About the site and the videos
(i.e. patting myself on the back ;-)
About the website
conform. Meaning it uses only valid HTML. Thus it won´t work as it should when using mediocre browsers as MS Internet Explorer (6, that is. 7 is quite OK, took them only several years anyway).
I say this so that you understand why it may look different in IE than, for example, in Firefox. IE doesn´t support half of CSS2, which is an important part of my site. I will try to fix it, but there are limits to my efforts. Last time I tried for about an hour to fix some design issues with IE, but had no luck.
Thus, my recommendation is to use FireFox
. I did the switch some time ago(namely when I found that many useful features of CSS(2) aren´t supported by IE - didn´t have any serious troubles since then. Once you´re used to the different design, everything´s fine.).
Right now, I´m using HTML 4.01 Strict - sooner or later I´ll upgrade to XHTML 1.1 . Hopefully your browser can handle it. I´m not sure IE can, since it can´t even do CSS2 - of course, CSS2 is mere 6 years old, so...
As a side note, I´m also using SSI
, which means that I don´t have to edit one huge file, but several small files that are combined into one - server-side, so that the client(i.e. your browser) doesn´t know of it. That´s the reason the files end with Shtml, btw.
It makes maintaining the site alot easier, and I don´t have to use junk like frames.
As you perhaps have noticed, no link on my site will spawn a new window. I did that for several reasons - for one, it´s against the STRICT standard, for another, the viewer should be able to decide wether to open in a new window/tab or not. (Also, since I´m using FireFox, it´s easier to just use the middle button to spawn links in new tabs.)
As you know, my site´s called "SuvwI' van bom"
(though I refer to it as "my site" ;-). The name is historical by now, from way back when all it featured was indeed the klingon anthem.
By now, several other videos have accompanied it, together with a program(The Klingon Language Lab Light
, a size-reduced version of KLL
Even though the content may change, I intend on keeping the name - for one, it´s only a name, for another it´s nice, IMO.
New content is added once in a while, recently most updates were either design-based, or for the tlhIngan mu'tay, the vocabulary
Other videos may follow, especially remakes of those already available - I now have a better source and am working(yes, really, even though I always keep saying it...) to polish them enough to make ´em useable. The main problem is that they´re either not smooth enough, or too smooth. Unfortunately, too much detail will hinder compression - meaning you´d have to download huge files, which you surely don´t want...
Most content on my page comes exclusively from KCD
, however, I think about adding other klingon-related videos as well. Cuts from the movies and such.
Recently I´ve acquired a copy of a comic entirely in Klingon - I already uploaded a scan of an advertisement found in it - for be'yula Qe'
Once I´m done, I´ll add a complete scan of the comic. If you like it, don´t hesitate to BUY
it. It´s not supposed to be a replacement of the real thing(not that it could). Neither are the videos a replacement of the game, buy it, if you have the chance. It´s well worth the price, IMO.
Well, it´s rather simple, I grant that. However, I did put much thought into it. My site´s not supposed to be a playground, it´s not something to look at, it´s mostly for downloads.
That´s the main reason why almost all content is put into one single page - even though it increases loading time, it also means you don´t have to click through numerous pages to get to the files. I think it´s a good trade-off. Besides, the site´s made to be loaded fast - every picture has predefined dimensions, so that your browser will be able to display the site while pictures are loaded.
I tried to make the entire page as dynamic as possible - so that it should fit any screen resolution. If not, feel free to drop me a line
. I´ll try to correct it, if possible.
About the videos
How I got them
As you know, most of the videos are from the game Star Trek: Klingon. Once I played it, I had the desire to do something with it - fortunately, the video files were in AVI format, a format I knew and had some experience with.
The videos use a rather rare CoDec, called DUCK Truemotion. I have searched for long to find it, and didn´t find it to this day.
Fortunately, someone told me where to get it ;-)
Once I had it, the first thing I did(after installing it) was to try it. It worked.
The audio streams were encoding using a seemingly proprietery DUCK format as well, DK3 it´s called. It turned out to be no more than ADPCM with some bits shifted, though. A simple program was able to fix that, so that I could include audio as well.
Since then, I´ve been busy extracting clips from the game, creating downloadable versions.
My first videos are rather ugly, mostly because I used the PC version, which uses badly treated videos, dithered(color-reduced) and squished to death(one-side resize).
All new clips are taken from the Mac-Version, which seems to feature the unprocessed(with the exception of dithering) videos, thus looking much better.
The only exception are the videos of Gowron, from the mu'tay
- there is no difference between PC and MAC version, aside frome the container used(AVI for PC, MOV for Mac. Same codec, though, no difference in video).
What I did with them
Although the Mac-version has far better graphics, it´s still suffering from structured dithering - a process where colors are reduced in a structed way, kinda like overlaying the picture with a grid, to reduce the number of colors(think of a billboard - single dots making up colors that didn´t exist before).
The color reduction is no problem, but the grid is - for one it´s ugly to look at, for another it seriously hinders compression.
A test showed that an unprocessed video, compared with an oversmoothed one, took twice as much size.
I have yet to find the best way to eliminate as much of the grid, without destroying the details. It´ll never look really good, but I hope to make it better than it´s now. There´ll be serious loss of detail, though.
Maybe Paramount is kind enough to send me the master tapes ;-)
Tools for editing
At first I only used VirtualDub
, though recently I started to use AviSynth
as well, since it offers more video processing options.
For encoding and cutting, though, I still use VDub. It´s simply easier to do with a nice GUI ;-) I even do some filterin with VDub - as usual, one tool alone isn´t as good as two together.
I´d like to put up a list of filters I used, but since I haven´t found the best combination yet, I can´t. You can contact me
and I´ll send you a list of filters I´m using.
Codec and Container
Unless noted otherwise, all videos are encoded using DivX
for video and MP3
Container-wise, I´m currently doing a balance-act - I´m creating AVI files as well as MKV files.
MKV, or Matroska, is my favorite, for reasons listed on my Matroska page
. Shortly put, MKV is more versatile than AVI.
However, for those still using AVI, I always create a version as well - usually it´s lower quality, because I hardsub it(that is, the subtitle text becomes part of the video - and is encoded with it, causing encoding artifacts). The MKV files contain a separate subtitle stream, as well as any non-standard font required to view them(for example the Klingon IPA Font
I´ll continue to create AVI files for a long time, but I won´t promise it´ll be forever. The MKV files usually are smaller, even, so there is no reason not to use it.
Ok, that´s all. Still here? Got nothing to do, eh? ;-)
Any recommendations or wishes?