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Popcorn By Mozilla Set To Revolutionize Web Video

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With Adobe Flash and Microsoft Silverlight being made almost obsolete with HTML 5 video. Mozilla want to use HTML5 to its fullest and they are going to use Popcorn to do this.

HTML5 is clever a way of viewing embedded videos on the web without the need for flash, but it is also much more clever than that. Due to the versatility of HTML5 Mozilla hope to remove the boring nature of online video and take it away from an online TV experience.

Popcorn is going to use HTML5 to turn online video into a full interactive experience and the application has recently reached version 1.0 and at the moment works best in Firefox or Chrome.

HTML5 video is capable of much more than just, well, video. It’s HTML, after all. That means it can tap into things like WebGL, or use JavaScript to augment video in real time – annotating videos with information like location, details about the people and topics in the video, subtitles, Twitter feeds, current weather information, links and much more.

Popcorn is a JavaScript library that intends to simplify the process of adding external data taken from the web to your video. To show what’s possible with Popcorn, Mozilla is showcasing the movie  One Millionth Tower, a documentary film about an apartment building and how residents imagine the future. One-Millionth Tower premiered online last weekend at and at Mozilla Festival in London.

One Millionth Tower uses a couple tricks past what Popcorn can do (like WebGL for some 3-D elements), but most of its effects like the way the environment in the film changes based on the real-time weather conditions and time of day at the Toronto high-rises where the documentary was filmed are all the results of Popcorn.

So if it happens to be snowing in Toronto when you watch the film, it will begin snowing in the virtual world of One Millionth Tower, neat isn’t it. At other points in the film Popcorn will pull outside information from multiple places including Flickr, Wikipedia, Google Maps and, of course, Yahoo Weather. Pretty much any web service with an API can be plugged into an HTML5 video in real time with Popcorn.

One of the more Usable features of popcorn are subtiles, using popcorn a set of subtitles attached to the video could be sent to an online translation tool allowing one set of subtitles to be enough for an language you wanted. Popcorn could the display the translated subtitles meaning, subtitle your movie once and anyone could understand it.

Its still in early stages but popcorn could revolutionize online video. I for one would love to see what it could do.

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