HTML5 Video


If you want to cater for everyone with video, you are going to have to accommodate them with code, especially those beleaguered Apple users. First, convert your video into 3 formats – .swf, .ogv and .mp4. Between these, you will cover about 90% of users. Be friendly, and add download links for people who prefer to download and watch later, or for various reason, are unable to stream.



Download Video:
Closed Format: “MP4”
Open Format: “Ogg”

Here’s the code …

<video width=”320″ height=”240″ controls>
<source src=”; type=”video/mp4″ /><!– Safari / iOS video –>
<source src=”; /><!– Firefox / Opera / Chrome10 –>
<!– fallback to Flash: –>

<p> <strong>Download Video:</strong>
Closed Format: <a href=”″>”MP4″</a&gt;
Open Format: <a href=””>”Ogg”</a&gt;

Additional revenue stream is the mother of invention

Facebook is testing introducing of system that charges $1 in order for users to contact strangers (i.e. people not connected by friendship). LinkedIn has had this kind of service for a long while, and spamming based on this service is pretty minimal. Continue reading

Should you trust any testing company with “test” in their company name?

I have to say a no – why? The mere fact that someone decides to put “test” or “testing” in their company name just rings alarm bells to me. Putting asides agencies that rebranded themselves as test consultancies, there is also a ramp of companies in general, purporting to provide testing services. Each claim to be a leader in their fields (usually every type of testing you can name), and very few actually provide a service, simply bodies – testers, maybe test manager, but largely people who test.
Continue reading

Bug vs Feature

It is impossible for clients to work out all the features they need from an application prior to development. This is the strengths of Agile and the ongoing review process. Bugs come in all forms, and developers take great joy from rejecting bugs as “as specified” or simply “won’t fix” due to development complications. This is not an approach to take overall – bugs can lead to very useful feature improvements, and the benefit is that your client will appreciate what they see as free consultancy. Rather than just stick your head in requirements sand, be Agile and always be ready to incorporate new ideas into the development stream. Continue reading

Keep ISEB Out Of Testing

The flow incompetent ISEB testers seems to have stemmed now, which is good news.   BBC lost a lot of testers, through its bizarre ISEB/Nigerian hiring policy – a stream of  unskilled testers, made skilled by a little certificate.  “Yes, you can barely communicate to developers or managers, understand little about the web, work slowly and inefficiently, but hey – you have an ISEB, you must be special”.   But then the beeb were never the sharpest tool in the box, when it came to software  development.   Looking round the forums relating to ISEB, it is seen as some kind of holy grail to enter the IT contracting market.  Testing is not just testing – a tester who just understands testing principles (as ISEB see fit) with no other skills, is no tester at all.  Gradually there is realisation that all ISEB has done is reduced quality, not improved it.  It provided an easy platform for anyone to slip in through the back door, on the back of a 40 multiple choice exam, that can be taken as many times as you like.  And a lot of the examination centres are a joke – the one I took mine in, I was left totally unsupervised for the entire time. I actually had to go and find someone, because got tired of waiting after I finished.   When you look for a tester, dont just look at the ISEB and set your mind in a mode of  “I dont have to think anymore”.  Testers can qualify for ISEB,  and barely be able to string a sentence together in a bug report.  That no exaggeration – I have seen it, and sacked it.

Media 2.0

Media 2.0 Workgroup – Social, Democratic, Distributed

As one of the many (no doubt), who try and catch the internet waves, I realised my own personal weakness – tangents.  In the latter part of 2004 I started a venture mullshrimp, whose aim was to provide an online DAM (Digital Asset Management) System, providing services to upload video of multiple formats types, rought-cut edit, and stream online.   It was based on sound open source servers,encoders,decoders, cms.    I am sure now I wasnt alone in that "idea" – in fact of course we have the cream that rose to the top in youtube – s truly user-friendly and clear service, and still is.  I, on the other hand, became obessed with supporting as many formats as possible, and attempting to build a revenue model when just getting people to just use a service like this was a challenge.  The question is have a I learnt from my mistakes, now that it seems media 2.0 is upon us.

Asides the unfortunate 2.0 tag, I see media 2.0 as convergence between web 2.0 technologies (microfomats, social networking) and digital media.   I also note that these movements happen, regardless of fashion.  So the original mode of web 2.0 is now proved in the field, so to speak, so time to incorporate more than just the generic.  And so onto microformats … this is the web 2.0 area I latched onto to begin, albeit late!  I have long used rss/xml as forms of aggregation, but now there are extended formats designed to support different purposes.  Media, regradless of type – video, audio, photo, presenetations needs metadata, and it is this data that needs to be in machine-friendly format in order to be read easily by current and future microfomat SOA’s.

What my mullshrimp-bruising has already taught me is that just because you find a good application of technologies, what really forces the sell is adoption by the masses – the impatient ipod-generation ( a large market sector now).   Eschewing the virtues of a DAM that supports multiple file formats, when instead I should have presented the public with a fait-accomplit.  Why should they care what format their video file is in – they should just be able to upload and view it.  THey want to be able to tag it easily, and also be able to rate the videos.   I am forgetting that adults also have the "look at what I made!" drive.    In many ways, I am victim of my generation – in a era where only outcasts used computers.

I have more or less given up trying to start a company in the UK – the environment and atmosphere is poor, and at many points over the last fgew years I have felt thoroughly ashamed to be english.  Why i have latched on to technology so much, and the communities it is only place where you can truly count yourself as a "world citizen".