[whatwg] Video proposals

Vladimir Vukicevic vladimir at pobox.com
Mon Mar 19 15:20:05 PDT 2007

Håkon Wium Lie wrote:
> Also sprach Robert Brodrecht:
>  > As I said before, I think we have a lot better chance at getting a common,
>  > cross-browser, cross-platform format with MPEG 4.  The reason WHAT WG
>  > proposed Theora is *because* it is FOSS, not for quality, size, ease of
>  > implementation, or anything else (as far as I know).

Quality, size, etc. have all been goals of the Theora project, so it's 
not really fair to say that they haven't been considered.  There is no 
technical reason why Theora shouldn't be specified as a baseline format.

> Due to software patents, MPEG 4 costs money. Also, it requires more
> processing power than many devices have. Who will pay for licenses to
> OLPC's machines? And, how will the get the power to decode?
> I think it's vital that we find an open format that the free world can
> use.
> If MPEG4 is the alternative, we might as well continue using Flash and
> <object>. But it's not a world I want to live in.

I see no problem with an implementation supporting MPEG4 etc. in 
addition to Theora (provided they can legally do so).  If providing 
content in non-Theora formats is important, the client should list the 
supported video formats in the Accept header, and the server can send 
back the right thing.  Arguing over which format is supported isn't 
really productive, because due to legal realities, there are very few 
high quality options for a common baseline format.  Theora is probably 
the best of that bunch.  (The BBC format whose name I can't think of atm 
might be another, but I think it's much earlier along the development 

     - Vlad

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