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Comment: Re:starting to make sense (Score 1) 202

by Manuka (#47168939) Attached to: Netflix Ditches Silverlight For HTML5 On Macs

Who are you saying is "against" HTML5? DASH-IF? It's a complementary technology, not a competing one. There's no "contractual" issue here. Netflix hasn't switched to DASH until very recently because the technology hasn't been fully developed until very recently. There certainly wouldn't be a contractual obligation for members of the forum to use non-DASH technologies, that would be absurd.

DASH (which, since you're unclear on it, stands for Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP) is an emerging industry standard way of transporting streaming media. As I mentioned earlier, HTML5 is not a streaming standard, it's a browser rendering standard. DASH is a streaming standard that is currently emerging, which uses HTML5 (and associated CSS and Javascript) to render the video in the browser. The members of DASH-IF are the ones developing and implementing the standard. Development of DASH is one of the main reasons Microsoft backed away from Silverlight. Other players in DASH-IF deal with transport (such as Akamai, Cisco) and encoding (Adobe, Dolby, DTS).

Comment: Re:"HTML5 video" doesn't actually exist. (Score 1) 202

by Manuka (#47165733) Attached to: Netflix Ditches Silverlight For HTML5 On Macs

Correct, in order to use RTMP, you must use Flash (as I mentioned in the original post - HTML5 doesn't preclude using a Flash object). There are players such as JWPlayer that do an excellent job of using HTML5 media objects if supported and falling back to Flash if they're not, in order to provide a seamless experience to the end user (but Android is still a mess).

DASH is going a long way towards fixing the mess, but it's still very early in that lifecycle. One of the really neat things about it is that the manifest makes available a list of what video and audio segments are available (and what codecs, bitrates, etc), and the client picks what it needs based on its capabilities. If a DASH manifest makes available a 2.0 stereo audio track at 128Kbps, a 5.1 surround track, a 7.1 surround track, and a 22.1 surround track (don't laugh, 22.1 is part of the upcoming 8K spec), along with a 4K video track and various resolutions and bitrates below that, it will pick whatever's appropriate for your hardware - playing on a mobile device over headphones? Player will pick whichever video track is appropriate for your screen/bandwidth and the 2.0 stereo. Output via HDMI from the same device? Switch the audio over to the surround. And so forth.

Comment: Re: you're smart but wrong (Score 1) 202

by Manuka (#47165663) Attached to: Netflix Ditches Silverlight For HTML5 On Macs

"HTML5" in the context of streaming simply refers to placing a media object on a page without benefit of external players such as Flash or Silverlight. The HTML5 spec quite intentionally does not specify codecs or transports in order to be flexible to upcoming technologies (which change awfully fast in the streaming world). Since HTML (and by extension Javascript) deals with rendering, not transport (that's done over HTTP), it's a technical impossibility to stream with HTML.

Comment: Re:silverlight bad, HTML5 good (Score 3, Informative) 202

by Manuka (#47165591) Attached to: Netflix Ditches Silverlight For HTML5 On Macs

Microsoft is a charter member of the DASH industry Forum (along with Adobe and Netflix and a few others) and is really pushing DASH (if the hype is to be believed, it's the Second Coming). That said, it has a lot of very useful technical benefits over silverlight or HLS.

Comment: Re: you're smart but wrong (Score 1) 202

by Manuka (#47165565) Attached to: Netflix Ditches Silverlight For HTML5 On Macs

The main reason they used silverlight is that of all the ways of streaming content, Silverlight has the most robust DRM support. It's been said that MPEG-DASH combines the best of HLS and Silverlight into an open protocol - namely, HLS' ease of use with Silverlight's robust DRM. HLS has decent DRM support as well, but it's still a proprietary Apple protocol (a "standard" in the Sony sense of the word: because they say it's a standard)

Comment: "HTML5 video" doesn't actually exist. (Score 5, Informative) 202

by Manuka (#47164185) Attached to: Netflix Ditches Silverlight For HTML5 On Macs

From the looks of this, the technical version of what this means is that Netflix has been working closely with Apple to bring MPEG-DASH Media Stream Extensions to Safari (they're already present in Chrome and IE11), and that MSE will be in the Yosemite release of Safari. This is good news for MPEG-DASH adoption. Hopefully we'll also start seeing hardware H.265/HEVC support in new silicon soon which will really open up the door for 4K (and significantly reducing current bandwidth usage for 2K/HD)

Contrary to widely held popular belief (especially among marketing types), there's not such thing as "HTML5 Video". There's a Video tag in HTML5 that allows you to embed a video player in a web page, but there's no standard as to what that actually means. When someone says they "support HTML5 streaming", they're spewing you a line of BS, because it doesn't exist. There are currently at least 5 different ways to send video to an HTML5-compliant browser: Apple HLS (supported by Safari, some WebKit browsers), MPEG-DASH (Supported by IE11 and very recent versions of Chrome), RTMP (Supported by Flash), RTSP (Supported by all kinds of things, but no adaptive streaming), and progressive download (Supported by just about anything, but can't do live streaming). Silverlight is HTTP-based, but not supported directly in the browser (Microsoft missed a golden opportunity with IE10+ to do that), and Adobe also has an HTTP transport called HDS, but it's not useful outside of Flash.

Once you've figured that much out, then you have to figure out what codecs your browser supports. If you're trying to stream live to Firefox, your options are pretty much Flash or nothing, since it supports neither HLS, DASH, or H.264, although MSE is being developed into the Firefox code, it's not ready yet -

And if you're running Android, all bets are off depending on Google's whims for that particular version's stock browser. When Android 4.1 came out they took HLS support OUT of the Android browser and at the same time got rid of Flash support, which means that in-browser streaming on Android became limited to the ancient RTSP protocol (HLS is still supported in the OS media player, and can also be accessed via API). Chrome for Android sort of supports MSE for DASH, but not yet. Google isn't part of DASH-IF, so they're not exactly anxious to support it on Android.

Comment: I use both. (Score 1) 432

by Manuka (#47088141) Attached to: Has the Ethanol Threat Manifested In the US?

One of the benefits of being in Kansas (even in town) is that I can readily get "real" gas (both 87 and 91 octane) at my local Cenex station (it's about 30 cents a gallon more for the 87, about an 8% premium, than the E10 they sell). With the ethanol-free fuel I typically get about 20% better tank range on the highway in my 1997 Toyota Avalon (about 70-80 miles). Cost-wise, it's pretty much a wash, but I like not having to fill up as often. I don't have any qualms using E10 in the car if real gasoline isn't available, since it has a modern engine. For gasoline-powered generators and equipment, though, I won't put ethanol in those if I can at all avoid it, as they do not have computer-controlled injection and ignition systems.

Anyone can do any amount of work provided it isn't the work he is supposed to be doing at the moment. -- Robert Benchley