Geek News: Latest Technology, Product Reviews, Gadgets and Tech Podcast News for Geeks


YouTube Adds Slow Motion Feature

Posted by J Powers at 10:25 PM on May 28, 2013

youtube logoDo you want to get a slow motion video of cars passing by but don’t have the special camera to do that? YouTube is helping you out on that one.

Today YouTube released Slow Motion – a new enhancement to slow a video down 50%, 25% or 12.5%. The only caveat – Your video cannot go over 10 minutes in slow motion.

As we start to use our YouTube Live Events accounts, we will need editing tools to clean up the picture and round the edges. YouTube has already added a Stabilizer, Instagram-type effects to add Sepia, vignettes, pixelation, cartoon looks and more. You can white balance, add fill light, reduce saturation and more.

It doesn’t replace video with a 240 or 500 frame per second high-speed camera – like the Slo-Mo guys use. It will smooth out the slower video so it doesn’t look jittery. YouTube needs to blend frames to make this happen. Even a GoPro Hero 3 might be better if you record at 120 fps.

Before – After using Slow Motion Enhancement tool on YouTube

First video – me playing drums, then slowed to 25%. Next video – a shot of Madison WI Capital, then slowed to 25%. All edited using YouTube editor.

Nintendo Goes After Player’s YouTube Profits

Posted by JenThorpe at 7:41 PM on May 17, 2013

NintendoNintendo has started doing something that is not making gamers very happy. The company has started taking the ad revenue from videos that players post on YouTube of themselves playing one of Nintendo’s games. These are referred to as “Let’s Play” videos, and people make them about all kinds of different video games (not just the ones from Nintendo).

Have you ever watched a YouTube video that showed a portion of a video game? People make them all the time. For gamers, it is a good way to learn how to beat a “boss”, to check out end-game content before their characters are big enough to get there, and to discover techniques that they may not have figured out for themselves. Other people will stream themselves playing a game so people can watch “in real time”. The player might record what he or she is streaming and post it on YouTube.

When a new game comes out that looks interesting to me, I will go to YouTube in the hopes of finding videos that show what the actual game play is like. I’ve also watched live streamed games for the same reason. It’s a good way to find out more about the game than the official ad shows. If I can’t find any further information about the game from these type of sources, it is highly unlikely that I will end up buying it.

Nintendo is using YouTube’s Content-ID to identify the videos that contain content from their games. One of the options that the Content-ID system allows is for the content owner to block that video from YouTube. Another option is for the content owner to make money from the videos that include their content but were posted by someone else.

In this case, Nintendo is placing ads that generate revenue onto the videos that were posted by gamers that showed them playing one of Nintendo’s games. Effectively, what happens is that the gamer is now unable to make any revenue from those videos. Instead, that money goes directly to Nintendo.

This can be problematic for people who have a YouTube channel that is filled with gameplay videos that have been generating ad revenue for the gamer. GameFront posted a statement from Nintendo:

As part of our on-going push to ensure Nintendo content is shared across social media channels in an appropriate and safe way, we became a YouTube partner and as such in February 2013 we registered our copyright content in the YouTube database. For most fan videos this will not result in any changes, however, for those videos featuring Nintendo-owned content, such as images or audio of a certain length, adverts will now appear at the beginning, next to or at the end of the clips. We continually want our fans to enjoy sharing Nintendo content on YouTube, and that is why, unlike other entertainment companies, we have chosen not to block people using our intellectual property.

I believe that Nintendo is “shooting themselves in the foot” with this choice. Gamers who make “Let’s Play” videos, and who have a YouTube channel that is making them a profit in ad revenue now have good reason to stop making videos of Nintendo’s games. They are going to choose games from other companies instead. The result will be less “Nintendo content shared across social media channels”, not more.

Psy to debut new song on YouTube

Posted by Alan at 4:08 PM on April 11, 2013

Psy, the South Korean music star who put Seoul’s Gangnam neighborhood on the map with a video that broke all records, is coming back this weekend. In honor of all of his YouTube success and fans, the star will debut his new song on the video sharing service this coming Saturday.

According to the Google service, “the artist who made K-Pop global is back to debut his second single, ‘Gentleman’. This Saturday at 6:30 p.m. Korean Standard Time (2:30 a.m. PST), PSY will kick off a live streamed performance from the Seoul World Cup Stadium and share his new single with the world”.

YouTube’s Sun Lee, Product Marketing Manager, says that “in the meantime, check out this message from our favorite sunglass-rocking pop star himself and make sure to mark your calendars for this Saturday”.

YouTube Prepares to Announce a Winner

Posted by JenThorpe at 3:56 AM on April 1, 2013

Fool's Day stampApril 1st has been described as the absolute worst day to go on the internet. Pranks abound, and, if they are good enough, you just might find yourself believing them. Personally, I find the plethora of April Fool’s Day jokes to be very amusing. Here’s a quick review of a couple (just in case you missed them).

Twitter posted a blog called “Annncng: Twttr”. The blog says that, starting April 1, there will be a change.

Starting today, we are shifting to at two-tiered service: Everyone can use our basic service, Twttr, but you only get consonants. For five dollars a month, you can use our premium “Twitter” service which also includes vowels.

The blog points out that “Y” should always be free to everyone – today and forever and that it will be included in the free Twttr service. Read the full blog for the inspiration behind the idea.

The Guardian has launched new “augmented reality” specs that have been specially designed to offer immersive liberal insight. They are called Guardian Goggles.

The device will enable users to “see the world through the Guardian’s eyes at all time”. Users will get an overlay of a real-time stream of opinions from The Guardian that are connected to whatever the user is looking at – be it a restaurant or a cinema. The article goes on to say the Guardian Goggles will also feature an optional built-in “anti-bigotry technology” that will automatically block out certain columns “as soon as the user attempts to look at them.”

Google has been busy! It announced it’s new Google Blue which is ready, after 6 years of developing the technology for it. According to Richard Pargo, Project Manager for Goole Blue was:

How do we completely re-design and re-create something, by keeping it exactly the same?

There’s more! Google has added a special feature to it’s search engine. Under the regular box, it says: “What’s that smell? Find out with Google Nose”. It is currently in beta. Users can “take a whiff” of the Google Aromabase, which includes 15M+ scentibytes. For the first time, ever, you can share a smell with your friends! There is SafeSearch function for users who are “wary of their query”.

YouTube will be shutting down, forever, at midnight, April 1, 2013. Their video explains that they will stop taking submissions at that time and will begin reviewing each and every video in search of a winner.

Image: Stock-Vector-Fool-s-Day-Stamp by BigStock

Google releases 2012 YouTube year in review

Posted by Alan at 8:18 AM on December 18, 2012

Every year around this time web sites begin publishing their year-end lists. Top tens in search and social media across every category imaginable. We have seen lists from Google, Yahoo, Twitter and Facebook. Now Google has released its official YouTube top ten trending videos and a retrospective video to accompany the list.

It will come as absolutely no surprise to anyone that Korean pop star Psy topped the list, as his video quickly approaches the magic one billion views mark. The video is not only tops for 2012, but also all time.

The announcement from Google also contains some stunning numbers – over 4 billion hours of video are being watched each month and millions of people are uploading video. Perhaps the most mind-boggling numbers would be storage space and bandwidth, but Google does not release that information.

You can see the top ten most trending videos globally at the link above. If you want to see an individual list for your country then head over to the YouTube Rewind channel. You can check out the video below.

YouTube Adds Nearly 100 New Original Channels

Posted by Alan at 7:52 AM on October 8, 2012

Early this morning YouTube announced the addition of almost 100 new original channels, this time including non-U.S. locations such as France, Germany, and the UK.  The roll out included two new BBC channels for science and nature, as well as many others, including local cuisine, health and wellness, parenting, sports, music, comedy, animation and news.

Aside from the BBC, there are quite a few other big names included in the list.  You will find Motor Trend, Car and Driver, The Onion, eHow Home, Howcast, Fuse, Slate, the Wall Street Journal, SB Nation, and many more.   In addition, YouTube also provided a little insight into how their original channels have been performing since their launch.

  • Our top 25 original channels are now averaging over a million views every week
  • 800 million of your are watching 4 billion hours every month, that’s up from 3 billion hours earlier this year
  • The number of people subscribing has doubled y/y
  • And partners this year are reaching the 100k subscriber mark 5x faster than they were just two years ago

There is no word on when these will go live, but some of them already are, while others are providing a sneak peak.  You can browse the whole list here.

Canon Vixia Camcorders

Posted by Andrew at 9:07 AM on February 14, 2012

Canon Vixia CamcordersThe Canon Vixia camcorders have been popular with consumers and Canon have upgraded the range with six new models. Jeffrey Powers has been a Vixia owner for some time and chats to Ben Thomas from Canon to learn more.

Some of the new models have built-in wi-fi allowing live streaming from the camera to iOS devices such as the iPad and iPhone. The footage can be captured by the free Movie Uploader app and, if desired, uploaded to Facebook and other video sharing websites.

There’s also new dynamic image stabilization technology that has four different stabilization modes that kick-in depending on the particular situation.

The Vixia camcorders normally record the AVCHD format but they can record direct to MP4 which is great for sharing on media players and mobile phones. The cameras take SDXC cards (up to 64GB) and have internal memory; the price determines exactly how much. Roughly, 32 GB will give 12 hours of 720p footage.

Prices start from $349 for R-series and $549 for the M-series.

Sorry we didn’t get to see Kellie Pickler. Interview by Jeffrey Powers of Geekazine.

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Life In A Day

Posted by Andrew at 4:35 PM on January 9, 2012

Life In A DayOk, so I’m really behind the curve here but the BBC screened “Life In A Day” over the Christmas holidays and I’m finally watching it. If you haven’t watched it already, you need to put this on your must-see list.

If you aren’t familiar with the film, it’s made up of footage from over 80,000 submissions of video that was all recorded on 24th July 2010 by people across the world. Created in partnership with YouTube, Ridley Scott produced the film with Kevin Macdonald directing. It’s been lovingly crafted into a documentary about the human condition.

And what a documentary it is. It’s a rollercoaster of emotion of taking you across the world to different places, peoples and societies. There’s every facet of human life and the juxtaposition of cultures makes it all the more poignant. One minute it’s a rich nation, the next a poor country. Some of the film is shocking and it doesn’t hide the sheer hard work of existence but throughout it all is the joy of life itself.

The film is available (legally) on YouTube. Warning: there are a couple of scenes that aren’t suitable for younger viewers.

 

VideoHunters

Posted by KL Tech Muse at 6:03 PM on March 22, 2011

VideoHunters

I was going to write this a couple days ago, but I been having too much fun playing with the application. If you like to watch videos from Youtube but are not happy with the YouTube interface on the iPad you may want to take a look at VideoHunters from the The APP Company.

VideoHunters is a great way to find, organize and share YouTube Videos. They start you off with a couple of themes already set up to get you started. To set up a new theme you simply click on New in the upper right hand corner, name your theme and start searching. Once you find something you like  you can add it to the theme, each search that you add becomes a new row within a theme.  If you want you can join search terms together.   You can filter search by adding and subtracting search terms. For example I like the Anime Bleach, however I have no interest in Cosplay, so I created a search term Bleach -”cosplay”, which created a row with videos about Bleach but no cosplay. You can add as many rows as you want. If you enter a search term and hit the Channel Button VideoHunter will pull up YouTube channels that match your search term. You can also use a a thumbnail of one of the video as the icon for that theme. When your ready to watch, your videos will play at the highest quality available including HD.

There are a couple of things that I do wish VideoHunter could do, the first is I wish it would auto play the next Video. I also wish it would work with other video services. This is a wish maybe coming true because it looks like one of the updates is Vimeo support. I f you like YouTube and have a iPad I recommend getting VideoHunter.

Movies & Documentaries On iOS Devices

Posted by tomwiles at 9:13 PM on February 16, 2011

Since getting the latest version of the 32 gigabyte iPod Touch a couple of months back, one of the uses that has surprised me has been late-night movie-watching after I’ve gone to bed but am not yet drowsy enough to go to sleep. The iPod Touch works extremely well for this task. I am able to pair the iPod to my Sprint HTC Evo’s WiFi hotspot feature and generally get very good Internet connectivity.

By far, Netflix is the best on-demand movie service available. Netflix has the most and best content available. The Netflix app for iPod/iPhone works great. It gives me the most relevant features of the full Netflix service in a tidy little package. So far, I’ve watched dozens of movies right on my iPod.

But are there other iPod/iPhone movie and documentary apps available? It turns out there are, though the quality can vary tremendously. One of them is called “NFB Films” which is an app created by the National Film Board of Canada. You can watch over 1,000 movies, including documentaries, animations and trailers.

Another app is called “Big Star TV.” The app itself is free to install, but if you wish to watch any content, like with Netflix, you have to pay a monthly fee. Big Star’s movies don’t seem to be up to the high quality level of Netflix.

B-Movies is a free app that presents Internet Archive (www.archive.org) films in an organized, easy-to-use format. It should be noted B-Movies is not associated or a part of the Internet Archive. Among other things, the Internet Archive contains an incredibly rich and diverse set of older classic corporate, school and government documentaries.

Apart from these choices of course is YouTube. Certainly YouTube has a tremendous amount of content, but therein lies the rub: there’s so much YouTube content, it makes it difficult for any single app to categorize, let alone try to catalog what’s available. With YouTube it’s best to simply search on a keyword or phrase that interests you and then start surfing.

The promise of the future that was held up when I was a kid has in many ways arrived, but as always there remains a lot of room for improvement.