Re: optimising compression for Quicktime dance movies

Darren Kelly (
Sun, 14 Jun 1998 15:58:19 +0200 (MET DST)

On Mon, 15 Jun 1998, David Rodger wrote:
> Guy Hilton wrote:
> >You might also want to consider what you find at
> >( Vapourware? Next
> >big thing? Hoonose.
> There was an article in the I.T. section of The Age newspaper (Melbourne,
> Australia) describing the same in a little more detail. (However, the
> detail was not a techical description.) It seems that Clark and his
> backers are keeping the lid on this thing. The readers of The Age started
> a letter debate which lasted a few weeks. There were a letters from people
> knowledgeable in compression techniques who expressed the opinion that this
> could indeed be vapourware... or a scam of sorts. Since no demo has been
> given, and no technical details or specifications released, it remains to
> be seen. I expect that if the claims are worth anything, they'll resurface
> once the patents have been secured.

Confirming David's observations, I've followed up this exciting
possibility, and discussed the matter with some video and audio
compression "experts". Clark seems to be claiming an information
compression of 1000:1, which is astonishing, some might say unbelievable.
Compression techniques customed to audio, for example, can achieve better
than 2:1 (but only on audio), by preempting structures in the audio data
and explotiing them.

Some people have suggested that it seems ridiculous that he should even be
discussing the idea publically if, as he says, he does not yet have
sufficient patent protection. Of course this might be his way of
attracting financial attention. Finalising such an important patent is no
easy thing, and very expensive.

To quote the magician and sceptic Randy, "extraordinary claims require
extraordinary proof". Transmitting a few screen bar codes and music by
phone line to a shopping centre is not extraordinary. Demonstrating the
transmission of _any_ video and audio signals by phone line in the
presence of data transmission experts would be.


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