Sunday, March 18, 2007

Please help me

I have been lazy.

In the 90s I was an avid reader of all things techy from magazines such as New Media Age, Production Solutions, Digit, Create Online etc. In fact I have spent a small fortune getting my head around such laudable questions as "Is TV dead?" and "Creating your own TV Station".

Somewhere along the way, I read and reread about how broadband at 8mb download represented a digital rubicon. That the data rate of TV runs at 8mb, so once broadband crossed that threshhold we could attain DVD [mpg2/4] quality films via the web.

I have loftily taken this as fact in the way it spews from lectures. It might well be, but now feel strongly that I need to delve deeper. I rifled through some of my old archive copies of the aforementioned magazines, but guess they're being recycled into 24k diamonds

8 mbit was a huge area of disucssion at a time when we ran on 56k modems. But trawling the net, I'm coming up short finding anything on this.

What I do understand to quickly avoid any public blushes is that bit rate of video is different to bandwidth transmissions.

So is TV really 8mb as generalised or is it that 8 meg download is the key for streaming [live or progressive in the nature of VOD]?

There are ome some knowns: greater bandwidth allows for the transmission of better quality video and IPTV -Internet protocol TV will be a huge player.

I also said at a conference how I favoured Flash over Windows Media Player and was in the habit of advising clients about using the FLV player because of its aesthetic. A further clairification might help. When it comes to image quality, Flash, Quicktime, Windows Media player run on similar principles. What you put in, you get out. Meaning, it's up to you. If it looks bad on your newspaper site that's because whoever encoded the video did so with a heavy hand, and would probably muck up Flash all the same.

No my real leaning to Flash is its aesthetic, that I can devise my own play back controls and that they are not visual comparison for Windows clunky less ergonomic displays, but then that's a personal opinion.


Doug Hughes said...

Wow David, where do you find the time? Apple's comment that you seem to be everywhere at once could'nt be more appropriate.

You know, it's interesting, living or working around academia, or in a professional settings where computers and the internet are everywhere and people are excited about these technologies it is easy to think that one day internet may be the death of TV.

However, when I step outside of my environment I see a world where many people have no or very little interest in the internet, or web technologies but they love TV.

My girlfriend and her friends work in an office. They have access to computers and the internet all day but it is amazing how unenthused about the technologies they are. I know what they are excited about though -- TV.

It will be a while before TV is replaced by the Web, and I guess when I think about it TV seems stronger than ever.

Nice post David.

Dr David Dunkley Gyimah said...

Thanks Doug

You're right though about how the non geeks e.g your girlfriend etc see this whole TV-Net thing.

When people tell me TV will die. I disagree with them. Ultimately TV will survive, but how will it look. Probbaly the same, but it's guts will have been surplanted with something else. A plasma screen with triple play tendencies: connected to Sat/Terrestrial and the Net

Which to your friends and mine is of little value, so long as they can watch their fav programmes.

This march Joost launches - from the boys who made skype. Interesting analogy! Skype hasn't replaced the traditional telephone system, and perhaps Joost and all the IPTVs will have a generation's work cut out for them before they're mass market.

But the next lot, 6 and 7 years with no allegiance to any visual media so long as it delivers will be heavy participants on a beefed up net which at 100mbits will make TV look and feel like card board cut outs.

Mind you.. tv isn't giving up the ghost yet. Watch out for high defintions sell, something the Net will take a wee bit more time to get to.