Movie Maker 2 and Photo
#57 - June 11, 2005
A newsletter reader
asked for an issue about Vlogging or Video
Blogging. It's something I don't do... yet. What is it, where is it,
and where is it going? And how would users of Movie Maker and Photo Story fit
into the movement? Let's explore that this week.
I turned to Google,
Blogging' and got 7,690,000 hits in a split second. I picked
the first two pages with 20 items to explore. The recently announced
Google video service was well-represented in the sample. To some extent I'm
Googling about Google... don't know if that feels right.
We live in a marketing-oriented society and sometimes the
commercials are better than the features... so I'll include a look
at the 13 'sponsored links' on the two pages. Who wants to sell us
what when it comes to vlogging?
Vlogging, like blogging and podcasting, is open to anyone
who wants to do it. It's another mass-movement that will end up going in
the direction the masses take it... Google can seduce us with its offer to
host unlimited videos, the marketers can present their items and
services, and we can do what we want.
Theory and good ideas are parts of it... then there's the
practical 'how to do it the easiest and best'? We'll look at that
some notes... before going
released a new software
app on June 10th, a graphics one named Acrylic
downloaded, installed and started to play with
it. This version will turn into a pumpkin at the end of the year, but
that's more than enough time to check it out...
Talk about codec hell... a post on the
forum this week reported typical codec-related issues. But I'll give
this one the prize. It was a video file made by a
Panasonic D-Snap Digital Camera, SV-AV50 at the highest quality setting. The
poster said the rendered movie had no video, a normal symptom of an
MPEG-2 file, but the file was an .asf. He sent a sample file which I'm
The saves files as MPEG-4 in an .asf wrapper, and
different codecs are needed depending on the quality setting used. Boards
and forums have lots of people who have wrestled with the files
from D-Snap cameras. Panasonic offers no downloadable codec,
and other websites for codecs don't offer it. It seems the only source of the
codec is the CD that comes with the camera, so I got a copy of it from the
poster. The license info with the codec plug-in software says you're allowed
to install it on one computer, and you're not allowed to copy it for others.
How are people expected to view videos taken with the
The installation of the MPEG-4 Decoder went well but
the file still wouldn't play in WMP or work in Movie Maker. I've been able to
see the video in IrfanView's multimedia player and JetAudio's player... but
I've yet to hear any of the audio that the file properties say is there.
VDubMod gives the usual error message about Microsoft not letting it open an
.asf file, and tells you to never ask for a version that does. As I said, it's
codec hell with such a file. And .asf is one of the file formats supported by
Movie Maker... yes, sometimes.
My Toshiba laptop is back after 3+
weeks in the CompUSA repair process for a new video card, TVTuner and DVD/CD
combo drive... when the new parts were installed and the screen
was still dark, they decided the light bulb had burned out, so they
changed it too. Most of the the time was taken by having to wait for a
refurbished TVTuner. It seems there are no new ones in the parts system so you
have to wait for one to get refurbished. I guess the one from my laptop
will go to the next in line.
I don't like being cynical, but I'd bet the only real problem was
the light bulb.
The laptop has spent so much time in Texas that I've
gotten to know the process and the people too well. Tom the Service
Manager at the Grand Rapids store, and Chris the customer contact in
Texas are both great people to work with. But I'd rather have my computer
not breaking down than getting to know Tom and Chris
.... on to the main topic
I started with Google and I'll stay with them a
bit. An April 6 press release said that Google Video was expanding their search feature
to "Video Blogging".
... their plan was to include home
video submissions from people. At that time they said "we're not quite
sure what we're going to get, but we decided we'd try this experiment."
Google started its test version of a video search
service at the beginning of the year. It's online today for those who signup for
an account... I found that my GMail account is sufficient; I didn't need a new
account to start uploading videos.
Users can search for content from TV programs from a
few providers (PBS, Fox News, CSPAN and local ABC and NBC affiliates in San
Francisco). It provides still images from the video clips and
some associated text, but users can't view video or read a transcript of
the program as licensing terms haven't been decided on yet.
Google bought Blogger.com in 2003, so expanding
into Vlogging seems natural.
Here's the link to upload videos to Google, and some extracts from
"Your work deserves to be seen. You've
made a great video. Now who will watch it?
Whether you produce hundreds
of titles a year or just a few, you can give your videos the recognition and
visibility they deserve by promoting them on Google - for free. Signing up for
the Google Video Upload Program will connect your work with users who are most
likely to want to view them.
Sign up and upload...
We're accepting digital video files of any length and size. Simply sign up
for an account and upload your videos using our Video Uploader (please be sure
you own the rights to the works you upload), and, pending our approval process
and the launch of this new service, we'll include your video in Google Video,
where users will be able to search, preview, purchase and play it. Find out more
Here are selected items about uploading video files:
- Before uploading your video to Google, we prefer that you encode your
video files using mpeg-2 or mpeg-4 codecs with mp3 audio (learn more). To
ensure your upload is successful, please follow the steps below. Remember that
after you upload your video to us, you'll need to add your video information
via your Video Status page.
- Google accepts video in a wide range of popular formats. The fastest way
to get your videos into Google Video is to submit each file in MPEG4 format
with MP3 audio or MPEG2 with MP3.
- While we also support other digital formats such as QuickTime, Windows
Media, and RealVideo, it's important to note that submitting your files in
these formats may significantly delay us from using them on Google Video. In
some cases, we may not be able to add your video at all.
- preferred video specs:
- NTSC (4:3) size and framerate, deinterlaced
- Video Codec: MPEG2 or MPEG4 (MPEG4 preferred)
- Video Bitrate: at least 260Kbps (750kbps preferred)
- Audio Codec: MP3 vbr
- Audio Bitrate: at least 70Kbps (128 Kbps preferred)
- You can upload as many videos as you like, without size or
- You need Java 1.4.1 or higher to install the
Google Uploader, and a broadband connection to upload video.
- You may designate a price for playback of Your Authorized Content in the
Uploading Form. If you don't charge for it, and Google decides to, they
will pay you seventy percent (70%) of the gross revenues.
- You can name any price for your video, which can be done from your
Add/Edit Video Information page. The price you choose completely depends on
you and your distribution goals. They suggest you choose a fair
price that you think users will pay to view your video content. Because you
can change the price at any time, experiment and see what price brings you the
- You can also set the price to zero and allow users to access and play your
video for free. This will potentially give you wider distribution than those
who choose to charge a price. If Google's costs to host your
video are extraordinary, they may charge users a fee (if you've
specified zero as the price for your video) or take a larger revenue share of
the price (if you've set a price greater than zero for your video) to cover
some of these costs. For example, if you upload a high definition file that's
500 MB and it becomes extremely popular, they might charge users a fee instead
of giving it to them for free or ask you for a higher percentage of the
revenue from the price of the video. They will let you know
before adding a price or charging a higher revenue share.
- You retain all copyrights to your videos.
Other Than Google
, a provider of Web Content Management (CMS) and
Collaboration software, announced the Silkware platform on March
9th, software that brings together audio and video blogging plus a number
of communication and collaboration tools.
The SilkClips audio/video blogging tool sets a new precedent for
delivery of video content over the Web. The application allows bloggers to
capture, publish and play back audio and video clips.
SilkRoad envisions the product enabling independent media outlets
to better leverage the Web as a vehicle for video content delivery. As an
alternative to conventional broadcast channels, independents could use SilkClips
to produce a series of video clips arranged into a feed, or channel, to be
delivered over the Web.
Features of note include:
- Emailing of feeds and clips
- Publish/Reading will support the MetaWeblogAPI and RSS 2.0 with
- All clips can be viewable by Web-enabled players or the downloadable
Video Blog Service Review
If you wish to video blog but you have problems with bandwidth or
storage, then consider using VideoAddon.com. Here's a short review of this video
streaming host service.
Videoblogging Week 2005
The site says Vloggercon
couldn't have turned out better. On January 22, 2005...about 60 people spent
the day talking about video on the internet. The what, how, why, and what's
the come. The underlying theme and excitement was the realization that posting
videoblogs can make us closer then we have ever been before.
Blogging 101: WordPress
Ethan Zuckerman, a fellow of the Berkman Center for Internet
and Society explains how to get started with the WordPress based Blogsome.com blogging
1. Create your blog's web
2. Enter your Email address and Blog Title
3. Log on to
your email and get your password
4. Log on to Blogsome with your username and
5. Create your first post with a Link and text formating
Video blogging for Sony PlayStation
Sonyís PSP turns out to be a good video
content platform, with innovation coming mainly from third-party
providers. In the UK, PSP has created a video blogging
What's this? This page shows goodies from
the web about video blogging. To contribute, just make a post to your blog about
video blogging and include the link below.
Business 2.0 Article By Greg
Lindsay, April 25, 2005
Smart Money Behind Video Blogging - The history of
exploiting film on the Web hasn't been good. Do Google and Gore have the
At the National Cable
& Telecommunications Association conference, Gore took the wraps off
his long-awaited foray into media moguldom, Current, a cross between
video blogging and the
early days of MSNBC. Starting Aug. 1, hipster hosts will introduce streams of
blip-length clips, created by the viewers themselves, focused on music and other
suitably hip subjects. The channel's first call for entries offered a tempting
$3,000, three-segment "studio development deal" as a prize for the best
Google and Gore announced a
deal with each other. Google's "Zeitgeist" feature, which compiles the top 10
most searched terms at any moment, will become the organizing principle of
Current's news programming.
If there's one thing the rise
of blogging proved, it's that a nation of living-room pundits and know-it-alls
were ready to start posting the moment an easy and ubiquitous set of tools
Google has the means to invent and own the way video
bloggers find, publish, and store their content, and apparently it has the will
to at least take the first step.
April 18, 2005
Just in case you've mastered blogging and
podcasting, video blogging will
allow you to continue the romance with "new stuff".
What is Vlogging? the Keynote presentation from last week talking about what is
Do not forget to
- Decide a theme for your VLOG
- Bring footage on your FireWire disks to edit an intro
- Designs for a Vlog logo
- Create a Blogger.Com account
- Email me your blogger.com website address
- Make your first blog post containing information about
Helpful websites -
If you haven't got your
blogger.com account set up yet.
Thursday, March 17,
Streaming & Downloading
video on the internet
Here is the keynote from last week about how to
encode your films for the internet. The settings I usually use for DV-PAL 4:3 footage is the
25 frames per
90 key frames
70 KB data rate
Size: 360 x
for an MPEG-4 encoder
Welcome to Vidblogs.com!
A video blog is the
new hot way for people to stick their personal lives on the internet! Not just
simple words, static pictures, or grainy audio. They invite you to join them
where-ever they go; meet their friends, their family, go on vacation, fall in
love, and all vicariously from the comfort of your home computer. See some
people's lives, and consider joining in on the fun here at
About 150 vidblog
One of the Google hits was to a
December 2002 article about video blogging possibly being a serious challenge to
Cable TV, with a reference to how good the blogging of Jeff
Jarvis was. The article commented that thousands were logging onto
blogs daily, and may want to make their own. It also said things
Technology is becoming cheap
and easy to use Ė enough so that one guy in his living room can whip up a 5
minute spot that is at least as good as a local news segment ten years ago, but
This is fun. Few people ever
bother to read, but everyone likes to watch. When you consider things
like wireless internet and video enabled cell phones, you start to realize the
But the rich, passive,
engaging content that video blogging provides may prove to be a serious
challenge to cable TVís ultimately baseless monopoly on broadcast
I Googled to see what Jeff
Jarvis is doing today and if he was a vlogger.... his site, the BuzzMachine, is going
strong, but I didn't see any vlogs mixed with his blogs.
Check his sidebar to the right... a few
items down are links to his comments about Video weblogs (Vlogs)... looks like
he did 6 Vlogs over 2-1/2 years, of which one is a WMV file that I can play...
the other 5 are .asf files that don't play on the computer I tried to view
them... his Blogs are going strong but he hasn't ramped up yet in the Vlog
Shoot and Capture
Vlogging as a routine needs
to be simple to execute. I just went through the motions using my digital
camcorder and Movie Maker... assuming I'm sitting here for my daily
vlogging session, with my Sony TRV80 mini-DV camcorder aimed at me if I'm
talking, or pointing other interesting things as I narrate them, as if I'm a
news reporter or entertainer:
Connect the camcorder to the computer via
Turn the camcorder on in Camera mode (not VCR/VTR mode)... the
popup Window offers the same choices as usual when capturing from a recorded
On the camcorder
menu, opt for FN > Page 3 > Remote Camera. The camcorder goes to 'Remote
Camera Standby' mode... it works the same if left in regular Standby
mode, except the regular one would result in the camcorder shutting down when
it reaches the inactivity timeout point of a few minutes. The Remote
Camera extends the camcorder timeout period to 3
Capture as usual... to
DV-AVI if editing in Movie Maker, or to whatever profile is appropriate for
your uploading without editing, like this pocket PC profile as I shoot my
I couldn't let anything
go without a little editing, even if it's just an opening title for
the date and occassion.
... edit in Movie Maker
as usual, save to a movie file and publish (to Google or
The features of your
camcorder may or may not support such an arrangement. If it doesn't you can
record and capture as you usually do.
Upload Your Vlog
A Vlog is nothing more than
a video file... so you need a website to put it on... and a web
page to provide a link to it, assuming your audience isn't getting the link just
from your email or the chain letter type disctribution of the link that follows
Who is Selling
You'll be at the heart of
your vlogs... hosts such as Google will be looking to provide you online
space, and others will be offering a smattering of products
related to vlogging... here are the sponsered ads at the right side of
the 2 Google pages I looked at. I clicked on each and explored the sites to see
what was being offered, and I didn't purchase anything:
'The Power of Video', a few software packages from $190
and up. Hundreds of customizable graphics, special effects, screen titles, and
music. All versions offer a teleprompter so users can speak confidently
without missing key points or memorizing lines, a green screen backdrop for
replacing your background with a logo, video or graphic and a clip-on
microphone to help eliminate ambient noise.
VideoAddOn.Com - a streaming video host that
doesn't sell software - allows you to place streaming video on your
personal web pages, ebay or yahoo auctions, company websites and blogs with
ease. 30 day trial... $15 a month or $100 a
year. They will convert .AVI,
.DV, .MOV, .MPEG-1, .MPEG2, .MPEG4, and .WMV. The maximum file
size is 50 MB per video. They do not limit the number of
SWiSHvideo lets you convert your video files into
streaming Flash files. Now you can easily display your videos on the web
complete with play controls and playback settings.
Blogging Equalizer - "The Shockingly
Simple Way To Explode Your FREE Website Traffic and Sales By Sending The
Search Engines Into A Feeding Frenzy, Sucking-Up Any Web Page That You
Want!"... It's simply a search engine strategy that combines the power and
popularity of Blogs to get the search engine spiders to visit nearly any Web
page you want... $147
Streaming video host... Windows Media and
QuickTime... $10 a month for 150 MB and 5,000 MB of
JussPress... free video sharing... Just drag and drop
videos from your digital camera, and we'll resize, transcode, upload, and host
your video for you. It's really that simple! JussPress is absolutely free. We
keep JussPress free so that any of your family and friends can easily join and
share too. The free version of JussPress is limited to 1,000 photos and 10
videos. At the moment we do not support MPEG4 video, nor do we support WMV video from Windows Movie
Vlogmania.com - Video Blog of the Mad
Vlogger - Call Now - 602-218-7497
- MedicineFilms... currently showing
vom-it... a web-based service that allows its users to create and update
movies. The Service can be updated through a web browser as well as by the use
of a free downloadable clients ("the Software"). Once registered with
MedicineFilms.com, each user receives his or her own account space to post
text, data, messages, or information concerning or linked to software, music,
sound, photography, graphics, and video ("the Content"). This Content may
reside on MedicineFilms's servers or on the servers of a third
party. Free Accounts: MedicineFilms.com
accounts are available for free to all valid registrants. Free accounts offer
a limited number of features in relation to the other accounts
offered. Your movie must be UNDER 2 MB in order to
upload. A Medicine Film is a short home video made in response to one of
the assignments created by the site's founders and
super-users. Medicine Films are creative, often collaborative, documentary
"slice of life" mini-movies.
- How to Make MASSIVE
Mounds of Money... In Record Time on Google...(Even Without a Website or a Product!) ... newly updated
- RSS To Blog - Compatible with
Blogger and WordPress blogs. RSS to Blog is a brand new
tool that can help you get and maintain top page rank, boost traffic and
income by automatically posting keyword specific content to one or more
- Secrets of the Super
Bloggers! You Get
EIGHT Great Blogging Resources - 7 with Master Resell
Rights! But Wait - There's
More! When you download your Super Bloggers package in a few
minutes, don't forget to download these Free Super Bloggers BONUSES,
Value of this Offer is Well Over $400!!! With Over $200 in Bonuses Alone!
Your investment is $97
Vlogging is in its chaotic infancy. Where it ends
up going is up to each person. One constraint I feel is the number of minutes in
the day. There's always more things that I want to do than there is time to do
them, so some sort of throttling has to take place.
I don't watch more than a dozen hours of TV a year,
so vlogging can't eat into that time. We go to the big-screen movies every week,
and the idea of saving the $20 for admission and popcorn... to spend the dollars
and time on something else just isn't appealing.
I'm on the internet from waking to going to bed, 7
days a week. My 3 hours at Barnes&Noble every evening is to work on my
website and newsletters on my laptop... away from the internet. It now has a
wireless service... but I go there to relax a bit, away from the
Time, money, and choices about what to do with each
minute and dollar. The time is a constant. The money is usually enough and can
never be too much. What's really going up expontially are the choices, and
the internet is such a great tool to facilitate those choices.
Google is great... I use it all the time to
research material for the newsletters, and for answers to newsgroup and
forum posts. But my G-Mail account goes unused. My new Google Video
account is ready to go, but I haven't used most of space at Neptune, and have
barely scratched the storage space in the corner of my son's server used for my
website and most of my online videos.
When I Google for Vlogging and Google itself is
prominent in about half of the first 20 hits, of 7+ million... when the new
service is still more of an idea than a reality... part of me is wondering if
the searcher should be separate from the searched... if not, the cozy
relationship might get overly so, and get in the way of
Google has become a powerful force, one I
respect for winning by doing something basic but with uncommon quality...
but with bigness comes internal administrative and communication
processes... and higher responsibilities. To pull off free hosting
of unlimited videos is a pretty big goal... it's too early to say they will
Have a great holiday weekend...