Saturday, March 10, 2007

Experiments with Google Video

For a long time now, the Research Group here at Business Objects has used video to demonstrate progress on projects. A number of videos are available on the Open Quark main page.
One of the challenges of videos of course, is that they are delivered in a particular format, which may or may not be best, or even appropriate, for any given platform/viewer.

Theoretically then, something like Google Video could really fit the bill, offering web-based video playback on all platforms. So, recently I have been experimenting with Google Video as a channel for demonstration videos (which are of course screen captures). Results so far have left a lot to be desired, and I'm wondering whether this is simply a combination of the content type (screen objects and text) and the fidelity possible with Google's streaming/viewer technology at this point. Alternatively, I haven't found the magical format to upload yet to get a high-fidelity transcoding to their live format.

Google recommend MP4 video at 640x480, deinterlaced at 30fps, with MP4/AAC audio. I have tried to provide almost extactly this format in the uploaded source (exception being 8fps as 30fps is a bit of overkill for a screen capture), and have experimented a little with a few different settings. The latency involved in getting a video live on Google makes experimentation a little awkward, and so far none of the results have been particularly better than any other.

So, if anyone knows a way to get the best results out of Google Video for this kind of content, I'd love to hear from you!

1 comment:

Lavonn said...

Interesting to know.