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leaving, on a jet plane
made it. Forgot passport. paid $60 in idiot tax in the form of taxi fare due to two extra airport trips. Twice as many bags as expected. Energetic children. ahh, travelling with small people...

On the plus side, I think I finally fond something that will encode 90% of my videos in a form suitable for my iPod. I forgot what it was like to need to install codecs to do things. (MPlayer is my friend. Quicktime and underdocumented proprietary formats are not.)

Off to Illinois. 23rd-28th. 603.264.2294 if you're in the area and want to get ahold of me for any reason.

My parents are apparently no longer speaking to each other because my mother is so upset that we're staying in a hotel. Hooray for passive aggression.

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Good luck, and don't give in to your mother's childishness.

Oh, and congrats!

My parents are apparently no longer speaking to each other because my mother is so upset that we're staying in a hotel.


*snugs* Hang in there and I hope you all manage to have a good time.

Just make sure you don't give in to her, be prepared to handle the confrontation that she's probably building up to. Be polite, even if you're planting verbal barbs about her behaviour in self-defence, just remember to smile sweetly.

Have a good time anyway, and remember that what doesn't kill you serves to make you stronger (except hangovers, people never learn from them).


But they do build up a tolerance...

and if that doesn't work, stab her with a fork.

Doesn't that depend on whether or not you're the sort who wants to fork your mother?


well this is chris' mother we're talkin about, so i will leave that to him

I've heard good things about Podner, only $10.

What about the iPod video format is proprietary?

Podner is decent, but is poorly documented as far as "How come sound/video doesn't work on some of my files?" goes. For example, my copy of Podner can't convert AAC Audio, and until searching for two hours and finding that I have to install additional codecs to get Quicktime to read the audio for those files...

and even *after* installing the AAC codec, Podner and QT *still* can't read files with AAC audio - it just gives me a "QuickTime lacks the neccesary software", and Podner says "This stream has no embeded audio."

The iPod video format wants (and seems to barf on anything other than) Apple-compliant MPEG-4 video. (Meaning: "What Quicktime Produces." based on every Apple-published document.) Theoretically, MP4 data can hold any MPEG-4 data - this would include DivX - and iTunes can play them, but the iPod can't.

I'm not really sure that any part of the process is proprietary, but the complete lack of documentation from Apple other than "Buy Quicktime!" (especially when that doesn't work out of the box on 90% of the files I have - no DivX codecs by default) just smacks of Apple cheek. The one thing I did find was:

MPEG-4 video: up to 2.5 mbps, 480 x 480, 30 frames per sec., Simple Profile with AAC-LC up to 160 Kbps, 48 Khz, stereo audio in .m4v, .mp4 and .mov file formats

-- http://www.apple.com/ipod/specs.html

But that's both uninformative and, apparently wrong, since it supports non-AAC audio.


Here's more explanation:

And a couple of tutorials.



I don't think you'll ever see an official "How do I convert my DivX files for transfer to my iPod Video" tutorial from Apple, or any other video MP3 vendor for that matter. Hopefully those docs will help.

I'm unaware that video files will play audio from anything other than AAC. If so, it's probably just something the iPod got for free from the PortalPlayer chipset that drives it.

Mostly I'm just cranky because it took me 36 hours and $10 in order to get video to work on my iPod. Normally I'd accept that this was as a result of not using the Apple-supplied "way", but then I realized that even Apple's "way" of doing it wouldn't have worked, because Apple will never tell you how to load codecs into Quicktime other than their official ones, which don't do DivX or mp3 audio or any of a number of things.

I may actually be wrong on the audio - it's just not the part that's given me trouble. I thought that I'd seen something other than AAC in the iTunes "Get Info", but I hadn't.

Of course, there is one complaint that would be valid even for a normal user: iTunes repeatedly tells me that the photos or videos I'm trying to load were "Not copied because they won't play/display on the iPod" but don't tell me why (or even give me a 'more details' screen). "The audio is the wrong type", I get. "The video is the wrong format", that's fine. But "It doesn't work" is completey unhelpful. Same for my photos: *why* can't the iPod display them? Do you have more details? there must be *some* analysis (other than copying them over) becuase it finds out *before* it copies them, so there must be some detailed reason why, and even as an advanced user, I have no way of getting to it.

The DVD ripping guide is good, but doesn't work all the time. It loaded into iTunes fine, but then refused to copy to the iPod with the "won't play on the ipod" message. And I've got no debugging tools for it, so I don't know why. *sigh* Random files that I ran through the same VLC encoding process would work, while others wouldn't, while both returned the exact same file info in iTunes.

Podner at least works, some of the time, once I found the right codecs. It's just really hard to debug what's wrong with a QT format because so few of the tools I'm used to working with will deal with it. I'm just not an apple person at heart: this is obvious considering I'm wanting to look into how to install Linux on my 'Pod ;)

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