Video Breakthroughs
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Video Breakthroughs
Monitoring innovations in post-production, head-end, streaming, OTT, second-screen, UHDTV, multiscreen strategies & tools
Curated by Nicolas Weil
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New stream repackaging product : Concurrent eFactor Transmux

New stream repackaging product : Concurrent eFactor Transmux | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

Concurrent focused its eFactor development efforts on reducing the complexities of delivering video to a growing population of disparate connected devices. Content producers and service providers must currently prepare and package video content for delivery over three market-leading HTTP adaptive bitrate formats, including Apple, Adobe and Microsoft. Concurrent’s Transmux solution removes that complexity by repackaging a single source asset on-the-fly, while offering flexibility to support future formats. This greatly simplifies workflow and results in savings on both capital and operational expenditures, while reaching the widest audience possible.

 

eFactor’s Transmux is offered as a software development kit (SDK) or as an integrated feature in eFactor multi-format origin and edge servers, offering Concurrent’s customers ultimate flexibility. CDNs with substantial investment in existing infrastructure can seamlessly add value to their services by integrating Concurrent’s Transmux SDK with their existing servers. Customers that do not have existing infrastructure will benefit from fully packaged eFactor origin and edge servers that support on-the-fly Transmux of live and on-demand content.

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New White Paper: The New Technologies for Pay TV Content Security

New White Paper: The New Technologies for Pay TV Content Security | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

Bill Rosenblatt has just published a new white paper: The New Technologies for Pay TV Content Security.

The 28-page paper describes the current state of the art of techniques for protecting video content delivered over pay television networks such as cable and satellite.

 

The final section of the paper discusses fingerprinting and watermarking as two techniques that complement encryption as ways of finding unauthorized content “in the wild.”

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TVTak is like Shazam for TV

TVTak is like Shazam for TV | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

Ever wanted to get more information about a TV show, film or advert on TV? Of course you have. But Googling what you can see is easier said than done. What we need is something which recognises the show and can take you to more info – even let you share what you’re watching on social networks.

 

TVTak does exactly this. Download the app, point your iPhone at the TV, take a picture and TVTak will present more information, links and a way to Tweet or Facebook what you are watching. It’s literally magic.

 

This is like like Shazam for video in realtime, on a live broadcast.

 

Demo video here :  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V_jkRVMpChM

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Captionator.js : Video Captioning in HTML5, NOW...

Captionator.js : Video Captioning in HTML5, NOW... | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

At first glance, video captioning might not seem like a huge deal. Maybe it might appeal to you if you need to meet accessibility requirements in your workplace, or you're just doing it to be nice to people with hearing difficulties.

 

You're pretty far from the mark though. Yes, accessibility is an important driver for video captioning on the web. But it's about much more than ‘deaf people’ (and you should be providing quality captioning for them anyway!)

 

In addition to important accessibility benefits, captioning your video can allow automatically generated transcripts, text search-ability within videos (imagine what will be possible once Google supports crawling WebVTT!), chapter markers and powerful metadata capability, and much more! You could provide a track of time-specific comments on the video (the same way SoundCloud allows commenting on specific parts of audio) or even a live twitter feed on your video (similar in style to the ABC'S Q&A program.)

 

“Alright!”, you say. “I'm convinced. How does HTML5 allow me to caption my video?”

 

For a while, there wasn't an easy way to do it. Guys like Bruce Lawson were coming up with creative ways (if a little hacky) to implement support, in lieu of a proper standard.

 

Now, however, there's a really nice way to provide support - the HTML5 <track> element and its associated JavaScript API. There's a slight catch though. No currently shipping browser supports either of these features/standards. They will soon - Webkit has support in development, and Firefox can now parse the <track> element (but can't do anything with it yet.)

 

But you want to caption your HTML5 video now. And for that, you need Captionator.js.

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Audio Catches Up: Online Video Rocks with Multichannel Audio

Audio Catches Up: Online Video Rocks with Multichannel Audio | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

As movies move online and go mobile, sound gets some respect with updated codecs, more TLC, and a better attitude.

 

The next time you walk past the hollowed-out hulk of a Blockbuster store in your neighborhood, you’ll be reminded that there is a war going on. Actually, the format wars have been going on for decades now, but the debris left behind by the physical media era underscores how the battles have migrated to the virtual realm now. One of the defining characteristics of this epoch of the conflict, though, is that it’s becoming less about the origin of the content, or even the format it takes in its travels, and more about the places that it ends up. Streaming to an ever-widening selection of devices and platforms puts content under a variety of pressures, and while the HD video dogfights get all the glory, audio— media’s perennial underdog—has some pretty capable allies of its own.

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Streaming Video Technologies Panorama, part 2 : Server-Side Stream Repackaging

Streaming Video Technologies Panorama, part 2 : Server-Side Stream Repackaging | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it
There are basically two ways to sustain the extensive growth of video formats that you must, as a media distributor, serve to your different clients’ target devices : the most common answer is to choose the best in breed most-powerful encoders to prepare all the target formats during the content preparation time (see Panorama article N°1 on this topic), but you can adopt a different approach saying that you want to prepare your contents once and have the distribution part of the overall workflow take care of the repackaging and protection of the contents on the fly.

Server-side repackaging of the streams consists eventually in :
- choosing languages in audio and subtitle tracks available in the original mux (optional)
- transcoding/transrating the video content in different sizes/bitrates from a high quality video file (optional)
- applying a DRM compatible with the output format (optional)
- generating the manifest file corresponding to the target adaptive streaming technology (mandatory)
- remuxing and chunking the video data according to the output protocol requirements (mandatory)

Historically, repackaging was pushed as a quick solution for broadcasters to add iOS streams on top of existing Smooth or Flash streams. In a wider OTT/Adaptive Bitrate perspective, this alternative approach means : less files to manage in the main production workflow, less storage, less bandwidth to populate the origin servers, smaller time to contents’ online availability and easier support for new formats – shortly said, an agile path.

Potentially a risky one, but quite attractive…

Let's examine the available options on the market, to do it on your own platform or in the cloud !
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Streaming Video Technologies Panorama, part 1 : Hardware-accelerated Encoding

Streaming Video Technologies Panorama, part 1 : Hardware-accelerated Encoding | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

Maybe some of you remember the Tarari Encoder Accelerator for Windows Media which came on market in 2005 as a FPGA loaded PCI board. It was a 10K$ investment but it could seriously boost your encoder performances and it was a transparent solution for all encoders integrating Windows Media SDK. That was maybe the only real reliable option to do HD encoding decently at that time. More confidential were the Ambric cards for accelerating MainConcept H.264 and MPEG-2 SDK, which were found to be working with Inlet Armada transcoding farm.

Since these days, Tarari boards vanished, Windows Media encoding has been somehow outshined by H.264 and CPU performances have made great jumps, but the needs for hardware accelerated encoding solutions is still there, mainly because :
- H.264 encoding is also hungrily crunching CPU cycles
- screen types to feed have exploded with mobile, tablets, connected TVs and all other OTT devices
- adaptive streaming requires far more versions of the same file that previously mono-bitrate encodings
- available rackspace is not endless and it’s not convenient to manage hundreds of encoding nodes
- new formats like 3D and SVC are demanding strong encoding power
- you like to play with cool high-end encoders and you have strong convincing skills when it comes to make your boss buy expen$ive hardware


So let’s take a look at the different options available on the market now !

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TelVue Connect Brings Professional Broadcast Management to the Cloud

TelVue Connect Brings Professional Broadcast Management to the Cloud | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

"TelVue Corporation, a leader in IP Television Broadcasting and Internet Video Streaming, announced today that it has launched a new platform to slash cable/telco local origination and leased access (LO/LA) servicing costs and dramatically improve workflow.

 

Believed to be a first in professional broadcasting, TelVue Connect migrates what has always been an on-premise equipment and software service entirely to the cloud.

 

TelVue now uses the cloud to handle large media file uploads, content management, transcoding for different destination networks or devices, and scheduling requiring only a broadband connection and browser. TelVue Connect continues a trend of cloud-based processing that eliminates high customer capital costs, maintenance management, feature upgrade logistics, equipment networking and compatibility issues."

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Best Practices For Managing Adaptive Bitrate Resolution And Encoding Profiles

Best Practices For Managing Adaptive Bitrate Resolution And Encoding Profiles | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

During a StreamingMedia.com webinar Dan Rayburn moderated on the topic of Adaptive Streaming & HTTP Delivery, Cisco gave out some great details on managing adaptive bitrate resolution and encoding profiles.

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Flixmaster makes HTML5 video interactive

Flixmaster makes HTML5 video interactive | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

Creators that want to build interactive video applications have largely been constrained by the lack of easy-to-use tools for doing so. Today those publishers can either use rudimentary tools like YouTube annotations to extend an element of choice to video applications, or they can turn to expensive, custom web design firms to build that interactivity into their videos.

 

Now one startup is looking to provide an alternative: Boulder, Colo.–based Flixmaster offers a platform for publishers like transmedia creators and interactive advertisers that provides most of the functionality that they desire, without requiring them to shell out tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars to build custom experiences.

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WiO Connects TV to Mobile, Makes TV Ads Interactive

WiO Connects TV to Mobile, Makes TV Ads Interactive | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it
A new mobile app platform called WiO is set to revolutionize the TV watching experience by allowing customers to immediately get information about the products and services they see advertised on screen, both in TV commercials and within the shows...
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Comparing Adaptive HTTP Streaming Technology From DASH, Apple, Microsoft and Adobe

Comparing Adaptive HTTP Streaming Technology From DASH, Apple, Microsoft and Adobe | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it
On today's StreamingMedia.com webinar about Adaptive Streaming & HTTP Delivery, RealNetworks shared the below slide featuring a nice chart that breaks out some of the differences and features from Apple, Microsoft and Adobe.
Access to the webinar here : http://bit.ly/qpMVmE
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Morega Systems Awarded Patent for Breakthrough Content Portability Technology that Supports TV Everywhere

Morega Systems Awarded Patent for Breakthrough Content Portability Technology that Supports TV Everywhere | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

Morega's solution supports the placeshifting of optimized premium content to all types of devices via either streaming or sideloading - and allows the viewing of that content to be tracked Morega Systems, a developer of content portability solutions, revealed today that the company received patent approval for its breakthrough content portability technology. This unique content delivery solution gives satellite, cable and IPTV service providers, and equipment manufacturers a better way to extend premium, multimedia content beyond the television and the set-top box to support the Connected Home and TV Everywhere.

In addition, Morega's sideloading technology uses a sophisticated back-office, standards-based and proprietary authentication, encryption and digital rights management (DRM) system to protect copyrighted material and to assure the delivery of high-quality video entertainment content.

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The TV That Watches You

The TV That Watches You | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

A television due out soon can tell websites and online advertisers which shows you're watching, making Web pages more intelligent.

 

Many people surf the Web while they watch television. Soon­­­ the websites they visit could adapt in real time themselves to the shows being watched—automatically presenting information relevant to the show, or even tuning their ads in response to what you're watching.

 

A new type of Internet-connected television, due out before the end of the year, has built-in software and hardware that send data about what is on-screen to an Internet server that can identify the content. Web pages being viewed using the same Internet connection as the TV set can then tap into that information. The system can identify any content onscreen, whatever the source, whether live TV, DVDs or movie files playing from a computer.

 

Flingo, the San Francisco-based startup that developed the technology, known as Sync Apps, says the new set is already being mass-produced by one of the top five television brands in the U.S. and will retail for less than $500.

 

"Any mobile app or Web page being used in front of your TV can ask our servers what is on right now," says David Harrison, cofounder and CTO of Flingo. "For example, you could go to Google or IMDB and the page would already know what's on the screen. Retailers like Amazon or Walmart might want to show you things to buy related to a show, like DVDs, or what people are wearing in it." Social sites such as Facebook or Twitter can use the service to connect viewers to a TV show's official page or stream. When a user flips channels, or a show ends, the Webpage being viewed knows about it and can instantly update to the new viewing.

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Encoding H.264 Video for Streaming and Progressive Download : a great Jan Ozer slidedeck

126 pages of walkthrough in H.264 encoding techniques and tips - a great presentation by Jan Ozer !

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FFMedia Broadcast (ffmbc) : FFmpeg for broadcast and professional usage

FFMedia Broadcast (ffmbc) : FFmpeg for broadcast and professional usage | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

What you can do with FFMBC:

 

* Import your files in Final Cut Pro or AVID Media Composer by:

- Creating XDCAM HD422 files in .mov or .mxf

- Creating XDCAM IMX/D-10 files in .mov or .mxf

- Creating AVID DNxHD files in .mov

* Transcode your MPEG-2 4:2:2 Tranport Stream files containing S302M audio.

* Transcode your AVCHD files correctly.

* Merge and split your audio tracks.

* Create Quicktime files containing timecode tracks.

* Create audio files (mp3 and m4a) with cover art.

* Keep covert art when converting your audio files.

* Faststart MP4 for streaming (replace header in front) automatically.

 

FFmbc-0.7 BETA is synced on FFmpeg git 7cbb856efe6ccab7485bb96ad3887472a6519ffa

 

Sample use cases cmdline here : http://bit.ly/pq0VqJ

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EtherFilms Taps HTML5 to Take Viewers Deeper Into Movies

EtherFilms Taps HTML5 to Take Viewers Deeper Into Movies | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

Los Angeles production house Halo-8 Entertainment is banking on nonlinear storytelling with its upcoming delivery platform EtherFilms, which will give viewers greater control over how movies and other media unfold. For example, the interactive transmedia platform might serve up an extended version of a particularly fascinating interview or let the viewer dive into a comic book mentioned in a documentary.

 

Anchored in the principle that programming should be oriented around content rather than format, HTML5-based EtherFilms will integrate multimedia from past and future Halo-8 motion comics and documentaries like Grant Morrison: Talking With Gods.

 

“That means jumping from an animated film to the digital comic that tells a character’s origin or extending an interview in a documentary, or even jumping to a different documentary altogether for further insight on a topic”...

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HTML5 video was meant to be this easy : html5media enables and tags in all major browsers

HTML5 video was meant to be this easy : html5media enables  and  tags in all major browsers | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

HTML5 video and audio tags were designed to make embedding a video as easy as embedding an image. They were also designed to give users a faster experience by doing away with browser plugins such as Adobe Flash.

Unfortunately, older browsers don't support HTML5 video and audio tags, and even modern browsers don't support a consistent set of video codecs, making embedding a video rather difficult.

The html5media project makes embedding video or audio as easy as it was meant to be. It's a fire-and-forget solution, and doesn't require installing any files on your server. Unlike many other HTML5 video players, it allows people to use the video controls supplied by their own web browser. It's one of the smallest, fastest solutions available, and as browser technology improves it will become even faster.

 

The html5media project is open source and can be found on GitHub.

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Avanti GUI + FFMPEG – Open source alternative to Adobe Media Encoder

Avanti GUI + FFMPEG – Open source alternative to Adobe Media Encoder | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

Avanti GUI + FFMPEG make a perfect open source alternate to Adobe Media Encoder. The Avanti GUI also needs “Avisynth” optionally for some extra features. but basically if you intend to own a desktop tool for your video/audio needs, such as conversions, audio extraction, video extraction etc etc: then this is the thing for you. Avanti with FFMPEG renders Adobe Media Encoder completely unnecessary.

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Introducing MetaFragments, a common format for timed metadata in HTML

Introducing MetaFragments, a common format for timed metadata in HTML | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it
MetaFragments gives to web tools, mobile apps, browser and search engines a simple way to explore, connect and share the inside content of web videos. The idea behind MetaFragments is to use media fragments URIs and in-HTML meta-data to store timed data relating to audio and videos sequences.
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Interesting new product from Harmonic : ProMedia Origin, HTTP streaming video server used as origin [PDF]

Interesting new product from Harmonic : ProMedia Origin, HTTP streaming video server used as origin [PDF] | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

- Ingests transcoded, segmented and encrypted output from ProMedia Live, ProMedia Carbon and ProStream 4000

- Enables progressive download or adaptive streaming (using Apple HTTP Live Streaming, Microsoft Smooth Streaming, Adobe RTMP and  HTTP Dynamic Streaming to downstream caches or CDNs)

- External API for asset management and offline content transcoding workflow integrated with external content management systems

- Integration with Omneon MediaGrid network-attached storage

 

Read the PDF here : http://www.harmonicinc.com/view_collateral.cfm?ID=4100

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Roland Garros HBBTV & 3D

For more details around HbbTV development tools, read Loïc Guillois's blog (in french, Wiztivi developer) : http://www.loicguillois.fr/developpement-de-lapplication-hbbtv-roland-garros/

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Streaming Video Technologies Panorama, part 3 : WebM Streaming

Streaming Video Technologies Panorama, part 3 : WebM Streaming | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

WebM is surely one of the hotest streaming topics right now, because WebM is one of the two final HTML5 video standards with H.264. When Google bought On2 in 2009 and open-sourced its latest VP8 codec one year later, two promises were made : providing a codec which quality can compete with H.264 , and providing it in a royalty-free way. On the quality point, the general opinion is that the VP8 codec is slightly less performing than H.264– but it can be an acceptable trade-off regarding the royalties point.

 

Precisely, the royalty-free point is the one which raises the more questions now, as MPEG-LA is said to have a lineup of 12 patent owners ready to claim their rights on intellectual property, as VP8 would use compression techniques taken from H.264. Seeing their fight against Google being a success would cause a major setback in HTML5 standardization efforts around open source solutions – WebM then being another coding technology subject to royalties after H.264. Nevertheless, the patent war has not started yet and WebM is still a good alternative to H.264, on the paper. And that’s why we are curious to know how we can implement it in our existing or upcoming workflows.

 

So let’s walk through the different steps of the WebM streaming workflow !

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Beet.TV: Breakthrough: Contextual Advertising for Online Video Has Arrived via Affine Systems with YouTube and Top Video Ad Nets as Customers

Beet.TV: Breakthrough: Contextual Advertising for Online Video Has Arrived via Affine Systems with YouTube and Top Video Ad Nets as Customers | Video Breakthroughs | Scoop.it

"Affine Systems, a small San Francisco, venture-backed start-up built around machine learning, has created a technology to 'rip apart video frame' by frame," enabling advertisers to associate ads with desired content.

 

Largely under the radar, the company is working with YouTube and many of the major video ad networks including Tremor, Adap.tv, TidalTV, DBG, TubeMobul, Collective Media and AdBrite."

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AIR and Flash for TV - EpixHD running on Samsung and Google TV

Demonstration of the EpixHD Flash/AIR application running on a 2011 Samsung TV and Google TV. Note that Epix is a service only for authenticated Cable/MVPD s...
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