Re: Gnome Media Library

# The first thing that SHOULD be done, is to settle or implement standard
# file loading libraries for video and audio, like gdk-pixbuf is de facto
# standard for images. It is extremely inconvenient, if every simple program
# requires different kind of libraries simply for loading .mod tunes.

You might want to briefly skim over the way BeOS does things - a lot of
its APIs are centered around A/V file handling and it has a very nice
pluggable architecture. Perhaps there's some things in there that GNOME
can learn from?

For example, there's a generic utility (its name escapes me) which
converts from one digital media file format to another - say, for example,
QuickTime movie to Intel Indeo-compressed AVI. The utility itself knows
nothing about the various formats involved; it just knows how to
read/write "multimedia" files. The libraries do the actual dirty work, and
the capabilities (formats supported, codecs, etc), are all not a whole lot
more than plug-ins.

I can't be the only one out there that thinks that this is:

a) Pretty neat :-)

b) A very sensible way of doing things

This way, applications generally wouldn't have to know or care what format
their audio or video files are in - so long as the libraries can handle
them. As far as applications are concerned, they have a generic audio or
video stream that can be manipulated in a standard way. So, if your game
ships with 8-track MOD files for its background music, there'd be no real
reason why you couldn't replace them with 32-track XM files a little while
down the line, with no extra programming required, no modifications
required to the application (except if it used hard-coded filenames,

This kind of flexibility is great from an application developer's point of
view, and even better from the user's. 

Or am I off on one of my meaningless rants, again? :-)


Mo McKinlay                                T: +44 (0) 709 22 55 05  x1
Chief Software Architect                   F: +44 (0) 709 22 55 05  x3
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