Showing posts from 2012

Problems with AVC Coding and Captioning

A not-so-new video encoding algorithm has a not-so-good affect on video captioning. It has caused a lot of tech questions from MovieCaptioner users who are trying to embed captions into movies. AVC Coding (Advanced Video Coding) is a commonly used video format for high definition video, and has been around since about 2003. Unfortunately this advanced format cannot be used to embed captions. What users will find is that they might (or might not) see their captions in their video, but when they go to save it they will get an error and/or the video will not save at all. Since MovieCaptioner uses QuickTime's method of adding text tracks to movies, I manually tried to add a caption track (without using MovieCaptioner) and got the same results. It simply would fail when it came to saving the movie with captions. If you're having such problems saving your captions in your movie, open it in QuickTime Pro and check the Movie Inspector window. This is one of the reasons I strongly sugg…

Closed Captioning for the iPad

Closed captioning for the iPad is really very easy. First we will use MovieCaptioner to create our captions and then we will export them as a Sonic Scenarist (SCC) caption file. These are the same type of captions you might see on TV and are often called Line 21 captions. We will use Apple's Compressor software to create the captioned video for the iPad. First, after opening Compressor, if you see a Templates Chooser window, just hit the Cancel button. We won't need this. Drag your movie to the window with the downward facing arrow... Next, go to the Window menu and select Show Inspector if the Inspector window is not already open... Once the Inpector window is open, if it appears blank, click on your movie in the main window and the info for the movie should appear in the Inspector window... Now click the Additional Information tab in the Inspector window and choose your SCC file from your hard drive... You can close the Inspector window, then go to the Window menu and…

Captioning Recorded Adobe Connect Meetings

If you need to caption Adobe Connect meetings that have already been recorded, there is an easy way. First, download these template files. The files contain an instructional PDF with screenshots showing you how to download your recorded meeting, how to caption it using MovieCaptioner, and how to make the captions work. The process is simply this: Download your Adobe Connect recording and name it "main.flv" (case sensitive).Load the movie into MovieCaptioner and create the captions.Export the captions as Flash (DFXP) caption file naming it "captions.xml" (the default name from MovieCaptioner for Flash captions).Copy the template folder and name it what you want.Drop the "main.flv" and "captions.xml" files in the folder, replacing the 2 files with the same name in the template folder.Launch the "index.html" file in the folder to check your work.Upload the whole folder to your Web space and link to the "index.html" file The big …

How to Tag Team a Video Captioning Project

Do you have a deadline you have to meet for captioning a video? One way to get the job done in half the time is to do as the pro wrestlers do and tag team the project. With MovieCaptioner, this is pretty easy to do.
Let's break the project up between Person A and Person B. Person A will review the movie and find a spot about halfway through it where there is either no talking, or some type of break, like between sentences. Let's say about 30 minutes into the movie there is a spot where there is no talking and maybe some music starts playing. This might be an ideal spot. Maybe the music begins a 00:31:25.15. Person A tells Person B to start there. Person A just follows the normal work flow. She clicks the Load Movie button, sets the text attributes to what she wants and then hits the Start button to begin captioning the movie. She continues until she reaches the point agreed upon just prior to the music starting.

Person B will also open MovieCaptioner and instead of starting at …

Are QuickTime Text Tracks Dying?

Lately I've been seeing increased problems with QuickTime text tracks that are either embedded in QT movies or are called in externally via a QT SMIL file, both of which MovieCaptioner can create.
First I saw problems on the Windows side. QuickTime 7.7.2 for Windows simply will not read any QT Text file embedded into the movie. It seemed to choke somewhere on a font attribute and would only display something like "al}" (when Arial was selected as the font). The same problems were exhibited with QT SMIL captions, where the .qt.smi file would call in the movie and the QT text file to display them together. I found that removing QT 7.7.2 and reinstalling QT 7.7.1 fixed this problem. I reported this as a bug to Apple in May 2012. If you need to revert to QT 7.7.1, send me an email at and I'll get it to you. It seems to have disappeared from Apple's downloads page.
Most recently I've found an issue on the Mac side of things as well. With my b…

How to Create Open Captions for Your Movie

First of all, let me explain the difference between closed captions and open captions. Closed captions can be toggled on and off, while open captions are on all the time. Simple and straightforward.

Update: Apple is no longer selling QuickTime Pro. If you already have QuickTime Pro, read on. If not, there is an alternative solution here:

Open captions are the better choice when the site where the movie is displayed does not support any type of captioning. An example of this is the popular Vimeo site. Since it does not support closed captioning, the captions must be made part of the video and not a separate track. If you attempt to upload a movie that has a video track, a sound track, and a text track, the text track will get stripped out on upload. What we need to do is to burn the text track into the video track.

In the video below, I've used MovieCaptioner to embed a text track into a movie. Note that in …