Media/SMIL Authoring Tutorials and
Articles by Larry Bouthillier
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Comcast.net's Innovative Video Browser
needed a way to bring easy, interactive video to its
broadband customers, it turned to Macromedia's Flash. The team's mission: "The challenge
was to create a new video
application, which combined browse, search, playback, and customization
in an easy to use interface. It had to be as simple as channel surfing
on the TV." Comcast's innovative solution is The Fan.
Review: A Bandwidth Simulator for Testing Streaming Media
comfortably on our company networks, it can
be hard to imitate the way 76% of American households view streaming
content – via dialup. This week we look at a tool that helps
your streaming content by simulating low bandwidth connections.
10 Competes On Features, Codecs
As you might
expect, the latest encoding tool from RealNetworks offers great new
codecs for audio and video. There are also some helpful features that
can make your encoding process more flexible and more efficient. We'll
take a look at what's new in the RealProducer Plus 10 preview release.
Windows Media Download Packages
download packages bundle up an entire
playlist, a collection of media files, and a custom border into one
downloadable file. With a single click, the Windows Media Player will
unpackage the contents, add the playlist to its Media Library, and
begin playback of your program.
Media ActiveX Control – Not Just for Internet Explorer Anymore
(StreamingMedia.com March 2004)
Windows Media player in a
Web page can be challenging. A Rubik's cube puzzle of version-madness
takes over if you try making it work for every browser. Now, the
Mozilla/Netscape team has built ActiveX support for Windows Media
directly into their latest browsers. Here's how to sniff for browser
support for Windows Media, and embed your video for everyone.
for Streaming (StreamingMedia.com March
media is a great way to
receive multimedia over the Internet. But it doesn't help you much when
you're on a plane, in traffic, or sitting in your ice-fishing hut in
Minnesota. There's help available - StreamDown and SDP are utilities
that can record streaming media programs, letting you watch or listen
at your convenience.
MPEG Video Standards – from 1 to 21
more to MPEG than just audio
and video compression. There are five MPEG standards–MPEG1,
MPEG4, MPEG7, and MPEG21–spanning all aspects of compressing,
authoring, identifying, and delivering multimedia. Here's a quick look
at each one and where it fits in the digital media landscape.
Recording – An Enterprise Approach to Streaming Media
Publishing (StreamingMedia.com January
For software training, demos, or even
Powerpoint slideshows, a narrated screen recording can be a simple and
effective way to get your point across. In the second part of our look
at screen recorders, we'll look at the
industrial-strength Screenwatch & see how it handles
authoring for educational institutions & the enterprise.
Recorders for Streaming
visual communication over the
Internet an essential business and educational tool, screen recording
can provide a simple means to create presentations of software demos,
data walk-throughs, or even traditional slideshows. Let's face it,
nothing beats the "Show me, don't tell me!" approach of a narrated
MPEG4 – Who Will Lead the Way?
MPEG4 standard for interactive
video has facets that shine brightly and attract attention, enthusiasm,
and investment. Both the Web and the broadcast industries are
salivating over the possibilities of a standards-based solution for the
authoring and delivery of rich media content. But there's a difference
in the approach each industry takes to drive adoption. A few companies
are looking for the middle ground.
Interactive Video With MPEG4
November 2003) [MPEG4 example
video and sample XMT/SMIL source code listing]
a long build-up, MPEG4 is
finally roaring out of the gates. Read on for a look at the frontier of
MPEG4 video - interactive video capabilities that will leave you oohing
and ahhing. We'll look at the basics, then walk through a complete
XMT/SMIL code example that shows how it's done.
Look at Higher Ed Streaming - Univeristy of Cincinnati Case Study
(StreamingMedia.com November 2003)
media has become an integral
part of the communications toolset at the University of Cincinnati.
What started in 1999 as an experiment in streaming technology has
transformed the classroom environment and expanded the reach of the
school's academic and public service programs.
To Brand Your Video With A Watermark
October 2003) [example
watermarked video and sample SMIL code listing]
floating over the
bottom-right corner of a video, a watermark logo provides viewers with
instant recognition of the program's source, even as it builds further
brand awareness. We'll show you how you can grace your videos with an
interactive watermark that brands your content and drives traffic to
your Web site.
Commons Licensing for Digital Media
October 2003) [Creative Commons
the phrase "copyright
restrictions" a misnomer? Restricting the use of a work is just one
side of what copyright law can do for those who create and distribute
content. After all, most of us create in the hope that our work will be
seen, quoted, and talked about - as well as purchased. The Creative
Commons (CC) project gives content creators a rich toolset for applying
carefully-crafted copyright protections to their work. Read on to learn
whether CC can help you, and how to tag your audio and video projects
with a CC license.
for Quicktime and MPEG4
and MPEG4 files must be
“hinted” before they can be streamed.
We'll take a look at what
hinting is and why you have to do it (and when you don't).
Opens Windows Media 9 Codec to SMPTE
recently submitted its WM9
SMPTE for consideration as an official standard. Is it bold move or
desperate measure in an effort to make Windows Media the standard for
video compression in consumer electronics and broadcasting equipment?
Media Metafiles: When And How To Use Them
metafiles - .ram files, .asx
files and Quicktime Reference Movies - can be both a hassle and a
powerful feature of streaming media systems. We’ll explore
why you need
them, when you don’t, and how they can do more for you than
Media Metafiles Part Two: ASX Files
metafiles give you control
over the presentation and delivery of your streaming media content. In
this article, we continue our look at the basics of metafiles with an
overview of the Windows Media ASX format.
Media Metafiles Part Three: Quicktime
offers a variety of ways to
connect your users with your streaming media content. This tutorial
looks at three text-based metafile formats for streaming QuickTime
vs. Downloading: Understanding the Differences
of the most frequently asked
about delivering online video is "What's the difference between
streaming video and downloading video?" Let's face it, as a user
clicking a video link on a web page, you often won't know which method
you're using, unless you poke around a little. But streaming and
downloading are distinct methods of delivery, each with its own
benefits and limitations. We'll take a look at the difference between
the two methods, and make some suggestions about when you should choose
one or the other for your projects.
Streaming Media Players
and Client Connection Speed
(source code and
this slimmed-down version of
last-year's article, we get right to the heart of how to create the
code that will let you determine which players your users have
installed, and what bandwidth they have available on their Internet
connection to stream your content.
RealONE player has an Enterprise
version designed especially for corporate streaming media deployments.
See how the RealONE Desktop Manager gives you unprecedented power to
effectively manage your enterprise
media deployment and provide your users with the very best streaming
in SMIL -- (Source
code and examples)
(Streamingmedia.com April 2001)
visual layout of your
streaming media presentations can be controlled by the SMIL
language, or with RealPlayer and your browser, by HTML.
Learn basic layout structures and how to use HTML with SMIL to
control the layout of complex integrated designs that include HTML and
elements of dynamic content.
RealSystems' Event Streams -- (Source
code and examples)
(Streamingmedia.com May 2001)
can tie other kinds of web
content to the timeline of your streaming video
presentation, which allows you to create complex and
personalized experiences for your viewers. This article will teach you
several ways, including one "secret" undocumented
way using SMIL, to add events to your streaming media.
You'll also learn how to use callback handlers to insert
complex data into your media stream.
Streaming with RealSystem iQ (Print
version (600kB pdf
Streaming Media Magazine July/August 2001)
you're planning to deploy an
enterprise streaming media system, and hope to keep your CEO
smiling and staff headaches to a minimum, RealSystem iQ might
be the solution you've been looking for. We'll take you
through building a distributed video server infrastructure
with Scripts (Streamingmedia.com
advantage of the
command-line capabilities of the major video encoders. In
this tutorial, you'll learn how to set up scripts to achieve
a more scalable and efficient encoding process.
and Client Connection Speed
(source code and examples) (Streamingmedia.com
your users well starts
with knowing their player capabilities. In this three-part
series, you'll learn how to detect your users' media players
and internet connection speed, let them choose their preferred
player, and honor their player choice.
- SMIL Synchronized Multimedia
the introduction of Synchronized
Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL, pronounced smile), Web
multimedia creators have a new tool set for building time-based,
streaming multimedia presentations that combine audio, video,
images, and text. This tutorial article and demo will show you
how to create compelling streaming multimedia content using SMIL.
Metafiles - Streaming Media Management and Personalization
of the power of streaming
media over traditional broadcast media is the ability to
provide the "killer feature" that the web is so uniquely able
to provide -- personalized, direct access to the exact content
the user is searching for, on-demand. With a basic content management
system, you can let your users search your video database, play
the clips that they find, bookmark interesting video segments,
and save clips in personal collections or playlists. This
article describes how to build a streaming video management
system using server-side Java and JSP. Learn how to manage your
RealServer, Quicktime Streaming Server, or other streaming media system
content while giving your users new ways to use streaming media.