High-Def Flash Video


As someone who’s job it was in the past to scrutinize display quality as a large screen projectionist, I am a tough customer when it comes to image quality. I also tend to be pretty picky when it comes to what I would call “acceptable” video quality on the web by today’s standards. With the latest version of Flash and it’s new VP6 encoded flv capability, you can really get some stunning results when it comes to quality, performance, and size as long as you have a relatively newer CPU and a fast connection. But can it really legitimately handle hi-def?

Close, but not yet. There are however some good work arounds people have tried. To see an example of this check out Fabio Sonnati’s optimized faux hi-def conversions here and here . While these do look pretty good, they are roughly half the size as the 1080i source content and tend to be blocky, especially in the darker videos. Even ABC’s on demmand solution for all their prime-time content falls short in some sense as the videos are fairly small and not as clear when compared to a WM9 HD compressed download (not availaible but you can get them ;)…) This doesn’t remove the fact that ABC is pioneering content delivery in the emerging electronic entertainment delivery paradigm. Others are and will surely follow suit.

When it comes down to it, I want a large and impactful experience when I consume media, preferably seated comfortably with a beverage in my hand. If I am going to be trapped in front of a computer, the picture quality better be either good or short (see YouTube). I’m sure going forward we’ll see HD solutions for Flash Media Server and I look forward to it.


Fidelity Trading Knowledge Center


So this is the reason why blog has been very hush hush lately. We just released this groundbreaking next generation RIA last week after a hectic production schedule with an ambitious deadline to say the least. But it all came together in the end and I am very proud of it. Of course I am just one part of the puzzle for this and luckily every one I worked with was friendly, competent, and supportive.

The application was built in Flex 1.5 (because of projected adoption rates for Flash 9) and is chock full of Flash video. So check it out.

Fidelity Trading Knowledge Center

For Sale: Your Lego design


Here’s a cool idea. Put out a free piece of software that allows your customers to design their own lego masterpieces. Then allow the customer to post the design to a website allowing them or their friends to purchase all the necessary pieces as a kit. Viola, just like that you are an industrial designer in the toy industry. Not only that, with your personal login, the site serves as a social networking platform for youngsters where they can interact and even design collaboratively.

This christmas tree car is just one of the numerous designs my son has created and submitted. The coolest part is watching him designing in 3D-space. Just think of what kind of I+D talent we’ll have in 20 years if you get them on it this young. Anyway, the item can be purchased here for a nominal price of $6.51. My son, ever the capitalist, has more in the works.