HTML and CSS Reference
Converting Audio and Video Content
I have a little Flip video camera that I use to take videos. It's a cute little thing, and easy to
use. Unfortunately, it's been discontinued because so many smart phones have built-in video
capability that meets or exceeds the Flip's capability.
My Flip, and most video phones and other cameras, take video in the MP4 format. In addition,
most of our devices now support HD video, which means large video files that may or may
not be useful for web access. Once you have a video—your own, or a CC or public domain
video you found online—you need to provide conversions of the video for all of your target
browsers and environments. This means, on average, creating smaller or edited versions of
the video, and converting the resulting video into either Ogg or WebM format (or H.264 if the
video is a WAV or other video format).
In addition, you may have a WMA (Windows Media Audio) file that doesn't play on the web,
which you need to convert into a web-friendly format.
The number of tools to edit both audio and video files can fill a topic, so I'll leave that for
another topic. Instead I'm going to introduce you to some useful tools you can use to create
video and audio conversions for various browsers and environments.
The Free Mp3/Wma/Ogg Converter
The tool I used for most of the audio conversions for this topic is the Free Mp3/Wma/Ogg
Converter, by Cyberpower. This tool is extremely easy to use, and can convert one audio file
or do batch conversions.
When you start the tool, you're presented with a blank workspace, and buttons to the right for
adding source video files. The tool can work with Ogg Vorbis, WMA, and MP3 source files,
Clicking the Next button at the bottom of the window leads to the next page, where you can
select from several audio output formats. For instance, you can pick from a list of Ogg Vorbis
quality conversion choices, as shown in Figure 1-6 .