Please note that some, if not many of the links on this page may be broken.
This is just an archived copy of the news for this month. We cannot guarantee
that the links will work because we remove old versions as we update.
For the newest software releases please always refer to the main
news and software pages. If you really
need a file then please contact us and
we'll do our best to help.
0.622 can show a bunch of EVOB info, calculates the frame number,
has an auto clear option and some minor GUI changes.
While Sony and their allies in the Blu-ray camp are busy claiming
victory, they are not beyond losing more money in bringing down
player prices. Faced with a $350 street price for Toshiba's HD-A2
HD DVD player, Sony can't even keep up with the PS3 (could it be
consumer electronics' most subsidized product ever? Sony seems to
major corners down to cut on PS3 losses), so they are now cutting
standalone player prices, too: the $599 BDP-S300
Blu-ray player will have the same capabilities as it's $999
brother the BDP-S1, and like Toshiba's second generation of players,
it will be considerably smaller. By the way, the article with the
announcement contains some Sony Blu-ray PR spin that I just have
to contradict: If the disc per buyer ratio so much higher for HD
DVD, how on earth can you claim 80% of PS3 buyers also buy Blu-ray
discs? If you look at the sheer size of the installed hardware base,
Blu-ray out to crush HD DVD disc sale numbers.
Meanwhile, the HD DVD camp is getting serious about triple layer
discs that would nullify the - mostly paper based, reviews even
favor HD DVD slightly in terms of picture quality despite the lower
capacity and despite more space eating features - size advantage
of Blu-ray: Toshiba is submitting
the triple layer specs to the DVD forum for approval and hopes
that the first triple layer discs will be ready by the end of the
And so it begins: the
first DMCA takedown notice has been filed against BackupHDDVD.
0.22 RC1 supports AVI input as well as a bunch of new audio
encoders, allows a more fine grained control of thread priority,
no longer bundles the Nero DLLs, uses updated Lame and Vorbis libraries,
contains updated presets and fixes a lot of bugs.
is a new AviSynth filter that can handle MPEG-4 AVC streams.
It was to be expected: talks between EMI and online music retailers
on the subject of selling unprotected music have
broken down. Not surprisingly, the studio put the hurdles for
a deal so high (they asked for large upfront payments to "compensate"
the studio for the higher risk of illegal copies) that no retailer
would go for it - and now they can conveniently blame retailers
when the customer asks for a DRM free product.
What does it take for a large smuggling enterprise to be lucrative?
Eric Flint argues that the
reasons are basically the same as the reasons for widespread piracy
of music and movies.
Has the WIPO - dominated by countries who do nothing but push the
entertainment industry's agenda - finally realized there's a whole
world out there besides big media? They have at least taken the
step towards recognizing that they can't slap laws and protection
on everything and need to respect public domain works (recall
the WIPO broadcast treaty that threatens to turn public domain works
into protected works if somebody broadcasts them). To be continued
A small update on the hosting search: the machine needs to be dedicated
(or near dedicated - there was an ftp running on the existing box)
- the shared hostings you can get for a couple bucks a month don't
cut it if you have one site eating up nearly all resources - the
host will simply demand that you upgrade to a dedicated hosting
(we asked around a little).
And so it continues: the
first AACS device key has leaked - now we're eagerly awaiting
to see the revocation mechanism in action. And personally I'm also
curious about all the derogatory terms the mainstream media will
find to describe our community when they report on this on Monday
- the current high point is the Guardian's "famous haunt for
hackers and pirates". I wish the author would come around asking
for help on shady content to see how fast his butt it striked into
submission. Slashdot's "fair-use community" is much more
to the point.
MP3 as we know it could face a drastic change if the patent madness
continues: A jury has just awarded
$1.52 billion in a patent case between Microsoft and Alcatel-Lucent
(Microsoft has an MP3 license from the Fraunhofer institute - the
institute that was thought to hold all the applicable MP3 patents).
If the ruling makes it through the inevitable appeal, Alcatel-Lucent
will go after all the other software and hardware makers that offer
MP3 playback / recording, and unlike Fraunhofer, Alcatel-Lucent
has made no promise not to come after open source software. And
while Alcatel-Lucent has already made their move, little known Texas
MP3 technology claims to have patented concept of an MP3 player
money from any company dealing in MP3 players.
Here's one for our American readers: The shift in power in congress
obviously did very little in slowing down big media in their assault
on consumer friendly technology and consumer rights: the PERFORM
act is back and would bring
mandatory DRM for any digital radio broadcast and Internet webcast,
so that you may not record anything anymore. So please contact your
elected representatives to shut this down before it is too late.
It is a well known fact outside the media industry, that the industry
opposes every new technology - at least initially until they catch
up with their consumer base. It just happened again with the upcoming
launch of the BitTorrent
Entertainment Network - based on BitTorrent technology (remember,
that evil bit of P2P technology developed by remorseless hackers
with the only goal of screwing honest Americans out of their job
- NOT). Fox, MGM, Paramount and Warner have teamed up with the creators
of BitTorrent to offer a P2P based movie rental and TV show download
store. TV episodes will retail for $1.99 whereas movie rentals will
cost between $2.99 and $3.99 and last 3 days. The content can only
be played on WMP 11, thus you need a HTPC or Notebook to watch the
content on your TV (unlike e.g. Apple's AppleTV which has its own
hardware that can be plugged directly into your PC).
For starters, a few internal things: yes the forum is down and
we can't remotely reboot the server and it being the weekend, we
might not be back up until Monday. Also, and this is important,
the hosting for the forum is still unresolved and we're in dire
need of a host that can offer a fast dedicated machine (dual core,
2 gigs of RAM, RAID-1) and pump out a couple mbits per second (I
believe the average is around 3mbit, but getting slashdotted/digged/whatnot
means 2.5 times that traffic) as ateme decided they no longer wanted
to host us. While we'll bend over backwards to try and find a solution,
please be aware that the admins aren't about to foot the bill for
the hosting out of their own pocket (on top of already spending
many hours every week looking after the forum in various ways).
Just remember that a place that big isn't just there and will stay
afloat forever, it takes people who are willing to make considerable
investments to provide the basis upon which a community can function
(that starts with hosting and continues through management where
we have 50 odd people who volunteer a considerable part of their
4.82.3 includes fixes in the engine and the BDA module.
HC 0.20 supports HD resolutions, has two new functions (ZONE and
MASK_SHIFT), contains improvements in the auto GOP function as well
as some SSE2 optimizations, supports the latest DGDecode release,
has an updated GUI, includes more matrices and contains some bugfixes.
Unfortunately, it's still not ready for the quad core chip I have
on my personal shopping list :(
1.0.11 fixes the drop frame option.
2.70a supports Windows Vista, supports WMV, MOV, has improved
support for MP4 and includes a bunch of bugfixes.
In the HD DVD backup area, there was a new release of EVOdemux
- I'd give you the changelog but guess what, they're in the forum,
Continuing with HD news, it appears Blu-ray
has caught up with HD DVD in terms of software sales. However,
as usual, no hard data is presented so I'd be exceptionally careful
before drawing any conclusion. The article mentions a few pertinent
things though: there are a lot more Blu-ray capable players, meaning
Blu-ray owners buy less discs, and that in recent months, the Blu-ray
camp has been churning out more discs. Let's analyze a bit, shall
we: More players: That is if you count the PS3. But, the PS3 is
a gaming console (not selling so terribly by the way) that Sony
is using to cross promote Blu-ray. Hardly anybody buys a PS3 just
to play Blu-ray (it might be a cheaper player but a noisy gaming
console is no substitute for a player that fits in with your other
equipment and which is quiet). Moreover, around Christmas people
buy a lot of consoles - and that's where the novelty factor of Blu-ray
comes in: While on your way from the PS3 pile and the register,
you are likely to come across a bunch of Blu-ray discs, so you'll
be tempted to pick up a couple discs just for the heck of it. Hey,
I have a bunch of UMD movies for when I got a PSP and I'm not the
only one - UMD even got considerable software support in the beginning
but the format simply tanked after the novelty phase had worn off..
people much rather wanted to rip their DVDs and play them on their
PSPs (the interest in making backup copies, unlike the interest
in UMD) has not faded. I see the same thing in my http statistics..
around Christmas, people get new electronic gadgets, which results
in a spike of interest in the matters we deal with on this site
and the forum. With both HD formats still being in the early stages
of the early adopter phase, the considerable increase in units sold
in December and January (versus earlier months) may not continue
that way as most people still stick back and let things develop.
The Blu-ray camp will argue many HD DVD players are just Xbox360
add-ons - which is true - but keep in mind that you don't buy a
HD DVD drive for the Xbox360 (or your PC.. the device works on both)
unless you care about the format in the first place, making every
sale of a HD DVD add-on a lot more significant in the overall picture
than the sale of a PS3 unit.
Now let's have a look at software: Blu-ray has the edge in studio
support. But, recall DIVX? The two studios with a stake in the DVD
format (Sony and Warner), supported DVD exclusively. Fox was DIVX
only (so now not surprisingly they are in the BD camp since it has
more stringent DRM), Disney, while officially supporting DVD, exhibited
a very lackluster DVD commitment - and one of their main sellers,
animated features, were DIVX only. The same thing can be said about
Paramount. The only company firmly in both camps was Universal (now
the only remaining exclusive HD DVD supporter). So, software wise,
despite the two holdouts, I was always concerned that DIVX had an
edge since the studios standing in both camps seemed to favor DIVX.
In the end, studio support mattered little - all studios quickly
fell in line and went down the road where there was money to be
made (so they followed the lead of the customer). Hence, I disagree
with assessments that the format war is over, or would be over if
Universal caved. Paramount's decision to drop DIVX is often seen
as the point where the scales tipped - so if one of the studios
standing in both camps is going to drop support for one of the HD
formats, that's when I'd get worried, but before that you shouldn't
spend too much time worrying about the numbers the Blu-ray camps
is throwing at you - it's just spin.
And now to continue with our news, we all expect to see the same
speed bumps in the HD burner area as we've seen in the DVD area
- and a first step has already been made: Nichia Corporation has
developed a laser that can handle 10x
burning on dual layer Blu-ray media.
Another music download store is setting out on the right track:
Canada's Puretracks has taken a first step to convert
their current Windows DRM protected offering into unprotected MP3s.
0.621 has a new message supporting rich text, has a button to
browser for the destination folder, displays TrueHD audio and LPCM
audio information and has new options to auto read, demux and rebuild.
Well, we tried - it doesn't come as a surprise that the UK government
about to take one for the little guy and ban DRM.
It seems we can't shake DRM out off the news these days (though
I'd wish the news were worse for the consumer... it takes a lot
of angry paying customers for lawmakers to see past their corporate
sponsorship) - JupiterResearch sides with Apple and claims that
DRM won't mysteriously solve the music industry's problems.
Well, how about trying to offer what your customers actually like?
It works for pretty much any industry and has worked even when there
was no music industry.
Some might call it the poor man's HD DVD: Dubbed 3X (how did they
come up with that name), HD
DVD content on a regular DVD can offer a full length movie at
720p resolution (most consumers currently don't have 1080p capable
playback devices and those special offer HD ready TVs they throw
after you are only capable of handling 720p natively) - including
all of HD DVDs interactivity features, codecs (of course you can
forget about pulling a Sony and use MPEG-2 compression) and even
AACS. One company even offers free
equipment upgrade to DVD mastering facilities. Perhaps we ought
to call it miniHD DVD instead - in remembrance of miniDVD (I still
remember writing those guides back in the day when we didn't have
contains base OSD windows (whatever that might be.. I can't quite
figure it out).
In a rather lengthy article, the NY Times paints a pretty picture
the RIAA conducts their business - they pay DJs to release semiofficial
compilation albums, then arrest them for doing so, and while at
it, actively participate in law enforcement (I thought that was
the government's job..), and while DJs were dragged away at gunpoint,
major retailers can keep on selling the same albums that were cited
as the reason for the arrest. Make sense anyone?
And in another example of private business overstepping the boundaries
of law enforcement, FBI
and MPAA investigators are training Swedish police in P2P matters.
In light of the above, is anybody surprised that a BBC column labels
the US copyright lobby as out
of touch? (the article also gives a nice compilation of all
the countries that dare not to fall completely in line)
By the way, copyright infringement is only evil if you're a little
guy - the MPAA
happily violates software licenses as they please.
0.619 can display DTS HD audio stream information and uses a
different filenaming scheme when using the "Continue on second
SlySoft has released the final version of AnyDVD
Russia is on the software industry's list of worst copyright offenders.
The Russian depute IT minister has a simple
explanation for the rampant piracy: software costs too much
when taking into account average Russian wages, and the licensing
terms, especially those by Microsoft, are overly strict. Now we
can sit back and wait for the BSA spin department to come up with
some tuned numbers to contradict the price point argument, rather
than accepting facts. It's not like you can compare the Russian
government with a warez release group or a bunch of filesharers
2007 didn't turn out to be a good year for AACS so far: the AACS
LA just had to bite the bullet for the second time and confirm
that the processing key first released in
the forum is for real.
In what may or may not be related to the attacks on AACS, Fox has
a significant number of Blu-ray releases. I wonder if they're
working feverishly on getting BD+ onto their discs.
Now Macrovision - inventor of the signal distortion found on analog
video tapes as well as audio CD and DVD corruption schemes they
sell as copy protection mechanisms, and last but not least the company
who is directly responsible for bringing down DVD Decrypter - speaks
up on DRM. However, considering remarks as "DRM increases
not decreases consumer value", I'd seriously suggest mandatory
drug tests in Macrovision's PR department.
As if there were any doubts that the DMCA is essentially an industry
tool to circumvent fair use, here's just such an example of making
a TV broadcast sample available for educational purposes that resulted
in a DMCA takedown notice. The snippet wasn't even something worth
watching, but just
a copyright notice.
Here's an interesting
take on the industry's "we can't compete with free" line
of reasoning behind their crackdown on P2P.
0.617 has a clear button on the status page and should fixes
a SUP export problem.
supports DiSEQ for the Technotrend BDA driver, and fixes a few bugs.
0.616 contains some GUI changes and fixes a bug that would occur
when demuxing MLP audio.
a majority of the music industry in Europe thinks that DRM slows
the adoption of digital music, you might find yourself wondering
why we still have to fight DRM on most downloads..
Is Canada about to become part of the 'axis of evil', oops, I mean
the list of countries that don't do enough to enforce copyright
laws? A coalition between music, movie and software industry aims
to put Canada in the same category as China and Russia - undoubtedly
in an effort to pressure the government to pass legislation that
would put the consumer at a disadvantage.
Is Norway about to mimic
China's great firewall? In an attempt to fight online gambling,
child pornography, and other illegal activity, Norway's Datakrimutvalget
(if my Scandinavian serves me right it's a commission to investigate
data crime) suggests a solution that should send chills down your
0.614 can display information about AVC and MPEG2 audio/video
streams. Since my last report about the tool two days ago, there
were two more releases which added a detailed info option as well
as VC-1 stream information and display of the first PTS of a stream.
ImgBurn 18.104.22.168 continues the tradition of almost indigestible
changelogs. Amongst the additions is UDF 2.50 support which enables
ImgBurn to read HD DVDs and Blu-ray discs and enhanced Blu-ray burning.
Blu-ray has been launched down under and that particular launch
also marks the launch of the format war between retailers: Sony
has persuaded (with monetary incentives?) 20 retailers to
only sell Blu-ray, and not HD DVD.
Last but not least, in another excellent look at patents, author
Michael Chrichton has a look at patents
in the genome area and the undesired sideeffects they could have.
Undoubtedly as a valentine's day gift for the MPAA, SlySoft has
released a public
beta of their AnyDVD HD. AnyDVD HD is the first on-the-fly decrypter
for HD DVD titles.
Yahoo's general manager dared to make an intriguing prediction
in USA Today: He predicts that by the end of this year, most
of Yahoo's music catalog would be DRM free, and that sales would
increase by 15% - 20% if the DRM on their songs was gone.
Is Google's adsense program going to be the latest victim of the
media industry's suing spree? The WSJ reports that big media is
accusing Google of profiting
from online piracy by selling ads on sites that facilitate piracy.
The Hollywood reporter offers some insight
into the recent MPAA roadshow.
Last but not least, in response to Sony's latest Blu-ray marketing
attempts, I decided to a little digging on my own, and visited the
largest consumer electronics store in the region (incidentally there's
a huge shopping area right next to my highway exit:). So while walking
around I tried to spot any sign of HD DVD and Blu-ray, and didn't
spot anything in the area where they sell DVDs or DVD players/recorders.
I finally spotted the one and only HD DVD player in the TV section,
along with a bunch of discs from Warner and Universal. Two 46"
LCD TVs were showing a HD DVD movie. Not far from that, I spotted
a Sony sponsored Blu-ray disc exhibit. The titles were mostly from
Sony and Warner, resulting in quite a few titles that were available
in both formats. Two TVs featured some Blu-ray trailer but there
was not a single player to be seen. Amidst all the other huge flatscreen
TVs also showing HD quality trailers, neither HD format made a rememberable
impression, and the disc display reminded me off the DVD launch
where Warner came up with a cardboard stand holding about a dozen
DVDs, and there was but one player available - Panasonic's first
generation model which cost about as much as today's Blu-ray players.
All in all, while both formats are available, neither one was prominently
displayed, there was no attempt to show the formats' superiority
over traditional DVDs, and the lack of available titles and players
really do not allow to draw and definitive conclusion on the format
war. I'd say right now we're in the very early stages of the early
0.61 can write "traditional" SUP files and displays
the duration of the video stream.
AAC reference encoder 22.214.171.124 was tuned for better quality at
certain bitrates as well as more speed, supports 16 and 22.5 kHz
sampling rates in HE AAC, handles temporary files properly on Windows
Vista and fixes HE AAC configuration problems.
Just when you thought levies on blank media were off the table,
they are brought
up again in Canada. If they are not stopped, you could end up
paying up to $75 extra for an iPod.
A study be the Journal of Political Economy on file sharing and
their effect on music sales has come to a conclusion that makes
sure it'll never be quoted by the RIAA: the study found that the
influence of P2P downloads on legal music sales is not statistically
distinguishable from zero. The study focused on units sold,
versus units shipped which the RIAA uses for their studies. The
study also looks at DVD sales, which seem to benefit from lower
CD sales (didn't I say the money was simply going someplace else?).
Sony, apparently undeterred by their recent disappointments in
the PSP platform and the PS2 outselling the PS3, is using the incomplete
VideoScan numbers in the US to launch a Blu-ray marketing campaign
the format as the winner in the format war. Those numbers leave
to be desired though - the number one Blu-ray title in January came
out in January whereas the number one HD DVD title in January was
released back in November, and there were twice as many new Blu-ray
titles in January than HD DVD titles (HD DVD still has a larger
While EMI is discussing selling DRM-free songs online (though it's
just that.. keep pestering them for songs without DRM but don't
expect wonders, the music industry has traditionally opposed any
change in the market), Warner
is dead set in the DRM camp (and a note to the editor: it's
DRM free music, not copyright free music;)
In response of the MPAA's latest lobbying efforts on congress and
attacks towards the Consumer Electronics Association, the head of
the CEA has posted
a response to the MPAA's attacks. Gary Shapiro actually spares
me from having to dissect the MPAA's arguments - it's great to have
parts of big business on the consumer's side for a change.
MuxMan 0.15Q fixes a few bugs.
1.4.9 beta 14 checks if an audio stream to be demuxed wouldn't
get the same name as an already existing file with the same name,
has a new tool to analyze synch and it supports streams that have
one indexed unit containing more than one I frame.
0.6 can dump Dolby Digital and Dolby Digital Plus parameters.
can show demuxed HD DVD subtitles.
HD DVD, due to its similarity with existing DVDs, has always been
touted as cheaper to manufacture as existing product lines can be
used to press prerecorded content. An analysis
of numbers provided by pressing plants confirms the theory,
but with most HD DVDs being dual layer and most Blu-ray discs being
single layer, the cost equation favors Blu-ray. Then again, at 30GB
Vs 25GB, you can now use Blu-ray's size argument: currently, the
HD DVD variety used for movies offers more space than the Blu-ray
It appears, title and volume unique keys aren't the only AACS keys
you can find when you know where to look: media
keys, volume IDs and processing keys are also available for the
Are you recording transport streams containing AVC content (e.g.
via DVB-S 2) and find the task of demuxing the TS files tedious,
here's a tool to make your life simpler: h264tsto.
It requires a bunch of DirectShow filters though.
Some of you - the author included - might rely on AnyDVD for not
being bothered by region codes, encryption and corrupt DVDs. Now
the company behind the tool is looking
for beta testers for AnyDVD HD - an AnyDVD release that also
supports HD DVD.
Now the chair of the MPEG standards committee is also chiming
in into the DRM discussion that Steve Jobs launched. Not surprisingly,
he suggests that all would be better if everybody would use the
MPEG's own DRM standard. I need to rebuff a few statements right
here: GSM and DRM? Yeah, there's something and it's called OMA and
I just read an article in c't yesterday on how DRM on mobile phones
is restricting the music business for cellphones. The radio channel
encryption in the GSM standard is not DRM, it's encryption to keep
your conversation from prying ears (not that it stops the NSA and
Co but it's a lot harder to eavesdrop on a GSM call than on the
analog system we had before that). Or would you call SSL and VPN
a DRM mechanism? Also, CSS is transparent? Perhaps if you have AnyDVD
and Co installed on your machine, but if you want to play the latest
store-bought DVD on your video iPod, PSP, computer without DVD drive
or computer running Linux, it is not transparent anymore.
In an attempt to get Congress in line to come up with even tougher
copyright legislation, the MPAA brought out the big guns last Tuesday
and even recruited a bunch of celebrity actors for a daylong
event for lawmakers and lobbyists and aides. Now who's going
to tell them the truth instead? For instance, a pirate copy doesn't
necessarily amount to a loss of a DVD sale - it depends whether
the person in question had any intention at all of buying the movie
in case he couldn't get it for free. Similarly, the money "saved"
by not buying the DVD isn't going to end up in some bank vault but
is spent for doing something else, so there's another part of the
industry that can reap the benefits. If we go with the MPAA tagline
and accept their inflated piracy figures, imagine what would happen
if billions of dollars were suddenly pulled out of other parts of
recreational industries - sales of games, computers, and consumer
electronics in general would take a noticeable hit (along with probably
other industries) and suddenly a lot of non movie business people
would be out of a job.
If you want the gist of copyright legislation in 2006, and legal
action by the music and movie industry, DRM Watch has a nice document
wrapping it all up.
Hot on the heel's of Apple's probably not so honest call for DRM
free music comes news that EMI is at least considering DRM
free online music. Bring it on - I'll buy a few songs just to
show my support. Back when I got my iPod nano I browsed the iTunes
store, and there's quite some stuff I'd consider buying if it weren't
for the DRM. And even though I know how to get around it, I have
yet to spend a dime on DRM'ed music and I guess I'm not the only
one - most iPod owners just put MP3s onto their players anyway.
SanDisk to the Apple skeptics. Even Microsoft is skeptical -
DRM after all.
In an interesting experiment, we see just how much trust we can
put into P2P tracking companies that the music industry uses to
sue people - the bottom line is: the
IP address harvest is dangerously misleading and identifies people
that have not done anything wrong, and the records contain no
proof that anything illegal took place.
Decrypter 126.96.36.199 contains updated language files and fixes
several minor problems.
fixes a problem with recognizing DVD discs on Windows 98, but it
cannot fix the problem called Windows 98 ;)
0.92 fixes problems with non digit decimals, generates the number
of titles and chapters in accordance with the DVD specs, uses an
ini file for BatchMux and ships with the latest version of Aften
Wal Mart is entering
the movie download business: backed up by all the major studios,
they currently have a catalog of 3000 movies that cost between $12.88
and $19.88, and TV shows for $1.96 a pop. And what do you get for
pretty much the same amount as a DVD: DRM'ed, Windows-only content
that you cannot burn onto a DVD. It's going to be huge, right? Here's
some free advice: if you're going to sell a crippled product, at
least cripple the price, too.
In a well publicized move, and hot in the heel's of the trouble
in Norway, Apple's CEO has posted an open
letter on music and DRM - bottom line: "we'd rather do
without it but the studios won't allow that". The gist of that
message has quickly come under fire from various sides: The Norwegian
consumer council points out that Apple
is still selling songs in violation of Norwegian law. DVD Jon
points out that there's a number of songs
sold on iTunes that can also be gotten without DRM in other stores.
The RIAA meanwhile considers
the letter as an offer to license Apple's DRM called PlayFair
- something which Apple has refused to do in the past, claiming
it would make PlayFair less secure (needless to point out that this
is not true, Microsoft's DRM - even though also beaten - is still
a tougher nut to crack than PlayFair, and multiple PlayFair removal
utilities have appeared in the news of this very site). Back on
the old continent, Germany's record industry points out that
iTunes' success is closely tied to PlayFair.
should cost significantly more - at least if the RIAA is concerned.
Hot on the heels comes
the rebuttal - and you might recall other companies having tried
to pull the same fast one in the past. Perhaps the RIAA would need
higher CD prices to pay
the attorneys' fees they have to pay to people they wrongfully sued?
When is law & order getting overboard? When it involves keeping
track of every citizen without so much as the suspicion of wrongdoing.
What is commonly practiced in states run by non elected governments
like Nazi Germany, the German "Democratic" Republic, the
Soviet Union and communist states in general, was blessed upon us
Euros almost a year ago, is now making its way through US congress.
Hidden inside a bill against child pornography called the Safety
Act (who in their right mind would be against measures to bring
those people to justice), comes language that would bring the US
in line with the EU when it comes on unwarranted snooping of people's
And here's some bad news if you live in Canada: your government
is intent of letting your ISP prioritize traffic any way they please
- in other words, no
Net Neutrality for you and too bad if your ISP slows down access
to your favorite sites.
1.7.1 shows the FourCC code in the AVI info window, "display
decompressed output" can be enabled or disabled while encoding,
there's a new warp resize filter, animated GIFs are now supported,
there are some improvements in using Direct3D as well as the capture
mode and a bunch of bugs have been fixed.
2.1 can import and export color palettes with SUP files, creates
VobSub files directly from textual subtitles, uses Google to automatically
translate textual subtitles to another language, can convert image
based subtitles to textual ones using OCR via Office 2003, can cover
forced subtitles, supports WAV and MPA files in the DVD wizard,
automatically selects the prefered palette and it can set the font
for a single subtitle as well as increase and decrease font sizes.
Besides all those new features there's a considerable list of bugfixes.
Last month I reported on the MPAA's astonishing "figures"
on copyright infringement in Canada. Of course, the
numbers don't add up when you take a closer look..
If you're in for some serious reading, Edward Felten's blog contains
insight into AACS as well as information on what the available
decryption software could mean for the struggling HD formats.
In what might have a chilling effect on MP3 software, the Alcatel
- Lucent seems to have a rather unfortunate side-effect: the new
telecommunication giant seems determined to enforce
their MP3 patent portfolio and sue manufacturers of software
that incorporate MP3 en/decoding.
In what will have the BSA heads scream out in pain, Romanian president
Basescu is openly admitting that software
piracy helped to build Romania's IT industry.
Windows Vista has barely been released, and already the driver
signing on the 64 bit version has been circumvented. The 64
bit version only permits signed drivers in an attempt to enforce
that every driver fully implements the Protected Media Path that
was incorporated into Vista at the behest of the major media conglomerates
(and at the cost of the consumers who now have to live with less
stable/proven - drivers need to be re-engineered which takes time
and money - drivers for crucial system components).
VideoScan has for the first time reported
a bunch of sales numbers on the HD disc formats: While HD DVD
still has a lead in terms of available titles, the release of Sony's
PlayStation 3 has boosted sales of Blu-Ray titles so that in January,
Blu-Ray outsold HD DVD by a 2:1 margin. Then again, since most Blu-Ray
players are PS3, the novelty factor might eventually wear of (who
isn't going to buy a couple discs if you already have the player?)
and in my opinion, a noisy game console is no real replacement for
a regular noiseless player. On top of that, we have yet to see the
effect of BackupHDDVD (tech savy early adopters are surely going
to encourage their friends to go with the less DRM laden format).
Last but not least, no hard data was presented in terms of discs
sold since the formats launched.
0.91 fixes a problem in the PAL -> NTSC conversion mechanism.
6.5.1 has a registry key that can be used to disable hardware
overlay for predefined applications and contains various fixes.
188.8.131.52 contains important changes in the analysis code that
should work better with complex DVDs, checks if a PSL file has been
imported into DVD Decrypter, updates the display to show the IFOs
being read during step 1, checks whether a disc to be processed
is indeed a DVD, has some more debug information and fixes a couple
0.6 contains various speed enhancements, should provide higher
quality and there's now a working dynamic range control.
has been improved several times since I was last around to write
news and now shows the framecount in the GUI, handles subtitles
and writes their PTS information into a separate file and it can
create new EVO files containing only the selected stream while renumbering
the streams properly.
supports NEWMI Advanced DVB cards and contains small fixes in the
release of Haali's media splitter supports DTS audio in MPEG
TS streams, has a much better deinterlacer in the video renderer,
supports Type 1 DV content in AVI files, supports references in
MOV files as well as Blu-ray m2ts files, and the video renderer
uses multiple passes instead of complex shaders. Besides that, there
are various bugfixes.
is another lossless audio compressor which offers a mix of compression
efficiency while being easy to decode. I'm not aware of any video
container supporting this format but I'm sure Matroska will come
to the rescue again ;)
Last month's news can be found here.