A couple of weekends ago I had the pleasure of meeting Rob Sandie, a Lehigh grad (my hometown) behind the most recent entry into the video upload/sharing market: Viddler, which left it’s private beta and entered it’s first public beta.
I know what you’re thinking, “oh boy, another you-tube knockoff” but Rob and his team have done what all of the youtube knockoffs havent: they’ve taken needs in the video sharing market and found solutions to them. Notably: better streaming of video files and deep tagging.
Allow me to explain. You go to youtube, want to watch the last 15 seconds of a 1 minute video. Or worse, the last 15 seconds of a 10 minute video. You need to wait for the whole video to download before you can give the scrubber a nudge to the end of the timeline. Viddler, on the other hand, uses Flash Media Server so that videos can not only start being played immediately, but if you jump the scrubber to ANY point in the video, the streaming begins from that point.
Deep tagging is what I have said is going to take the next video sharing service to the top. This technique allows any user, be it the one who uploaded the video or the one who is casually viewing, to participate in tagging a moment in the video’s timeline with relevant information: descriptions, tags, etc. This also allows to link TO that specific point in time in a video, so I can send a link to the video to my friend, and it starts playing at the exact spot in George Bush’s latest speech that he says something stupid (not like its hard to spot them), instead of starting at the beginning.
On the whole, the video player interface itself packs a lot of power but also doesn’t become overwhelming. It’s a great demonstration of excellent user experience.
The usual features also still apply: easy upload, insta-transcode, sharing and browsing of your videos, friends videos, searching videos by description, title, or tag. Also you can record in-browser if you have a webcam on your computer.
Check out Viddler today.
P.S. Rob is as nice as he is sharp. We had some great conversations at the barcamp that we met at, and have continued to stay in touch since. In fact, the light blue gradient you see on Viddler? I helped Rob choose between that one and a duller, greyish blue. I think Rob made the right choice 😀
[tags]Viddler, Rob Sandie, innovation, creative camp, video sharing, video tagging, deep tagging, flash media server[/tags]
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