Miro Video Converter 2.0 first tool to produce WebM videos

The Participatory Culture Foundation has released the second iteration of the cool and dead simple Miro Video Converter, its open source video transcoding utility that converts basically every video format to the open Theora video format, and, new in this version, to the  open WebM video format, announced earlier this week.

Miro Converter 2 screen shot

In addition to open formats it supports MP4, and includes transcoding profiles for iPod, iPod Touch, PSP, Android, a variety of cell phones, and, new in this version, iPad.

WebM was great news earlier this week, and this is the best way to finish it: with an easy, friendly tool for creating open video content. Now we only need a profile for YouTube and other WebM enabled web sites, and a way to automagically upload videos to these sites to make it the best option for end users.

Miro Video Converter 2.0 is available for Windows and Mac OS X only. You can get it from the Miro Video Converter web site.

PCF launches Universal Subtitles for web videos

The Participatory Culture Foundation has announced Universal Subtitles, a new project that aims to provide a mechanism to make web video subtitling an easy task anyone can participate and benefit from.

The PCF envisions three components:

  • a widget that can be presented along any web video with a very user friendly interface to transcribe and/or translate the speech
  • an open protocol that would enable browsers to request subtitles for videos
  • a community of subtitling volunteers gathered around a subject, language or anything else

Mozilla is helping this initiative through the Mozilla Creative Collective, running a Design Challenge to collect different ideas on how this widget should work. Here’s a screenshot of the current version:

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