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Footytube 2.0

Some of you might have remember that I mentioned the footytube 2.0 beta a while back. Yesterday I got a very nice email from Lee over at footytube, inviting me to take the new version for a test run:

Heya,

A little while ago you signed up to the footytube 2.0 Private Beta.

We are delighted to announce that the beta is now ready, and we would be chuffed to bits if you wanted to come in and be amongst the first people to give it a spin.

I think footytube 2.0 was originally set to launch in November if I remember correctly, the message about the new platform has certainly been up there for a while now. Hopefully it means that they’ve not experienced serious complications, but that they’ve considered and tweaked forth and back for the best possible result.

I’ll have to say that I’m really impressed with the new platform and design at first glance. I haven’t had much time to try out the arsenal of functionality, but it looks beautiful! The first you’re met with is a video grid or ‘Zeitgeist’ which shows what footytube users fancy today. It seems that most functionality is driven by Ajax, something that makes the site clean, fast and easy to navigate. Footytube also seem to have glanced one or two times at YouTube (surprise surprise), ‘borrowing’ not only fractions of the name but also certain functionality. The mandatory widget with related, channels and popular videos are all there, what’s more surprising is perhaps the new added features (very cool!) such as the ‘community opinion on team performance’ and ‘nominate a goal for goal of the week’.

Focused on user interaction, easy navigation, and speed – I’ve no doubt that the new footytube will be a big success. A much cleaner layout and design will definitely help. All the best!

Extracting sound from a YouTube video

There are numerous “download streaming videos” resources online, most of them are aimed at downloading YouTube videos where perhaps KeepVid is the most famous one. In the case of YouTube, KeepVid simply lets you input a URL of a video and then kickbacks two download links, one for normal quality and one for high quality. Easy enough and serves the purpose. Users have also written Firefox add-ons for this, such as Magic’s Video Downloader and Fast Video Download.

However, the other day I had a different agenda, I found a song on YouTube, a live performance of a song that I only wanted the sound from to be able to use it on my iPod. What then? There are of course sources for this as well, where ListenToYouTube is probably the best and most user-friendly. It works the same way as KeepVid, letting you input a URL to a YouTube video, and then extracts the sound; leaving behind only a download link for the sound in MP3 format.

The reason this is okayish and not great is that the MP3 it creates is in poor quality compared to what you’d be used to. The audio bitrate is 64 kbps whereas most MP3 song you would be used to listening to are in either 128 or 160 kbps. It’s a great service, but for me – it’s not good enough for my iPod.

The solution to this is downloading AoA Audio Extractor, we’ll then use a combination of the KeepVid solution to grab the video, and use AoA Audio Extractor to extract the sound from it. This way, we’ll be able to choose the audio bitrate, sample rate, as well as output type (MP3, WAV, AC3).

Save it where you like, and import it to your iPod – voila!

Kleerup – With Every Heartbeat, Acoustic

Genius. He’s come a long way since hanging outside of “cafét”.

YouTube for Television

This is pretty cool. YouTube launches YouTube for Television in beta.

Currently in beta, the TV Website offers a dynamic, lean-back, 10-foot television viewing experience through a streamlined interface that enables you to discover, watch and share YouTube videos on any TV screen with just a few quick clicks of your remote control.

Big Buck Bunny, HD on YouTube

I don’t think I mentioned this before even though it’s been a while since I saw it. A month ago or so, a 720p HD trailer/clip of the animated movie Big Buck Bunny was seen on YouTube UK. Its origin is a 1920x1080p HD file, quite amazing. There are some specs in the post as well:

Codec: FFmpeg x264 (Build 15625)
Profile: Main@L3.1 (No B-Frames, 2 Re-Frames)
Bitrate: 5000Kb/s (Variable)
Resolution: 1280×720 16:9 Square-Pixel Format
Framerate: 24fps
Running Time: 9:56
Source Filesize: 397MB
Audio Format: 320Kb/s 48KHz Stereo CBR AAC

I won’t embed the video as it’s best viewed BIG, but be sure to check it out!