Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 4th Feb 2010 00:12 UTC
Multimedia, AV We've got news from the MPEG-LA, regarding any possible H264 license changes they might institute at the end of this year. More specifically, they've put out a press release stating that they will not change one specific aspect of the license that governs the AVC Patent Portfolio (to which h264 belongs): MPEG-LA will not collect royalties for internet video that is free to end users. The press release is highly confusing, so let's de-construct what's going on here.
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Comment by smashIt
by smashIt on Thu 4th Feb 2010 00:39 UTC
smashIt
Member since:
2005-07-06

somehow i hope that someone challenges the mpeg-la and loses

that would mean that the license of the codec gets mixed with the license of the content

and i'm sure the opensource community will pump out a codec that requires encoded content to a) be distributed on the internet and b) it must happen free of charge

the showdown between mpaa/riaa and mpeg-la will be epic ;)

Reply Score: 4

Comment by memson
by memson on Thu 4th Feb 2010 00:41 UTC
memson
Member since:
2006-01-01

Dear Lemur2, Thom and to a lesser extent Kroc - here is your dose of Crow. Please eat it all up and try not to choke.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by memson
by Thom_Holwerda on Thu 4th Feb 2010 00:48 UTC in reply to "Comment by memson"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

What? The situation will stay exactly the same, so how are we eating crow? For what? What false predictions did we make? I don't get it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by memson
by memson on Thu 4th Feb 2010 12:50 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by memson"
memson Member since:
2006-01-01

Because, as with many of these types of things, you proclaimed doom, spread FUD, but as many predicted it sorted itself out. Crow is par for the course.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by memson
by Kroc on Thu 4th Feb 2010 14:22 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by memson"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

Sorted itself out? Nothing of the sort has happened. Something even worse happened—they extended the free period to give even more time to cement usage of H.264 on the web as a defacto standard. When the deadline was 2011, it was so close that it was making developers planning to use HTML5 think twice about using H.264, now if anything, it’ll put developers back into a lull and it won’t be until 2016 that everything explodes in their face.

The MPEGLA have not voided the patents, nor said they won’t ever charge, they’ve just just given as all another free sample to keep us hooked just as everybody was waking up to the dangers.

Reply Score: 5

RE[4]: Comment by memson
by kragil on Thu 4th Feb 2010 15:21 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by memson"
kragil Member since:
2006-01-04

Exactly!

Another good article on this matter that has some useful insight:

http://lwn.net/SubscriberLink/372566/be1c92c24ab7f56e/

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by memson
by imtiaz on Thu 4th Feb 2010 17:03 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by memson"
imtiaz Member since:
2005-07-06

you are absolutely right Kroc. just like the English fed sample tea in india and waited until people got used to it and then started selling. free feed is done when u got habituated.

Edited 2010-02-04 17:04 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by memson
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 01:15 UTC in reply to "Comment by memson"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Dear Lemur2, Thom and to a lesser extent Kroc - here is your dose of Crow. Please eat it all up and try not to choke.


Actually, it is a victory in a way.

MPEG LA were all set to charge for transmission of web video using h264 for the next licensing period.

Then the Thusnelda project came up with the goods, and Theora 1.1 was released with performance as good as h264. The W3C proposed Theora as the codec for HTML5, which in turn necessitated a massive FUD campaign from MPEG LA against Theora.

Essentially, the FUD hasn't worked. MPEG LA see a serious risk that people will use Theora and not h264 for web video, and hence be entirely free of threat from MPEG LA. This announcement is an admission from MPEG LA that if they charge for all transmission of h264 over the web in the next licensing period as they had intended, then h264 just wouldn't become the accepted codec for web video. Not a chance.

Not to worry, though ... there are still numerous licensing restrictions on h264, MPEG LA will still charge for commercial h264 video clips on the web, h264 is still patented to the hilt, threats of patent lawsuits surrounding the use of h264 are still prevalent, Theora 1.1 still performs as well as h264 does, Theora is still protected by the patents for VP3, and still no-one has nominated a patent earlier than the VP3 patents that can even remotely be considered to apply to Theora (despite Apple and others desperately seeking any owner of such a patent).

This announcement shouldn't really be a problem.

It is telling, in a way, that MPEG LA had to make this decision.

Edited 2010-02-04 01:16 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Comment by memson
by hornett on Thu 4th Feb 2010 08:56 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by memson"
hornett Member since:
2005-09-19

Then the Thusnelda project came up with the goods, and Theora 1.1 was released with performance as good as h264. The W3C proposed Theora as the codec for HTML5, which in turn necessitated a massive FUD campaign from MPEG LA against Theora.


People keep saying this on OSNews, but I can't get Theora (even SVN version) looking anywhere near as good as x264.

My results are very similar to this:
http://saintdevelopment.com/media/

All the results I have so far seen which state otherwise seem to have disabled all the 264 high-complexity encoding methods (e.g. they are comparing Theora at slowest/best quality encoding with h264 baseline/quickest encoding).

Reply Score: 6

RE[3]: Comment by memson
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 09:05 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by memson"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"Then the Thusnelda project came up with the goods, and Theora 1.1 was released with performance as good as h264. The W3C proposed Theora as the codec for HTML5, which in turn necessitated a massive FUD campaign from MPEG LA against Theora.


People keep saying this on OSNews, but I can't get Theora (even SVN version) looking anywhere near as good as x264.

My results are very similar to this:
http://saintdevelopment.com/media/

All the results I have so far seen which state otherwise seem to have disabled all the 264 high-complexity encoding methods (e.g. they are comparing Theora at slowest/best quality encoding with h264 baseline/quickest encoding).
"

The tinyvid.tv site had some excellent quality 720p movie trailers encoded in Theora 1.1, but the site has closed now because the required bandwidth was getting too heavy for them as more and more people are using Theora (since more and more people now have Firefox 3.5 or 3.6).

Edited 2010-02-04 09:13 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by memson
by aliquis on Thu 4th Feb 2010 10:44 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by memson"
aliquis Member since:
2005-07-23

Just excellent quality or just good enough / almost as good as / (as good as H.264?)?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by memson
by aliquis on Thu 4th Feb 2010 10:41 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by memson"
aliquis Member since:
2005-07-23

Source for the claim that Theora 1.1 would be as good as H.264?

What I've read everywhere is that Theora is worse, even from our own Eugenia.

But then I don't know anything about version 1.1, but then there is H.265 to so ...

Also no matter what I've read on Slashdot earlier about Dirac which also is open and seem to be superior over Theora so why discuss Theora at all?

It's not like Theora is a market standard or something anyway so why go with it if it's not the best product?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dirac_(codec)

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by memson
by Thom_Holwerda on Thu 4th Feb 2010 10:45 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by memson"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

It's not like Theora is a market standard


Well, it actually is. Every HTML5-capable browser supports Theora (except Safari), which means that everyone who has Chrome, Firefox, and Opera installed (32% of the market*) can playback Theora content on the web.

Since only Chrome and Safari support h264, h264 video on the web will give you a market reach of about 10%.

In other words... Theora is AT LEAST a better standard for web video than h264.

* Figures from NetApplications.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Comment by memson
by aliquis on Thu 4th Feb 2010 11:29 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by memson"
aliquis Member since:
2005-07-23

Ok, so now go look for websites using one of the formats and tell me how many videos in percent is encoded in what format ..

GL HF.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by memson
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 11:31 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by memson"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Ok, so now go look for websites using one of the formats and tell me how many videos in percent is encoded in what format ..

GL HF.


Sigh!

http://openvideo.dailymotion.com/en

100% Theora. Enjoy.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Comment by memson
by memson on Thu 4th Feb 2010 12:46 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by memson"
memson Member since:
2006-01-01

"Ok, so now go look for websites using one of the formats and tell me how many videos in percent is encoded in what format ..

GL HF.


Sigh!

http://openvideo.dailymotion.com/en

100% Theora. Enjoy.
"

Well, let's see:


http://openvideo.dailymotion.com/video/xb27z6_the-cathedral-vancouv...

vs

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xb27z6_the-cathedral-vancouver-fil...

If you scroll to 40 seconds in, the "actor" turns their head. The "openvideo" encode completely barfs pixellated blocks and artefacts, where as the regular "flash" based version doesn't. There is a *extremely* noticeable loss in quality for the "openvideo" version, especially the text on the opening credits and the "openvideo" version took about 10 seconds to buffer enough to start playing, where as the flash started immediately. Yes.. "progress"..

NB. that video was on the front page, and I watched the Theora version *first* before I viewed the flash version, so was expecting the Theora to at least be at the same level of quality.

Lemur2 - if you are going to promote Theora, fine. Please at least stop spamming everyone to death with your fanboyism. We get it. You like Theora.

Edited 2010-02-04 12:54 UTC

Reply Score: 6

RE[7]: Comment by memson
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 13:05 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by memson"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

" Sigh!

http://openvideo.dailymotion.com/en

100% Theora. Enjoy.


Well, let's see:


http://openvideo.dailymotion.com/video/xb27z6_the-cathedral-vancouv...

vs

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xb27z6_the-cathedral-vancouver-fil...

If you scroll to 40 seconds in, the "actor" turns their head. The "openvideo" encode completely barfs pixellated blocks and artefacts, where as the regular "flash" based version doesn't. There is a *extremely* noticeable loss in quality for the "openvideo" version, especially the text on the opening credits and the "openvideo" version took about 10 seconds to buffer enough to start playing, where as the flash started immediately. Yes.. "progress"..

Lemur2 - if you are going to promore Theora, fine. Please at least stop spamming everyone to death with your fanboyism. We get it. You like Theora.
"

Uploaded: 06/11/09

November 09. Theora 1.0 used to be lower than h264 quality. Yes memson, we knew that. Theora 1.1 was first released by developers in September '09, so it wouldn't have been in common use for the making of that clip.

http://openvideo.dailymotion.com/video/xc3sqi_expenses-i-took-stron...
http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xc3sqi_expenses-i-took-strong-stan...

Uploaded: 04/02/10

Not a particularly good quality video, I grant you, but it is equally good (or bad, if you will), for different reasons, in both formats. Either format serves the purpose equally well.

The Wikipedia page for Theora has a reasonable example of a small clip:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theora

As for the buffering comment ... that has actually to do I believe with a lack of size information in the Ogg streaming format. This can be worked around in several ways ... it won't be a problem by the time the HTML5 tag is finalised.

memson, if you are going to incorrectly badmouth Theora for no good reason (or even if you think you have a good reason) ... don't. You are doing no-one a favour. A free, and freedom, well-performing video codec, an unencumbered video codec is essential for the future of the public access web. It will benefit billions of people all over the planet if the web remains open and free, rather than closed and proprietary. Theora is the only hope of achieving the former over the latter.

What exactly is your purpose in trying to prevent it happening?

Edited 2010-02-04 13:19 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Comment by memson
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 11:17 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by memson"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Source for the claim that Theora 1.1 would be as good as H.264?


See for yourself:
http://people.xiph.org/~greg/video/ytcompare/comparison.html

Same filesize, same bitrate, imperceptible difference in video quality.

http://www.0xdeadbeef.com/weblog/2010/01/html5-video-and-h-264-what...

Mozilla says:
What the web is really asking for is a codec that is implemented everywhere, that competes well on quality and doesn’t come with GIF-like surprises. Theora and Vorbis fit every part of this bill. You can actually use them on all of the desktop browsers, either via native support or via a Java plugin that actually works pretty well.

On the quality side what we’ve been able to do at Mozilla, with the help of the rest of the Xiph community, is to show that even though Theora is based on older, royalty-free technology, most people can’t really tell the difference between a video encoded with a decent Theora encoder and a video encoded with H.264.


What I've read everywhere is that Theora is worse, even from our own Eugenia.


Out of date.

But then I don't know anything about version 1.1, but then there is H.265 to so ...


Theora 1.1 is the current version. h.265 is vapour-ware, and it throws away more video data than h.264 anyway, so it probably won't be as high quality.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H.265
Although some agreements about the goals of an H.265 project have been reached, e.g. computational efficiency and high compression performance, the current state of technology does not yet seem mature for creation of an entirely new H.265 standard


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theora#Performance
More recently however, Xiph developers have compared the 1.1 Theora encoder to YouTube's H.264 and H.263+ encoders, in response to concerns about Theora's inferior performance from Chris DiBona, a Google employee. They found the results from Theora to be nearly the same as YouTube's H.264 output, and much better than the H.263+ output.

The performance characteristics of the Theora 1.0 reference implementation are dominated mostly by implementation issues inherited from the original VP3 code base. Work leading up to the 1.1 stable release was focused on improving on or eliminating these implementation problems. A May 2009 review of this work shows a considerable improvement in quality, both subjectively and as measured by PSNR, just by improving the forward DCT and quantisation matrices. A flaw in the version of FFmpeg used in the test initially led to incorrect reports of Theora PSNR surpassing that of H.264. Although not achieving this goal, the improvement in the measured PSNR and the perceived quality is considerable. Further work on adaptive quantization, as well as overall detailed subjective tuning of the codec, is still to come.


Also no matter what I've read on Slashdot earlier about Dirac which also is open and seem to be superior over Theora so why discuss Theora at all?


Dirac is theoretically better at very high resolutions and quality, but it is not at all competitive with smaller video clips. There is also no software for it commonly available (hence it is at best only "theoretically" better).

It's not like Theora is a market standard or something anyway so why go with it if it's not the best product?


It is the best open codec product by far.

Edited 2010-02-04 11:19 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by memson
by memson on Thu 4th Feb 2010 12:51 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by memson"
memson Member since:
2006-01-01

"Dear Lemur2, Thom and to a lesser extent Kroc - here is your dose of Crow. Please eat it all up and try not to choke.


Actually, it is a victory in a way.
"

Yes, and Crow is tasty.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by memson
by KAMiKAZOW on Thu 4th Feb 2010 10:16 UTC in reply to "Comment by memson"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

Dear Lemur2, Thom and to a lesser extent Kroc - here is your dose of Crow. Please eat it all up and try not to choke.

It wouldn't be bad that they comment on that matter if they had any clue at all. I doubt anyone of them ever visited Doom9 and other codec-focused sites and forums to actually start to educate themselves.

My favorite ridiculous claim by Lemur2 is that Dirac is worse than Theora and Mozilla must not implement Dirac (even if co-existing with Theora), because Theora is actually patented by On2, while Dirac is 100% free of patents. (Dirac uses old wavelet techniques that are well known to be out of patent long ago, but were impractical to implement until a few years ago due hardware restrictions.)

A FOSS apologist defending patents... classic. :-D

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by memson
by Thom_Holwerda on Thu 4th Feb 2010 10:27 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by memson"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Dude, I never said anything abut Dirac or whatever other codec. As long as it's not patent-encumbered, I'm happy. It's just that RIGHT NOW, Theora is the OBVIOUS choice as it already has the most widespread support (better than h264, and infinitely better than Dirac).

I know you seem to have some sort of personal investment in Dirac, and that's fine - but just because you have a personal investment in your pet codec, doesn't mean the same applies to me. There's no other reason for me to talk about Theora other than that it is ALREADY supported NOW, as opposed to Dirac, which is not supported by ANY browser.

It's just common sense.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by memson
by aliquis on Thu 4th Feb 2010 11:06 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by memson"
aliquis Member since:
2005-07-23

It's obvious because so many know about it but noone gives a shit or use it.

"it already has the most widespread support"

Depends on how you look at it I suppose, maybe it's implemented in more open source products than Dirac but as long as the format is open I doubt that is an issue.

"as opposed to Dirac, which is not supported by ANY browser."

So what, the defacto standard isn't decided yet (or is H.264 and you lost.)

To choose a poor codec with bad results such as Theora is just retarded. It's as stupid as staying with Mpeg II would be, or going digital TV broadcasting using Mpeg II (as in here in Sweden...), do it over air or not using HD. It's as stupid as going HD-DVD over BluRay. And so on so on.

As long as something haven't been widely implemented and is the standard so it's a major struggle to replace it with something else pick the tool which is the best for the job and not something which is "ok."

If Dirac has superior quality, which it seem to have, go with it instead of stupid Theora just because people know about the Ogg brand (which they do from the audio part not because of video in the first place. And it's not like Ogg audio ever got really popular either, even though it's far bigger than the video codec.)

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Comment by memson
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 11:38 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by memson"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

To choose a poor codec with bad results such as Theora is just retarded. It's as stupid as staying with Mpeg II would be, or going digital TV broadcasting using Mpeg II (as in here in Sweden...), do it over air or not using HD. It's as stupid as going HD-DVD over BluRay. And so on so on.


It isn't as stupid as being horrendously out-of-date (and hence entirely wrong) with your evaluation of Theora's actual current results.

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: Comment by memson
by boldingd on Thu 4th Feb 2010 16:51 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by memson"
boldingd Member since:
2009-02-19

In all fairness, for every comparison that shows Theora 1.1 matching H264, there seems to be at least one showing Theora still well behind. I think the issue is at least unclear, and I would say it's disingenuous to declare that Theora 1.1 is clearly and incontrovertibly now just as good as H264, issue closed. (In particular, it sounds like Theora 1.1 is typically found to be "just as good" in controlled environments, whereas people aren't seeing the same results "out in the real world". And the difference between theoretical best-performance as seen in a lab test is a much less useful metric than reproducible real-world performance.)

Reply Score: 3

RE[6]: Comment by memson
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 22:29 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by memson"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

In all fairness, for every comparison that shows Theora 1.1 matching H264, there seems to be at least one showing Theora still well behind. I think the issue is at least unclear, and I would say it's disingenuous to declare that Theora 1.1 is clearly and incontrovertibly now just as good as H264, issue closed. (In particular, it sounds like Theora 1.1 is typically found to be "just as good" in controlled environments, whereas people aren't seeing the same results "out in the real world". And the difference between theoretical best-performance as seen in a lab test is a much less useful metric than reproducible real-world performance.)


In all fairness there is a large group of heavily interested companies who have a direct, substantial monetary interest in promoting h264.

http://www.mpegla.com/main/programs/AVC/Pages/Licensors.aspx

It is in the direct, undisputable financial interest of these companies to spread misinformation about competing formats such as Theora. The more misinformation and FUD, the better.

There is no "payoff" for spreading misinformation about h264 (and indeed being sued under laws such as the Lanham act is possible). Being a free, freedom, open codec, there is likewise no "payoff" for falsely promoting Theora, other than the altruistic fact that you are potentially doing something good for the worlds billions in saving them from having to pay avoidable taxes to MPEG LA.

When one encodes video, the results are variable depending on the source of the video. Not many people have access to raw, uncompressed video data (which BTW is why Big Buck Bunny is often used in fair comparisons, because uncompressed video is available), so a lot of amateurs are going to just transcode from one compressed format to another, and get very disappointing results for the format on the end of that chain. For sites where the content is user-contributed, you will get a lot of very poor video because it has been through three or four DIFFERENT compression algorithms before the user posts it.

Edited 2010-02-04 22:36 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[7]: Comment by memson
by boldingd on Thu 4th Feb 2010 22:35 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by memson"
boldingd Member since:
2009-02-19

Yeah, but if lots of people on this forum take videos in some third codec, and then transcode from CodecWhatever to h264, and transcode from CodecWhatever to Theora, and Theora looks worse, even version 1.1...

That's what I'm trying to tell you. It's not just Apple: random joe users, on this very forum, have reported inferior results with Theora. There is insufficient data to make the positive and unqualified assertion that Theora is now at-least-as-good-as h264. It may be or may not be: results are conflicting.

I'm not... ignorant of the associated issues here, more than half of my music library is in Ogg Vorbis, and I choose to encode new music in Ogg Vorbis for the philosophical reasons you mention. But my problem is that you're acting like Theora is now Clearly Equal to h264, when that is not clearly the case. That assertion requires more support than presently exists.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by memson
by miles on Thu 4th Feb 2010 17:07 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by memson"
miles Member since:
2006-06-15

If Dirac has superior quality, which it seem to have, go with it instead of stupid Theora just because people know about the Ogg brand (which they do from the audio part not because of video in the first place. And it's not like Ogg audio ever got really popular either, even though it's far bigger than the video codec.)


Since you have more information than most of us, could you please point to a recent comparison of Dirac with either H264 (Youtube bad parameters would be sufficient) or Theora 1.1, at 480p (standard Youtube resolution)? If it doesn't exist, could you please do a quick one, since you seem to know that Dirac is supperior you for sure must have ways to check that.

Else, the point is moot, and please refrain from such wild assertions.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by memson
by aliquis on Thu 4th Feb 2010 18:33 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by memson"
aliquis Member since:
2005-07-23

Not very good at reading comprehension are you?

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Comment by memson
by miles on Thu 4th Feb 2010 19:48 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by memson"
miles Member since:
2006-06-15

Not very good at reading comprehension are you?

Care to elaborate?

Yes, there's an "if" in your sentence, but adding "if" as an excuse to spread misinformation doesn't absolve you to back up your arguments with some facts. Else I doubt you'd have posted them as an argument against the use of Theora.

Especially when you back it up with the "which it seem to have" and use it as an argument against "stupid Theora". And saying that people who chose to backup Theora at the moment do so "just because people know about the Ogg brand" in opposition to Dirac means that either you can come up with the facts to back your claims, or you're just full of it and just repeating any stuff you've read on the net without having grasped the meaning of it.

Now instead of doging the point, could you please backup your claim?

Reply Score: 3

RE[7]: Comment by memson
by aliquis on Fri 5th Feb 2010 06:13 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by memson"
aliquis Member since:
2005-07-23

Yes, there's an "if" in your sentence, but adding "if" as an excuse to spread misinformation doesn't absolve you to back up your arguments with some facts.

Especially when you back it up with the "which it seem to have" and use it as an argument against "stupid Theora". And saying that people who chose to backup Theora at the moment do so "just because people know about the Ogg brand" in opposition to Dirac means that either you can come up with the facts to back your claims

Only comparisions I've seen are http://www.osnews.com/story/19019/Theora-vs-h.264/

In the FOSS camp people seem to back up anything just because it's open, which isn't necessary wrong, but yeah, IF H.264 was superior it seem pretty retarded to go with an inferior format, better wait for something open to catch up.

The name stuff was mostly because everyone into FOSS knows what ogg is, even though they may not encode much music using it themself, and that most likely give ogg theora a much bigger brand knowledge. I know I've known it for way longer and seen it mentioned many more times atleast.

Dirac wikipedia losely claims:
"Dirac supports resolutions up to HDTV (1920x1080) and greater and is claimed to provide significant savings in data rate and improvements in quality over video compression formats such as MPEG-2 Part 2, MPEG-4 Part 2 and its competitors, e.g. Theora, and WMV. Dirac's implementers make the preliminary claim of "a two-fold reduction in bit rate over MPEG-2 for high definition video",[11], which makes it comparable to the latest generation standards such as H.264/MPEG-4 AVC and VC-1."

So yeah, from looking at Eugenias post back in the day seeing how Theora looked way worse than H.264 and reading that Dirac was supposed to be better and comparable to H.264 I assumed both where true, Theora to look worse and Dirac to be better.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by memson
by KAMiKAZOW on Thu 4th Feb 2010 13:24 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by memson"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

Dude, I never said anything abut Dirac or whatever other codec.

That's the problem. You always only present Theora as only alternative to AVC and that's simply wrong, especially as Dirac performs way better at HD resolutions than Theora and is completely free of patents.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Comment by memson
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 13:33 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by memson"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"Dude, I never said anything abut Dirac or whatever other codec.

That's the problem. You always only present Theora as only alternative to AVC and that's simply wrong, especially as Dirac performs way better at HD resolutions than Theora and is completely free of patents.
"

One currently can't get software in any browser or player for Dirac. One can't find any Dirac-encoded video on the web to view. At resolutions up to about 720p, recent versions of Theora perform better anyway.

Dirac will probably have application at very high resolutions (say 1080p), but that just isn't web video clips right now ... web video clips are 380p or lower for the most part, and Dirac is lousy at those sizes.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by memson
by KAMiKAZOW on Thu 4th Feb 2010 13:38 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by memson"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

One currently can't get software in any browser or player for Dirac.

Yes, YOU can't find VLC. We get it! All the other millions of people who have either VLC or GStreamer installed, can play Dirac video just fine.
Now stop spreading anti-Dirac FUD already!!

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by memson
by Zifre on Thu 4th Feb 2010 21:00 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by memson"
Zifre Member since:
2009-10-04

You always only present Theora as only alternative to AVC and that's simply wrong

At lower resolutions, Theora is better.

Dirac performs way better at HD resolutions than Theora

This is true.

[Dirac] is completely free of patents.

So? Theora has patents, but they under an irrevocable free license. This is actually preferable to no patents since it gives them a weapon to fight with in the case of other unknown patents. So why do you keep using this argument?

I understand your point, and I agree with you, but you are just as fanboi-ish as lemur2...

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by memson
by danieldk on Thu 4th Feb 2010 17:24 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by memson"
danieldk Member since:
2005-11-18

It's just that RIGHT NOW, Theora is the OBVIOUS choice as it already has the most widespread support (better than h264, and infinitely better than Dirac).


In web browsers... But it is a whole lot easier to add browser support for a codec, than to replace hardware already out there with hardware-assisted H.264 decoding. Besides that, the latest installments of the two most popular operating systems have excellent H.264 support.

Google and Vimeo's choices have jeopardized Theora's chances. For most people it's more important to be able to wach Youtube videos, than to have a particular browser.

Time to nuke software patents ;) .

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by memson
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 10:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by memson"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"Dear Lemur2, Thom and to a lesser extent Kroc - here is your dose of Crow. Please eat it all up and try not to choke.

It wouldn't be bad that they comment on that matter if they had any clue at all. I doubt anyone of them ever visited Doom9 and other codec-focused sites and forums to actually start to educate themselves.

My favorite ridiculous claim by Lemur2 is that Dirac is worse than Theora and Mozilla must not implement Dirac (even if co-existing with Theora), because Theora is actually patented by On2, while Dirac is 100% free of patents. (Dirac uses old wavelet techniques that are well known to be out of patent long ago, but were impractical to implement until a few years ago due hardware restrictions.)

A FOSS apologist defending patents... classic. :-D
"

I don't need to apologise for FOSS ... it is free, it is freedom, it is great software, enjoy!

What's to apologise for?

As for the practical comparison of state-of-the-art Theora vs Dirac on the web, here are some samples of Theora:

http://openvideo.dailymotion.com/en
http://internetarchive.wordpress.com/2008/11/25/rederiving-our-movi...
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Main_Page
http://www.archive.org/details/movies

and here are samples of Dirac:
http://samples.mplayerhq.hu/V-codecs/Dirac/

I can't tell you the performance of Dirac, because no current software I could find could play the files, sorry.

Finally, as for defences for FOSS software against patents, FOSS is just fine with having patents where they are royalty-free and used purely to defend FOSS software against attack by patent trolls and big-business opposition.

Read up on the topic at these sites:
http://www.openinventionnetwork.com/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_Invention_Network

http://www.patentcommons.org/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patent_Commons

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IBM_Technical_Disclosure_Bulletin

Classic indeed. Having patent coverage and making it irrevocable and royalty-free for everybody is indeed a classic tactic to defend FOSS software against other patents.

It is far more effective than the old "sitting duck" ploy, let me tell you.

Edited 2010-02-04 10:48 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by memson
by KAMiKAZOW on Thu 4th Feb 2010 13:28 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by memson"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

and here are samples of Dirac:
http://samples.mplayerhq.hu/V-codecs/Dirac/

I can't tell you the performance of Dirac, because no current software I could find could play the files, sorry.

Yes, you are not able to find VLC. VLC plays the files just fine.
Again you gave proof how clueless you are about video codec matters....

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Comment by memson
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 13:39 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by memson"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"and here are samples of Dirac:
http://samples.mplayerhq.hu/V-codecs/Dirac/

I can't tell you the performance of Dirac, because no current software I could find could play the files, sorry.

Yes, you are not able to find VLC. VLC plays the files just fine.
Again you gave proof how clueless you are about video codec matters....
"

"No suitable decoder module:
VLC does not support the audio or video format "drac". Unfortunately there is no way for you to fix this."

That was the result for VLC media player 1.05 Goldeneye.

VLC 1.0.5 is the current version, released on: 2010-01-31. VLC 1.1 is not released yet.

SMPlayer says this:
src3_422p_ffdirac.drc
General
File /home/******/Videos/src3_422p_ffdirac.drc
Size 2304 KB (2 MB)
Length 00:00:00
Demuxer lavf

Video Resolution 0 x 0
Aspect ratio nan
Format drac
Bitrate 0 kbps
Frames per second 25.000
Selected codec

Initial Audio Stream
Format

Bitrate 0 kbps
Rate 0 Hz
Channels 0
Selected codec


It tried, it didn't crash, but nothing played.

Edited 2010-02-04 13:44 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by memson
by KAMiKAZOW on Thu 4th Feb 2010 14:24 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by memson"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

"No suitable decoder module:
VLC does not support the audio or video format "drac". Unfortunately there is no way for you to fix this."

That was the result for VLC media player 1.05 Goldeneye.

VLC 1.0.5 is the current version, released on: 2010-01-31. VLC 1.1 is not released yet.

Yeah, right..... http://www.flickr.com/photos/19616885@N00/4330361928/
VLC 1.05

If you are using Linux, bug your distributor that he packages VLC badly.

Edited 2010-02-04 14:25 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by memson
by miles on Thu 4th Feb 2010 17:02 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by memson"
miles Member since:
2006-06-15

and here are samples of Dirac:
http://samples.mplayerhq.hu/V-codecs/Dirac/

I can't tell you the performance of Dirac, because no current software I could find could play the files, sorry.


No need to check for yourself. I tried both clips, and at about 2000kbps for 420p, they produce worse quality than a kid could do with x264 and less than 500kbps.

It's possible they're a really bad example (but still worrying, I beleive it would be impossible to get that bad quality with any H264 encoder, or Theora for what it's worth), but then why hasn't any Dirac proponent produced a comparison between Diracs and other codecs (they could even compare it with Youtube, since that's what's at stake here, not the encodes we'd do for our own consumption, but what Youtube serves us).

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by memson
by daveak on Thu 4th Feb 2010 19:19 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by memson"
daveak Member since:
2008-12-29


My favorite ridiculous claim by Lemur2 is that Dirac is worse than Theora and Mozilla must not implement Dirac (even if co-existing with Theora),


I'll repeat what I have said numerous times. I agree, Mozilla must not implement Dirac, or any other bloody codec. They need to pull their heads out of their collective arses and use the multimedia framework available on the system like every other browser is doing. If they want Theora support they can bundle the codec with the Firefox installer.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by memson
by Thom_Holwerda on Thu 4th Feb 2010 20:21 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by memson"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Firefox is cross-platform. It's be insane to ask them to write code for and support GStreamer, DirectShow, and QuickTime (both 7.x and X, since not everyone has upgraded to Snow Leopard yet). And then, every time the Linux world decides to move on, they'd have to start all over again.

It's just not practical. It's much easier to put the codec straight into the browser.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Comment by memson
by daveak on Thu 4th Feb 2010 22:48 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by memson"
daveak Member since:
2008-12-29

They add a lot of other platform specific code. However if you are going to take that standpoint, gstreamer builds on all platforms, and supports directshow and quicktime on windows and macos so will use the native codecs.

Reply Score: 2

Editor Needed
by Macrat on Thu 4th Feb 2010 01:03 UTC
Macrat
Member since:
2006-03-27

"...fears had arisen that the MPEG-LA would change the licensing terms for h624 for the worse. "

Be sure to review before posting.

Reply Score: 0

This is good news
by obsidian on Thu 4th Feb 2010 01:26 UTC
obsidian
Member since:
2007-05-12

Let MPEG-LA keep their proprietary codec while the web moves on to Theora.

This just reinforces the wisdom of moving to Theora, making the web more open and standards-based and thus avoiding MPEG-LA's "web tax" and vendor lock-in.

Google will play a crucial role in this, given that they own YouTube. If they can really step up and support Theora, it'll be great for everyone - except MPEG-LA.

Reply Score: 3

RE: This is good news
by nt_jerkface on Thu 4th Feb 2010 02:23 UTC in reply to "This is good news"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Google will play a crucial role in this, given that they own YouTube. If they can really step up and support Theora, it'll be great for everyone - except MPEG-LA.


LOL they already are playing a crucial role by supporting h.264.

Reply Score: 6

RE: This is good news
by Karitku on Thu 4th Feb 2010 08:57 UTC in reply to "This is good news"
Karitku Member since:
2006-01-12

Let MPEG-LA keep their proprietary codec while the web moves on to Theora. This just reinforces the wisdom of moving to Theora, making the web more open and standards-based and thus avoiding MPEG-LA's "web tax" and vendor lock-in. Google will play a crucial role in this, given that they own YouTube. If they can really step up and support Theora, it'll be great for everyone - except MPEG-LA.

Keep dreaming moose. Microsoft will bring IE9 with h264 support and without theora. This will mean majority of web users can be served with h264 codec so which one you think is gonna win? Mozilla will shit pants and come back to line when other browsers start eating it share. Most of the web content people don't care since they think money. Couple of freetards will be crying in corner, majority of people won't just care. W3C actually made video tag right since those who want most people will choose h264 even if it costs. Puritist will choose theora. This is true freedom. Freedom to choose with consequencies.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: This is good news
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 09:10 UTC in reply to "RE: This is good news"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Most of the web content people don't care since they think money.


If they truly "think money", then they would use Theora, as it costs less.

The only way h264 could be better for sites that "think money" is if MPEG LA is sponsoring them to use h264.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: This is good news
by Karitku on Thu 4th Feb 2010 13:34 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This is good news"
Karitku Member since:
2006-01-12

"Most of the web content people don't care since they think money.
If they truly "think money", then they would use Theora, as it costs less. The only way h264 could be better for sites that "think money" is if MPEG LA is sponsoring them to use h264. "
Sigh, lets do some math. I have content that I'm planning to show in internet. Let's assume majority of my customers are normal people, not tech nerds. So this would mean that 72% of my customers would have h264 capable browser and only 33% would have Theora capable browser. So naturally I would choose h264 since most people would have access on content. Ofc you can always hope that miracle happens and Firefox by some leap of faith gets over 50% markets.

I didn't even bother talking on payed content since what kind a idiotic firm would sell content without DRM, none. Those firms will keep using flash or WMV or Silverlight. Only very few firms would actually pay MPEG LA for paying content, most video tag content will be free. And most already have tools to make videos so they have license for H264 encoding alread.

Only freetards who want everything to be free seems to make this huge issue, rest of the people just don't care.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: This is good news
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 14:15 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This is good news"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"Most of the web content people don't care since they think money. If they truly "think money", then they would use Theora, as it costs less. The only way h264 could be better for sites that "think money" is if MPEG LA is sponsoring them to use h264.

Sigh, lets do some math. I have content that I'm planning to show in internet. Let's assume majority of my customers are normal people, not tech nerds. So this would mean that 72% of my customers would have h264 capable browser and only 33% would have Theora capable browser. So naturally I would choose h264 since most people would have access on content. Ofc you can always hope that miracle happens and Firefox by some leap of faith gets over 50% markets.

I didn't even bother talking on payed content since what kind a idiotic firm would sell content without DRM, none. Those firms will keep using flash or WMV or Silverlight. Only very few firms would actually pay MPEG LA for paying content, most video tag content will be free. And most already have tools to make videos so they have license for H264 encoding alread.

Only freetards who want everything to be free seems to make this huge issue, rest of the people just don't care.
"

It isn't about what is easiest for companies to reach the most people, although your logic even there is wrong because AFAIK no browser support h264 (you have to get a plugin of some kind).

What it is about is low barriers to entry for ANYONE to put video on the web. Schools, if they want, or local councils, or individuals.

Here are some clues for you:
http://arstechnica.com/open-source/news/2009/01/mozilla-contributes...
"Open standards for audio and video are important because they can be used by anyone for any purpose without royalties, and can be inspected and improved by an open community. Today, video and audio on the web are dominated by proprietary technologies, most frequently patent-encumbered codecs wrapped into closed-source player widgets," Möller writes. "Wikimedia and Mozilla want to help to build a web where video and audio are first class citizens: easy to use and manipulate by anyone, without compulsory royalty schemes or other barriers to participation."


No artificial rip-off barriers to participation. Public access web ... for everyone. Even for people without an MPEG-LA-sized budget.

Edited 2010-02-04 14:15 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: This is good news
by danieldk on Thu 4th Feb 2010 17:29 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: This is good news"
danieldk Member since:
2005-11-18

although your logic even there is wrong because AFAIK no browser support h264 (you have to get a plugin of some kind).


Both browsers that I commonly use have out of the box support for H.264, thank you.

What it is about is low barriers to entry for ANYONE to put video on the web. Schools, if they want, or local councils, or individuals.


The video tag is neutral. If you fear about getting sued for H.264, use Theora or Dirac, and advise users to install a plugin if their browser does not support these formats.

[i]No artificial rip-off barriers to participation. Public access web ... for everyone. Even for people without an MPEG-LA-sized budget.


Web access won't be much of a problem, since the latest version of the most commonly used operating systems support H.264 anyway. For the rest there is VLC(/gstreamer/...).

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: This is good news
by bert64 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 20:07 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This is good news"
bert64 Member since:
2007-04-23

Everyone should care...
The web has always been free and open, and probably wouldn't have succeeded if it wasn't (look at all the old closed networks like aol, compuserve and msn)...
Anyone can write a web browser, and anyone can acquire and use one...
If h.264 becomes too prevalent, then web browsers will start to cost money and be closed source, and only a small number of players will be able to make them.
The web thrived because it was open, it was built on open standards, the first browsers were open source and many of the innovative features on the web today originated in open source browsers.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: This is good news
by wumip on Fri 5th Feb 2010 00:18 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: This is good news"
wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

So this would mean that 72% of my customers would have h264 capable browser and only 33% would have Theora capable browser.

Sorry, but the vast majority of html5 video capable browsers support Theora:


http://blog.gingertech.net/2010/01/25/html5-video-25-h-264-reach-vs...

Ofc you can always hope that miracle happens and Firefox by some leap of faith gets over 50% markets.

Firefox has 25-30% of the market. Chrome has 5% of the market or so. Opera has a couple of % as well. More than 30% of all browsers support Theora. Chrome + Safari are less than 10%. So less than 10% support h.264.

Only freetards who want everything to be free seems to make this huge issue, rest of the people just don't care.

Not everything free. Just basic web stuff like HTML, CSS, video...

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: This is good news
by Zifre on Thu 4th Feb 2010 12:39 UTC in reply to "RE: This is good news"
Zifre Member since:
2009-10-04

Couple of freetards will be crying in corner, majority of people won't just care.

Do you have to make yourself sound like an idiot and be offensive?

Reply Score: 7

RE: This is good news
by aliquis on Thu 4th Feb 2010 11:08 UTC in reply to "This is good news"
aliquis Member since:
2005-07-23

Except us looking and ISPs and maybe Google themself depending on quality @ whatever bitrate vs license cost.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by viator
by viator on Thu 4th Feb 2010 01:53 UTC
viator
Member since:
2005-10-11

Mpeg la is delibrately making things confusing. H264 is not "free" or open at all! And it is becoming more and more clear that theora is the only standard viable for html5 video.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by viator
by mrhasbean on Thu 4th Feb 2010 02:19 UTC in reply to "Comment by viator"
mrhasbean Member since:
2006-04-03

And it is becoming more and more clear that theora is the only standard viable for html5 video.


And therein lies the problem - Theora is NOT a standard, at least not one that is internationally recognised by the necessary industry bodies. And until THAT situation is addressed it is extremely unlikely to be adopted as the HTML5 default.

I can see the lawyers rubbing their hands together at the prospects...

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Comment by viator
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 02:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by viator"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"And it is becoming more and more clear that theora is the only standard viable for html5 video.
And therein lies the problem - Theora is NOT a standard, at least not one that is internationally recognised by the necessary industry bodies. And until THAT situation is addressed it is extremely unlikely to be adopted as the HTML5 default. "

All that is required is for the W3C to say that the codec for HTML5 is Theora ... as they already did until self-interested commercial parties temporarily stopped them ... and then it IS a standard.

I can see the lawyers rubbing their hands together at the prospects...


The prospects for what? What have lawyers got to do with it?

The requirements for the codec that W3C are seeking to standardise on for HTML5 are quite clear:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ogg_controversy
In order to not impose dependence on proprietary technology for web users (both consumers and publishers), web content must be available through freely implementable, royalty free open standards. As multimedia is already mainstream on the web, this has been a concern to developers of HTML 5, given the current use of non-interoperable ad hoc embedding methods, proprietary data formats and dependence on proprietary browser plugins.

Freely implementable, royalty free open formats for video and audio (which the Ogg formats are) can:

have the potential for universal acceptance, creating a "baseline format" that everyone is both able and permitted to use without restrictions (legal, technical, what so ever).
enable browsers to handle playback. Straight-forward embedding with HTML5 will facilitate this.
keep web content out of "plugin prison". This is a consequence of the above. Plugin prison refers both to the limitations of existing browser plugins and the dependence on them:
The format will be specified, not the plugin, so one can for example take advantage of the best playback implementation on a given platform, instead of depending on a commercial third party to support your platform.
Dependence on specific proprietary software to access data (such as encode, transfer, decode) goes against principles like "own your data" and "control your computing", which arguably applies not only to publishers, but also consumers wanting to access it.
lower the bar for amateur publishing. Free software encoders and straight-forward HTML5 embedding will require less effort and money than becoming an actionscript programmer.


Despite inteference from some commercial interests, the choice of codec cannot be held up forever.

There is only ONE codec choice at the moment that satisfies these requirements, and that is Theora.

Note that the announcement made by MPEG LA says only that free content over the web would not attract a royalty for h264, and even then only for the next five years. That means that h264 still does not qualify, as W3C requirements are that all content be royalty-free.

So where is there any kind of legal problem?

PS: There might however be a legal problem for Apple and others trying to stop Theora being declared as the HTML5 standard codec by raising bogus objections.

Edited 2010-02-04 02:53 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by viator
by tyrione on Thu 4th Feb 2010 02:59 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by viator"
tyrione Member since:
2005-11-21

How can we say this any more plainly:

Nvidia, Intel and AMD all support h.264 hardware accelerated video.

None of them are building support for Theora.

Reply Score: 5

RE[4]: Comment by viator
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 03:06 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by viator"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

How can we say this any more plainly: Nvidia, Intel and AMD all support h.264 hardware accelerated video. None of them are building support for Theora.


How can it be said more plainly: h264 does not meet the freely-implementable, royalty-free (to all parties) requirements for a video codec for the web. Theora does.

Nvidia, Intel and AMD all support programmable pixel shaders and GPGPU, which can be used for hardware accelerated video decoding of any codec.

http://xbmc.org/wiki/?title=Hardware_Accelerated_Video_Decoding#Alt...

Reply Score: 5

RE[4]: Comment by viator
by WereCatf on Thu 4th Feb 2010 03:16 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by viator"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

Indeed. Though, they should.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by viator
by aliquis on Thu 4th Feb 2010 11:19 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by viator"
aliquis Member since:
2005-07-23

What's the issue with Dirac then?

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by viator
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 11:26 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by viator"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

What's the issue with Dirac then?


1. Not competitive performance-wise for the common sizes of web video clips (which is smallish, 320p or thereabouts).

2. No software available in wide circulation, not supported by any current common players or browsers.

3. No defensive patent coverage.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by viator
by daveak on Thu 4th Feb 2010 19:22 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by viator"
daveak Member since:
2008-12-29

"What's the issue with Dirac then?

2. No software available in wide circulation, not supported by any current common players or browsers.
.
"

It is supported by Gstreamer (just install apt-get or whatever the codec plugin), so should play just fine under Totem or any other Gstreamer based player.... such as Opera as their <video> support is Gstreamer based is it not?

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: Comment by viator
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 22:12 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by viator"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"[q]What's the issue with Dirac then?
2. No software available in wide circulation, not supported by any current common players or browsers. . " It is supported by Gstreamer (just install apt-get or whatever the codec plugin), so should play just fine under Totem or any other Gstreamer based player.... such as Opera as their support is Gstreamer based is it not? [/q]

I have gstreamer installed, and all gstreamer plugins, and gstreamer-ffmpeg, and the separate shcroedinger (sp?) codec. No dice, Dirac doesn't play.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: Comment by viator
by boldingd on Thu 4th Feb 2010 22:19 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by viator"
boldingd Member since:
2009-02-19

I'm on ancient-and-broken Red Hat 4, using an old ffmpeg. I downloaded the linked example, opened up an xterm, and `ffplay ~/Desktop/*.drc` worked perfectly, the video played. With old-and-broken ffmpeg. This is one of the few times that any multimedia-related software has worked correctly on this machine.

I realize that no popular browser supports Dirac, but there definitely are working players out there.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by viator
by KAMiKAZOW on Thu 4th Feb 2010 13:31 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by viator"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

What's the issue with Dirac then?

There aren't any issues. Lemur2 is just a Theora fanboy and accepts no other codecs besides Theora, even though they could coexist just fine.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Comment by viator
by darkstego on Thu 4th Feb 2010 07:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by viator"
darkstego Member since:
2007-10-26

Theora is NOT a standard, at least not one that is internationally recognised by the necessary industry bodies.


I don't really understand who should recognize Theora as a standard. If we are talking about web based video, then I believe what really matters is what the browsers support. And even today with all the talk about Theora not being a standard, it is supported natively by Firefox,Chrome and Opera. The only browser that supports only .h264 is Safari.

So as a content provider, if you encode in Theora you have a better shot that your users are actually able to view your content.

Edited 2010-02-04 07:48 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by viator
by KAMiKAZOW on Thu 4th Feb 2010 13:35 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by viator"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

The only browser that supports only .h264 is Safari.

That's not true. Safari delegates all video requests to QuickTime and QuickTime plays whatever format it has codecs for.
Xiph distributes a codec package for QuickTime that's sadly not maintained well. If the codec package plays Ogg streams, then Safari plays them, too.

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: Comment by viator
by darkstego on Thu 4th Feb 2010 14:45 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by viator"
darkstego Member since:
2007-10-26

I was talking about official support. One could work h264 support into firefox through codecs. What I was mentioning is you post a Theora video you are guaranteed support by any recent Firefox,Opera or Chrome user.

If the user is browsing with Safari then the only video you can be certain he can access is h264.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Comment by viator
by StephenBeDoper on Thu 4th Feb 2010 14:52 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by viator"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

The only browser that supports only .h264 is Safari.


Chrome does support h.264 via the <video> tag, but only the official releases (h.264 playback doesn't work in variants like Iron, or presumably Chromium).

Interestingly enough, that makes Chrome the only browser that can view all 4 of the videos on a test page I setup for checking browser compatibility & comparing video quality (h.264 MP4, Ogg Theora, WMV, and MPEG1 for baseline).

And on the other side, it was quite funny/sad to see that the MPEG1 file was the only video that could be viewed in all of the (Windows) browsers I tested with.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Comment by viator
by darkstego on Thu 4th Feb 2010 16:50 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by viator"
darkstego Member since:
2007-10-26

True, but I was talking about browsers that supports only h264, as in not support Theora.

Its interesting what you said about Chrome's wide video portfolio. This shows that a browser backed by deep pockets can provide just about anything they want. Which makes it even more frustrating that Apple have not placed Theora support into Safari (updating the iphone to run Theora would not have cost them all that much).

It is sad that we are looking at a future where if someone wants to make a browser that can support the standard video on the web he better be ready to shell out the $5Mill/year price. This will mean many smaller browsers will no longer be able to view the web as other browsers can. Some may argue that no one cares about these small time browsers. But remember at one time Opera and Firefox were small time browsers, but they were able to compete with the IEs of the world and really push for more innovation in the browser market.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by viator
by StephenBeDoper on Fri 5th Feb 2010 14:20 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by viator"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

Its interesting what you said about Chrome's wide video portfolio. This shows that a browser backed by deep pockets can provide just about anything they want.


And the situation is getting almost as convoluted as it was 10 years ago. Even with h.264, you still need to provide different delivery methods for different users, even if they're just different ways to deliver the same file.

Which makes it even more frustrating that Apple have not placed Theora support into Safari (updating the iphone to run Theora would not have cost them all that much).


Agreed. Apple's objections *would* be valid if they were just arguing against making Theora the primary/officially-blessed video format for their handhelds. But their arguments don't justify completely leaving out Theora support (and they go even further by preventing third-parties from implementing support).

I think that the reasons are obvious: Apple has "hitched their wagon" to h.264 at every level of their product line - from iPods all the way up to their pro-level video editing products, along with everything in between. To describe that as a "vested interest" would be a serious understatement.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by viator
by bert64 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 20:08 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by viator"
bert64 Member since:
2007-04-23

It doesn't need to be a standard, it can be made a part of the html5 standard.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by Soulbender
by Soulbender on Thu 4th Feb 2010 02:44 UTC
Soulbender
Member since:
2005-08-18

The h264 codec is still a patent-encumbered mess, and with the risk of unknowing end users getting sued by the MPEG-LA


In any country with a sane legal system it is not the end user who is responsible for license violations in the product they are using and it would not even be possible for MPEG-LA to start a legal process against a user. End users are not expected to understand all the different licences and associated legalities for a product. Any attempts at suing an end user would be thrown out immediately.
The responsible party is the manufacturer of said product and they're the ones wo need to worry about being sued by MPEG-LA.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Comment by Soulbender
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 02:59 UTC in reply to "Comment by Soulbender"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"The h264 codec is still a patent-encumbered mess, and with the risk of unknowing end users getting sued by the MPEG-LA
In any country with a sane legal system it is not the end user who is responsible for license violations in the product they are using and it would not even be possible for MPEG-LA to start a legal process against a user. End users are not expected to understand all the different licences and associated legalities for a product. Any attempts at suing an end user would be thrown out immediately. The responsible party is the manufacturer of said product and they're the ones wo need to worry about being sued by MPEG-LA. "

The royalty-free requirements for the video codec standard for the web do not apply only to users.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ogg_controversy
In order to not impose dependence on proprietary technology for web users (both consumers and publishers), web content must be available through freely implementable, royalty free open standards.


MPEG-LA's h264 codec does not meet these conditions, only Theora does.

Edited 2010-02-04 03:00 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by Soulbender
by aliquis on Thu 4th Feb 2010 11:25 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Soulbender"
aliquis Member since:
2005-07-23

"freely implementable, royalty free open standards."
MPEG-LA's h264 codec does not meet these conditions, only Theora does.

"Dirac is an open and royalty-free video compression format, specification and system developed by BBC Research at the BBC.[1][2] Schrödinger and dirac-research (formerly just called 'Dirac') are open and royalty-free software implementations (video codecs) of Dirac.", http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dirac_(codec)

Whatever ..


Theora is supposed to have worse video quality than H.264, hence I don't like it to win, even if it may have other advantages. I hate standardisation on inferior formats.

Edited 2010-02-04 11:27 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by Soulbender
by lemur2 on Thu 4th Feb 2010 11:27 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Soulbender"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Theora is supposed to have worse video quality than H.264, hence I don't like it to win, even if it may have other advantages. I hate standardisation on inferior formats.


You are OK then, because Theora is not inferior. (It once was, but no longer). It is now entirely competitive, it produces results such that most people wouldn't be able to tell the difference in quality to h.264. You would need analysis software to tell them apart.

Edited 2010-02-04 11:30 UTC

Reply Score: 1

h264 is a triple hit for most producers
by TechGeek on Thu 4th Feb 2010 03:23 UTC
TechGeek
Member since:
2006-01-14

Lets see, you have to pay to encode video in h264. Then you have to pay again to stream video over the web. Then, you have to pay again if you are a commercial site. You don't think all these costs are going to be passed on to the end user somehow? Either that or it will create a barrier to entry where only large entities can put streaming video on the web.

The web is suppose to be open. Theora is open. Where is the logic in using h264?

Reply Score: 7

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Lets see, you have to pay to encode video in h264. Then you have to pay again to stream video over the web. Then, you have to pay again if you are a commercial site. You don't think all these costs are going to be passed on to the end user somehow? Either that or it will create a barrier to entry where only large entities can put streaming video on the web. The web is suppose to be open. Theora is open. Where is the logic in using h264?


Precisely. Exactly. Absolutely spot on.

Even the announcement by MPEG-LA that is the subject of the thread effectively means, as Thom says: "MPEG-LA will not collect royalties for internet video that is free to end users".

Not good enough. The requirement for the standard web video codec is for a freely implementable (by anyone), royalty-free (to all parties) codec.

H264 doesn't even get close to that requirement.

Edited 2010-02-04 03:34 UTC

Reply Score: 2

SReilly Member since:
2006-12-28

The requirement for the standard web video codec is for a freely implementable (by anyone), royalty-free (to all parties) codec.

Exactly. For all those in doubt, look up Sir Tim Berners-Lee and why he created the world wide web in the first place. Believe me, it wasn't to lock people into technological and monetary chains. The whole point of the web has always been about free and open disclosure, what science used to be about before the capitalists got their hands on scientific publication.

It really is that simple.

Reply Score: 4

darkstego Member since:
2007-10-26

You are correct. Historically the web has been a level playing field. I really hope this continues to be the case in the future.

Reply Score: 2

BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

Lets see, you have to pay to encode video in h264.

In what sense? In that you need to pay for the encoder, or are there per-video licensing costs for merely encoding to h.264?

If it's the latter, typically that's done as a one-time/flat licensing fee charged to the people selling the encoder - rather than any kind of per-use fee for end users of the encoder.

Reply Score: 2

wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

In what sense? In that you need to pay for the encoder, or are there per-video licensing costs for merely encoding to h.264?

If it's the latter, typically that's done as a one-time/flat licensing fee charged to the people selling the encoder - rather than any kind of per-use fee for end users of the encoder.

Everyone is responsible for everything being paid:

http://bemasc.net/wordpress/2010/02/02/no-you-cant-do-that-with-h26...
http://www.osnews.com/story/22812/MPEG-LA_Further_Solidifies_Theora...

Reply Score: 1

Quality Theora-based Content Online
by hankheathen on Thu 4th Feb 2010 04:57 UTC
hankheathen
Member since:
2009-05-13

Okay - it seems settled then (according to most of the posts here).

Theora is the way to go, cos not only is it not encumbered by patents, it's every but as good as h.264 quality-wise (cos we care about quality here too, yeah?)

So can anyone post a couple of URLs for sites serving up high quality Theora-based video content?

Anyone?

Reply Score: 0

openadvocate Member since:
2010-01-21

I realize that you're being sarcastic but here are two as you've requested:

http://www.wikipedia.org/

http://openvideo.dailymotion.com/

*Note: Dailymotion is in the process of converting from Flash to the HTML5 video tag. Not all videos may be available in Ogg Theora at this time but many are.

Edited 2010-02-04 05:50 UTC

Reply Score: 2

hankheathen Member since:
2009-05-13

It's true... I was being sarcastic. Well spotted.

I actually was aware that Wikipedia served up video in Theora format - I didn't know that daily motion did.

But I was actually after high quality content, as in hi-res, well encoded.

Reply Score: 1

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

It's true... I was being sarcastic. Well spotted.

I actually was aware that Wikipedia served up video in Theora format - I didn't know that daily motion did.

But I was actually after high quality content, as in hi-res, well encoded.


Not many people have access to uncompressed hi-res video, from which to encode high quality content.

One user-contribution site called tinyvid.tv did have at least a few hi-res (720p) movie trailers from the recent Sherlock Holmes movie, but that site has had to close because of the high bandwidth requirements.

Nevertheless, those two 720p trailers did prove the point ... Theora 1.1 can deliver hi-res good quality.

Here is a screenshot gallery of one of those clips playing on my system:

http://ourlan.homelinux.net/qdig/?Qwd=./Theora_720p&Qiv=name&Qis=M

The last shot shows the actual player window:

http://ourlan.homelinux.net/qdig/?Qwd=./Theora_720p&Qif=SMplayer.pn...

Edited 2010-02-07 10:36 UTC

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Okay - it seems settled then (according to most of the posts here). Theora is the way to go, cos not only is it not encumbered by patents, it's every but as good as h.264 quality-wise (cos we care about quality here too, yeah?) So can anyone post a couple of URLs for sites serving up high quality Theora-based video content? Anyone?


Theora has only been up to scratch since September 2009 timeframe, so websites serving equivalent-to-h264 quality Theora videos are not yet plentiful. This is the similar situation as for h264 a year or two ago when h264 was new, and all of YouTube was h263 or worse.

However, despite the fact that Theora has only recently improved to sufficient quality, here as you requested are a couple of URLs for sites which now serve Theora video:

http://openvideo.dailymotion.com/
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Main_Page

Given your sarcastic tone, no doubt you did not expect that.

Another site whose name you may recognise: any video on Wikipedia is encoded with Theora.

A slightly longer list of URLs is here:
http://wiki.xiph.org/index.php/List_of_Theora_videos

Edited 2010-02-04 06:09 UTC

Reply Score: 2

The anouncement says one thing..
by fithisux on Thu 4th Feb 2010 08:01 UTC
fithisux
Member since:
2006-01-22

Theora, theora, theora. for example bradcom could have published more open source for its CrystalHD if it was for Theora acceleration. Free encoding and free decoding/srtreaming should not be charged. H264 is good but nobody makes decisions on quality only.

Reply Score: 2

nt_jerkface
Member since:
2009-08-26

who may not otherwise include internet video support in devices like set-top boxes and blu-ray players because of decoder fees.

I was neutral for a while but I have decided that Theora should be adopted due to its flexibility. It's more than adequate when it comes to quality for typical internet videos and movie rental websites that want something else can use a plug-in.

I think the best move at this point would be for the W3 to adopt Theora as its default codec which would then put Google on the defensive. Google will only convert YouTube to Theora if their public image is threatened.

Reply Score: 3

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

who may not otherwise include internet video support in devices like set-top boxes and blu-ray players because of decoder fees.

I was neutral for a while but I have decided that Theora should be adopted due to its flexibility. It's more than adequate when it comes to quality for typical internet videos and movie rental websites that want something else can use a plug-in.

I think the best move at this point would be for the W3 to adopt Theora as its default codec which would then put Google on the defensive. Google will only convert YouTube to Theora if their public image is threatened.


Google and Vimeo, both of whom recently announced experimentation with HTML5, have both been heavily flooded with requests for HTML5/Theora rather than HTML5/h264.

Both have adopted a pronounced "la la la I can't hear you" attitude, and both have summarily and rather rudely closed off accepting any further comments on the topic.

http://gedece-en.blogspot.com/2010/02/boycott.html

This fact, along with the announcement from MPEG LA that is the subject of this thread, heavily suggests that MPEG LA has offered a special "deal" to both of them.

Edited 2010-02-04 09:15 UTC

Reply Score: 2

karunko Member since:
2008-10-28


Google and Vimeo, both of whom recently announced experimentation with HTML5, have both been heavily flooded with requests for HTML5/Theora rather than HTML5/h264.

Both have adopted a pronounced "la la la I can't hear you" attitude, and both have summarily and rather rudely closed off accepting any further comments on the topic.

This fact, along with the announcement from MPEG LA that is the subject of this thread, heavily suggests that MPEG LA has offered a special "deal" to both of them.


They don't even need a special deal as such: making sure that only "the usual suspects" will be able to offer streaming is enough of a good motivation for them.

Also, this "free until the end of 2016" sounds like a trap to me: it's safe to assume that by the time HTML5 will be really ubiquitous and reliant on H.264. In other words, it could very well be GIF all over again.


RT.

Reply Score: 3

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"
Google and Vimeo, both of whom recently announced experimentation with HTML5, have both been heavily flooded with requests for HTML5/Theora rather than HTML5/h264.

Both have adopted a pronounced "la la la I can't hear you" attitude, and both have summarily and rather rudely closed off accepting any further comments on the topic.

This fact, along with the announcement from MPEG LA that is the subject of this thread, heavily suggests that MPEG LA has offered a special "deal" to both of them.


They don't even need a special deal as such: making sure that only "the usual suspects" will be able to offer streaming is enough of a good motivation for them.

Also, this "free until the end of 2016" sounds like a trap to me: it's safe to assume that by the time HTML5 will be really ubiquitous and reliant on H.264. In other words, it could very well be GIF all over again.


RT.
"

Precisely. The only difference is that GIF didn't really have any alternative, but there is an obvious, open, zero-cost, quality alternative to h264. We are in the midst of a heavy FUD campaign against Theora right now, where the patent owners are trying to spin that a heavily patented, restrictive license encumbered and proprietary format of good performance is somehow better than an open, royalty free (therefore zero cost) essentially equal performance alternative.

To present such a counter-intuitive spin on things is a very hard sell, and the astroturf FUD machine is out in force and all over threads like this one.

Here is an example of some of the spin in this current FUD war:
http://www.techcrunch.com/2010/02/02/adobe-cto-kevin-lynch-defends-...

Now it is interesting that very recently, after years of having a "gentleman's agreement", that Google has gone to war against Apple:
http://www.techcrunch.com/2010/02/02/apple-google-multi-touch-andro...

So the YouTube shift away from Flash and its experiment of HTML5/h264 may suddenly stop, or it may just as suddenly turn into an experiment with HTML5/Theora.

Watch this space.

Edited 2010-02-04 10:11 UTC

Reply Score: 2

v Reminds me of health care reform
by deathshadow on Thu 4th Feb 2010 13:34 UTC
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

For the simple fact that without licensing the question becomes the same one the "massachusetts model" health care has - "Ok, so who the **** is going to pay for it?"... a question most of your dirty hippy liberal bullcookies never seems to ask. In the case of health care it just makes people who can't afford it have to pay for it by law (oh, brilliant) - while in the case of something of negligible concern to Joe Sixpack like a codec the result is nobody paying for it, a healthy part of why it lags a decade behind projects that actually have a viable revenue stream.

Theora has no practical business model, and as such quite frankly continues to be nothing more than a toy. News flash people, consumers on the whole, are generally willing to pay for something that not only works, but works well. This 'fight the power' anti-corporate nonsense which is the driving factor behind such nonsensical statements as "not a suitable choice for INTERNET video" screams the same pipe-dream liberal naiveté that you only find amongst career educators, career lecturers, and 16 to 24 year olds still having life paid for by mommy and daddy.

You want something that works good, someone somewhere is most likely going to have to pay for it. Licensing accomplishes that - not having any sort of viable revenue stream is how you end up with buggy slow code train wrecks like the entire xiph.org portfolio that frankly, only fringe extremists and FSF zealots show any real interest in.

Sometimes this type of "Rah Rah fight the power down with the man" malarkey just makes me want to scream "Lands sake, would you grow the **** up already!"


It is paid for, already. The development is done.

http://arstechnica.com/open-source/news/2009/01/mozilla-contributes...

Good try, but no cigar.

Sorry, no, it wasn't a good try at all. You knew the code had already been written, for both h264 and Theora, and many other codecs as well. You knew that people already pay for a media player and a browser wwhen they buy their machine with OS pre-installed.

http://arstechnica.com/microsoft/news/2010/01/windows-7-leads-the-w...

So why exactly did you want to rip off billions of people ongoing?

Edited 2010-02-04 14:06 UTC

Reply Score: 2

deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

"already written" you say - and yet it's still next to useless and little more than a toy compared to h.264 - lands sake you'd be better off going back to cinepak than using theora in ANY of it's "currently written" forms. Theora is STILL little more than VP3 with a slap of paint, and has seen NO REAL IMPROVEMENTS in terms of quality, size, speed or support in the past DECADE. When a Q6600 cpu with a GTX 260 can BARELY decode (as in dropping about 20% of frames with horrible tearing) 1080p video encoded in Theora off a local file, it's NOT a viable format! (while my Atom/Ion MPC can handle the same thing in h.264 streaming over the network using flash 10.1)

Sorry, but no. "good enough" isn't "good enough" if you catch my drift.

... and ooh, $100K, that will pay what, three, maybe four programmers for a year? Chump change compared to what MPEG-LA is probably pulling in off it's pennies per use licensing. You tell the average software development corporation they are getting $100K in income to help with a project with no post-release income stream, you'll be laughed out of the room.

When hardware vendors show an interest in making dedicated decoder chips for it, or when somebody takes the time to make it recognize and use something like Cuda or Streams, then MAYBE it will be viable just as h.264 is viable on handhelds, netbooks and other lower horsepower devices (land sakes my **** dingoo can decode h.264 in HD). Until then Theora will continue to take the 'also ran' prize.

MAYBE instead of bitching about licensing, they should make a product that is viable and actually usable for something more than standard def first? But that's like most open source nonsense, can't compete in terms of product quality so they end up bitching and moaning about stuff that frankly, means jack **** to the consumer like licensing using lies like the "free as in freedom" propaganda.

Edited 2010-02-04 14:21 UTC

Reply Score: 0

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"already written" you say - and yet it's still next to useless and little more than a toy compared to h.264 - lands sake you'd be better off going back to cinepak than using theora in ANY of it's "currently written" forms. Theora is STILL little more than VP3 with a slap of paint, and has seen NO REAL IMPROVEMENTS in terms of quality, size, speed or support in the past DECADE. When a Q6600 cpu with a GTX 260 can BARELY decode (as in dropping about 20% of frames with horrible tearing) 1080p video encoded in Theora off a local file, it's NOT a viable format! (while my Atom/Ion MPC can handle the same thing in h.264 streaming over the network using flash 10.1)

Sorry, but no. "good enough" isn't "good enough" if you catch my drift.

... and ooh, $100K, that will pay what, three, maybe four programmers for a year? Chump change compared to what MPEG-LA is probably pulling in off it's pennies per use licensing.

When hardware vendors show an interest in making dedicated decoder chips for it, or when somebody takes the time to make it recognize and use something like Cuda or Streams, then MAYBE it will be viable just as h.264 is viable on handhelds, netbooks and other lower horsepower devices (land sakes my **** dingoo can decode h.264 in HD). Until then Theora will continue to take the 'also ran' prize.

MAYBE instead of bitching about licensing, they should make a product that is viable and actually usable first? But that's like most open source nonsense, can't compete in terms of product quality so they end up bitching and moaning about stuff that frankly, means jack **** to the consumer like licensing using lies like the "free as in freedom" propaganda.


In spite of your enraged ranting, and in spite of the millions spent by MPEG LA (ages ago, well and truly recouped by now) versus the 0.1 million spent by Mozilla on Theora, Theora quality is demonstrably up to that of h.264.

The only spending that MPEG LA are doing these days is bribing people to try to force the adoption of their preciousssss rip-off codec.

No luck, bozos, we aren't falling for it.

Reply Score: 2

deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

In spite of your enraged ranting, and in spite of the millions spent by MPEG LA (ages ago, well and truly recouped by now) versus the 0.1 million spent by Mozilla on Theora, Theora quality is demonstrably up to that of h.264.

Assuming you have more processor than brains to throw at it - since 1 up without hardware decoding h.264 demonstratively uses about half the cpu during decode, AND damned near every device out there supports hardware decoding - and even Flash 10.1 adds hardware decoding support for it so most any crappy little device with a decoder chip right down to a crappy little OMAP850 based handheld can handle it at full quality.

While again, Theora chokes out one core on a 2.4ghz quad core (since there appears to be no multitasking in any of the implementations either)

The only spending that MPEG LA are doing these days is bribing people to try to force the adoption of their preciousssss rip-off codec.

"Bribing" - right, so first they are "unfairly punishing people" by making someone along the way actually pay for functionality per use, and now that's bribery - RIGHT. I'm so certain ADOBE needed a payoff from the MPEG-LA to want to implement it in flash 10.1 as hardware. I'm just SO certain all these cheap little chinese knockoff MP4 players that come bundled with NES/SNES emulators and bootleg roms got a payoff from the MPEG-LA for h.264 support... Yeah, RIGHT.

... and I'm the paranoid one.

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Assuming you have more processor than brains to throw at it - since 1 up without hardware decoding h.264 demonstratively uses about half the cpu during decode, AND damned near every device out there supports hardware decoding - and even Flash 10.1 adds hardware decoding support for it so most any crappy little device with a decoder chip right down to a crappy little OMAP850 based handheld can handle it at full quality.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theora#Playback_performance
There is an open source VHDL code base for a hardware Theora decoder in development.


However since decoding Theora is less CPU intensive than decoding H.264, hardware acceleration may not be necessary in all devices.


Problem is, Mozilla's 'implementation' leaves SO much to be desired, it's effectively useless on anything less than a dual core - and if you have something else running in the background forget it.

They want to make Theora take off, they need to take half a million dollars front-money and get SOMEONE out there to make acceleration chips for it... Or at the very least offload some of the work to CUDA and/or ATI Streams.


Either programmable shaders, or GPGPU can be use to accelerate decoding of Theora in current hardware video graphics cards (using current GPUs, without modification).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GPGPU
GPUs are designed specifically for graphics and thus are very restrictive in terms of operations and programming. Because of their nature, GPUs are only effective at tackling problems that can be solved using stream processing and the hardware can only be used in certain ways.


Ideal for a video stream decoder, though.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Video_acceleration#Stream_Processing_a...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stream_processing

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pixel_shader
Pixel shaders use different languages depending on which API they use. Popular APIs include DirectX and OpenGL.


Enjoy.

You know, you might enjoy life a bit more if you relaxed a bit, and dropped the cussing.

Edited 2010-02-06 10:57 UTC

Reply Score: 2

wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

It's trivially easy, and you don't have to pay, to support hardware acceleration of Theora. Problem solved.

Reply Score: 1

boldingd Member since:
2009-02-19

Sometimes, your laughably over-the-top rhetoric, asterisked-out obscenities, frequent use of pejoratives and flat insults... just makes me want to laugh. It's like getting a visit from Bill O'Reily, if he cared about software.

I mean, asterisked-out obscenities? What, are we five? Is Linus Torvalds also a stupid doodie-head?

Reply Score: 3

wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

"Ok, so who the **** is going to pay for it?"... a question most of your dirty hippy liberal bullcookies never seems to ask.

Who paid for HTML, CSS, JavaScript, etc.?

a codec the result is nobody paying for it, a healthy part of why it lags a decade behind projects that actually have a viable revenue stream.

It is not longer lagging a decade behind. Theora 1.1 is nearly as good as h.264. And it only needs to be good enough, not better.

Theora has no practical business model, and as such quite frankly continues to be nothing more than a toy.

HTML/CSS/JS has no practical business model, and as such continues to be nothing more than a toy?

LOL.

This 'fight the power' anti-corporate nonsense which is the driving factor

No it isn't. It's about basic web stuff being open.

Sometimes this type of "Rah Rah fight the power down with the man" malarkey just makes me want to scream "Lands sake, would you grow the **** up already!"

This is just your fairy tale/straw man invented because you are too ignorant and bigoted.

Reply Score: 3

deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

Who paid for HTML, CSS, JavaScript, etc.?

Netscape and Microsoft who sunk in tons of money to turn Mosaic into something useful for the average joe - Netscape who sunk R&D into developing Javascript and took a payoff from Sun to slap the Java name on it... These company names ring a bell? Just because we get to mooch off those efforts doesn't mean someone didn't pay for REAL development to make it useful.

Problem is, Mozilla's 'implementation' leaves SO much to be desired, it's effectively useless on anything less than a dual core - and if you have something else running in the background forget it.

They want to make Theora take off, they need to take half a million dollars front-money and get SOMEONE out there to make acceleration chips for it... Or at the very least offload some of the work to CUDA and/or ATI Streams.

It is not longer lagging a decade behind. Theora 1.1 is nearly as good as h.264. And it only needs to be good enough, not better.

'good enough' plus 'no hardware support' in todays market equals /FAIL/. It's that attitude which makes over 90% of open source desktop applications complete toys... From OpenOffice and Freetype kerning text like sweetly retarded crack addicts, to blender not even allowing accurate/absolute values, to there yet being a single SERIOUS music composition/synthesis application for *nix, to incomplete sound hardware support even on open documented chips... "Close enough" - what a wonderful attitude.

HTML/CSS/JS has no practical business model, and as such continues to be nothing more than a toy?

Microsoft has one. Google has one. Hell even Opera for their complete marketing naiveté kind-of has one... Mozilla inherited the work of one from Netscape... Those are the people IMPLEMENTING those technologies (or at least mooching off the people who implemented them), and if you'll pay attention, for most of the 'browser wars' between netscape and MS both pretty much gave the W3C little more than lip service going their own ways to do their own thing with those 'open' technologies. (In fact, MS paid MORE attention and at the time made the MORE compliant browsers!).

Let's look at the W3C who doesn't seem to have any sort of real plan other than 'we're open'... What's their browser called again? Amaya... Who's using that right now? Oh wait, who's even DEVELOPING it right now?

LOL.

No it isn't. It's about basic web stuff being open.

Which can be taken to the point of entering fairytale land instead of dealing with reality.

Edited 2010-02-06 04:08 UTC

Reply Score: 2

wumip Member since:
2009-08-20

"Who paid for HTML, CSS, JavaScript, etc.?

Netscape and Microsoft
"
Aha. And the same thing is happening to day. Browser vendors, designers, and all sorts of people and organizations are working together on updates to HTML, CSS, JS, etc. Mozilla threw a tiny bit of money at Theora, resulting in version 1.1 which is vastly better than 1.0.

Just because we get to mooch off those efforts doesn't mean someone didn't pay for REAL development to make it useful.

Indeed. So how is your rant about "dirty hippies" relevant when real money is being spent TODAY on open standards?

'good enough' plus 'no hardware support' in todays market equals /FAIL/. It's that attitude which makes over 90% of open source desktop applications complete toys...

It's amusing how your insane rants do nothing but expose your own hypocrisy and double standards. And adding hardware acceleration for Theora is trivially easy.

"HTML/CSS/JS has no practical business model, and as such continues to be nothing more than a toy?

Microsoft has one. Google has one. Hell even Opera for their complete marketing naiveté kind-of has one...
"
Here you go contradicting yourelf again. Amazing ;) Thanks for showing exactly how free and open standards do exist, and how real companies are putting real money into them ;)

Let's look at the W3C who doesn't seem to have any sort of real plan other than 'we're open'... What's their browser called again? Amaya... Who's using that right now? Oh wait, who's even DEVELOPING it right now?

The W3C is not a browser company. LOL. Your ignorance is astunding ;)

"No it isn't. It's about basic web stuff being open.
Which can be taken to the point of entering fairytale land instead of dealing with reality. "
Yeah, fairytale land like HTML, CSS and JavaScript?

Your amazing contradictions are becoming crazier by the second!

FAIL FAIL FAIL

Reply Score: 1

SReilly Member since:
2006-12-28

[Off Topic]
It's always fun to watch somebody who's spoon fed on FauxNews shoot themselves in the foot and as I can clearly see that trying to explain the economics of universal healthcare to you would be a waste of time, I'll just give you some examples instead.

I've lived in several countries with and without universal health care and the difference in standards of living between those countries is phenomenal. Universal health care enables people to live longer, healthier lives and allows more of the working class to move into the middle classes, something the vast majority of people would agree is something to strive for.

For example, let's take a look at Ireland, my home country. Ireland has no universal health care and it's shown in the rising problem of obesity in children. There is no drive towards combating this problem as "treating the symptoms" becomes the norm when any child could potentially be lining your pockets for years to come. The impact of people not being able to afford healthcare in Ireland has been especially noticeable with the current economic climate. More and more people are having to leave the country as jobs are lost and people just can't afford to get sick any more. If you're not illegible for healthcare and you get cancer, you die no matter how serious the cancer is.

Now let's look at Luxembourg, a country with one of the highest standards of living on the planet. In Luxembourg, all health insurance is run by the state and heuristic approaches as well as symptom treatment is the norm. I have never seen a single obese child in Luxembourg, even thought I've lived there for 17 years. My mother got cancer of the womb 10 years ago. After an emergency hysterectomy, I'm happy to say that everything is fine but she gets regular check-ups without it costing her the earth. If my mother had been a resident of Ireland 10 years ago, she would now be dead and let me tell you, her family would not be the only people who would miss her. As she is the co-owner of a business, she is a very productive member of society and employs several hundred people. 10 years ago, her business had not yet taken off and she could in no way afford the costs of health care, considering her family's pre-existing conditions.

So you think that because poor people will end up paying for universal healthcare that's a bad thing? Believe me, if the rich don't want to lend a helping hand, the rest of us can so it without them. I see no problem in sharing the costs of universal healthcare with my fellow brothers and sisters if it's going to make the world a better place.
[/Off Topic]

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

It's always fun to watch somebody who's spoon fed on FauxNews shoot themselves in the foot and as I can clearly see that trying to explain the economics of universal healthcare to you would be a waste of time, I'll just give you some examples instead.


You won't get through to totally close-minded people like deathshadow.

I think deathshadow must be employed in the US in a guard labor job:

http://www.boingboing.net/2010/02/05/santa-fe-institute-e.html

Deathshadow certainly adopts positions and writes like that is the case. He certainly seems in this thread to be desperately trying to defend a video-over-internet tax imposed by MPEG LA (who are the haves) against a perfectly legitimate tax-avoiding alternative that the people might use instead.

Reply Score: 2

SReilly Member since:
2006-12-28

That's a great link. Thanks for that.

This really does not surprise me and it's something I've been talking about for years now. Conservatives keep repeating that if you tax the rich, they will leave. Let them leave! If they don't have the public mindedness to help out then all they are good for is to create a drag on the economy.

Conservative love to bring up trickle-down economics like it hasn't been dis-proven countless times. All the crap about we needing them to pay taxes is rubbish. The rich don't pay taxes, that's what tax lawyers are for. As for the banks needing their money, they bank off shore so they don't need to pay taxes. Banks are happy enough when they can lend from each other and as long as that money is one bank, the others will be able to borrow it.

The day I no longer have to listen to all their bullshit will be a happy day indeed!

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

all they are good for is to create a drag on the economy.

Conservative love to bring up trickle-down economics like it hasn't been dis-proven countless times.


Just this week according to h-online:
http://www.h-online.com/security/news/item/The-H-Week-Browser-de-an...

- MPEG LA announced that Internet Video encoded with H.264/AVC provided for free to end users will remain royalty free until 2016 (i.e. MPEG LA did not feel confident that people would still use h264 if they began to charge end users as they had intended)
- The Danish parliament announced that it will adopt the OpenDocument Format (ODF) as its official document format
- a recent study showed that more than 21% of German PCs run OpenOffice or one of its derivatives.

It would seem that all over the world people are perhaps starting to move towards their IT freedom rather than waiting forever in vain for something of value to "trickle down" to them.

Edited 2010-02-08 00:20 UTC

Reply Score: 2

I vote for...
by NathanHill on Thu 4th Feb 2010 15:08 UTC
NathanHill
Member since:
2006-10-06

Whatever is the best option right now.

For me, that sounds like h264, as Theora keeps being described as "almost" or "just/about as good". The good thing is that something better is going to come along in a year or two, and then we can reevaluate and jump to the next best option.

If it's open source... if it's costly... if it's written in Basic, no one cares, as long as it's awesome.

h264 is awesome.

Edited 2010-02-04 15:08 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE: I vote for...
by rub3nmv on Thu 4th Feb 2010 15:51 UTC in reply to "I vote for..."
rub3nmv Member since:
2009-07-27

I don't care if it's "almost as good", I care if it's good enough and free, so Theora the best option right now.

Reply Score: 2

Since we are geeks and nerds....
by Sean Parsons on Thu 4th Feb 2010 19:38 UTC
Sean Parsons
Member since:
2005-09-11

Since we (the people that take the time to post on OS News) are geeks and nerds, maybe we should make an effort to use Theora video on our own sites and help force the standard. I know I posted a video on one of my web sites yesterday and purposely did it in Theora, and just above it posted the comment:

If your browser can't view the video below you should either switch to Firefox 3.5 (or newer) or watch it on You Tube.


I know we want everyone else to see the logic of an open web, but we also need to lead by example.

Reply Score: 1

darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Won't the majority of viewers just go to Youtube then?

Reply Score: 2

Sean Parsons Member since:
2005-09-11

Won't the majority of viewers just go to Youtube then?


Yeah, some will follow the You Tube link, some will be just happy to view it as is since a slight majority of my visitors on that site use Firefox, and some will just ignore it as it is just a 45 second clip in the middle of a 12 page article, but some will pause for just a moment and wonder why they can't view it in IE or Safari. Also, I intend to follow up with a webcast comparing various browsers on Linux and I'm going to purposely include that article when comparing browsers to further emphasize Theora video play back.

I might just be spinning my wheels, but I would like to think that I'm doing my own small little part.

Edited because I unintentionally used a markup not supported by OS News comments.

Edited 2010-02-04 23:48 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Missing the point?
by karunko on Fri 5th Feb 2010 08:22 UTC
karunko
Member since:
2008-10-28

I'm likely going to take a lot of flak for this but, as I see it, arguing about the technical merits of H.264 vs. Theora (not to mention Theora vs. Dirac) is pointless.

No, scratch that. It's not pointless, it's dangerous because it draws our attention away from the real problem: H.264 is dangerous, so it shouldn't matter if it's "better" -- the risk of nasty surprises further down the road is just too big to ignore.


RT.

Reply Score: 2

Funny
by r_a_trip on Fri 5th Feb 2010 13:20 UTC
r_a_trip
Member since:
2005-07-06

I'm very amused to see so many pro H264 people resisting theora, because they "want the better pixels". What do you think to gain? Yes, freebie video from a licensed encoding entity will be safe. The video will probably look a little better. Is that good enough?

In my view it isn't. Why are we clammoring for a codec that will erect additional toll booths for our culture? Isn't it enough that cultural works produced during our lifetime will only become public domain long after we're dead and gone? Do we need to wrap it up into another rights trap as well?

Do we really want a world in which we have to pay anyone and everyone their pound of flesh before we are permitted to take a look at something?

I guess you all do want a world like that, "because the pixels are better".

Don't think you are off the hook for freebie internet video. MPEG LA probably won't sue end users, but somewhere along the way some companies will (inadvertently) run afoul of the H264 licensing and will get sued and made to pay. Guess where the bill for these suits will eventually end up? Yes, the end user.

Common sense is dead these days.

My grandmother says it best when she says "The world won't just end, it will rot away". Roughly translated as the general decline of the human species.

Reply Score: 3