ScreencastTeam Meetings

The ScreencastTeam meetings are scheduled for every two weeks. Meetings are held at #ubuntu-meeting, They are open for everyone interested and/or participating in the ScreencastTeam.


  • When: 10 September 2007

  • Start: 19:00

  • End: 20:00

  • Timezone: UTC

  • Where: #ubuntu-meeting on

  • Chaired By: AlanPope

Agenda for this meeting

  • Action points from last meeting
  • Current status
  • Month Of Screencasts 2007 progress
  • Translation / Sub-titling
    • How do we manage the transcription and subtitle translation
      • Launchpad?
    • How to we serve up the subtitles
  • Formats that videos are supplied in:-
    • Too many?
    • Not enough?
    • Matroska and OGM format to hold video and multiple audio streams
      • Only one video to download
      • Video bulked up with multiple audio files
  • Next meeting schedule


  • Reviewed action points from the last meeting
    • We now have scp/ssh access to the screencasts site which makes uploading easier
    • Upgrade to drupal 5 can wait until an ubuntu theme is available and MoS2007 is finished

  • Current status
    • We are behind schedule Sad :(

    • We have over 1000 subscribers to the podcast feeds Smile :)

    • Plan for the next couple of weeks to be revised
    • Comments on the site about sub-optimal quality of the 1280x720 Ogg feeds means we have checked and improved some settings in xvidcap to improve quality
    • Drop formal "week 1" "week 2" and just have 30 good quality screencasts, with less restrictions imposed on us, more flexibility
    • Main team contact (and only person with upload rights) AlanPope will be on holiday from 14th to 21st September. Plan is to make some screencasts up front before the holiday, and upload some after. Announcing a break for the period of the holiday, but catching up afterwards with a view to still fulfilling the plan of having 30 screencasts in one month (hopefully).

  • Translation / Subtitling
    • Contact LP and DOC team to investigate best way to translate .srt files - and manage the process
    • Investigate format required by google and the jw flash player we use
    • Upload .srt files and link to them on the screencast pages
    • On the page of any screencasts pages that have been translated - have links "Also available in French" etc.
    • Create separate pages for each non-English language screencast and categorise them accordingly "fr_audio" "fr_video" to allow non-English RSS readers (planets for example) to syndicate.
  • Formats.
    • Find out from Canonical system admins which files are most popular so we can determine whether we need as many formats as we have.
  • Better categorising of existing screencasts based on subject matter. Maybe add a category browser or tag cloud.
  • Scheduled next meeting for 19:00 UTC on 24th Sept 2007


19:59:13 -!- Topic for #ubuntu-meeting: Current meeting: Screencast Team | Calendar: | Logs: | 11 Sep 15:00 UTC: Server Team meeting | 11 Sep 19:00 UTC: Technical Board | 12 Sep 20:00 UTC: Edubuntu | 13 Sep 12:00 UTC: Canonical Desktop Team | 18 Sep 15:00 UTC: Kernel Team
19:59:13 -!- Topic set by ubotu [n=ubotu@ubuntu/bot/ubotu] [Mon Sep 10 19:50:05 2007]
19:59:44 < popey> Anyone around for the screencast team meeting?
20:00:04 < spd106> yes
20:00:30 < popey> cool
20:00:38 < popey> going to be a quiet one :)
20:00:54 < popey> ok, lets make a start.
20:00:59 < popey> BONG! Screencast meeting begins
20:01:20 < popey> Agenda is at:- 
20:01:31 < popey> * Action points from last meeting
20:01:42 < popey> ( which can be found at )
20:02:10 < popey> Ok, firstly, no new non-ubuntu-screencast-team screencasts have been uploaded since that meeting
20:02:18 < popey> when they are they will be categorised as such
20:02:37 < popey> we now have scp (well I do) access to the screencast site
20:03:03 < popey> (this makes uploading much easier but I still "only" have 90K/s upload rate so it still takes an age to upload 6 videos per screencast!)
20:03:17 < popey> site was getting DOSed, this was fixed
20:03:41 < popey> drupal 5 can wait until the canonical system admins have made a theme for it - and definitely until after MoS2007
20:04:05 < popey> The rest is all still in progress
20:04:11 < popey> Ok, onto the next item.
20:04:21 < popey> * Current status
20:04:59 < popey> We have uploaded 9 screencasts each in 6 formats (3 sizes, two codecs), and they're proving quite popular
20:05:21 < popey> we have around 1000 subscribers to the high quality ogg feed through miro/democracyplayer alone
20:05:47 < popey> we have been in the "most popular" slow on miroguide for the last week:-
20:05:50 < popey> yay us!
20:05:54 < Webspot> yay
20:06:07 < popey> (hi Webspot )
20:06:11 < Webspot> hi :)
20:06:29 < popey> downside is that this week has been madly busy in my personal life - so I am behind - my bad, apologies
20:06:42 < Webspot> I'm also behind :p
20:06:45 < popey> (two kids with birthdays in one week and one starting school means I get called away from the computer a lot)
20:06:52 < popey> however this is not a disaster! :)
20:07:11 < popey> I have decided we need to rejuggle the plan - so we will talk about that in a bit
20:07:25 < popey> we have had a fair bit of feedback in the form of comments on the site
20:07:43 < popey> ranging from "these are great" to "remove this now, you said Linux was an OS, it's a kernel you idiot!" type posts
20:07:57 < popey> I am really happy to get both types of comments
20:08:05 < popey> means people are watching them :)
20:08:29 < popey> Also had a comment about the less than stellar quality of the 1280x720 ogg video - and it turns out I had a setting too low in xvidcap for quality
20:08:34 < popey> i discovered this 5 mins ago
20:08:48 < spd106> Which size video is the most popular?
20:08:50 < popey> so all screencasts from now on from me will be much crisper 
20:08:55 < popey> 1280x720 ogg - easily
20:09:05 < popey> and surprisingly
20:09:19 < spd106> Will the new quality bump up th efile size?
20:09:21 < popey> howeveer that is based only on the feed usage, not the actual downloads of files
20:09:37 < popey> shouldn't do too badly no it just means there will be a cleaner master to encode from
20:10:13 < popey> so that's the current status - I have one extra one that's not online yet - "installing ubuntu"
20:10:21 < popey> I have decided to split it
20:10:27 < popey> to have multiple "installing" videos
20:10:39 < popey> one for using the live cd, one for the alternate cd and maybe another for server/netinst
20:10:52 < popey> so we cover all bases - make sense?
20:11:02 < Webspot> yeah
20:11:11 < popey> the good news is this pushes back the schedule a bit - and gives you more time to make yours :)
20:11:19 < popey> bad news is we need to rejig the schedule
20:11:48 < popey> i am coming to the conclusion that we should drop the idea of "week 1" "week 2" and just have a steady stream of the screencasts
20:12:07 < popey> because it restricts us having "week of this" or "week of that", I don't think people care
20:12:13 < popey> I think they just want the content :)
20:12:35 < popey> given we already have the "month of" moniker, having  a week of sub-moniker is overkill
20:12:55 < popey> so, I will edit the wiki page after the meeting to reflect this
20:13:01 < spd106> It's nice to have some structure, though you're probably right
20:13:16 < popey> yeah, structure is good, but not when it makes life too hard for us :)
20:13:35 < popey> would also mean we can be a bit more free with the schedule (within reason)
20:13:48 < popey> i.e. we can start talking about specific applications at any time
20:13:57 < popey> we don't necessarily have to stick to a theme for this week
20:14:02 < spd106> I think the introduction week was a good idea
20:14:23 < popey> yeah, and once people are up to speed with what it is, and how to isntall, we can go anywhere from there really, wouldn't you say?
20:14:31 < spd106> true
20:14:49 < popey> although it does make sense to show how to install apps and installing updates early on
20:14:51 < popey> :)
20:14:53 < spd106> As long as the quality remains high
20:14:58 < popey> indeed
20:15:12 < popey> ok, there is an extra spanner I am going to throw in :)
20:15:31 < popey> I am on holiday for a week from 14th to 21st, and will have sporadic very low speed internet access
20:15:54 -!- Netsplit over, joins: nixternal
20:15:54 < popey> so this means we either go mad to make loads, or we just announce a "screencast holiday" on the site :)
20:16:09 < popey> we will still have the total of 30 screencasts in september
20:16:20 < popey> (I plan to record some whilst on holiday but cannot upload due to bandwidth limits)
20:16:28 < popey> so will play catch up after 21st sept
20:16:35 -!- highvolt1ge [] has joined #ubuntu-meeting
20:16:47 < popey> I will of course do my best to make as many as I can, and hope others will before the 14th (this friday)
20:16:58 < popey> but I don't think we should kill ourselves to do it :)
20:17:16 < popey> its all gone quiet :)
20:17:37 < popey> ok, lets move on..
20:17:46 < popey> we've kinda covered the progress so on to the next subject
20:18:03 < popey> * Translation / Sub-titling
20:18:22 < popey> I really wasn't expecting us to get some transcriptions done so quickly
20:18:52 < popey> we now have quite a few srt files - subtitle/caption files - which I need to upload to the site
20:19:12 < popey> I am thinking we can just put them on the page with each screencast as a link to download - and have a little note that says how to use them
20:19:24 < Webspot> Yeah. Seems the best way
20:19:54 < popey> it's possible to upload them to google and the flash player we use can support them but I'm not sure how to get the format right for both
20:20:02 < popey> it seemed to barf when i tried - on both
20:20:13 < popey> maybe the syntax wasn't right - it's on the to-do list anyway
20:20:26 < spd106> I was wondering about that the other day
20:20:27 < popey> the other thing we have to worry about is audio dubs
20:20:31 < popey> oh?
20:20:43 < spd106> google asks for utf-8
20:20:56 < spd106> I'm not sure how to check for it
20:21:28 < popey> how to check if a file is utf-8?
20:21:33 < spd106> From what I've read it should be standard
20:21:58 < popey> I don't know much about that I'm afraid
20:22:02 < spd106> but when ever I open an srt it says some iso standard
20:22:44 < popey> looking at it I think google is barfing at the blank lines in the srt file
20:22:51 < popey>
20:22:56 < spd106> oh, ok
20:23:07 < spd106> I thought that was a part of the spec
20:23:17 < popey> 1
20:23:17 < popey> 00:00:00,881 --> 00:00:03,426
20:23:17 < popey> This is Alan Pope with the Introduction Screencast
20:23:20 < popey>  
20:23:25 < popey> for example, google wants:-
20:23:25 < spd106>
20:23:36 < popey> just the timestamp and the text
20:23:40 < popey> not the 1 or the blank
20:24:49 < popey> I will monkey around with one of the files we have and report back to the mailing list
20:25:04 < popey> see if we can get the format right
20:25:15 < popey> next thing is audio dubs
20:25:48 < popey> for example I have been sent an audio file for one screencast which i can easily dub and re-encode, so we have a french version of the samba screencast
20:26:05 < popey> i guess i could just upload them all and make a french page perhaps?
20:26:13 < popey> maybe link to the french page from the English page?
20:26:17 < popey> and vice versa
20:26:25 < Webspot> Yeah
20:26:26 < popey> rather than chuck all the languages on one page
20:26:55 < popey> so the url might be /samba_filesharing we could have /samba_filesharing_fr  and _es _de etc
20:27:18 < popey> as a separate page they would be easier for people to link to
20:27:31 < popey> and it woudl be obvious it's an existing screencast but with french audio
20:27:33 -!- toutouff [] has quit [Connection timed out]
20:27:39 < popey> hmmm, well it's obvious to me anyway
20:27:52 < spd106> sounds like a good idea
20:28:05 < popey> so long as they are linked to, maybe we should have a block on the side of the site that lists translated ones so far, and untranslated ones
20:28:11 < popey> no, untranslated is silly
20:28:28 < popey> because none have been translated to swahili so they are all in essence untranslated
20:28:34 < popey> not sure how to display that
20:28:42 < popey> maybe a simple table
20:28:57 < spd106> Are you going to do all sizes?
20:28:57 < popey> list of screencasts down the side, translations along the top, links (ticks) in the middle for translations
20:29:13 < popey> spd106: it's no extra effort just disk space and time to upload to do all the sizes
20:29:23 < popey> I probably won't setup rss feeds and the like
20:29:32 -!- highvoltage [] has quit [Read error: 110 (Connection timed out)]
20:29:35 < popey> maybe have a category
20:29:37 < RobV> Perhaps have a note available under screencasts saying "this screencast is also available in ...", as well?
20:29:45 < popey> which would be useful for non-EN planets to syndicate
20:29:52 < popey> yes RobV, good idea
20:30:04 < popey> "also available in chocolate flavour"
20:30:27 < RobV> i'm more a fan of vanilla, but yeah.
20:30:37 < popey> I could tag all the existing ones with "english_audio" and "english_video"
20:30:43 < popey> and then add extra tags for the non-english ones
20:30:47 < popey> make them easy to find
20:31:08 < popey> ok, this all sounds groovy
20:31:15 < popey> we're SO going to run out of disk space :)
20:31:28 < Webspot> How much do we have?
20:31:48 < popey> /dev/hda1              25G   13G   11G  54% /
20:31:55 < popey> but I don't know if that's LVM - it may be
20:32:25 < popey> it's xen so i would expect it to be lvm'ed, and more space may well be just a request to the canonical admins away
20:32:34 < Webspot> yeah
20:32:43 -!- Balkhog [i=Blomroir@gateway/tor/x-33f8eceafcc7fe43] has quit ["暫離"]
20:32:43 < popey> when I said to them that I figured we would need 8GB MAX for MoS2007, they said it was fine
20:33:23 < popey> ok, so the next question on the agenda is how do we manage the translations
20:33:37 < popey> will it work just having a page on the site showing translation status?
20:33:54 < popey> and ask people to email the srt to the mailing list and/or oggs of dubs to us/me ?
20:34:03 < popey> would be nice to use launchpad/rosetta
20:34:12 < popey> suggestions welcome!
20:34:42 < spd106> I think some kind of version system would be uesful
20:35:00 < popey> I am no expert on these matters
20:35:01 < spd106> People make mistakes, I know I do
20:35:04 < popey> we could use an lp ppa?
20:35:14 < popey> sorry, lp bzarr repo
20:35:32 < spd106> I'm new to this as well, I'm afraid
20:35:50 < popey> maybe a mail to the launchpad-users list might help
20:36:09 < spd106> What do the docs team use?
20:36:14 < popey> i think it might also be useful to mail the loco mailing list - the global one - actually asking for translations
20:36:19 < popey> I don't know
20:36:38 < popey> but if we ask the loco list - we really need a system in place first
20:36:51 < popey> so I think asking the doc team and/or launchpad devs first might be a wise plan
20:37:19 < spd106> Is the screencasts team part of the docs team?
20:37:26 < popey> see if we can organise a revision control system first, then solicit help
20:37:29 < popey> yeah, kinda :)
20:37:56 < popey> they would like to have some screencasts they can link to from the documentation
20:38:20 < popey> brief history..
20:38:21 < spd106> They have lot's of skilled translators too
20:38:52 < popey> I setup the screencast site as a ubuntu-uk thing, Matt East (mdke) suggested it shouild be a global (not UK) thing and thus adopted us into the doc team
20:39:05 < popey> i recently setup the irc and mailing list channels for us to discuss separate from -doc
20:39:17 < popey> not because I don't want to be part of -doc, just figured we needed a dedicated channel
20:39:33 < popey> if there is any help we can leverage from the -doc team then all the better
20:39:44 < spd106> There was a post to the docs list today asking about screencasts
20:39:48 < popey> yeah :)
20:39:59 < popey> he popped into the irc channel too - seems very keen to make a few screencasts
20:40:13 < popey> which is exactly what we need/want :)
20:40:30 < popey> ok, so summary:-
20:40:58 < popey> Contact launchpad devs (via mailing list) and doc team to see how they manage revisions of non-structured data like our .srt files
20:41:15 < popey> once we can figure some kind of control system we start asking doc team and loco teams for help translating?
20:41:20 < popey> make sense?
20:41:29 < spd106> yep
20:41:48 < RobV> yep; one thing: what about audio files?
20:42:21 < RobV> Is there any structure in place for them yet, or will that need to be looked at - in due time ;) - too?
20:43:04 < popey> I'll ask about that at the same time
20:43:16 < RobV> Okay
20:43:21 < popey> the two are heavily related really
20:43:27 < popey> thanks for reminding me :)
20:43:49 < popey> ok, next topic, unless anyone has anything further on translation...
20:44:18 < popey> * Formats that videos are supplied in:-
20:44:22 < popey> too many, too few?
20:44:53 < popey> i need to get some proper stats from canonical system admins as to which videos most people watch
20:45:29 < popey> we could potentially just have 1280x720 ogg and 1280x720 flash, and upload to google video for everyone else :S
20:45:33 < popey> comments/flames?
20:45:48 < spd106> I like the small ogg
20:45:56 < popey> damnit ;)
20:46:07 < spd106> I only have a 1024x768
20:46:11 < popey> ah, ok
20:46:13 < popey> understandable
20:46:31 < popey> but if you grabbed the 1280x720 you could watch that scaled down?
20:46:41 < popey> which would arguably look better than my re-encoded version
20:46:46 < spd106> Yeah, but it wastes bandwidth
20:47:15 < popey> well.. you say that...
20:47:19 < spd106> I suppose I could cope
20:47:35 < popey> -rw-r--r-- 1 popey popey 85M 2007-09-10 15:00 20070908_places_and_system_theora_400k_vorbis_1280x720.ogg
20:47:35 < popey> -rw-r--r-- 1 popey popey 31M 2007-09-10 14:16 20070908_places_and_system_theora_400k_vorbis_512x288.ogg
20:47:35 < popey> -rw-r--r-- 1 popey popey 50M 2007-09-10 14:26 20070908_places_and_system_theora_400k_vorbis_768x432.ogg
20:47:39 < popey> yeah, you're right
20:47:46 < popey> wowzers, look at those file sizes
20:48:19 < spd106> Does anyone download the medium one?
20:48:41 < popey> tell you what though, I am staggered and amazed we haven't been asked for MOV (H.264/AAC) and AVI (MPEG4/MP3) support!
20:48:50 < popey> dunno, need to get stats from canonical
20:48:52 < spd106> non-free
20:48:57 < popey> well, from the windows weenies
20:49:00 < popey> i mean
20:49:05 < popey> and the apple ipod users
20:49:08 < spd106> they're not here
20:49:09 < popey> ipod video even
20:49:11 < popey> hehe
20:49:50 < spd106> Just provide a link to ogg codecs
20:49:56 < popey> ok, lets defer this item until the next meeting, we'll keep doing what we're doing, and I'll see if I can get some stats about which files are popular from the system admins
20:50:12 < popey> heh, the first screencast in the mos2007 has such a link
20:50:16 < popey> ooo, speaking of which..
20:50:30 < popey> we did get a request for a "what if I am on windows, how do i view these" page
20:50:49 < popey> would be useful if someone could put together the text for such a page
20:50:56 < popey> maybe a couple of screenshots
20:51:10 < spd106> Surely most people have heard of flash
20:51:18 < popey> well, yes, true
20:51:24 < spd106> There's always one though
20:51:30 < popey> :D
20:51:53 < popey> ok, will put that on the back burner for now
20:51:57 < spd106> There was that guy who asked about matroska too
20:51:59 < popey> it's low priority - only one comment
20:52:01 < popey> indeed
20:52:16 < popey> i don't even know if ffmpeg supports matroska
20:52:24 < spd106> What's support like amongst the media players?
20:52:43 < popey> well, I was surprised that the totem auto codec download thing just worked
20:52:54 < spd106> Totem plays them, but vlc choked on one I made
20:52:58 < popey> I had a copy of $TV_PROGRAMME that I wanted to watch, and totem did the business
20:53:03 < popey> erk
20:53:10 < popey> back burner then :)
20:53:12 < spd106> so did mplayer
20:53:18 < popey> we know ogg and flv work
20:53:41 < popey> i know the suggestion of multiple audio tracks in one video came up too
20:53:52 < popey> this could needlessly bulk up the video sizes too
20:54:07 < popey> I mean, nobody wants to download a video with 10 languages when they only "need" one do they?
20:54:11 < popey> or do they?
20:54:20 < spd106> Something for the future
20:54:22 < popey> then again, do we really want to host 10 copies of the video
20:54:29 < popey> for each of the languages
20:54:30 < spd106> depends on demand really
20:54:35 < popey> indeed
20:54:54 < popey> ok, matroska, multiple audio tracks deferred
20:55:07 < popey> 5 mins left, lets figure out when the next meeting will be now..
20:55:20 < popey> 24th?
20:55:32 < spd106> Fine with me
20:55:47 < popey> is 8pm good or should we go back to the 4pm slot we had previously?
20:55:48 < spd106> When are you back from hols?
20:55:51 < popey> 21st
20:56:12 < spd106> I prefer this time to earlier
20:56:16 < popey> ditto
20:56:28 < popey> kids go to bed at 7pm, so time for me to grab some food and a glass of vino
20:56:41 < popey> ok, will shedule next meet for 24th@8pm BST
20:56:55 < popey> thanks for the help Webspot spd106 RobV, much appreciated!
20:57:05 < RobV> my pleasure. :)
20:57:06 < popey> I'll update the schedule and will mail the list with the thoughts from today
20:57:45 < spd106> Thanks popey
20:57:47 < popey> (and now I am a fridge editor I can add my own meetings to the fridge calendar Muhahahahaahaha)
20:58:17 < RobV> first the fridge, then world domination
20:58:57 < RobV> popey: one last question/comment from me: are videos already being categorized? I find the website hard to navigate if I'm looking for a specific screencast
21:01:07 < popey> not much, what kind of categories would you like?
21:01:14 < popey> woot, added already :)
21:01:57 < RobV> Installation / Administration / Networking, etc?
21:02:17 < RobV> At least, that's what I'd look for if I were looking for a samba screencast, for example
21:03:18 < popey> ok, will add some extra categories
21:03:37 < popey> i haven't actually categorised any of the MoS ones
21:03:40 < popey> which is daft :)
21:04:14 < RobV> Just noticed that too :P
21:04:30 < popey> well, other than categorising for the purposes ofthe rss feeds :)
21:04:34 < popey> which I had to do

ScreencastTeam/Meeting20070910 (last edited 2008-08-06 16:24:46 by localhost)