iMovie7 0x0000fffb 0x1000 + 61435
16 com.apple.Foundation 0x96a4de94 _NSSetObjectValueAndNotify + 164
17 com.apple.iMovie7 0x000122cb 0x1000 + 70347
18 com.apple.Foundation 0x96a4eb0e NSKVONotify + 62
19 com.apple.Foundation 0x969cafd2 -[NSObject(NSKeyValueObserverNotification) didChangeValueForKey:] + 546
20 com.apple.CoreFoundation 0x956ccdd9 -[CFXPreferencesPropertyListSource setValue:forKey:] + 73
21 com.apple.CoreFoundation 0x956ceb06 _CFXPreferencesSetValue + 102
22 com.apple.Foundation 0x96a27a91 -[NSUserDefaults(NSUserDefaults) setObject:forKey:] + 113
23 com.apple.iMovie7 0x0000f502 0x1000 + 58626
24 com.apple.iMovie7 0x001540a9 0x1000 + 1388713
25 com.apple.AppKit 0x94d5753b -[NSApplication sendAction:to:from:] + 112
26 com.apple.AppKit 0x94d57478 -[NSControl sendAction:to:] + 108
27 com.apple.AppKit 0x94d572fe -[NSCell _sendActionFrom:] + 169
28 com.apple.AppKit 0x94d56957 -[NSCell trackMouse:inRect:ofView:untilMouseUp:] + 1827
29 com.apple.AppKit 0x94d561aa -[NSButtonCell trackMouse:inRect:ofView:untilMouseUp:] + 541
30 com.apple.AppKit 0x94d55a64 -[NSControl mouseDown:] + 888
31 com.apple.AppKit 0x94d541a3 -[NSWindow sendEvent:] + 5381
32 com.apple.AppKit 0x94d20d49 -[NSApplication sendEvent:] + 2941
33 com.apple.iMovie7 0x00031cda 0x1000 + 199898
34 com.apple.AppKit 0x94c7e69f -[NSApplication run] + 847
35 com.apple.AppKit 0x94c4b8a4 NSApplicationMain + 574
36 com.apple.iMovie7 0x00005474 0x1000 + 17524
37 com.apple.iMovie7 0x00002e92 0x1000 + 7826
38 com.apple.iMovie7 0x00002db9 0x1000 + 7609
The method names in the stack trace indicates that there was a problematic key-value pair in the data stored about the movie snippets which from visual inspection appears to happen when creating miniatures in the scan process.
I then did some trial-and-error and found that
- Removing menus did not influence the crashing.
- By splitting up a recording in pieces - thinking that the length of the movie was the troublesome meta data- iMovie didn't crash while scanning and allowed me to pull in the pieces.
- The "create miniatures" post processing then hanged. The progress bar kept moving from about 65% to 70%, and then jumping back to 65%. Right-clicking on iMovie and telling it to "Stop" made the process finish without stopping iMovie.
For now I am leaving this - I got the songs on the iPod I wanted :) - but I think that the next step would be to isolate a small clip with this problem, and then look into the MPEG stream to see if there is anything out of the ordinary.