Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Media Google Technology

YouTube Hints At Support For Free/Open Formats With HTML5 133

Posted by timothy
from the when-it-happens-I'll-believe-it dept.
shadowmage13 writes "After the recent post about YouTube, so many votes were put in for HTML5 using Free and Open formats that Google has already cleared them all out (to make space for others) and issued an official response (requires Google login): 'We've heard a lot of feedback around supporting HTML5 and are working hard to meet your request, so stay tuned. We'll be following up when we have more information. We're answering this idea now because there are so many similar HTML5 ideas and we want to give other ideas a chance to be seen.' Now all the top ideas are concerning copyright and DMCA abuse."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

YouTube Hints At Support For Free/Open Formats With HTML5

Comments Filter:
  • Well then... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nametaken (610866) * on Saturday January 16, 2010 @01:36AM (#30788314)

    What's a more polite way to say, "be more like Vimeo"?

    • It will be interesting to see if Google would use On2's compression technique on YouTube.

      • by sznupi (719324) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @02:00AM (#30788430) Homepage

        Plus releasing On2 tech as a standard without legal encumbrances, for everyone to take & implement freely, and opening its adoption as the HTML5 video?

        That would be interesting...

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by hitmark (640295)

          technically thats what ogg theora is, as it was on2's submission for mpeg4 standardization that was not selected, and that they later handed over to ogg.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by jonwil (467024)

            OGG Theora is based on On2 VP3.
            On2 VP8 is a much better codec than VP3 ever was.

          • VP 4 has higher compression ratio than VP 3.

            VP 6 reportedly has 50% more compression than VP 4.

            According to ON2's site, they are saying that VP 8 achieves 40% more compression than VP 6, with much less noise.

            Of course I take all those claim with a grain of salt. Let's half the claims, then.

            VP 6 achieves 25% more compression than VP 4.

            VP 8 achieves 20% more compression than VP 6.

            Which means VP 8 is at least 50% better than VP 4, which is in itself better than VP 3 / Ogg Theora.

            • by cortana (588495)

              Ogg theora is no longer the same as VP 3. It has had many years of improvements!

              Are there any decent comparisons of the two?

            • Which means VP 8 is at least 50% better than VP 4, which is in itself better than VP 3 / Ogg Theora.

              Only if you ignore the significant improvements the Xiph guys have made to Theora recently.

          • There has been a lot of FUD about Theora's patent status, however. On2 gave away the patents that covered VP3, but it's possible that some patents were infringed later, or were infringed by VP3 but no one bothered suing. No one has done an exhaustive patent search on Theora to see if it infringes any submarines. With the MPEG standards, there is less of an incentive to sit on patents that the standard infringes, because if you disclose them early then there is a mechanism set up for you to get royalties.

        • by kill-1 (36256)

          I'm convinced that this is exactly what Google plans to do once the acquisition of On2 is finished. The lack of an open, royalty-free video format with better compression than Ogg Theora is the one thing that's keeping HTML5 video behind.

    • Vimeo? So You Tube would use flash?

      From Vimeo:
      object class="swf_holder"type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="640" height="360" data="/moogaloop_local.swf?clip_id=7129398&server=vimeo.com&autoplay=0&fullscreen=1&show_portrait=0&show_title=0&show_byline=0&color=00ADEF&context=user:2433314&context_id=&hd_off=0&buildnum=32768"
      • Vimeo had HD first, and they currently give you a direct link to download the original video, if you have an account.

        I don't know if they're doing any HTML5, though.

    • Re:Well then... (Score:5, Informative)

      by geckipede (1261408) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @03:12AM (#30788616)
      I would prefer "be less like vimeo" because the only difference between them that affects me is that the youtube player decodes video efficiently enough that my processor can handle it, and vimeo is a browser locking slideshow.
    • Be less like Fark's arbitrary bannings?

    • by Hal_Porter (817932) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @07:25AM (#30789534)

      What's a more polite way to say, "be more like Vimeo"?

      Please be more like Vimeo

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by gedw99 (1597337)

      There are many reasons why this is happening:

      1. ACTA agreement and license fees are up for renewal.
      http://www.mpegla.com/main/programs/AVC/Pages/FAQ.aspx [mpegla.com]
      All OEM product makers and content encoders are now waiting on the 2010 agreement from the mpegla licensing aggregation company . It will be stiff fees apparently, although not confirmed yet. What is even stranger is that we are now in 2010, and they have still not released the new licensing terms. Very weird; What are they waiting on i wonder ? Maybe ACTA

    • by tepples (727027) <tepples&gmail,com> on Saturday January 16, 2010 @08:21AM (#30789816) Homepage Journal

      What's a more polite way to say, "be more like Vimeo"?

      How about "I know a lot of people who, to put it mildly, aren't a fan of video games. Can you make subtle changes to your policy so that videos of video games end up all but banned?"

      Background: Vimeo bans use of its service for commercial purposes; this rules out any video uploaded by the video game's publisher. Vimeo also rejects videos uploaded by anyone other than the author; this rules out videos of game play uploaded by anyone other than the video game's publisher because they're "derivative works".

  • because if it doesn't, using it will be a mistake.
    • by BikeHelmet (1437881) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @01:49AM (#30788388) Journal

      Video tags are easier to accelerate. They can be handled by just about anything. That means rather than being locked to Flash, it can be played with Xine/GStreamer on Linux, Quicktime on OSX, DirectShow on Windows, DSP codecs on your phone, etc.; it might also be possible to use VLC on any platform, although that defeats the "accelerate" part.

      And of course, you've always got Flash as a fallback.

      P.S. Posted before, but this might be of interest to someone: Javascript-free HTML5/Flash video embedding, which works on desktops as well as devices like the iPhone: http://camendesign.com/code/video_for_everybody [camendesign.com]

    • faster how? encoding? decoding? downloading?

      HTML5 video doesn't inherently say anything about video "speed" or quality, because it does not define a codec.
      Some browsers support h.264, which is an option in recent flash, but not yet the standard. Other browsers support Theora, and some support whatever gstreamer/directplay/quicktime support.

      Of course, if Google opens up On2's VP8 codec, and pushes it on Youtube (with fallbacks, of course), browsers will be all over it, and Flash (for video), Theora and perha

      • by beelsebob (529313) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @03:11AM (#30788614)

        Faster at all 3 if we use h264 because:
        Hardware h264 encoders exist, and I bet google would use them – it would cut their power use massively
        Hardware h264 decoders are common on just about all graphics cards
        h264 can compress a video much more for a given quality than the current flash video they use

        Not faster at all if we use ogg theora because:
        Hardware Ogg encoders don't exist
        Hardware Ogg decoders don't exist
        Ogg barely uses less bandwidth than flash video for a given bandwidth

        • by hitmark (640295)

          that depends, if the video cards behaved more like a DSP when it came to video decoding, they can support just about anything.

        • 4) Google and youtube are large enough to make companies reconsider about hardware support.

          I am not certain how good you can pour Theora into silicon, but I seem to remember easy hardware decoding (i.e. not using much silicon real estate) was one of the goals.

          Richard

          PS: Ogg is a container, Theora is the actual video codec

          PPS: _If_ they do it, do it right. Use Theora in a MKV

        • Hardware Theora encoders don't exist
          Hardware Theora decoders don't exist
          Theora barely uses less bandwidth than flash video for a given bandwidth

          Fixed. Stop conflating a wrapper (Ogg) with codecs (Theora and Vorbis, commonly used with Ogg), people!

          • If you correct a point of terminology in a post, it is also polite to correct a point of substance along with it. Otherwise, you look like you're in the National Socialist Grammar Teachers Party.
            • But I believe the post is otherwise correct. Someone started work on a Theora FPGA decoder for SoC 2006, and that is about it.

              And that definitely isn't grammar, I think the correct word in this case is semantics.

        • by xous (1009057)

          Hi,

          I believe Google's model for hosting is using cheap commodity hardware and making it redundant at the software level.

          As far as I am aware cheap video cards do not include a hardware encoder which is what Google would care about at their end. Most users do not know or care if their system has a hardware decoder as they don't understand it's value.

          There may not be cheap hardware Ogg Encoders/decoders as of yet but if it gains popularity these should be able at a fraction of the cost of h264 counterparts b

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by beelsebob (529313)

            Most users *absolutely* do care about having hardware decoding – on their cell phone.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by True Grit (739797) *

          Hardware h264 encoders exist, and I bet google would use them – it would cut their power use massively

          First, do you have a citation for this 'massive' reduction in power?

          Second, Google's two main concerns in the case of video and youtube is bandwidth and codec licensing costs, not power. They've already become masters at power efficiency from their experience with their search server farms. Power is not the main issue here, the amount of streaming data they have to pump to the user is.

          As for the licensing issues with h264, why do you think they're buying On2? They've seen the statements from MPEG-LA abou

          • by beelsebob (529313)

            Don't get me wrong – if google manages to come up with an open source video codec that's competitive with h264 in terms of bandwidth use for a given quality *and* has hardware decoding support for phones then I would be 100% behind it.

            I'm not even above commenting that h264 is better than OggTheora as a choice necessarily. Only that it at the moment is the only one that satisfies the parent's criterion.

            • by True Grit (739797) *

              if google manages to come up with an open source video codec that's competitive with h264 in terms of bandwidth use for a given quality *and* has hardware decoding support for phones

              Right, I understand the importance of hardware support for handheld devices, just keep in mind that that can happen for any codec if there was demand for it. Hardware accelerated Theora (or Thusnelda - the later, better version of it) could exist right now, if there had just been some demand.

              If a major player like Google opened up one of the advanced On2 VP codecs as an alternative to h264, it would instantly become a viable, if not downright *attractive*, option for gadget makers, because unlike Theora, i

              • by tepples (727027)

                Hardware accelerated Theora (or Thusnelda - the later, better version of it) could exist right now, if there had just been some demand.

                Thusnelda is the name of an encoder that produces Theora bitstreams compatible with all conforming Theora players. For a service like YouTube, it's less important for the encoding to be hardware accelerated because encoding happens once on fast servers, but decoding might happen 24,576 times (or more often if you're Fred).

          • by moreati (119629) <alex@moreati.org.uk> on Saturday January 16, 2010 @05:48AM (#30789128) Homepage

            First, do you have a citation for this 'massive' reduction in power?

            Langen, Germany, October 30, 2008 - Fujitsu Microelectronics Europe (FME) today expanded its line-up of H.264*1 CODECs with two new devices that encode and decode full high-definition (HD) (1920 dots x 1080 lines) Video in H.264 format. The first of the two products to be launched, the ultra-low power MB86H55, features power consumption of only 500mW during full HD encoding including the built-in memory, an industry-leading level for low power consumption. In addition, the upcoming MB86H56 will offer processing of full HD video at 60 frames-per-second (progressive) '60p'*2, to improve picture quality even further.

            -- http://embedded-computing.com/fujitsu-full-h-264-codecs [embedded-computing.com]

            That's half a Watt encoding HD, a general purpose CPU would be consuming tens, or even a hundred watts to do that.

            • by True Grit (739797) *

              That's half a Watt encoding HD, a general purpose CPU would be consuming tens, or even a hundred watts to do that.

              This is a special device/chipset for embedded devices, however, Google isn't running youtube on embedded devices.

              Once you take into consideration the power their server farms are already consuming, any savings just from hardware encoding (which they would only need to do *once* if they could move the market to one Internet video codec standard) becomes a small percentage of their total power consumption.

              Never mind that doing something like this would require them to add a PCI card with this chipset to ever

              • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

                by molecular (311632)

                That's half a Watt encoding HD, a general purpose CPU would be consuming tens, or even a hundred watts to do that.

                They wouldn't have to put that into the youtube web-servers, because, as you said later in your post, they'd only have to do it once. They would certainly pre-encode all the videos and put them on storage somewhere (cloudy place).
                Also: noone forces them to use an embedded device, even if the chip was specifically made for use in such.

                • When you handle as much video as youtube, "pre-encoding the videos" is a huge technical challenge that hardware acceleration would be incredibly useful for.

                • by True Grit (739797) *

                  They wouldn't have to put that into the youtube web-servers, because, as you said later in your post, they'd only have to do it once.

                  They'd only do it once if they were able to use a real, open, universal standard. We don't have that yet.

                  And no, h264's de-facto standard is not a *real* standard, its derived solely from popularity, not from an industry-wide agreement (if it was a real standard it would be part of HTML5 right now).

        • by Skapare (16644)

          Where's the obligatory URL to a H.264 decoder chip with a fully documented and open, royalty-free and unencumbered INTERFACE (we don't need a driver for BSD or Linux, because if it is truly an open chip, the driver will be developed)?

          I have no issue with using some proprietary patent encumbered protocol or format where all the work to process it is inside a licensable piece of hardware (which could even have its own firmware and CPU built inside to do it all). If the manufacturer of the chip requires that

          • by beelsebob (529313)

            If you don't mind a binary blob (as you said), see any modern (G92 or later) nVidia card...

            I believe intel's new IGPs have open drivers for video decoding too.

            If you want embedded platforms, the PVR MBX/SGX does video decoding, and there are many linux distros with it implemented.

            You probably want to go look at vdpau in general though ;).

        • Hardware h264 encoders exist, and I bet google would use them

          They already do. Google encodes YouTube stuff in h264, and includes h264 support in Chrome. I could see something changing with the On2 purchase, but for now, h264 is a good bet.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by agrif (960591)

          You did not mention openness in your post, so I have no idea where you stand on that. Your post is factual, though.

          People need to remember that h264 is not a free format! This is why YouTube videos are limited to ~10 minutes. A free format should be preferred in this case. Also, HTML5 is intended to be an open format. Video and audio codecs that are used with HTML5 should also be open, or the whole system is no longer open. An open format, when available, should always be selected here regardless of quality

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          Actually, accelerating Theora is high on our priority list due to it being one of the few codecs that Redhat can sponsor and ship.

          We have no plans to add h.264 acceleration to any GPU driver at the moment, although patches are welcome.

          The hardware can decode h.263 (Theora) just as well as it can decode h.264.

        • by Briareos (21163) *

          h264 can compress a video much more for a given quality than the current flash video they use

          Except, of course, that the flash plugin has supported H264 video [wikipedia.org] for a while now and the 10.1 beta actually does accelerate H264 decoding [adobe.com] via the graphics card (I'd say less than 5% CPU use when playing a HD trailer suggests it's being accelerated...)

          np: Pink Floyd - Echoes (Meddle)

    • Not any time soon. Embedded Theora video in Firefox 3.5 still uses at least twice as much CPU as downloading the file and playing it with a proper video player. It's better than Flash which is even more greedy with your CPU cycles, but it is by no means anywhere near close to being called good.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by nine-times (778537)

      Can you explain why it would be a mistake? If we were to assume for a second that performance on the client end would be exactly the same, then what would be the mistake in using standards instead of a proprietary stuff?

      But anyway, it will provide some benefits. They're already encoding all their video in h264, but they're using Flash as the player, which is pretty inefficient. For one thing, Flash means no hardware decoding. Also, Flash itself can be a bit of a resource hog. Providing the same video

  • by Djupblue (780563) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @01:59AM (#30788422)

    Youtube is pretty much the only reason I need Flash. If it was possible to watch Youtube videos without plugins it would be great. No more choppiness or Flash using 100% CPU. Playing some videos from internet shouldn't be rocket surgery so this is really about time. Flash seems almost purposefully bad on Linux.

  • So wait... (Score:3, Funny)

    by gaelfx (1111115) on Saturday January 16, 2010 @04:12AM (#30788750)
    ... you're telling me that I finally got Flash working on my 64-bit Ubuntu box for nothing??? (Admittedly, it wasn't really that difficult) To be honest though, it doesn't really matter for me since YouTube is still blocked in China, but it would be nice to see if this prompts the many streaming sites in China to embrace an open-standard such as this, but that will never happen since everyone continues to use IE6 here and I'm betting that IE will never implement HTML5 until it's long past finished...sooooo another 15 years before IE used HTML5? Bets anyone?
  • So the next big question is, how long will it take for all the über geeks at Google to make it happen? I wonder if they can pull it off quicker than the time it takes to hire a new person.

  • Almost everything already supports H.264 and AAC, they're both excellent CODECs and the *only* problem people have with it is the damn patents.

    Apple should just buy all the rights to H.264 and AAC and then make them free to use/public domain.

    Another solution would be to change the license requirements for software-only products (such as browsers), so that only hardware products require a license.

    • by alvinrod (889928)
      Which is great until H.265 is released and the whole problem repeats itself. It's also a matter of the FTC letting Apple purchase all of these companies (Some probably won't want to sell their patents.) and Apple actually wanting to spend all of this money for something that benefits them in no way at all. Maybe some goodwill but most people won't even understand what's being talked about.

      Since most hardware buying built these days has H.264 decoding built in somewhere, wouldn't it just be sufficient for
      • by Yvan256 (722131)

        That's the most sane solution I've ever heard about this topic. Hardware already has H.264 decoding and it would make it necessary for software to actually use hardware-accelerated decoding.

    • by True Grit (739797) *

      Apple should just buy all the rights to H.264 and AAC

      Apple is already one of the patent owners serviced by MPEG-LA. They make money off of h264 themselves. Thats why they're pushing it. Its easy money in their pocket.

      As for buying out all the other patent owners, I doubt anyone, not even Google, has that much money. Those patent licenses are a huge cash-cow.

  • by SanityInAnarchy (655584) <ninja@slaphack.com> on Saturday January 16, 2010 @12:46PM (#30791562) Journal

    I'm not sure to what extent this is "storm-in-a-teacup" status, but the DMCA has been frequently abused on YouTube as a means of censorship -- not just by corporations, but by individuals. So has "false flagging" -- a video says something you disagree with? Flag it as inappropriate.

    Both of these seem to be handled somewhat mechanically by YouTube. For a good example, search for "What Islam Fears: Laughter," but it's much more common than that -- particularly, creationists like to use it to get atheist videos removed, when their votebots fail to reduce the video's score significantly.

    Most recently, VenomFangX (remember him?) pulled a neat little trick in which he false-DMCA'd someone, then dropped it when a counter-notice was filed and accused this person of child molestation, using the personal information from the counter-notice to personally identify him.

    So far, I see a ton of comments about HTML5, and that's well and good, open standards are important. But freedom of speech is more important. Granted, it is YouTube's right to censor whatever they wish, but this doesn't seem to be YouTube doing the censoring, or indeed a conscious choice on the part of any human at YouTube -- it's individuals abusing YouTube's flagging and DMCA notice system.

    Of course, if Google notices this, expect the next wash of comments to be complaints about the new channel pages -- fair enough, given I don't know a single person who prefers it to the old system -- but not nearly as important as these two issues.

  • It’s weird. I see two “sides”, presented as “fighting” (of course the are not>). And both of them are not connected to reality at all.

    First we have what’s there right now: Flash, some proprietary container, H.264, MP3.
    Then we have the open source evangelists (as opposed to the normal friends of open source): HTML5, Theora, OGG, Vorbis.

    Meanwhile, here in the real world, everybody who distributes modern videos, does it in: Matroska container, AC3, Vorbis, AAC or MP3, per

If imprinted foil seal under cap is broken or missing when purchased, do not use.

Working...