Turning a basic HTML5 video player into one with enhanced playback features is surprisingly simple. Here's the code to add chapter markers, captions, and more.
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The appeal of HTML5 remains strong, even as questions about its diffusion and implementation linger. The draw is two-fold: service providers and developers endorse the efficiency gains of a standard; and consumers naturally prefer a seamless viewing experience to one interrupted with plug-in requests.
An underlying driver for HMTL5 among Pay TV operators is cross-device compatibility. During a workshop at Cable-Tec Expo in Orlando, Matt Zelesko, SVP of the Converged Technology Group at Time Warner Cable, noted that proprietary set-top boxes were no longer the operator’s only game, but that that embracing a more diverse array of devices while maintaining consistency requires considerable effort.
We’ve seen the future of television, and we want it now.
NDS, a company that develops DRM security and DVR technology for pay-TV providers like Cox and DirecTV, has developed a proof-of-concept called Surfaces that shows how television could become the center of a much more compelling, immersive living room experience.
The prototype jettisons the single, static screen that’s been a hardware mainstay since the golden age of television. In its place is a slick, highly customized room-sized desktop that hosts not only a traditional widescreen TV image, but also windows for a plethora of digital accoutrements.
It could be exactly what the TV industry needs to stay relevant.
Veveo, a provider of search solutions for connected devices, has debuted a new voice and natural language-based, "conversational interface" technology for video search. Available for trial currently and for release in Q1 '13 in its Reveal 3.0 product, the new voice capability is targeted to pay-TV operators, connected device manufacturers and set-top box providers eager to give users more flexibility in how they navigate the ever-increasing array of video choices.
Underlying Veveo's conversational interface is its SmartRelevance Conversational Platform, based on 32 issued patents and 65 patent applications. The platform consists of a "Knowledge Graph" (reference set of named entities, with algorithms to make use of them), "Content Graph" (actual content assets mapped to the Knowledge Graph), "Personal Graph" (contextual learning engine for user's behaviors and interests) and a "Conversational Query Engine" (front end that binds together other elements and allows natural language processing).
To create applications and systems that are easy to use, it is crucial to understand the user and the context in which the app will be used. Understanding the context helps design systems that anticipate use cases at a relevant time of use. The more unobtrusive and transparent the experience is at the time of use, the better the design. This means the user does not have to think about the device he is using, changes in the environment, or changes in context, and can rely on great functionality and ease of use independent of his situation.
In traditional systems, the context of use did not change much. Whether the use was in the office or at a personal computer at home, the surroundings were similar and there was no need to adapt to different environments. In today's world, smartphones, tablets, laptops, and smart TVs provide different services in different contexts. These services are consumed by a variety of users and require different interaction models, use cases, and planning. For this reason, UX professionals should first design for the context of use in order to provide better experiences and ultimately enhance the intended purpose of the product.