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Testing Flash Player for Screencasts on Web

  • # April 26, 2008 at 10:15 pm

    Hey ya’ll -

    I’ve had a couple of people report that they didn’t want to install the quicktime plugin just to watch the screencasts. A couple of other folks reported that they were just unable to get the videos to play online. As an experiment, I’ve tried to convert this last video in Flash Video, and use a cool Flash player I found. I’m thinking Flash is even more common than Quicktime so there should be less problems?

    You can check out the experiment here:
    http://css-tricks.com/videos/css-tricks-video-15alt.php

    It’s even got a cool "full screen" feature and volume control, so that’s a bonus. The file size is like 3 times what it was as a quicktime video though, and the quality might even be a little lower, so that’s an anti-bonus.

    Any thoughts?

    # April 27, 2008 at 5:39 am

    Personally I follow the video’s by iTunes now, so I can watch them when I have no internet (like when I am in the train or something like that), but I like this video-player. I have the same one and I think it’s one of the best, it’s easy, simple, clear and like you said: the full-screen function. Good addition to your website :)

    # April 27, 2008 at 7:33 pm

    Personally i like the Quicktime better, but you can’t go wrong with a nice looking flash player. If you have the bandwidth, space, and time it might be nice to have a flash and quicktime for every screen cast. Flash is nice for watching online, but I always download the Quicktime videos so i can watch them later where and when ever i want to.

    # April 29, 2008 at 4:58 am

    Maybe every Apple user has quictime installed but I dont think thats true for PC users. I think switching to FLV videos will made your screen casts more accesible.

    # April 29, 2008 at 11:30 am

    While Flash is ubiquitous on most PCs its worth keeping in mind that for maximum compatibility with other devices (such Nintendo WII) you are looking at Flash 7 being the norm which means some of the cool compression bits have to be left of. On a side note christ I noticed your using SWFObject which is cool but given your on a Jquery quest you might find http://jquery.lukelutman.com/plugins/flash/ useful.

    Also keeping the ability to download for offline viewing is a nice idea.

    # April 29, 2008 at 11:52 am

    I think ultimately I’m going to skip Flash. I need it to be quicktime for iTunes, and if I did flash I’d have to do two versions every time and double my hosting space. Plus it just doesn’t seem as efficient or as good of quality.

    Thanks for the jQuery link Tim! That looks absolutely badass.

    # April 29, 2008 at 1:29 pm

    quicktime is the best IMO. I think the majority of people who visit this site and want to watch the videos will have it installed. Your target audience is pretty savvy with the internet.

    I definitely second the keeping the download option though. I don’t often have the time to watch the longer videos in one sitting.

    box
    # April 29, 2008 at 5:44 pm

    Like any website or feature, you have to be aware of your target audience. In your case, it would be mainly people who are web-savvy and are interested in web technologies and hence trying to find out more about them to develop their skills to create their own. In that sense, I would fully expect the majority of your visitors to either already have quicktime installed, or be quite willing to install it. Those that don’t should perhaps think of another interest – like trying to swim without getting wet ;)

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