Friday, February 29, 2008 - Mobile Versus Internet Streaming: 5 Key Challenges

Hot off the presses of, Roland Banks & Alex Yoon have published a new article on, Mobile Versus Internet Streaming: 5 Key Challenges. In our world of increasing convergence with mobile and internet content the delivery of video through these two platforms are distinctly different and offer different results. Banks and Yoon write, "Streaming in the mobile space poses perhaps more significant challenges than traditional internet streaming. These challenges include issues that relate to and affect quality and the overall user experience... This article addresses five key problem areas inherent in mobile streaming and suggests approaches that can lead to more successful delivery of mobile multimedia services."
  1. Streaming Quality is Limited by the Wireless Data Rate
  2. Fluctuations in the Wireless Network
  3. Handset Compatibility Issues
  4. Handset Feature-Set
  5. Integration with Backend Systems
Internet streaming is a mature platform and by contrast the mobile content delivery environment is developing. This article offers timely insights and recommendations to improve overall quality and user experience.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008 - A Free Screencasting Publishing Tool

I learned about another screencasting program thanks to Robin Good who pointed out this new free online tool called Freescreencast. It's a combination of a Windows only free software download (currently in Beta10) and a web site that hosts your content.

In his article, "Screencasting Recorder: Upload, Share, Publish, Embed - Is Here" Robin Good describes FreeScreencast as, "a new free web-based service that allows you to record anything taking place on your screen in a simple way. Not only. FreeScreencast takes care of uploading your recorded clip and provides you immediately with an embed code to post the screencast on your site. This is the first easy, and inexpensive screencasting tool that truly empowers online publishers to create and publish high-quality screencasts on their blog sites with the minimum effort."

I haven't tried it yet, but it from what I can tell it's pretty easy to use and according to the FreeScreencast web site you can get started in 3 easy steps.
This is a demo screencast "Creating screencasts with" embedded below:

The FreeScreencast blog had these useful links on their Blogroll:
If you haven't gotten enough of screencasting has a review by Travis Quinnelly of 5 Free Screencasting Apps for Creating Video Tutorials. It includes five of the same apps from Sean P. Aune's Mashable list from the other day (AviScreen, CamStudio, Copernicus, Screencast-o-Matic and Jing.)

Special thanks and acknowledgements to
Robin Good for his article "Screencasting Recorder: Upload, Share, Publish, Embed - Is Here" first published on February 26th 2008 for Master New Media.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Robin Good's ooVoo Review

Robin Good has published the quintessential review of ooVoo, titled "Video Conferencing As It Should Be: Multi-Party, Affordable, Cross-Platform - The Video Conversation Starter Is Here - OoVoo." In his article he provides a extensive and detailed explanation of the key features which he describes as, "real-time communication with audio, video and the ability to share files and documents easily. In this respect OoVoo is very much on focus and not trying to do too many things that would place it in direct competition with other conferencing and collaboration tools."

This is my fourth ooVoo post within the last two weeks so you can probably guess that I'm an ooVoo fan. I have yet to try it on a PC and have only experienced the Mac version (which is actually still available from the "Download ooVoo Now" link on the My ooVoo Day With... web page) or (the direct link at and enter user name: oovoo and password: oovoomac at the appropriate prompts.) The PC version has more features than the Mac version including free telephone calls to US and Canada landlines or mobile. Robin points out that, "you can also add phone participants in the US to your ooVoo video calls. In this introductory period OoVoo provides up to 120 minutes of FREE phone calls through March 1, 2008."

Another PC only feature is the ability to record the videoconference session. This is really cool and lends itself to many possibilities for archived interviews, panel discussions and talk shows. Robin shared this example of a recorded session that was saved as a .flv and uploaded to

If you haven't tried ooVoo yet but you're interested in how it works I suggest you read the full text of Robin's ooVoo review. He offers some suggestions on what ooVoo could do to improve adding that, "I strongly feel that ooVoo has a tremendous window of opportunity if it can further streamline and clean up its act, before Skype comes out with its own multi-party video conferencing solution or Google launches its own one. The time is ripe but one needs to act rapidly and effectively."

Overall his impression is positive and share these concluding remarks, "OoVoo is a video conversation starter and one great tool to hold impromptu professional video conferencing meetings online."

"Video Conferencing As It Should Be: Multi-Party, Affordable, Cross-Platform - The Video Conversation Starter Is Here - OoVoo" was originally written by Robin Good for Master New Media and first published on February 19th 2008.

Mashable - 12 Screencasting Tools For Creating Video Tutorials

Here's another great list of software tools compliments of Sean P. Aune of Mashable who has assembled a dozen options for you to create a screencast. Screencasts are commonly used to demonstrate software features since you can directly record your computer screen activity and publish it as stand alone video. The benefit is that you don't have to use any external hardware and it's done using a software application which gives you a high quality non-scan converted video capture.

Sean intentionally left industry standard screen capture program Camtasia off the list and commented that, "
I didn't feel it needed inclusion since I do believe every one knows it." He's right too, because if you're on Windows and have had to produce any screen recording projects then you probably have heard of Camtasia. He added that, "Perhaps we should have called it "Forget Camtasia", but I admit that particular idea didn't cross my mind at the time I wrote it."

So here's the list, some are free and some are commercial products, and you can see his original post for more details along with comments from readers. (Thanks again Sean!)

The following is written by
Sean P. Aune for Mashable and originally published on February 21, 2008 as:

12 Screencasting Tools For Creating Video Tutorials
  1. AviScreen - As the name would imply, this capture program records the video into AVI files, but can also do BMP photos. It’s Windows only and does not record audio.
  2. - An open source program for capturing your on-screen video and audio as AVI files. Windows only, and absolutely free.
  3. Copernicus - A free program for Macs that focuses heavily on making quick and speedy films by recording the video to your RAM for quicker access. Does not include any support for audio.
  4. - Beyond recording video, Jing allows you to take a picture of any portion fo your desktop, draw on it, add a message, and immediately upload your media to a free hosting account. You are then given a small URL that you can give to whomever needs to see the image or video. Works with Macs and Windows machines.
  5. - A Java-based screencasting tool that requires no downloads and will allow you to automatically upload to hosting. According to their site it works well with Macs and Windows machines, but does have some issues with Linux.
  6. Wink - Screencasting software that focuses on making tutorials with audio and text annotation abilities. Outputs to Flash, PDF, HTML, EXE files and more.
  7. Adobe Captivate - While Adobe is almost always synonymous with quality, it also always means it’s going to be expensive. Pricing starts at nearly $700.
  8. AllCapture - Capture in real time, add audio during recording or after completion. Can output to Flash, EXE, ASF, DVD, SVCD and VCD. Free trial available, Windows only.
  9. HyperCam - Windows only system for recording screen activity to AVI files along with system audio. Free trial with $39.95 for full version.
  10. iShowU - Offers a wide-range of presets that allows you to record directly into Quicktime and up to 1080P in both NTSC and PAL formats. Also does audio and the file is ready to be published as soon as hit stop. Mac only.
  11. ScreenMimic - Software for the Mac that offers transitions, audio dubbing, can output to HTML, Quicktime and Flash. Free download and $64.95 for the paid version.
  12. ScreenRecord - Outputs to Quicktime directly and can record your clicks and all on-screen activities. Offers a free trial and then $19.95 to purchase.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Steve Garfield on Getting Started in Web Video

Pioneer internet video blogger Steve Garfield recorded this short video about a week ago on How To Get Started in Web Video. On his video blog he writes, "Here are three steps to help you get started with web video. 1. Choose something you are passionate about 2. Good Audio 3. Steady Camera Shots"

Steve uses a simple and direct address approach to share his video blogging tips. The video, courtesy of Steve Garfield/, first appeared on The Daily Flip, "a web show about online marketing and being an entrepreneur" as described by The Daily Flip creator and long-time blogger/online marketer Jim Kukral.

His version, Video Blogging Tips by Steve Garfield packages the same video in a web show format with Steve and Jim "corresponding" by way of a fake satellite uplink.

The Daily Flip is named after the Flip Video camera, a small and innovative USB-enabled video camera which Jim uses to shoot his show. It's a cool and inexpensive video device and you can see specs on it here.

I've included a few more related The Daily Flip videos courtesy of Jim Kukral:

Sunday, February 17, 2008

My ooVoo Day With... iJustine!

I had my third My ooVoo Day With... videoconference today with new media connoisseur and "the internet" girl iJustine. It was fun to meet some new people and we all had a good time. There were a couple zany moments, as you can tell, which I've captured in this slide show. I say make My ooVoo Day With... an ongoing event! Thanks to everyone at Crayon and ooVoo for making it happen.

Mashable - Forget PowerPoint: 13 Online Presentation Apps

Sean P. Aune
Mashable has gathered 13 online presentation creators that, as he says. "make it even easier for you to forget about doing anything offline ever again!"

I checked out a few of these tools and they offer a great alternative to other off-the-shelf Powerpoint to Flash programs. Most will allow you to import an existing Powerpoint slideshow and incorporate audio, video and animation elements. Embed tags seem to be a standard feature and some allow for offline editing so you can download the presentation and upload it to your own server or distribute it on CD or DVD-ROM.

I have used one of the online applications, VCASMO, which lets you synchronize video with Powerpoint slides. I reviewed it on this blog a few months ago and they now have an offline version. A reader named kski suggested a similar application called SimonShows which "allows for easier navigation through the content because it is organized by chapters and pages."

Here's the Mashable list (the entire text below is courtesy of Sean P. Aune - thanks Sean!)
  1. jaxPresents - Presentation software portion of the Ajax13 office suite. Works with Firefox 1.5 and higher, free, and can import & export from PowerPoint and OpenOffice.
  2. - A Java based presentation tool that allows you to create online and then download to your system to save it.
  3. - A tool for creating media rich presentations online with Flash and Ajax. You can share them with the public and allow them to be voted on.
  4. Google Documents - Google made their intentions to take on Microsoft Office fairly obvious when they finally added an online presentation tool to take on PowerPoint.
  5. - Uses an Ajax-based interface for quick editing. Allows collaboration and easy sharing with clients and colleagues.
  6. - Focused more on larger corporate customers with a monthly budget for little bit higher-end needs. Provides templates for speedy creation.
  7. - Is a completely free presentation editor that generates the slides as web pages so they can even be edited in an HTML editor if you choose. They allow 250 MB of storage, but no limit to the size or duration of a presentation. Also offers unlimited online collaboration.
  8. - Currently in private beta, SlideRocket is trying to fulfill all of the features of desktop apps and adding more online features. They are accepting emails to sign up for the beta at this time.
  9. - A Flash presentation generator that can be used online or in their desktop editor. Results can be published or embedded.
  10. - ThinkFree Show is part of the ThinkFree office suite which offers a free online alternative to Office. The service is free and offers 1 GB of online storage.
  11. - A free presentation builder that allows you to build your work right in te browser and then share it with anyone by just sending them a link.
  12. - An online presentation editor that allows for work with numerous file formats, video, audio, photos and more. Online embedding and sharing is easy when you’re done, and they expect to launch a Facebook app sometime in the second quarter of 2008.
  13. Zoho Show - Zoho’s answer for presentation software offers all of their usual services such as collaboration, but you also get the chance to embed your shows in blogs or present long distance to a client.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Mogulus and Qik Partner in Live Streaming


This news is more than a week old and almost slipped by me. It's about a significant and strategic integration of live mobile video streaming and a relevant technology development to discuss. I have to thank Robin Good for bringing it to my attention yesterday during our My ooVoo Day With... video conversation (Grazie Robin!)

On Feb. 5th, the Mogulus blog posted, "We are really excited to announce that Mogulus has integrated with mobile phone streaming provider Qik ( From now on, all Mogulus producers have the ability to go live with their mobile phone on their Mogulus channel."

Their previous post on Feb. 3rd, which stated their plan to integrate the two services, noted that, "Thanks to Robert Scoble who used Qik and Mogulus during his CES coverage in January - it became clear to both companies that an integration will be beneficial to producers using our platforms."

It's great to see two similar yet distinct companies partner like this, and also how end-users can influence this type of technology mashup. The Qik blog describes the integration in 3 easy steps and the Mogulus blog has more detailed information.

Here's a great video courtesy of video blogger Steve Garfield on how he used Qik, Mogulus and Twitter to cover Super Tuesday.

Friday, February 15, 2008

My ooVoo Day With... Robin Good


I was back for another session of My ooVooday With... and I had great video conversation with Robin Good and social media and blogging guru Sherman Hu and Allen Mostow who manages LA music artist Audra Hardt. I had been looking forward to this opportunity to meet the Master New Media guru and I also met a few new friends. We had a lively discussion about online video publishing tools and strategies. Some of the video tools mentioned included Qik, Mogulus, Kyte with ooVoo now joining the mix since you can both conduct and record a live multi-party videoconference. Robin added that Mogulus and Qik has integrated so producers can now stream live from their mobile phones directly to their Mogulus channel with Qik.

In additional to our live ooVoo session, Robin was simulcasting a live feed of our videoconference to his Qik page and you can view the archive recording below.

For some, videoconferencing technology can be cumbersome and awkward to use, but it was real easy to have an open group conversation using ooVoo. The user interface is both slick and intuitive in design and both the video and audio quality is actually quite good. The video runs at about 10 frames per second (fps) so motion is pretty smooth and I saw very little tiling or motion artifacts. The audio is quality is crisp and it works best if you have headphones as that helps to eliminate the echo. Good lighting is essential too so that your participants can see your facial expressions. The ooVoo web site has some good information on video quality.

I've been in the videoconferencing industry for 18 years and I find it remarkable that you can have a cross platform multi-party IP videoconference with up to 6 people... totally free!

My ooVooday With... seems to be a big hit for many bloggers as I've seen a number of ooVoo comments and reviews over the last week. Chris Brogan posted an interesting review on his blog and I second his kudos to Scott Monty of Crayon for organizing this incredible social experiment. You can also see Sherman Hu's post which includes a video recording of his ooVoo videoconference with Joseph Jaffe (

My next scheduled My ooVooday With... is this Sunday with iJustine.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

My ooVoo Day With... A Videoconference Social Experiment

ooVoo is a cross platform (Mac and Windows) software service that you can use free of charge to conduct multi-point videoconferences. The ooVoo web site describes it as "a multi-party online video communication tool... to have a face-to-face video conversation with friends, family or colleagues, no matter where they are in the world." It actually works a lot like Skype but you can have up to 6 people in a video chat on your computer screen much like the "Hollywood Squares" TV show. You can also record the call if you are on Windows.

Although it's public launch was in June 2007, I first heard about oVoo just the other day from a post on Robin Good's New Media News which caught my eye, "Video Conference with Leadership Author." I learned from Jim McGee's blog McGee's Musings that they would be using something called ooVoo to, "participate in an intimate video conference/chat with Allan Cox."

I followed the link and quickly downloaded the Mac version of ooVoo so I could participate in "My ooVoo Day With...", which ooVoo calls "a week-long experiment in blogger to fan interaction. Notable bloggers from across the 'sphere will host interactive conversations on hot topics, facilitated by the multi-person video chat technology from our friends at ooVoo."

Within minutes of downloading the software and registering, I signed up and took part in a video conversation with John Wall, co-host of the Marketing Over Coffee Podcast, along with 3 other fans who joined the call. We didn't get to talk much about new marketing strategies and we mostly discussed ooVoo, other conferencing tools and debugged the audio issues. I asked John how he got involved in My ooVoo Day With... and he said represents he was invited by Scott Monty of Crayon, ooVoo's marketing company. and as Greg Verdino of Crayon says on his blog, they "wanted to come up with a way to demonstrate just how cool, fun and useful ooVoo can be."


I have two more My ooVoo Day With... videoconferences scheduled this next week which I'm really looking forward to. One is with online video publishing guru Robin Good and the other is with Internet “it” girl iJustine.

I hope that ooVoo plans future events like this as it really helps build community and it's for a good cause too, as Greg Verdino conveyed that "ooVoo will be donating money in the hosts’ names to the charities of their choice. ooVoo and most of the hosts have chosen to pool their money to support the Frozen Pea Fund, a fund established to support the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer campaign, in honor of blogger and cancer patient Susan Reynolds (who is one of the My ooVoo Day participants.)"

I plan to continue to explore using ooVoo, and who knows, I may be able to get my whole family to try it. We all use Skype for our individual calls but now we could try a multi-point videoconference.

UPDATE: One more related item I meant to add in the earlier post...

  • Correction: John Wall commented, "Scott Monty from Crayon invited me to the event, but I do not represent them nor have they paid me. I participated solely to meet some new people."
  • More ooVoo videos on YouTube

Friday, February 8, 2008

Beet.TV Interviews Jeff Jarvis on Mobile Video Journalism with the Nokia n82

Andy Plesser of Beet.TV recently interviewed Buzzmachine media and news blogger Jeff Jarvis on Reuters news service began giving its journalists Nokia n82 phones to record and upload mobile video reports to the news service's video pages. They call this innovative program "Mojo" for Reuters Mobile Journalism.

In this Beet.TV interview Jarvis describes how mobile phone technology is revolutionizing the way journalists are covering the news. The interviews tend to have a more personal touch using the smaller mobile camera phones while offering an instant and direct reach to a worldwide audience. The interview also contains a clip of Jarvis' conversation from the recent World Economic Forum in Davos with David Cameron, leader of Britain's Conservative Party who talks about his “webcameron” site and politics on the Internet. Reuters shared their "Mojo" by handing out the camera phones to a number of bloggers and journalists including Jarvis who were in Davos last month.

Here's the latest image of the Nokia n82, courtesy of Beet.TV which was first published on IntoMobile:

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Yahoo Launches Live! A New Live Streaming Service... Well, Sort of

In the midst of an impending takeover by Microsoft, Yahoo launched a new "experimental" live streaming service, called Yahoo! Live, which has already seems to have reached capacity on its first outing.

Both ReadWriteweb and TechCrunch reviewed the new site describing its functionality and Michael Kirkpatrick of ReadWriteweb, who tried to cover the launch live wrote, "It looks pretty good though early tests are experiencing scaling issues already. Apparently, the company that gets more web traffic than anyone on earth is incapable so far of handling 400 people watching 30 live video streams. Actually, a flood of early adopters just came in via Twitter and the thing promptly broke - completely as far as I can tell. The service combines many of the best practices developed by early explorers of the medium, tiny startups that must be very worried tonight. Part BlogTV, part Mogulus and just plain better than UStream"

On the Yahoo! Live blog, Michael Quoc, Director of Advanced Products, describes the service as, "a new experiment in live video from the Advanced Products team at Yahoo!. Y! Live was dreamed up as a way to make it possible for anyone to create their own live video experience. Broadcast the concert you’re at. Webcast your own live DJ set. Lifecast. Build your own live video speed dating application. We’ve created a website and an API that lets you do all these things and many more."

Quoc continued that, "Keep in mind that Y! Live is an experimental release.... Y! Live is a limited capacity release, so bear with us as and we may reach our limits in periods of high traffic. Our top priority now is to hear your feedback – send your comments to, and follow our twitter feed to hear about headline broadcasts and notable things happening live."

Regarding it's experimental state, Chad Dickerson, Sr. Director of Yahoo's Advanced Product Team, commented on TechCrunch that, "Needless to say, we’re aware of and not surprised by the stability issues (ironically, someone sent me a message via Twitter about the servers getting pounded and Twitter timed out just before it delivered the message! C’est la vie.) This is an experiment (see our post on Yahoo! Next for more about the product and API — ).

As it joins the ranks of it's live streaming competitors (Stickam,, Ustream, Mogulus and Blogtv) it will be interesting to see how Y! Live evolves and becomes more stable over time. Given that you gotta wonder what Google may have up it's sleeve.

Sorry Y! Live but here's another TechCrunch review on the the launch, Yahoo Live Fails to Scale

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

BlogTV Goes Mobile

TechCrunch reported today that the popular live streaming web site BlogTV has launched a new mobile site called The video below, courtesy of Niro3007, demonstrates how it works.

In the TechCrunch post, Duncan Riley writes that, "The new mobile site... offers live streaming to most mobile phones without the need for a plugin (I’m presuming it’s flash based, because it doesn’t work on my iPhone.) BlogTV claims that their mobile streaming services is the first of its type available for mobile phones. The mobile version includes the host stream, cohost and chat feed, fully replicating the normal BlogTV experience."

Several people have left comments with mixed results that it didn't work on their mobile phones (iPhone and Blackberry) but others said it was working fine (a simple SE k610i and a Samsung) and one comment from Yaov said, "From what i can see it’s 3gp video streamed via RTSP (real time streaming protocol)."

See the related Jan. 30th TechCrunch post: BlogTV Signs Strategic Deal with IQC

See the BlogTV blog announcement for a list of supported mobile phones.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Chris Pirillo's Tips for Better PowerPoint Presentations

The Powerpoint tips listed here are compliments of Chris Pirillo who writes, "It may be simple to begin using PowerPoint… but it’s not so easy to make professional looking presentations. These tips were sent in by a community member, and will help you in your endeavor to create a great presentation."

He produced this video which expands on the tips listed below or read his blog.

  • Be sure to make your presentation appropriate for the audience in which you are going to present it to!
  • Be sure to make your presentations easy to read!
  • Make your presentations professional-looking!
  • Don’t just have text!
  • Format the text information correctly!
  • Add your own information and experience to the presentation!
Check out my post on Life After Death by Powerpoint for more information.