Teaching Examples

Convert Soundslides to video
December 8, 2006, 7:32 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Joe Weiss has added video conversion to Soundslides (Mac version only for now).

The Soundslides video plug-in converts your audio slide show to various video formats with the help of the free Quicktime Player on Macs. The plug-in is not included with the Soundslides application, and is purchased as a separate item.

The price for the plug-in is $19.95 (buy it). Don’t begrudge Joe the money: “The plug-in represents a lot of work, and I understand that such functionality is not needed by the entire user base of Soundslides.” (More info and links here and here.)

I couldn’t imagine why you would want to do this until yesterday when one of my students explained it to me. His team’s final project profiled a local hip-hop band. The band liked the Soundslides about them so much, they want to put it on their MySpace page. Well, video. And then, there’s YouTube, etc.

So even though the file will be larger, the images smaller, the quality lower — still, we must consider the distribution channels that people use.

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7 Comments so far
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Out of curiosity, why not just make the slideshow with sound in QuickTime in the first place? Export to .m4v too.

Seems like a rather indirect route with loss of quality as you mention. And then funny thing if you put it on YouTube it becomes Flash video all over again.

Comment by Anonymous

Or insert Flash into your Myspace profile. Myspace really promotes Flash.


They even give you the code.

Comment by Anonymous

So, according to the Amara page, you can embed SWFs on MySpace pages like this:

src=”http://www.amarasoftware.com/slideshow.swf” quality=high pluginspage=”http://www.macromedia.com/shockwave/
download/index.cgi?P1_Prod_Version=ShockwaveFlash” type=”application/x-shockwave-flash”

I don’t use MySpace, so this was not obvious to me before.

Comment by Mindy McAdams

As to the question “Why not just make the slideshow with sound in QuickTime in the first place?” — if I have the photos and the MP3 file, I can produce a Soundslides in a few minutes.

And as I mentioned, my photos will be bigger and my file size will be smaller if I do this in Soundslides.

For me, the question is, Why would anyone do a slideshow as video? What a waste of bandwidth.

Plus with Soundslides you get a Flash file, which millions more people can view, compared with any of the non-Flash video file formats.

Comment by Mindy McAdams

Mindy, by creating QT files from Soundslides I can then send the slideshows to iTunes for people who subscribe to my blog. When they plug in their iPod to sync, my videos are automatically loaded. I did if for a time, buy got lazy about making the third compression. Now with this new Soundslides feature I can make all my multimedia content available via iTunes–that’s cool.

Comment by Colin Mulvany

Colin, are you by any chance tracking those downloads? I wonder how many people are downloading video from your site as opposed to watching directly.

Comment by Mindy McAdams

In the first week of announcing the video podcast, I had about 50 subscribers sign up. I haven’t been tracking it since, but will now. Most of my multimedia is in Soundslides format, so for me this is a no- brainer.

I love being on the bleeding edge, even if only a few people access the content this way . I think things are about to change though. With new wireless handheld devices able to handle video, I believe most newsrooms should begin to think about ways to push their content to people that want utilize this emerging technology.

Comment by Colin Mulvany

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