Release (and what’s next)
Thomas released GStreamer Plugins 0.8.6 today. This makes me really happy because I’ve been bugged all over the place for like two weeks now by Sebastien, Arjan and several others on when we were finally going to do this long-awaited new release. Now’s the time! The same as always: if you have media files that don’t play back, please file bugs! We’ll gladly fix more media playback bugs. Currently known issues:

  • No WMV9 (hmm, where’s the source?). No QDM2. No MMS (Maciej is working on this).
  • Some old AVI files (from the very early divx3 era) created by Virtualdub (and clones) have A/V sync issues
  • ASF files cannot pause.
  • Ogg radio will sometimes hang for no apparent reason. This is a threading bug in GStreamer core that’s fixed in CVS.

    And now that all this is done, I can finally break CVS. Yay! Today, I fixed/added:

  • SVCD/VCD support (#158704)
  • Surround sound support (#151624)
  • APE v1/2 tag reading support
  • Properties page in Nautilus (Totem; #156689)

    Pending, will be committed in a few days (first two; need only some minor adjustments) or are being worked on and will be ready in a few weeks (last two):

  • Visualization support (Totem; won’t be on-the-fly yet, though; screenshot)
  • Buffering support (Totem & GStreamer; screenshot)
  • DVD support (Totem; no menus, though)
  • Rewritten Application Development Manual

    Now, on to stuff that I’d like to advocate. I’m working a lot on Totem, however, you can make a difference too. We’re looking for more people that would like to help adding new features to Totem or Totem’s GStreamer backend. Here’s a list of things that need doing:

  • Language selection support (for both subtitles and audio streams; Arjan said he might look at this)
  • Subtitle support
  • DVD support with menus (I know Martin Soto is working on this, but I still want to advocate it so more people help him; it’s apparently not as easy).
  • Support for new media types or input types (such as mms, which Maciej is working on, and RTP, which Ramon is working on; but there’s also many that nobody’s working on yet!).

    We have a full Plugin Writer’s Guide that can guide you in your first steps. We’ll gladly assist you as you move on from there. Come on IRC or mail one of the developers, we’ll gladly help you finding a long-lasting solution to one of the issues. In the end, all this is simply to create the best possible movie player for the GNOME (-2.10) desktop. You’re not seriously gonna tell me mplayer looks good, uh?

    All happy with the release, I forgot about something that I really wanted to blog about. Apparently, Xiph thinks media frameworks are a cool idea so they are doing one themselves! Best of all, it’s Ogg-only. Can someone please explain how this is not completely stupid? Dudes, waste your time on something else and just use GStreamer, or for that matter something else (NMM, Xine, MAS, …). But do not redo it. It’s a waste of your time. You guys have done so many way cooler things (Ogg, Theora, Vorbis), don’t make us feel like you’re idiots after all.

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