Archive for February, 2006

Various Bits

Martyn released a new version of Gossip today, so I spent this morning working on pushing this out in FE. It should be available later today, since FE is in the midst of a massive rebuild due to the upcoming FC5 release.

What else has been going on? I’m about half-way through writing the GStreamer backend for the Nautilis-Flac-Converter. Ross Burton pointed me to a project (Sound Converter), that is similar in use, for examples on how to implement it. Unfortunately, since it was written in Python, I wasn’t really able to use any code from it. It did help me figure out the pipeline I needed to use in GStreamer to convert the FLAC file, though. For example, to convert a FLAC to an ogg vorbis file with gst-launch (a tool that builds and runs basic GStreamer pipelines), I would simply run:

gst-launch filesrc location=02-Rebirth.flac ! flacdec ! audioconvert ! audio/x-raw-float,rate=44100,channels=2 ! vorbisenc name=enc quality=0.6 ! oggmux ! filesink location=02-Rebirth.ogg

Basically, in the extension I’m just recreating this pipeline, which will allow me to switch parts of the pipline with the approriate elements for encoding. I’m using large chunks of code from Sound-Juicer, so the work so far has been fairly minimal. Depending on how much time and motivation I have, I’m hoping to finish this up in the next couple of weeks.

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How Long Until Kelly Writes About This?

From the AP:

Manuel Villanueva realizes he has been getting a pretty good deal since he signed up for Netflix Inc.’s online DVD rental service 2 1/2 years ago, but he still feels shortchanged. That’s because the $17.99 monthly fee that he pays to rent up to three DVDs at a time would amount to an even bigger bargain if the company didn’t penalize him for returning his movies so quickly.

Netflix typically sends about 13 movies per month to Villanueva’s home in Warren, Mich. – down from the 18 to 22 DVDs he once received before the company’s automated system identified him as a heavy renter and began delaying his shipments to protect its profits.

The same Netflix formula also shoves Villanueva to the back of the line for the most-wanted DVDs, so the service can send those popular flicks to new subscribers and infrequent renters.

The little-known practice, called “throttling” by critics, means Netflix customers who pay the same price for the same service are often treated differently, depending on their rental patterns.

Since I know that Kelly is quite the movie buff, I’m sure he’s been screwed by the man on this one.

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