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Feedback on ClipFlair Studio application Using local files, not online  Viewed 84375 time(s), 18 post(s), 3/21/2013 5:33:15 PM - by guenaga

George
3425 Reputation 460 Total posts
4/10/2013 8:18:48 PM

Btw, it has nothing to do with the activity itself, the issue you have is with the video.

With smooth streaming that our gallery server uses, each user should get a video quality relative to their CPU strength (I do need to add some smooth streaming fix for very low powered Intel Atom CPUs btw) and network bandwidth, so it's preferred from Dropbox. If there are copyright issues with the video, even if I give you a private url for streaming it still doesn't change the fact that it's not "legal" to serve it from our server

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An alternative could be to install ClipFlair as a local application and open a local file (but still you'd need to copy the file to each machine since using it over a shared folder on your local network still can choke the machine that serves it even locally if not configured correctly). However I think it needs me to cryptographically sign the app to do that (which needs one to pay money for code signing certificate or use a test certificate that you'd then have to install manually to each machine). Will do some more search on it and let you know if it could really be an option

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11
Stavroula
4592 Reputation 329 Total posts
4/10/2013 9:06:02 PM

Some good news. Sara has just reported that she piloted the activity with about 30 students hitting the same link from the gallery (the video also on the gallery) and they didn't complain about buffering problems.
So the gallery at least seems to work fine with multiple users. 

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12
George
3425 Reputation 460 Total posts
4/11/2013 12:50:36 PM

Hi again Noa,
I think I found a way so that the user will be able to open a local media file (with an open file dialog shown) to use with the clip component. They will have to do this action every time they open the activity though, but it should work much better if you don't want to use our smooth streaming gallery and have low bandwidth connection etc. issues that I mentioned above

Working on it, will update you on the progress

Note that you'll have to copy the video file to each student's machine, since using it over a shared folder in your local network workgroup can sometimes choke the file serving machine if it's not configured correctly (although you can try if it works fine for you over a local network shared folder first [issue will usually be when many users hit the share at the same time])

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13
noatala
698 Reputation 56 Total posts
4/12/2013 10:09:27 AM

That'd be great, George. Let me know when this option is available.
Regards,
Noa

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14
Admin
2550 Reputation 349 Total posts
4/19/2013 9:16:41 PM

Hi Noa,



have added button at the Clip component's backpanel, under Media Source label that allows one to open a local media file (WMV/MP4/WMA/MP3). Note that not all encoders that the WMV file (container) can be using are supported by Silverlight (only supports a set of standard encoders to make sure content plays crossplatform [Win/MacOS-X] and one any Windows version). With MP4 some MPEG4 profiles aren't supported, but they should be rare. The list of supported formats is here:



http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc189080(v=vs.95).aspx







In any case if you have issues opening a file convert to .MP4 with Miro Video Converter first (http://www.mirovideoconverter.com) and use the .MP4 file. Similarly you can convert any problematic .WMA to .MP3







Note that the media file isn't embedded in the activity, nor any link is kept to point to it on your system (Silverlight security requires that the users manually open the file they want to play, so you will have to instruct them on how to do it).







Avoid opening files from shared folders on your local network if multiple people open the same file. Better copy the file to each one's computer, since non-server versions of Windows impose restrictions on simultaneous usage of fileshares. However if you have a local file server machine you can try and see if it works OK for you with multiple students if you want to avoid copying arround media files.

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15
noatala
698 Reputation 56 Total posts
4/21/2013 9:49:34 AM

Thanks, George. I'll give it a try saving the file in the students' computers if there are problems tomorrow when using the activity URL(beforesunrise_train) at the computer lab.
Best,
Noa

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16
noatala
698 Reputation 56 Total posts
4/23/2013 5:42:04 AM

Dear George,
Everything worked allright with the URL yesterday at the computer lab. However, I told students to give it a try loading the clip from their computers for the first activity we had problems with. They will try at home. I've tried it myself and it seems to work just fine.
I'll let you know if they mention any problems with that new 'open media from local folder' icon.
Thanks for everything.
Regards,
Noa

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17
George
3425 Reputation 460 Total posts
7/6/2014 7:06:44 PM

Now when using local files at Clip and Image component, saving the activity will embed the local media asset files inside the .clipflair file of the activity, making it self-contained. Of course it will be of bigger size. Will provide an option for Clip and Image components in the future to not embed the local media files you've told them to open when saving their state (however the default setting will be to do embedding)

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