I’ve received a few reports of readers not being able to see video content on this website. The simple answer to resolve this problem – is to update your web browser to the most recent version. I’ll now give the technical reason for needing to do this. Unfortunately most of you will ignore the long winded explanation. But I feel it’s worth taking the time to read further.
I’d venture a guess that most readers running into this problem are using Internet Explorer as their web browser. Not all browsers play by the same rules – basically not everyone follows the same standards. This can lead to a less than pleasurable Internet experience for end users.
Your average user normally just assumes the owner of the website is a moron who doesn’t know how to run things or that something is broke. They are half right – something is broken – their choice of web browser. From what I can see even Internet Explorer 10 won’t offer help to my readers using IE as their browser choice. The explanation as to why is a bit complicated.
“Internet Explorer 9 requires third-party WebM software”
What does that mean? It means you have to install a plug-in to view WebM videos. I have linked the website that Google offers so that Internet Explorer users can do that. Microsoft could stop all this nonsense by making WebM support native in Internet Explorer – like almost every other browser producer has done.
Unfortunately many of you reading this won’t understand why web standards are important. Most won’t understand why they should demand that Microsoft start supporting all standards and formats – like Internet Explorer’s competition has done for years. But I will make an effort once again to explain why using Open Source for video is important to freedom of information, ease of use and content control for website owners.
The reason Microsoft Internet Explorer users can’t see the video content here is very simple. Internet Explorer does NOT support the .WebM codec. Examples of well known codecs are .MP3, .MP4 , .AVI and Divx. Those are just a few of the well known codecs that video and audio content can be encoded in. WebM is an Open Source codec instead of Closed Source like all the others. Why does this matter?
For years the Internet has been seen as the last true source of freedom. In reality this isn’t as true as is should be. But the Internet is where you are suppose to be able to express ideas and explore information freely. Many websites claim to allow you to do this – but most have rules and regulations that don’t always allow you to speak your mind or express yourself. Open Source options give you the freedom to share your views and content without all of the restrictions and rules.
Traditional codecs all require someone to pay royalty fees for using them. Open Source codecs don’t have these restrictions. This means someone can’t come knocking on your door stating you need to pay them for using their media codec. For those who produce and share content this is freedom. The freedom not to be harassed for their choice of codec.
For those who think .WebM is some silly geek thing that large companies ignore – you’d be mistaken. Even though you don’t realize it Google uses the WebM codec for it’s YouTube videos.
“The WebM Project development is sponsored by Google Inc.”
“YouTube offers WebM videos as part of its HTML5 player experiment.”
“The YouTube app for the Nintendo Wii uses WebM for streaming videos”
“Wikimedia uses WebM for the HTML5 player.”
WebM encoded videos also offer end users a bit of Internet security. You DO NOT need Adobe Flash or Java enabled to view videos encoded with WebM. This allows Internet users to browse the web much safer. HTML5 & WebM allow end users to get rid of these security nightmares. Over the years many security flaws and exploits have come from those two pieces of software. If their use is reduced or eliminated – this can help make the Internet a slightly safer place.
I’ve previously written several articles on WebM and how it offers website owners and Internet users the freedom to control their own content. All you need is an account with a web hosting service – that is all you need to pay for. Everything else to host your own videos is FREE!! If you run WordPress for your website and install the VideoJS – HTML5 Video Player plugin – you are all set.
With HTML5 & WebM the need for all these codecs goes away because the video processing is supported natively within the web browser. This makes the user experience even more seamless than it currently is.
I originally chose WebM video encoding to hopefully reduce the need for my readers to install a plugin, having to use Flash or Java. While many users have ditched Internet Explorer – there are still a lot of you who use this browser daily. Unfortunately Microsoft has always been slow to accept Internet standards. Microsoft has always preferred to promote it’s own products and vision. Many times at the detriment of end users and their online experience.
I’m sure very few of you have read all this. Even less of you probably care or understand why this is important.
Comes down to this = Open Source audio and video = Internet freedom. You should support websites that use WebM for their content.
WebM for Internet Explorer is a free software plugin that enables support for playing WebM videos in Microsoft Internet Explorer
The WebM Project is dedicated to developing a high-quality, open video format for the web that’s freely available to everyone.
What’s Great About WebM
Very high quality video
Great video playback performance, even on older computers
100% free and open to everyone
Supported on popular video sites like YouTube
WebM is an audio-video format designed to provide royalty-free, open video compression for use with HTML5 video.
VLC media player is my choice for playing all audio and video content not on webpages. This Open Source project has to be one of the greatest – in regards to bringing sanity to the Internet – no codec installs etc – because VLC plays everything from the start.
My web browser choice – uses Mozilla code – just like Firefox. SeaMonkey is an Open Source browser.
My operating system ( OS ) choice – Open Source and FREE!!
A codec is a device or computer program capable of encoding or decoding a digital data stream or signal
Comparison of video codecs – somewhat outdated in my opinion
World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is the main international standards organization for the World Wide Web (abbreviated WWW or W3)
Supposedly Microsoft has or is working on WebM native support.