Tag Archives: video

Mailing list of fire

With apologies to Johnny Cash, the sorry tale of a mailing list that takes no prisoners. On a totally unrelated note, how’s HTML5 coming on?

Mailing list of fire on YouTube (with captions): www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCwgKtiu1II

Downloads

For your downloading pleasure, here are the video and audio–only files.

License is Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported. If you need a media player, I recommend VLC.

Lyrics

The web is a wondrous thing.
Flickr, Facebook and Bing.
One thing you must resist.
The pull of the mailing list.

I fell in to a mailing list of fire.
I scrolled down, down, down
and the flames went higher.
And it burns, burns, burns
this list of fire,
mailing list of fire.

And it burns, burns, burns
this list of fire,
mailing list of fire.

A geek, he never forgets.
When someone’s wrong on the internetz.
I tried not to act like a child.
Oh… but the trolls went wild.

I fell in to a mailing list of fire.
I scrolled down, down, down
and the flames went higher.
And it burns, burns, burns
this list of fire,
mailing list of fire.

And it burns, burns, burns
this list of fire,
mailing list of fire.


CSS3 Song

OK, so it’s not just for web animation, and you might need more than one line of code, but CSS3 is still cool and worthy of its very own song.

Video URL (with captions): www.youtube.com/watch?v=5b7dNNapMCM

Downloads

For your downloading pleasure, here are the video and audio–only files.

License is Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported. If you need a media player, I recommend VLC.

Lyrics

CSS3
Web animation done properly
CSS3
Degrading gracefully

I had a dream, an awesome dream
People surfing in the park
On Windows, Linux and Mac
And their page load speeds were oh-so-high
No big JavaScript library
Just to show some eye-candy

CSS3
Web animation done properly
CSS3
Degrading gracefully

As we surf down the superhighway
Did you ever even think
We could replace <marquee> and <blink>?
With just one, just one line of code
But it’s open to abuse
We must be careful not to overuse it

CSS3
Web animation done properly
CSS3
Degrading gracefully

CSS3
Web animation done properly
CSS3
Degrading gracefully
Degrading gracefully
With HTML5, naturally

Goodbye Google Wave

So it’s so long Google Wave. I was lucky enough to see a presentation by the user interface designer and understand some of their design decisions. Not only did they put a lot of effort into the user experience, the technology behind the real-time, synchronous editing was particularly innovative. I feel sorry for the team who achieved so much, but I’m sure we’ll still see parts of Google Wave appear in other projects. In the meantime, here’s a parting song.

Video URL (with captions): www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwKaScNbWIc

Downloads

For your downloading pleasure, here are the video and audio–only files.

License is Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported. If you need a media player, I recommend VLC.

Lyrics

Goodbye Google Wave
Though we hardly used you at all
You had such potential
To change the way we talk

We begged for invites and Tweeted
“Ooh, shiny shiny!” and seconds later…
“Now how does this thing work?”

And it seems to me, you lived your life
Like an Apple Newton
A great idea, whose time hadn’t come

You’ve still got fans who say that Wave rocks
But I guess the world just doesn’t need
One more inbox

I guess the world can carry on
With one less inbox

Just a phone?

I don’t get all this fuss about just another phone. Maybe if I sing a song it’ll help me understand…

Video URL (with captions): www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNTSR1oOzqw

Downloads

For your downloading pleasure, here are the video and audio–only files.

License is Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported. If you need a media player, I recommend VLC.

Lyrics:

My phone don’t give me presents
I know that Steve’s no peasant
Only ever has to give me
Apps for ever and for ever
My phone don’t give me presents
Turn it on when I get lonely
People tell me that it’s only a phone
I know it isn’t

My phone begins with an “i”
Lose it and I start to cry
I don’t care if it’s locked down
I just love those shiny round corners
So easy on the eye
It makes all my friends jealous
Makes them scream like girls as well as drool
Don’t ask me why

It’s a phone and I understand
It’s a phone that makes me feel like a man

My phone can cure disease
Fix social problems with ease
Global warming, it’s no biggie
World peace is not that tricky
My phone can cure disease
Vegetarians and feminism
It’s no match for fanboyism
Come on, why don’t you join me

It’s a phone
It’s a phone
It’s just a phone
It’s not just a phone
It’s a sexy phone
Oh, it’s more than a phone

It’s a phone
My life’s in this phone
My life IS this phone
Excuse me while I kiss this phone
It’s just a phone
So much more than a phone

How to create Ogg videos in Linux (with GUI)

Following up on my previous post about converting videos to Ogg Theora, there’s also an easy way for those who like a GUI.

Screenshot of the OggConvert programAlthough it’s possible to use VLC for Ogg encoding, I had problems with the audio and video being out of sync. Fortunately I found another way – enter OggConvert.

Written in Python by Tristan Brindle, there are packages for the major Linux distributions as well as a version for Windows. Not only that, it’s open source (GNU LGPL), preserves metadata when converting and is extremely easy to use:

  1. Fire up OggConvert
  2. Select the source video (or audio) file
  3. Click convert
  4. Voila! Enjoy your Ogg video

By default, the target file is saved in the same directory and with the same name as the source file but with an .ogg or .ogv extension. The default quality settings seem a bit low but should be adequate for most purposes.

When done, your Ogg video is now ready to use in your HTML5 pages:

<video src="video.ogg" width="320" autobuffer controls>
  <p>Sorry, your browser can't play this video but you can
  <a href="video.ogg">download it here</a>.</p>
</video>

How to create Ogg videos in Linux

Ogg Theora is the codec most supported by modern HTML5-capable browsers, so how can you convert your videos to it? Pretty easily, it seems.

There’s a cross-platform command-line application called ffmpeg2theora which does a good job of converting videos to Ogg Theora. Usage couldn’t be simpler:

ffmpeg2theora input.mpeg

If the audio is out of sync with the video, either try adding the –sync option or convert it to MPEG format using ffmpeg first, and then use ffmpeg2theora.

For those all-important tags (except ‘comment’) you can use parameters like so:

ffmpeg2theora input.mpeg --title "My spiffing video" --artist "Daniel" --license "http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0" --date "2010" --organization "Opera Software" --location "Tokyo, Japan" 

Or alternatively there’s oggz, available in the oggz-tools package in Ubuntu:

oggz-comment input.ogv TITLE="My spiffing video" ARTIST="Daniel" LICENSE="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0" DATE="2010" ORGANIZATION="Opera Software" LOCATION="Tokyo, Japan" COMMENT="Best viewed on a screen" -o output.ogv

To embed your converted video in an HTML5 page, use something like this:

<video src="video.ogv" autobuffer controls>
    <p>Your browser can't display the open Ogg Theora codec but you can download it from here: <a href="video.ogv">Video</a></p>
</video>

N.B. For Mac, there’s Exom which has ‘HTML5′ as one of its output options (thanks Bruce).

UPDATE: If you’d prefer to not use the command line, there’s a GUI alternative for easy Ogg conversion.

Inaccessible

A little song dedicated to Henny, our team’s queen of accessibility.
UPDATE: Make that Jack Pickard as well. A much-loved accessibility expert, now much-missed.

Jeff Allen‘s clever song rewrites led me to have a go myself.

Video URL (with captions): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S9i1vNnh1hg

Downloads

For your downloading pleasure, here are the video and audio–only files:

License is Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported. If you need a media player, I recommend VLC.

Lyrics

Inaccessible, that’s what you are.
Inaccessible, to a screen reader.
Like an art museum with no access ramp
you’re losing hits and dropping Page Rank.
Never before has a website been more…

Inaccessible, in every way,
and with no updates, that’s how you’ll stay.
That’s why, webmaster, it’s incredible
that a site so inaccessible
thinks that I won’t find another site soon.

[spoken]
Images should have alt tags (text)
and keyboard users, can they tab through your page?
If not, why not?
[end spoken]

Like never before,
with plugins galore.

Inaccessible, that’s what you are.
Inaccessible, pushing people afar.
I’ve got no official disability
but your site, to me, is a mystery.
Hope the next site is not
inaccessible too.

HTML5 it is a-changin’

Off sick with a cold, what better way to recover than by singing a song?

A performance, requested by Futomi Hatano, of the tune by Bob Dylan with lyrics by Jeff Allen, suggested by Molly Holzschlag and inspired by Shelley Powers.
Details and lyrics: http://www.molly.com/2010/01/05/bob-dylan-meets-html5

Video URL (with captions): www.youtube.com/watch?v=V2s8AU8PkBU

Downloads

For your downloading pleasure, here are the video and audio–only files:

License is Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported. If you need a media player, I recommend VLC.

Update

Customers who viewed this item also viewed:

Artist: Bruce Lawson
Video URL: www.youtube.com/watch?v=7gNmFabAOGc

How to watch videos on a Nokia smartphone

The Nokia N96 smartphoneMy new Nokia N96 (yes, and then they immediately released the N97!) may not be as intuitive as the iPhone but is packed with far more features and is so much more open to exploration that it’s a keeper. Not only that but clever @LonelyBob gave me some help last night to fix a problem I’d been battling with – video conversion.

Like him, I tried MEncoder which (unusually) didn’t do the trick and then gave FFmpeg a go. As usual, it requires a load of options and arguments that I don’t fully understand but converts almost any format into any other format – in this case an MP4 file. Trouble was, everything I tried resulted in a playback error on the phone. After exhaustive searching it seems the MP4 needs to be in a mobile-friendly wrapper for which I used MP4Box, found in the “gpac” package on Linux. That worked nicely but the extra step is a hassle. Enter @LonelyBob and his magic one-liner. I edited it a bit for my version of FFmpeg (3:0.svn20090303-1) and this is what’s left:

ffmpeg -y -i input.mkv -vol 256 -acodec libfaac -ac 2 -ar 44100 -ab 64000 -f 3gp -vcodec mpeg4 -s 320x240 -r 25 -b 256000 output.mp4

Of course, input.mkv can be almost any type of video file. The resulting output file is small but not great quality so you could try changing the bitrates, etc. to something like:

  • -ab (audio bitrate): 96000
  • -b (video bitrate): 384000
  • -s (dimensions): 320×176 (for widescreen)

N.B. If you get an “Unknown encoder: libfaac” message, try using “-acodec aac” instead.

Oh, and it’s worth the effort – the N96′s screen is fantastic.

Watching videos on the Wii

Screenshot of the Wii Photo ChannelContinuing with the Wii theme, I found out how to convert videos so they can be viewed on the Nintendo Wii.

The Wii can show videos in two ways:

  • Flash videos viewed online in the Opera browser.
  • AVI files viewed from a memory card in the photo channel.

I looked into the AVI method as I have a 2GB SD card handy. It seems the Wii only supports MJPEG video files which, while compatible with many digital cameras, tend to be very large with a 100MB file giving you just a few minutes of video.

Good enough for short family clips, however, so thanks to Ubuntu user dolson who passed on the command for conversion:

mencoder ORIGINALMOVIEHERE.avi -fps 29.97 -ovc lavc -lavcopts vcodec=mjpeg -oac pcm -vf scale -zoom -xy 512 -o OUTPUTVIDEOFORWII.avi

You need to have Mencoder installed first (it’s part of MPlayer) and you may need to change the framerate (fps) to 23.97 or similar if the audio is out of sync. Mencoder should accept any video format as input (i.e. FLV, etc.), not just AVI.

Similar to photos, you can have fun doodling on your videos or making puzzles out of them…