October 2000

October 31, 2000 -- Happy Halloween!

IBM's HotMedia 3.5 (an authoring tool that converts media of many types into a Java-based format so it can play back without a plug-in) now can import QuickTime files. More information can be found in a MacCentral Online article, "HotMedia 3.5 now supports QuickTime" as well as at IBM's HotMedia page (where you can also download the software for free).

A MacCentral Online article, "QT 5 reviews positive on aesthetic and technical fronts" provides quotes from a MacUser UK article (which you can read yourself if you go to the MacUser UK site and register), as well as from Adam Wilt's report on the new Apple DV codec (see last week's Little QuickTime Page).

Tech Info Library article number 60760 provides information on the compatibility of Final Cut Pro and QuickTime 5 Public Preview.

iPIX builder 4.1, recently released, now exports in the QuickTime VR cubic format. (The software is only $50, but you have to pay iPIX for every file you create, and you have to use one of a limited set of iPIX-compatible cameras.) More information is at iPIX's Builder page.

If you haven't been to the Products section of Apple's QuickTime web site lately, you'll be pleasantly surprised at it's fairly clean re-design, with lots of useful information, much of it not buried too deeply. For example, in the QuickTime (not too wisely named) section there are tutorials, and links to download the installers. In the Licenses and Legal section, they have access to the QuickTime badges, among other things. In the Services section, there's a good list of companies that provide QuickTime services including encoding and streaming.

Two streaming server web sites seem to have disappeared, One is the Marlin Project, which was a port of the QuickTime Streaming Server for Mac OS 9; the link just seems to be dead. The other is StreamingServer.org, a site that tracked "open" RTSP servers for streaming media; their home page is blank. Does anyone know what happened to these sites?

The QuickTime 5 Public Preview is now available in French, German, Japanese, and English (UK). You can download them from the QuickTime 5 Public Preview page.

October 25, 2000

An article in Streaming Media World, "Headwaters: Springs of Knowledge", summarizes key features of streaming media technologies, giving QuickTime the nod for "best-in-class".

Adam Wilt, widely recognized DV expert, has a detailed report on Apple's new DV codec (and giving it a big thumbs-up).Check out Wilt's Apple DV codec and Promax DV Plus review.

For a bit of humor, check out Jake Rodkin's "Do you dare?" page

New and updated Mac freeware and shareware tools to add to your library:

MakeCubicPPC, Apple's utility for making Cubic QuickTime VR movies is now available at QuickTime Tools and Utilities page. There's also a tutorial on the same page.

Version 1.1 of QuickTime Text Tracks, a Mac-only tool for creating QuickTime text tracks is available at the QuickTime Text Tracks page.

Version 1.1 of ImageDV, a utility for capturing single still images from a DV tape, is available at the ImageDV page.

Accelerate Your Mac! has an article titled "iMovie 1 vs iMovie 2, QT 4 vs QT 5 Performance Tests", that provides benchmarks comparing the old and new versions of iMovie and the old and new versions of QuickTime.

Jim Heid has a brief review of LiveSlideShow at Macworld.com. (LiveSlideShow is Totally Hip's easy-to-use tool for creating interactive QuickTime slide shows.)

A Reuters article, "Windows Media for Macs available", has the subtitle,"Microsoft is stepping up to challenge QuickTime", though it quotes a Microsoft rep as saying that Windows Media and QuickTime " can live side by side".

October 17, 2000

The big news at QuickTime Live last week was the announcement of QuickTime 5, and the release of a public preview version (for Mac OS 8/9 only, no Windows or Mac OS X), which you can get at the QuickTime 5 Public Preview page. You can get lots of details about what's new in a MacWEEK article, "Apple announces QuickTime 5." You can get Phil Schiller's take on QuickTime 5 at Apple's QuickTime Live Keynote page. Some of the most important changes as we see it:

The QuickTime 5 Player has a new face; we think it's much cleaner than the one that was on QT4. The best news is that chapter lists are now usable in the QuickTime Player: you get a real pop-up menu! (See our screenshot of the Player with a chapter list.) Also, the QuickTime VR interface finally matches the look of the Player.

Though not in this preview release, the final version of QuickTime 5 should have new version of the Sorenson codec. See a Sorenson Media October 11 press release for details about Sorenson Video3.

One particularly important new feature of QuickTime 5 is the component downloader; this will allow third parties to add new extensions to QuickTime which can almost transparently download. MacWEEK.com has an article "QuickTime components debut" that provides more details.

To go with this preview of QuickTime 5, there's also a preview version of QuickTime Streaming Server 3; more info is at the QuickTime Streaming Server 3 Public Preview page.

The DV codec is much improved. You'll notice a difference if you play back DV movies in QuickTime Player.

And, now that a version of QuickTime 5 is available, you can view some of the cubic QuickTime VR panoramas that are available. Check out Apple's Cubic VR Gallery, Kaidan's QuickTime VR Cubic Gallery, and Panoscan's Cubic QTVR page. (A free tool from Apple to make your own cubic QuickTime VR panoramas should be out soon; it will be at the QuickTime Tools and Utilities page when it is available.)

In other QuickTime news:

Peter Hoddie (formerly the senior QuickTime architect) has re-surfaced; check out the Generic Media web site.

A new web site, QT4EDU, provides lots of info about creating educational content using QuickTime, as well as some general information about the QuickTime architecture. (The creator, David Egbert, uses QuickTime movies to teach about QuickTime.)

There's a new tool, CoolStream, which is a shareware QuickTime broadcasting application. (This provides the first alternative to Sorenson Broadcaster.) Go to the CoolStream page.

If you're curious about how well QuickTime is doing, read an Apple press release, "Appleís QuickTime 4 Surpasses 100 Million Mark". Or check out a MacWEEK commentary piece, "Shalat's Web: The case for QuickTime ubiquity".

There's a new beta version (2.5b2) of QTKeys, a music synthesizer based on the QuickTime music architecture. Get it at the Brueckner Interactive web site.

Matsushita is making a digital still camera that will shoot 12 second QuickTime movies. Read a short MacUser article, "Matsushita to ship QuickTime-based camera."

October 3, 2000

Apple has announced the list of keynote speakers for QuickTime Live! There are some interesting speakers in the line-up, to be sure. Also, you'll be able to view Phil Schiller's keynote at Apple's QuickTime Live Keynote page; rumors hint at an announcement of a new version of QuickTime.

CatDV is a new tool for logging and cataloging QuickTime video. You can get more info and download a trial version at the CatDV Product Details page.

BTV Edit, a simple QuickTime capture and editing tool, has been updated to version 4.1, you can read more about it at the BTV site, click the download button in the navigation bar to load the frame where you can download the software and see a version history.

David Egbert at Brigham Young University has a QuickTime Authoring Tutorials page, which he is in the process of filling with QuickTime-based tutorials about using QuickTime (installation, using the Player for editing, including movies in PowerPoint).

Apple has posted an article titled "CNN Makes News with Totally Portable Video Production"; it's a story about how CNN produced a segment using a PowerBook, Final Cut Pro and DV cams. The story includes a QuickTime movie of the segment. (Somewhat surprisingly, the clip is compressed using the very old, and not web-friendly Cinepak and IMA codecs; perhaps they were trying to make the clip accessible to those with versions of QuickTime lower than 3?)

We won't be publishing the Little QuickTime Page next week; we'll be back in two weeks with lots of news from the QuickTime Live! conference. (Our talk at QuickTime Live! is QT35: Editing Tricks with the QuickTime Player.