PapaJohn Productions
Newsletter #108 - June 17, 2006

the 551 Video Transitions on my Laptop



Last week we looked at the 307 video effects on my laptop to see which package they came from. This week we'll do the same thing with the 551 video transitions.
With only one transition style allowed, the number of possibilities is much fewer than the 837+ trillion possible combinations of video effects.
Let's take the same approach, first renaming the AddOnTFX folders to go all the way back to the basic transitions included with Movie Maker 2, and then turning things on one package at a time to correlate the transitions with them.
... before getting into it further, a few short notes...

Vista Corner... it's now available to the general public for downloading... or by ordering a disc. I tested the generational loss issue a couple days ago and found that the 27th frame is still missing when rendering to a DV-AVI movie from a DV-AVI source file. The issue is one I've been studying for over 3 years, and it isn't resolved in Movie Maker in Vista.
Another follow-up note about my first for-sale video on Google Video... submitted on May 3... the current status is still "Video is verified; stay tuned - it will be live shortly"... that's almost 1-1/2 months now.
The Maximum PC issue with my 5 page tutorial about Photo Story 3 is the Summer Special, which will be on newsstands in the United States on July 18th. The disc with the magazine will include the story.
.... back to the main topic...

Video Transitions on my Laptop
Let's start by going backwards.... to get from my 551 transitions to the 60 that came with the basic version of Movie Maker 2.
Step 1 - Rename the AddOnTFX folder for MM2, the folder typically used by those providing extra effects packages, and those using custom xml files. I did it by adding 'removed' to the end of the Rename AddOnTFX Folderfolder name.
If you do it with Movie Maker open, you won't see a change as all the info in the folder goes into your system's memory as Movie Maker starts up... but, by opening MM2 after doing it, it'll skip over this renamed folded.
The 551 transitions I started with went down to 162 with this one rename, 102 more than the starter pack of 60 in MM2.
Step 2 - Rename MM1 AddOnTFX FolderRename the AddOnTFX folder for MM1... the first Adorage package for Movie Maker 2 uses that folder for its transitions. By renaming it the same way, the number of installed effects went down to the basic 60.
The two new Adorage packages use the MM2 AddOnTFX folder, so they were already moved aside by step 1.
The MUI\0409\AddOnTFX folder renamed last week to remove 14 pan/zoom effects didn't have any transitions associated with it.
With the slate clean, I'll bring the packages back into MM2 one at a time to see which of the transitions belong to which package or file, and take pictures of them for the newsletter. 

The first Adorage Movie Maker 2 Package #1 has 102 transitions, with semi-generic group thumbnails, with the same thumbnail used for each transition in the group. Here's a picture of the 6 thumbnails and the names of each transition in the group.
If you have favorites in the Blur, Color-Blur and Plain groups, you need to note them somehow.
Adorage - Package 1

391 of the transitions are toggled off and on by renaming the main AddOnTFX folder under Movie Maker... the folder has 51 xml files, each of which has one or more effects, transitions or title overlays.
I've explored different ways of managing this library. For this and last week's newsletters, I created another folder named AddOnTFX Library at the same level as the AddOnTFX... and moved the 51 xml files to it. That results in Movie Maker not finding them at startup... and I can copy them from the library one at a time to see what shows up in Movie Maker when I do.
I left all the DLL and other files in the folder. Without the xml files that call on them, they aren't involved.
Let's run down the moved xml files in alphabetical order. I'll include appropriate links to websites...
The recently released Adorage mm-maker 02 xml file has 30 transitions.
PapaJohn Effects

Lots of XMLCustom xml files also go in this folder
As xml files can also be for effects or title overlays, I'll spray paint those in the list that are not for transitions.
I'll copy the xml files for transitions into the AddOnTFX folder one at a time, and take snapshots of the thumbnails associated with it. 
The Adorage-mmaker-02.xml file is covered above. Let's go down the rest of them in alphabetical order...

The Blaine-Barn Doors is an example of a custom xml file made by copying and pasting the code from a forum post.
It doesn't have an associated customized thumbnail, so it uses any of the built-in thumbnail numbers from the MM2 library. In this case Blaine's choice is pretty good for how the transition works. 
You're on your own when it comes to making and using these custom xml files.

The next one, Blaine-Blue Screen, is another custom one from a post. I have a habit of naming the transition after the person I got it from. 
His posted xml code on the forum had it named 'Bluescreen'... I changed it to 'Blaine-Bluescreen' so I can know who to check with if I have questions. The name that shows up in the collection in MM2 isn't the file name... it's the internal name used in the xml code.
My current xml files like these come and go as I check code from forum posts. If I like the transition, I copy the code to my personal database for future use.

Transition Maker 2
The next two, DPL0 and DPL1 xml files, are sample packages included in Transition Maker 2 (TM2). If you don't know by now, it's a transition making utility programmed by Patrick Leabo and sold my myself through my website.
There's a full online tutorial about using it on my website... the Editing > Transition Maker 2 > TM2 Tutorial page.
Not only does TM2 create the needed transparent png graphics files, it creates a set of unique thumbnails to illustrate them. There are 24 transitions in DPL0 and DPL1... here's some of the thumbnails for DPL0.

FunPackThe Winter Fun PackFX 2003
...has two transitions, both about snow. They come from Microsoft but were made by Pixelan, as you can tell by the logo name.

GF1.xml is another set of 19 transitions made by Transition Maker 2. It's a sample set to help you see what kinds of transitions you can make.

The Editing Movies > XML Persian Section at ... has some xml code to copy and paste into your own files. That's how I made these.
The Persian-Chroma.xml file has 5 custom transitions with the code in the Persian section of the website. Note that I use Persian in both the file name and the internal transition names, to know where they came from. As most custom xml, the icons are generic and not illustrative of what the transitions do.
Persian-Compositing.xml has one transition... and another generic thumbnail.
Persian-Transparency.xml has 9 transitions... shades of transparency in 10% increments from the fully opaque to the fully transparent end of the scale.

PIP-720x480-standard.xml and PIP-720x480-widescreen.xml are two that I made and used since the early days of custom xml files, before I started naming them with the one they came from... I'll go do it now. My Grand Canyon and other PIP examples were made with these xml files.

Rehan's PIP+ package includes 8 dynamic Picture in Picture transitions, each using the same thumbnail.
Rehan's PIP Plus

Has a number of transition packages for Movie Maker 2... I have 10 of them on my laptop. Here's my visual inventory.
BonusIII M Pack
Pixelan Bonus Filter Pack
BonusII Pack
Pixelan Bonus Pack
Bonus Pack
Pixelan Contrast Pack
Cool FX New Pack
Pixelan Filter New Pack
Cool FX Pack
Pixelan Filter Pack
Energy FX Pack
Pixelan Frame Pack
Particle FX Pack
Pixelan Pan Zoom New Pack
PIP FX New Pack
Pixelan Pan Zook Pack
Soft FX New
Plus TransFX
Soft FX
Pixelan SoftFX

The set of transitions from the Microsoft Plus!_Trans FX Package

PapaJohn BluescreenThe Transparent - Do Amazing Things Orange R230 G147 B74.xml file is another of my personal ones, not fully labeled with my name. I'll do it now.
Inside it's labeled as a bluescreen transition... which it is kind-of, except for an orange color.

Conclusions and Closing
The packages are the easiest to use... then comes Transition Maker 2 which needs more computer skills and understanding about what's going on.... and then custom hand coding your own xml files, for the geek in you.
The forums at have lots of custom xml code being passed around... there's no conclusion or closing, new ones keep coming out for sharing and inspiration. There isn't a centralized complete library of the custom developed ones. Get the ones you like and use them.

Have a great week...