Now that Firefox 3.5 has been released, we will be seeing new sorts of programs for video including Ogg Theora, the open-source, non-Flash program for video.
DailyMotion, the big Paris-based video sharing site, has created a pilot to encode a several thousand clips into the format as part of an experiment. Users need the new Firefox 3.5 to view the clips.
The company announced the project in late May.
How broadly Ogg will be adopted and become more than an experiment is hard to say. Also, the video player is far from perfect, but it's an important development to watch.
Last month at the Open Video Conference, I caught up with Dailymotion's Sebastien Adgnot. He explained that his company started working with Ogg as a video platform for the One Laptop Per Child project.
We think the milestone for the adoption of Ogg Theora will happen when Wikipedia opens up to video uploads which are transcoded to the format. More on this to to come.
For an overview on Ogg Theora, you might want to watch this primer with Mike Hudack of Blip.tv
Andy Plesser, Executive Producer
Sebastien Adgnot: We started to encode some videos in Ogg about a year and a half ago for the OLPC Project, the One Laptop Per Child Project. They did a fantastic small laptop, the Xo laptop, and we wanted to have a website and all videos available on this laptop and so we started to encode some videos in Ogg just to see how it works. We developed a small website, olpc.dailymotion.com where kids can use their Xo to go to these websites. And then after a few months we sold at Firefox and actually Mozilla while launching Firefox Beta for their 3.5 version and we wanted to play with the new HTML 5 videotag and see how it works and see where we can go with it. If it's as good as Flash and try it as much as we could and we actually were able to do something pretty interesting with it, very similar video player, and so we decided to encode more videos in Ogg so it can be played by Firefox and then we launched the web site a few weeks ago up on video.dailymotion.com.
It's working with Firefox, Safari, and Chrome today. It's still a very early version so we found some bugs and technical problems, but its part of the fun and the job. But it's working pretty well and we expect to be able to work with Opera also on this project.
Andy Plesser: Great, so let me ask you is this being done in a way to lower costs or to change user experience or as part of HTML 5 or what what is sort of the, some of the goals of the program?
Sebastien Adgnot: The goal is that we are a web company so we would like to work with the best tools available on the web. We think that standards are important. We think also open format is something important for the future. And for the moment it's more a test than something…it's a long term project and so for the moment, for the end user it's not something very appealing, but we hope that in the near future the fact that videos will be better embedded inside web pages it will allow us to develop better functionalities, better services for end users and it's the goal of the project.