Category Archives: Multimedia PressWatch

Random articles relating to multimedia technology.

Video Ads In Magazines

I am greatly anticipating learning more about how this technology works: Video appears in paper magazines. Copies of Entertainment Weekly (a U.S. entertainment magazine) will have small, presumably flexible screens that are supposed to be able to store 40 minutes of video. The magazines are slated to go on sale in Los Angeles and New York next month. With any luck, San Francisco (which I am near) may see a few as well.

Americhip Demo

The BBC article reports that the underlying chip technology is supposed to be similar to the stuff found in singing greeting cards. That sounds like an oversimplification. But the article also names the tech supplier– Americhip, the self-proclaimed leader in multisensory marketing. They have a YouTube channel with demos of this and related technology.

JavaFX and On2 TrueMotion

Have you heard of Sun’s JavaFX? It’s due out later this year and is allegedly positioned to compete in the RIA space. It might be pertinent to mention that I work on a competing technology. Anyway, the reason I bring this up is that I recently learned that On2 is reported to be supplying JavaFX with video codec technology. According to “Sun Adds Comprehensive Video Capabilities to Ubiquitous Java Platform with On2 Technologies,” Sun licensed On2’s “TrueMotion” codec. I’m not entirely sure what codec they’re talking about and I can’t quite find any solid details. On2’s site seems to classify TrueMotion as encompassing both VP6 and VP7. I’m always surprised to hear the name TrueMotion since I thought that went away after the Duck Corporation morphed into On2. But the VP* series seems to be interchangeable with TrueMotion, just for extra confusion.

Who knows? Maybe they actually are using the classic Duck TrueMotion video codec in JavaFX.

Curiously, there is no word on what JavaFX will use for audio. Maybe logarithmic PCM in au/snd files?

Portable Movie Super Player

I still read the IMDb Studio Briefing everyday, though it gets a little discouraging. I sometimes wonder if there will ever be anymore interesting multimedia tech news. I should have more faith: New Movie Media Devices Predicted. Really, the story here is that IBM has developed a new, giant capacity yet very small storage method. This is one of those curious situations where they don’t mention how large capacities can possibly reach but instead express the capability in terms of how much media the thing might theoretically hold. It’s left as an exercise to the reader to decide what the average size of a ‘song’ or ‘movie’ might be and compute from there.

Remember the days when CD-ROM storage capacities were expressed in terms of how many printed documents it could hold? Later, the benchmark was number of pictures, then songs. Now it’s movies. This article cites that a device built around the memory could hold the 3500 movies or 1/2 million songs. Thus, the average movie is ~140 times larger than the average song.

The weirdest aspect of the articles floating around is that the hypothetical device would come with 3500 movies prepackaged and the consumer would purchase codes to activate individual movies.

Given recent media consumption trends, there’s little reason to doubt this strategy.

Sun’s Multimedia Rumblings

I’m reading fluffy press releases today about how Sun is going to work towards developing an open video codec: Sun Tackles Video Codec. The article is short on substance which is generally what earns this article a spot the Multimedia PressWatch category of this blog. Something about an Open Media Stack (OMS), perhaps correlated somehow to Open Media Commons (not to be confused with Open Media Now!).

It’s hard to find anything about this initiative that’s not a rehashed press release. But this Sun blog seems to have the most authoritative information, abstract though it may be. They present a fascinating design approach: Rather than evaluate algorithmic techniques based on their performance, evaluate them based on their legal status.

Good luck to them. Here’s a Wiki page to track it.