Photofest photos-to-video

Videoblogging, vlogging, vodcasting (assumes an iVod video device comes out soon from Apple) means that at some point, those of us interested in blogging and podcasting will also be delivering visual content.

So today I decided to gain an intuitive sense and understand what it would take — and what the workflow would be like — to simply take photos (from my recent Brainerd Lakes area PhotoFest), add a transition between each, set the production to music and publish it on my blog. No big deal video…just a straightforward, fast and seemingly simple video that should’ve taken 45 minutes. I’ve been at this on-and-off for five hours!

What an adventure. Even my preferred platform (Macintosh) which sports iMovie, Final Cut Pro (which I own) and Quicktime 7 (I have the pro version) wasn’t enough to allow me to deliver video in two flavors: high quality, H.264 (mp4); and — so those Windows users could view it — delivered as an AVI or WMV file. Guess what? The utilities aren’t built-in to any of the Mac tools to easily encode video to either AVI or WMV (AVI is built-in to Quicktime Pro for encoding/exporting, but in extensive testing I couldn’t get Windows Media Player 9 to play the video properly *and* it looked aliased and crappy) (NOTE: there are pay-for plug-ins that do this…but I’m not paying $99 for the privilege).

No question Apple has little incentive to support Windows Media nor wants to do so. Microsoft is probably bent-out-of-shape that iTunes installs Quicktime in stealth mode (need Quicktime to use iTunes) so the more iTunes users there are…the more Quicktime is in the marketplace and the critical mass of users grows.

So that’s why I’m delivering this video as a Flash video (90%+ of all web browsers on all platforms support Flash) and allowing higher quality H.264 download. Sigh…this is still way too difficult.

UPDATE IN JANUARY 2011: I’m actually NOT delivering this as Flash but rather via as an MP4, compatible with iPad, etc.

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  1. Chris Koehn on October 12, 2005 at 2:50 am

    Welcome to the wonderful world of encoding hell that is videoblogging! I honestly think I might just offer the same flash type content you are using for universality’s sake and PSP widescreen format too. Who’s got the time these days to churn out video content without being paid? Good luck with your video endeavours, I hope to see more video content from more bloggers in the future.

    Anyway I have some of your podcasts to catch up on so I better end this before it turns into a page or two…

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About Steve Borsch

Strategist. Learner. Idea Guy. Salesman. Connector of Dots. Friend. Husband & Dad. CEO. Janitor. More here.

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Connecting the Dots Podcast

Podcasting hit the mainstream in July of 2005 when Apple added podcast show support within iTunes. I'd seen this coming so started podcasting in May of 2005 and kept going until August of 2007. Unfortunately was never 'discovered' by national broadcasters, but made a delightfully large number of connections with people all over the world because of these shows. Click here to view the archive of my podcast posts.