Web Directions South 2009 talk on HTML5 video

Yesterday, I gave a talk on the HTML5 video element at Web Directions South.

The title was “Taking HTML5 <video> a step further” and the abstract was provided goes as follows:

This talk focuses on the efforts engaged by W3C to improve the new HTML 5 media elements with mechanisms to allow people to access multimedia content, including audio and video. Such developments are also useful beyond accessibility needs and will lead to a general improvement of the usability of media, making media discoverable and generally a prime citizen on the Web.

Silvia will discuss what is currently technically possible with the HTML5 media elements, and what is still missing. She will describe a general framework of accessibility for HTML5 media elements and present her work for the Mozilla Corporation that includes captions, subtitles, textual audio annotations, timed metadata, and other time-aligned text with the HTML5 media elements. Silvia will also discuss work of the W3C Media Fragments group to further enhance video usability and accessibility by making it possible to directly address temporal offsets in video, as well as spatial areas and tracks.

Here are my slides:

Download the pdf from here.

There was also a video recording and I will add that here as soon as it is published.

The video is available on Tinyvid:

I’m not going to try and upload this 50min long video to YouTube – with it’s 10 min limit, I won’t get very far.

7 thoughts on “Web Directions South 2009 talk on HTML5 video

  1. Silvia,

    The slides look great, I’m looking forward to the video (in ogv format, of course 😉

    When you mention multi-track video, you mean the video data with other time-aligned, searchable, meta data included as other “tracks”, right? I at first thought you meant video with multiple video streams encoded in it.

    I’m very interested in your work w.r.t. using the time-aligned data to improve deep searching of video. With StatEasy, I’d love for a search of a high school sports player’s name to pull up video of all of their plays for their last game (or career!).

    Thanks for the blog posts!

    Mike Ressler

  2. @Michael,

    I actually do include video with multiple audio, video and annotation tracks in my use of “multitrack”. I have an example at http://www.annodex.net/~silvia/elephant.mt-avt.ogv which has the usual audio and video track, but also a sign language, an audio description and a textual track. I will be creating demos that use this file and other in the Web browser over the next weeks.

    As for searching to particular time offsets, you should check out http://www.metavid.org/ for an example of where I want to take the standards. The media fragment URI demo shows some of the linking that we will enable. Now, we just need support in the browsers and we need search engines to support it.


  3. @Silvia,

    Do I need a dev build of Firefox for the multi-track sample? It doesn’t seem to load for me.

    The MetaVid example is fantastic. The scrolling transcript on the right reminds me of the scrolling event list I have in StatEasy. (Check out http://www.stateasysports.com/video.html)

    These next few weeks I’ll be working on supporting playlists of favorite plays for players to share or coaches to comment on which is why I’ve been interested in the ability to address the media fragment from the URI. My thought is that these playlists would be coming from multiple video sources rather than video clips from a single video source which might complicate things. I’ve been talking with friends about how they would expect the URL to look for such a playlist. Can you share your thoughts on the direction the standard is going for addressing media fragments from multiple video sources?

    Mike Resler

  4. @Michael

    Don’t try using the multi-track Ogg video yet – I don’t think Firefox supports it yet. We are working on it. I only wanted to explain what it is. You can use oggz-info to inspect that file and other oggz tools to deal with it.

    As for URLs for playlists – that is indeed one of the applications the media fragment URLs are being developed for. Check out http://www.w3.org/2008/WebVideo/Fragments/WD-media-fragments-spec/#naming-time (which is still a draft). You could make a playlist simply as a list of URLs like so:


    These would be played back as one video.

    As a format to store such a list of URLs in, you could consider xspf or even mediaRSS, but your player will have to do the work of sequentially fetching the files and playing them back. In HTML5, you could do so through javascript.

    There is no defined playlist format in HTML5 video yet. It has been a topic of discussion, but no solution has been agreed on yet.

    Hope this helps. 🙂

  5. @Silvia

    Thanks for the links! I guess I’ll have to have a list of links, like you proposed, that will get pulled down through JavaScript. Not too hard to implement client side while a standard playlist format is being discussed. Let me know if there’s specific input I can help you with on the playlist discussion.

    Mike Ressler

  6. @Michael

    No discussions on playlist formats yet. But I know xspf could be useful. Or even MediaRSS. If you have particular suggestions, feel free to put forward!

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