On DivX 4.0 and OpenDivX

I’ve just done a quick subjective comparison between the same film compressed with DivX Networks’ DivX 4.0 codec (as performed with my own im2avi linked with avifile) and Project Mayo’s OpenDivX (also mpeg4) codec, as implemented independently by ffmpeg. Now, ffmpeg encodes the whole movie in a fraction of the time. This is no surprise, as ffmpeg has spent some time on optimising their code for real-time streaming. This is still impressive.

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News update.

I get to work at home today. Yaaaay! Read this Salon article about Mozilla; it’s reasonable and down to earth. Also remember to IGNORE any links to MozillaQuest that you ever come across: the guy behind it is an absolute moron. Don’t confuse MozillaQuest (urgh) with MozillaZine, which is good. I’m test driving Mozilla 0.9.9, and I must say that it’s impressive. One day, all this browser pain will be behind us.

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InBook and Book both suck.

I just updated the script that generates our publications listings so that it doesn’t list the cross references separately anymore. It creates full citations for each and every publication instead. In this change, I ran into the old problem of @InBook and @Book not allowing author and editor, which is strange… think about when you’ve written a chapter in a book for instance. In anycase, my advice is to ditch these and use @Proceedings and @InProceedings instead.

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Mo Music

It would have been terribly useful if emusic.com had some facility for discussing the available music. I’ve discovered some jewels there (My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult for example) but I’ve had to work through quite an amount of audio. Hey, maybe I should mail them! I’m adding the final touches to the camera-ready version of my IEEE VisSym 2002 article. This has to be done by tomorrow, and then the fun can begin with some messy TF domain image processing.

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I hate Microsoft, you should too!

This is not an unreasoned or unfounded hate. I can name a few thousand good reasons why you too should hate the company and their products. There is no arguing that as a business entity, they’re simply doing what they should do to remain the best. However, their products have a greater negative impact on quality of life than you would like to think. Today’s little point to ponder is this: if Microsoft really gave a shit about its users, why does no Windows install come with PDF or Postscript support by default?

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Back from the US of A

I arrived back yesterday from the SPIE medical imaging conference in San Diego. America, or the little bit that I saw, is weird. The people eat too much, too oily and too sweet, the cars that they drive are too big, they have too many of them and the petrol is too cheap. Most of this is really not their own fault. For example, their public transport system really does not encourage a more reasonable attitude towards cars.

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Antwerpen is pretty.

On a whim we decided to drive down to Antwerpen on Saturday. This is one of the most beautiful and pleasant cities I have had the privilege of spending time in. In spite of its size and age, the city has a very vibrant atmosphere and the night-life is deeeevine.

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