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Codecs and Patents

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  • An Invisible Tax on the Web: Video Codecs

    Here’s a surprising fact: It costs money to watch video online, even on free sites like YouTube. That’s because about 4 in 5 videos on the web today rely on a patented technology called the H.264 video codec.

    A codec is a piece of software that lets engineers shrink large media files and transmit them quickly over the internet. In browsers, codecs decode video files so we can play them on our phones, tablets, computers, and TVs. As web users, we take this performance for granted. But the truth is, companies pay millions of dollars in licensing fees to bring us free video.

    It took years for companies to put this complex, global set of legal and business agreements in place, so H.264 web video works everywhere. Now, as the industry shifts to using more efficient video codecs, those businesses are picking and choosing which next-generation technologies they will support. The fragmentation in the market is raising concerns about whether our favorite web past-time, watching videos, will continue to be accessible and affordable to all.

  • AV1, Opportunity or Threat for POWER and ARM Servers?

    While I haven’t seen an official announcement, Phoronix reported that the AV1 git repository was tagged 1.0, so the launch announcement is imminent. If you haven’t heard about it already, AOMedia Video 1 (AV1) is an open, royalty-free video coding format by the Alliance for Open Media.

  • VP9 & AV1 Have More Room To Improve For POWER & ARM Architectures

    Luc Trudeau, a video compression wizard and co-author of the AV1 royalty-free video format, has written a piece about the optimization state for video formats like VP9 and AV1 on POWER and ARM CPU architectures.

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today's leftovers

  • Opus 1.3 Codec Library Nears, New Tools Release
    Back in June was the first release candidate of Opus 1.3 (libopus v1.3) with this open-source audio codec allowing to use SILK down to bitrates of about 5kb/s, wideband encoding down to 9kb/s, improved security, improved Ambisonics support, and much more. Libopus 1.3 RC2 is now available along with some tooling updates. Libopus 1.3 RC2 was released on Tuesday to fix issues with bandwidth detection, enable Ambisonics support by default, and enables security hardening by default.
  • Akademy 2018
    I had the awesome opportunity to attend Akademy in Vienna this year. First off, a big thank you to the organising team for pulling off this years Akademy without a hitch. This Akademy was a bit more special, since it was decided to switch up the format, which in my opinion worked quite well. There were training’s that ran alongside the talk’s and BoF’s, which I think was a great idea. I signed up to the Public Speaking Training and the Non Violent Communication training, which I think were run exceptionally. I hope that these training sessions are run again next Akademy because I found them exceptionally valuable.
  • NetworkManager Merges An Initrd Generator For Early Boot Handling
    Days following the NetworkManager 1.14 release, feature activity on the next release is progressing and the newest addition is nm-initrd-generator. The NetworkManager Initrd Generator is used to generate an early-boot NetworkManager configuration. This new utility scans the command line for supported options and from there generates a network configuration and the necessary configuration files to handle an early instance of NetworkManager that runs from the initial ramdisk during the system's early boot stage.
  • Mageia at fête de l’humanité 2018
    The booths were in a different place from previous years, and we had a lot more visitors. We gave out all the flyers we brought by Saturday evening – there was only one left for Sunday – so we gave out Mageia stickers instead. We did not sell any T-shirts, but we sold two USB sticks. Many people asked for general information; I spoke so much that I lost my voice! We had strong interest, coming from people already using a Linux distribution as well as from people wishing to turn to free software.
  • Troubleshooting FDB table wrapping in Open vSwitch
    When most people deploy an Open vSwitch configuration for virtual networking using the NORMAL rule, that is, using L2 learning, they do not think about configuring the size of the Forwarding DataBase (FDB).
  • Test Day: Fedora Silverblue
    Fedora Silverblue is a new variant of Fedora Workstation with rpm-ostree at its core to provide fully atomic upgrades. Furthermore, Fedora Silverblue is immutable and upgrades as a whole, providing easy rollbacks from updates if something goes wrong. Fedora Silverblue is great for developers using Fedora with good support for container-focused workflows. Additionally, Fedora Silverblue delivers desktop applications as Flatpaks. This provides better isolation/sandboxing of applications, and streamlines updating applications — Flatpaks can be safely updated without reboot.
  • Understand Fedora memory usage with top
    Have you used the top utility in a terminal to see memory usage on your Fedora system? If so, you might be surprised to see some of the numbers there. It might look like a lot more memory is consumed than your system has available. This article will explain a little more about memory usage, and how to read these numbers. [...] Your system has another facility it uses to store information, which is swap. Typically this is an area of slower storage (like a hard disk). If the physical memory on the system fills up as needs increase, the OS looks for portions of memory that haven’t been needed in a while. It writes them out to the swap area, where they sit until needed later. Therefore, prolonged, high swap usage usually means a system is suffering from too little memory for its demands. Sometimes an errant application may be at fault. Or, if you see this often on your system, consider upgrading your machine’s memory, or restricting what you run.
  • Global Open-Source Learning Management Systems Software Market Size, Status and Forecast 2022
  • The Commons Clause vs. Open Source controversy, explained [iophk: "if it has the "Commons Clause" in it then it does not qualify as Open Source"]

    So, what is Commons Clause and why isn’t it the same thing as open source?

Endless OS May Be the Best Linux Version for New Computer Users

Linux appeals to a certain kind of computer user: if you like computers enough to read about or tinker with them in your free time, then there’s a good chance you’ll find something to like about Linux. Otherwise, you will probably consider it too much work to bother. Endless Computer’s Endless OS aims to provide a complete desktop experience that’s versatile enough to serve families. Is this the ideal way to introduce newcomers to Linux? Read more

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