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Discussions

Bass Bass Knows the way the wind is flowing.
  • HTML 5 ditches native video support

    PaoloM said:
    Bass said:
    *snip*

    Google, Netscape, Mozilla, Opera.

    Can you translate his rant for me? What did "Google, Netscape (from the grave?), Mozilla, Opera" do? Are aliens involved? Sad Aliens are scary!

    I'm going to try my best anyway:

    Web browsers vendors et al, won a epic lawsuit of awesome proportions against unknown entity. This in a weird ponzi sceme sort of way, made web browsers as a whole, seem more valuable. But it's all a fascade! Then, MPEG LA, posses a cleverly designed time machine (aliens are involved). They are of course, being aliens, very interested in destroying the Internet (see: Independence Day), came up with a clever plan. We shall raise our generic license fees we quote everyone! This will surely kill the Internets. Oh an a puppy died. Sad Poor puppy.

  • HTML 5 ditches native video support

    AndyC said:
    Bass said:
    *snip*

    But such fees stem from the perceived "value" of the browser market, which in turn stems from the epic legal judgements against certain browser manufacturers. Judgements which certain of the vendors now complaining about the value of the browser market were (and continue to be) key players in initiating. Did they really think that pushing for a legal valuation of the market on such a scale might not come back to haunt them if they aren't capable of pulling in an equivalent amount of revenue?

    I don't know what the hell you are implying. "Certain browser manufacturers", "certain of the vendors", can you please define who/what the hell you are ranting about? It would be kind of helpful.

  • HTML 5 ditches native video support

    PaoloM said:
    Bass said:
    *snip*

    The only video site that counts (youtube.com) uses H.264. I don't see that changing and I don't see how it "ruined the internet" (well, maybe in the sense of mindless entertainment, but technologically it works just fine).

    Well Youtube is owned by Google. Google makes billions of dollars. Google can afford H.264.

    But what about everyone ELSE who wants to use H.264? Why should implementing HTML suddenly cost money? Does "the Internet" now how to be a licensee of MPEG LA, if they want to use HTML5 video, or hell even Flash?

    Did you know that if you use Flash client and you are a business, you must get a license from MPEG LA? Flash's H.264 is not licensed for commerical use at all! This is both client and server (decoding and encoding video). Just because MPEG LA hasn't sued the millions of businesses that are probably in violation of this right now, doesn't mean they won't later.

  • HTML 5 ditches native video support

    CannotResolveSymbol said:
    AndyC said:
    *snip*

    Yes, you could argue that.  But why should a standard be allowed to mandate that a closed-source codec with exorbitant licensing fees be implemented when freely available alternatives exist?

    If all the codecs are unacceptable to someone (and a standard has to have support from multiple implementors to qualify as a standard--  a "standard" on paper implemented by only one entity isn't really a standard), the only solution is to not specify the codec.  That's what happened here.

    Another any interesting thing about the license fees, the $5 million per year cap only applies in 2010. MPEG LA reserves the right to raise this license fee in future years. Also, MPEG LA doesn't currently charge for websites serving H.264 content, but they will begin charging license fees for this in 2010. Meaning if you have a website that servs up H.264 (channel 9?) you will have to get a separate license. They haven't decided how much they will charge. But chances are, as with everything MPEG LA apparently, this won't be inexpensive. This could affect tens of thousands of businesses and individuals, and many more if HTML5 used H.264 exclusively.

    Basically I view H.264 is useless as a video format for all but the biggest conglomerates who make billions of dollars and quickly hit the royalty cap, which as of now $5 mill is still petty cash for them. Notice that's why Apple and Google can live with H.264, they are both huge companies who use H.264 all over the place and probably pay the flat fee and are done with it. Apple also receives royalties from the MPEG LA, so they have a vested interest in the format.

    If H.264 starts getting more adoption, and basically even medium sized companies will require to buy expensive licenses to H.264 to be competitive. If people become "addicted" to H.264, suddenly, MPEG LA more incentive to raise their license fees to almost a government income tax type level.

    It could basically ruin the Internet, hurt mostly small business and individuals, which so far thrived on Internet IMO because it's an open access medium unlike TV.

  • HTML 5 ditches native video support

    AndyC said:
    Bass said:
    *snip*

    Is it the job of the standards definition body to bail out an organization which made a bad decision in terms of IP ownership? Will it continue to be if they continue to do so? What about if the political hole they are digging themselves becomes fundamentally incompatible with the business requirements of others?

    I don't think you can expect the W3C to say "if you want to implement HTML5, you better have $5 million per year in disposable income". I think the point is to offer wide implementation of web standardsin entities big and small.

  • HTML 5 ditches native video support

    AndyC said:
    CannotResolveSymbol said:
    *snip*

    Interesting use of the word can't when the truth is more like won't. Whilst there were technical objections to Theora, the arguments againt H.264 are purely ideological. Should we really be allowing standards to be defined by the political ideologies of a single contributor? What happens when the FSF push the boundaries further (we've already seen the desire to enforce political views through GPL3), will we continue to blindy accept those into the standards?

    To take it to an extreme, what happens when the Scientologists/Catholics/Muslims/Pastafarians release a browser and start demanding that their beliefs need to be represented by the HTML spec (will all HTML6 documents need to contain a <JesusApproves/> tag?)

    Perhaps I should have said "Arguably, Open Source derailed HTML video"

    Mozilla doesn't own the full copyright to the Firefox codebase. They must follow the license like anyone else, or risk being sued for copyright infringement.

    Besides the objections to H.264 are not purely ideological. For a web browser licensing H.264 goes up to five million dollars PER year. It's a very expensive codec.

    Edit: Off by a multiple. Still frecken expensive. Smiley

  • HTML 5 ditches native video support

    TommyCarlier said:

    Native video support is not ditched. The only thing that's dropped is the required codecs. The <audio> and <video> tags will still be part of the standard but the required codecs that browsers will have to support are not defined (just like with the <img> tag).

    Well at least with IMG you can pick JPEG and expect it to work reasonably well between all browsers. Smiley I think Ogg Theora should be at least a baseline codec. Basically Apple derailed HTML video in a way by refusing to implement Theora. Sad

  • HTML5 questions

    blowdart said:
    Bass said:
    *snip*

    Ah no, no-one knows if Dirac violates any patents. Whereas one would assume MS would have been sued by now if WM* had.

    Yes but we know that H.264 violates patents that aren't covered by the MPEG LA licensing agreement. It's just that a judge basically ruled that any such patents are invalid simply because H.264 is too important to train wreck. Seems silly to give one such codec special treatment under the law.

  • HTML5 questions

    blowdart said:
    Bass said:
    *snip*

    Wouldn't it be rather amusing if MS offered up WMA/WMV under a free patent license for W3 video use?

    Will that happen the day before or after Microsoft releases Windows under an open source license? Smiley

    I suppose if Microsoft did do that they'd actually take them up on the offer. But it seems unlikely, I don't really think Microsoft wants to see HTML5 succeed. HTML is in competition with their "Windows Everywhere" strategy.

    What's strange about the whole thing is we already have a patent free and high quality codec that was created and wide used by the BBC (called "Dirac"). It doesn't even seem to be under consideration.

    But basically the patent system is broken here in the USA. Submarine patents are a big problem, even H.264 was threatened by one from Qualcomm. Actually H.264 was considered important enough that a judge basically said that if you have a submarine patent against H.264, you aren't allowed to use it, doesn't matter if it's "valid" or not. I wonder if the government will give other codecs similar treatment.

  • Summary of existing bugs.

    CannotResolveSymbol said:

    #5 seems to only happen on threads that Bass has replied to.  Strange.

    I have this effect with other Microsoft software, so it's not suprising. Windows XP machines BSOD as I walk by. But anyway I think I "fixed" the problem.