YouTube - new features

YouTube has added some new features, which are:-

  • Quick Capture - You can now record video using your webcam. Mike Downey has already confirmed that FMS is being used for the same.
  • Mobile upload -  You can create multiple profiles for different mobile-devices and you get different email-id for each profile. You can email videos from your mobile-devices to these email-ids, simple if you want to upload small video clips. I don't have enough patience to upload large videos from mobile. But this feature indeed is cool.
  • Channel customization
    • You can customize the theme (color, text color etc) of your video channel pages.
    •  You can have custom channel URL, if it's not taken by someone else :)
  • Playlists management -  You can now also create, edit and do playlist management. Seems, you can play entire playlist, I noticed each video in playlist loads in different page, I would expect it plays in same instance of player.
  • Groups - Again, this is something new I noticed. You can now create group or join a group. You can have custom URL and tags associated with the groups you create.
  • TestTube - You can check out this section to find out new features that are still under-development. I came to know about "Streams" which would allow users to interact with each other while watching same videos. Interaction happens through Flash based chat client.

This list is not complete, these are just my observation, I thought to list down here. Check out YouTube in it's new avatar..

Orkut is banned in India or Maharastra?

I am not able to access orkut.com, it seems it has been banned in Maharastra (the state I stay) or entire India? A quick Google News search returned the link of this news where Maharastra chief-minister has asked Indian ISPs/Center to block orkut.

I can understand the government's concern about different hate-communities on orkut but I am wondering, why can't Indian government give a list (URLs) of such communities to ISPs so that selective ban can be done instead of entire orkut.com. Anyways, I am not a political person, neither I want to be. I respect government's decision, I am sure this is done for good cause. I am also hopeful that orkut would work again either government would do selective filtering or make Google delete all such communities.

I just wanted to let everyone know that it might not be their systems problem, if they are not able to access orkut, rather this particular ban could be the reason.

YouTube support - funny response

While working on ActionScript 2.0 API for YouTube, I sent a mail to YouTube-developer-support to ask if they are planning any improvement in their API to allow us (developers) to get the FLV url without any hacks. I didn't get the response of that mail for many days. Anyways, I sent another mail informing that I implemented the same and they might want to post a link at their developer-page. They used to have links of other implementation (f.ex. fTube by Manish)

The response from their support guy is little funny, atleast I laughed first-time. Click the following image to see it.

 

I think, he might replied me instead of someone else.

YouTube changes crossdomain.xml ?

I am just wondering, if YouTube has recently changed it's crossdomain.xml? The YouTube ActionScript 2.0 API example I wrote, has stopped working? I was using their REST API to consume data and it seems it doesn't work any more for me? What is the reason (developer-id is banned or my IP address or my domain is blacklisted)?

If they have changed it, it's really bad. We can not create frontends in Flash, which means YouTube API and RSS feeds are useless for Flash/Flex developers. I can use server-side proxy but I don't want to.

Please update me if it is working work your Flash/Flex applications.

Update: Yup! They have done it, I did a quick search and found that it used to be "*" instead of "*.youtube.com", you can see in image shown below.
Update: YouTube's crossdomain.xml changes might be because of security concerns, you can further read on these blogs:-

Adobe FlashLite 2.1 is free for Symbian devices

Through Bill Perry's blog I got to know that FlashLite 2.1 standalone player is free for supported Symbian devices (Nokia S60, Sony etc). Yet another good move by Adobe. I am not sure, what would be their revenue model by making this free? Anyways, Thanks Adobe.

Check out Bill's post for more. You can get installer from this download link.

 

BarcampPune - Are you participating?

http://barcamp.org/BarCampPune2</img>

I stopped going to conferences and unconferences for sometime. The last event I attended was BarcampBangalore, I wanted to help folks in organizing BarcampBangalore but couldn't do as much as I wanted to, because I fell sick. Though It was good experience. After that I have been busy with work and many ideas around my project so didn't feel like or didn't get time to attend any other Barcamps or events.

Now I feel I can start doing it again, I am planning to speak in BarcampPune on some topics, I have to decide from a list I have.

FYI! BarcampPune2 is most likely happening on Dec 16-17, 2006 in Symbiosis Institute of Computer Studies and Research (SICSR), Pune. You can register on BarcampPune2 Wiki.

If you are around, let's catch up.

Adobe India Developer Olympiad

Are you a student who likes Adobe Flex/Flash/Coldfusion? There is a chance to show your skills by participating in Adobe India Developer Olympiad. You can find more details on Raghu's blog, Manish's blog and ADO page.

Yeah, you need to be a student to participate in this contest. I don't get why this contest not open for all developers in India?

I might be little biased over this, but I always find funny when I see some form like this asking your degree and branch.

Is it necessary? Why can't you just live up with college name? A developer is developer, his/her degree helps him/her to solve problems but not you?
I mean, I am not able to figure out how this information would help in having a successful contest? Asking these details might make some folks think whether they are right one or not. Guys, it's passion that matters for building community not degrees.

I hope this contest goes well and becomes successful. This is first contest of its kind for Adobe Flex/Coldfusion. There was one long back by Macromedia and ZDNetIndia, that was open for all.

Torrent RFC or specfication?

I am just wondering if I can write a torrent client in ActionScript 3.0. I understand Adobe Flash Player can not do peer-to-peer(P2P) connection now but may partial implementation is possible, where only downloader part is possible, where Flash application connects to torrent network and download bits from different torrent clients on network? I can write a windows/mac exectuable that wraps SWF to achieve this.

I am also not able to find complete specification except BitTorrent's. If you have been thinking about it or have some thoughts about it, I would appriciate some kind of sharing.

YouTube ActionScript 2.0 API

I had small requirement of YouTube API in one of my personal ActionScript 2.0 project, I couldn't find any ActionScript 2.0 version of YouTube API. I wrote it couple of hours.

You can look at source code and example (app I made to test it, quick and dirty) and you can download it with example files.

You would notice, to construct FLV URL, I am doing client side parsing of YouTube html page to find out "t" param. This doesn't work in Internet Explorer 6.0 (IE 6) because of a bug where IE 6.0 doesn't uncompress gzipped page if requested through LoadVars?
In production mode, I would prefer server-side proxy to find out "t" param because it's optimized:

  1. Would work in IE 6.0 and other browsers.
  2. Doesn't require loading YouTube html page ( > 20 KB) and parsing.

Update: I am using following PHP code to get FLV from YouTube asset servers.

Technorati tags: youtube, flv, fetcher, download, php, curlscript

Nanocast alpha is released


Check out my blogspot for more Nanocasts examples: http://abdulqabiz.blogspot.com/.

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Nanocast is the startup I joined around six months back. We went public alpha couple of days back. We have done amazing work in last four months, yeah whatever you would see on http://www.nanocast.com/ has been done in four months. I think, we have really tried to push limits by using Adobe Flash Platform, I believe our tool is one of good examples to show power of Adobe Flash Platform.

There are many bugs and known issues in this release, but I would love to hear your comments/suggestions. Please feel free to either send them on channels mentioned later or through commenting system on my blog.

Following (italic text) is an introduction directly from the mouth of our community relation team.

This is about Nanocast at http://www.nanocast.com/. Our team have been working on something technically and socially challenging for the past coupla months. We've come to a stage where we are eager to get feedbacks from people who are Industry Experts, Community Harbingers, Internet Gurus and more importantly all the other internet enthusiast.

It would be an unpalatable choice if we have to tell you what it is and thus we'll leave it to you to figure out. This will make us easy to comprehend how to change/upgrade it further to make it more easier and productive to use. Please Visit, Register, Play & Work with
http://www.nanocast.com/, Alright, here is a brief synopsis.

Nanocast is a service that gives you the tools to create rich-media advertisements or expressions containing video, audio, image, text and animation. These expressions, which we call "Nanocasts" are some of the coolest ways of flaunting your media on the web. At the very core of the Nanocast service is the Nanocast Creator, a unique web-based tool that combines the power of widgetized media presentation, collaborative photo and video editing and webcam capture in one unified platform.

Think of it as a free-form tool that can allow you to create anything from an advertisement, to a photo slideshow, to a collage, to a radio show, or a video channel. Its ease of use makes it possible to create superb rich media expressions within less than three minutes, while giving the experienced user a plethora of advanced tools to tweak their "Nanocasts" to perfection.

QUICK STEPS TO NANOCAST
Here is the quick step to Nanocast if you want to get in quick.
1. Register (and it is good to authenticate through your email)
2. "Create", Yes, use that big create button. That is most fun part. Select "Category" > "Select Template" > Add your medias > Play.
3. "Done". Well, that's done and now enter the Meta Data like the Title, Description and be "Done" finally.
Note: You can post your Nanocasts to your website, blog or to others like Blogger, Myspace, etc.

There are lot more features than meet the mouse, we'd love that you try them out. We would love if you would like to be more involved with Nanocast and share the excitement. Here's how you can do:-

FORUM: All Discussion related to Nanocast can be done at
http://forum.nanocast.com/ and we'll be there to discuss, help and hear your feedbacks. This is separate from the Nanocast Login credentials to have a separate entity for free flow discussion.
BLOG:
http://blog.nanocast.com/ is the blog where we will be updating "behind the scenes", updates, gotchas, undocumented features, et al. Or you can directly subscribe to our RSS feed at http://blog.nanocast.com/feed/.
However, if you don't want to do anything but just browse what others have created, published or remixed, feel free to browse the site through the categories at
http://www.nanocast.com/.

Finally, just like every other company we too have our excuses for any glitches on the site - This Application is in its ALPHA stage.

If you are reading this line, it means you are interested :), so it's my duty to help you to get started. I suggest looking at Nanocast tour, we are working on help/documentation but this is something quickly made, hopefully would help you understand things better. You can also browse through existing categories(Personal, Jobs, Blogger etc) to see the creation by other users.