Posts By: Natalie North

Greatest FLV Player ever

In conjunction with Martijn DeVisser, we’re proud to announce new version 2 of FLV Player. The worlds most popular player for FLV files downloaded from YouTube and other similar video sites just got even better.

You can download FLV Player 2 here.

Here’s what’s new in FLV Player version 2:

New features:
– zoom 50% – 100% – 200% and fullscreen
– double click video view-port to toggle fullscreen
– drag-and-drop (multiple) files
– seek through video with mouse scrollwheel
– extensive meta-data inspection
– remember position on screen at next launch
– remember audio settings a next launch
– optional video smoothing for fast cpu’s
– auto-update feature
– keyboard controls:

[SPACE] – toggle play/pause
[CTRL-.] – zoom 50%
[CTRL-1] – zoom 100%
[CTRL-2] – zoom 200%
[CTRL-ENTER] – toggle fullscreen
[CTRL-O] – open file…
[CTRL-V] – paste URL
[CTRL-W] – close window

Download now!

The Windows Vista Anti-Recording Conspiracy Thwarted

For several years now, the ability to record audio on new Windows PC’s has slowly eroded, until it’s become virtually impossible to record anything but your Microphone on new Windows Vista machines. Recording streaming audio, or sounds from any application, simply couldn’t be done. But today, that has changed.

Today is the official release day for Freecorder Toolbar Sound Recorder, our new free audio recording application that makes audio recording in Vista (and XP for that matter) better and more accessible for everyone. To understand why this is a big deal, it’s helpful to know a little about the technology behind sound recording. But if you’ve recently bought a new Windows PC and tried to record audio, you’ve learned what I’m about to tell you the hard way.

Recording audio is traditionally done two ways: either by using a “loopback” line exposed by the sound card in your PC, or by using a third party program that creates its own Sound Card Driver. The loopback method has been slowly phased out, even with XP machines. There used to always be a “What U Hear”, “Stereo Mix”, “Wave Out Mix” or similar recording line on every sound card installed in every new PC, which hundreds of applications could use to record sounds.

Then all of the sudden, many PC’s shipped without loopback lines, especially with the popular RealTek cards, and millions of customers were out of luck- unless you had a recording application like Replay A/V with the Enhanced Sound Card Driver, Total Recorder or Soundtap. These specialized applications used custom written Sound Card Drivers to record, and didn’t require a loopback line. However with Windows Vista, Microsoft has required that all drivers be certified and signed by Microsoft, which effectively kills this method of recording. If you own a new Vista PC with no loopback line, you are unable to record audio – until now.

Our new Freecorder Toolbar Sound Recorder uses a brand new audio recording method invented by us. It works great with Vista, XP and even Windows 2000, and doesn’t require any special recording line or driver – it just works. Plus, an added benefit is Freecorder Toolbar’s Sound Separation technology, which isolates sounds from the application it was generated in. This means that the beep from your Instant Messenger program won’t wind up in the recording from your favorite internet radio station.

Our other products are getting this new technology shortly, but Freecorder Toolbar has it now, and it’s totally free. Give it a try and enjoy!

New Web Site

In case you haven’t noticed, we’ve launched our newly redesigned Web site last night. We’ve focused on making everything easier to find and navigate – I hope you like it!
One of the best new features is the search box on every page, which should make it easy to locate things on our site. And the new navigation is cleaner too.
If you see anything broken, or something we can do better drop us a line!
Finally – a big shout out to Debbie who did 99% of the work on the redesign, including fixing 1000+ pages. Way to go Deb!

Clear Channel Radio Online

In the past few days, Clear Channel has changed how their online radio stations work. They have made it harder to acquire a static URL that tunes properly to their stations. This is unfortunate, as it interferes with your legal right to automatically schedule recordings for listening later. A lot of online radio directories are similarly hosed.

Fortunately, we’ve come up with a solution in Replay A/V. If you’re looking to record a Clear Channel station, just open Replay A/V and add it from the Media Guide using the Shows menu option. Until Clear Channel changes something, this works great! If your station doesn’t work, just tell us, and we’ll update our radio station database.

Speaking of Clear Channel, poking around on their site uncovers some interesting discoveries. They are trying to compete with XM/Sirius in the content space with their new Format Lab service. And they have some interesting on-demand music and video content too.

Some people say Clear Channel is getting too large, but the innovation they are doing is pretty impressive, and they are poised to do to the online radio space what they’ve done to the terrestrial space. Watch out!

Silent Radio Day

Today is Radio Silence Day, when thousands of online radio music stations go silent to protest the upcoming increase in music fees. This canard promoted by the RIAA basically insures that any internet radio station goes out of business. Not only will fees increase, but they are retroactive to the past 18 months!

Pandora says it best. Read their home page here: http://pandora.com/
Mad yet? Call your congressman!

New Applian Media Browser Toolbar

Today we have just released a cool gadget – the Free Applian Media Browser Toolbar. From within Internet Explorer or Firefox, you can stay notified when Applian product news and updates occur, quickly get access to tutorials and help with streaming media recording problems, as well as some handy gadgets including a search box, radio player, weather bug, email notifier and more.

The Applian Media Toolbar is free. Check it out here: http://applian.com/toolbar/

More cool stuff – Veoh Player

Today just seems to be the day of neat discoveries. Have a look at the Veoh player – it can download videos from a variety of places, it lets you subscribe to RSS Video feeds, and it even has a “10 foot” TV mode so you can sit back and enjoy your videos. And Replay Converter works with the video downloads. Pretty cool stuff.
Check it out at veoh.com.

Recaptcha.net

This has little to do with the media business, but it’s so cool that it’s worth sharing. Check out http://recaptcha.net.
This service supplies free captchas – those squiggly words supposedly readable only by humans and not computers, used to prevent automated submissions of forms. The captchas are taken from scanning books where the OCR software fails. After enough humans verify a captcha, the word is corrected as a part of the book scan.

This solves two real world problems at once – supplying unique captchas to Web sites, and deciphering unreadable words using human power. Brilliant!

(Read more from the site to see how the software knows that a captcha is correct before it’s actually verified.)

Google Audio Ads

This is one of the weirdest things I’ve seen in a while: Google is setting up an Adwords-like system to be able to place and track radio ads. It’s called Google Audio Ads.

No, this isn’t online advertising – these are ads placed on terrestrial AM and FM radio stations. Ads are tracked by a callback phone number in the ads itself.

Why would Google undertake something so far outside their core area of expertise? Either it’s incredibly stupid, or really smart.

Perhaps Google thinks it can take over another advertising area, duplicating the success of Adwords and Adsense. Adsense works well for the hosting sites, but in our experience it doesn’t do nearly as well as targeted keyword advertising. Radio ads are usually expensive to run and ineffective unless you have a huge budget.

The other possibility is that they are setting up infrastructure for local advertising of all kinds. Location-based ads are hot in the investment community, and show a lot of promise, so perhaps this is Google’s way of trying to dominate the sector before the other location-based technologies take hold.

Google Audio Ads an interesting development, but don’t be surprised to see it become a total flop.