Talk:Meetinghouse Media Appliance
This is a great idea. My suggestion has to do with distribution of the media to the congregation. Is it intended that individuals or small groups watch the media on the netbook device? I would suggest a mechanism to burn the media onto DVD either for projection in the meeting house or for distribution to households.
COMMENT: If DVD burning is included, the system needs to either include format conversion (from Mpeg4 to Mpeg2 and and to NTSC/Pal/Secam)or it each local needs to be able to define what formats to download (this configuration may be hard for the non-technical to get right...).
- That depends if the ward/branch has a DVD player to use. I think an adapter that converts VGA signals to A/V would be more cost effective. --Lbacud 03:08, 29 January 2012 (UTC)
In the "requirements" it says "it sometimes takes weeks before members can easily watch General Conference and other broadcast events". I assume that this is the time it takes to master and ship out DVDs from SLC. Is it months? Is there also time spent adding/editing captioning and alternative languages or does this come from the live/realtime work? Has anyone suggested a target for how fast they would like this distribution to be done?
Distribution might work better (and faster) using a (modified) peer-to-peer network. Modifications could include regional super-caches (populated either by Internet or by disc-net)
Someone once said "Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of magtape". To some parts of the world, it may be faster to send the files on a data disc to super-caches for local distribution.
For slow links (dialups etc.) we may be able to do some specialized "compression" (not just Mpeg) by cutting the speaker out of the frame (for those General Conference talks) where the sides don't change and have the client machine rebuild the full image (or not).
Ubuntu 9.10 is not an "Long Term Support" release (and is now not supported). This project should move to 10.04 (at least, unless you want to support your own OS).
The appliances should have the OS and programs on a partition separate from the data. It should be mounted read-only. Updates to the OS and programs should be digitally signed.
Reinventing the Wheel?
Has anyone here thought about the XBMC or OpenElec projects. This would skyrocket this project forward at light speed because these projects are full media player implementations. In fact openelec is a full linux distro that installs in 5 minutes from start to finish (after download) and boots in less than 20 secs ready to play.
These support a wide range of input and output hardware and media. This includes almost out of the box support for remote controls and support for almost any audio/video codec without DRM. It even has a skinning API and plugin interface for live streaming. So not only could you distribute videos to it (rsync?) but you could create a plugin that scraped content from LDS.ORG's website as a live stream.
The work is already done and could be tested in a major way inside a 6 month period with very little more than coordinating software installs, media repositories and test sites. With more work the entire platform could be customized to only show menus and options specific to simple meetinghouse operation. Why reinvent the wheel?