Video Compressions

5:56 PM
File size is an important concern if you use digital video, because digital video files tend to take up a lot of storage space on your hard drive. T make files smaller, you need compression.

With text files, size is less important because the files are full of “spaces” and can be compressed very tightly—a text file can be made at least 90 percent smaller, resulting in a high compression ratio (the ratio of compressed data to uncompressed data). Other file types, like MPEG video or JPEG photos, hardly compress at all because they're in a format that's tightly compressed to begin with.
Why is digital video compressed?

Digital video is compressed because it takes up a staggering amount of room in its original form. By compressing the video, you make it easier to store. Digital video can be compressed without impacting the perceived quality of the final product because it affects only the parts of the video that humans can't really detect. For example, there are billions of colors, but we perceive only about 1024 shades. Since we can't discern the subtle difference between one shade and the next we don't have to keep every color. There's also the matter of redundant images—if every frame in a 60–second video has the same chair in the same spot, why save the data of that chair in every frame?

Compressing video is essentially the process of throwing away data for things we can't perceive. Standard digital video cameras compress video at a ratio of 5 to 1, and there are formats that allow you to compress video by as much as 100 to 1. But too much compression can be a bad thing. The more you compress, the more data you throw away. Throw away too much, and the changes become noticeable. With heavy compression you can get video that's nearly unrecognizable.

When you compress video, always try several compression settings. The goal is to compress as much possible until the data loss becomes noticeable and then notch the compression back a little. That will give you the right balance between file size and quality. And remember that every video is different—some videos look great highly compressed, others don't. You'll have to experiment to get the best results.
Compression strategies

There are many different approaches and strategies used to squeeze digital media files down to manageable size. Here are some of the most common ones:

1. Psychoacoustic audio compression. The word psychoacoustic looks complicated, but it simply means “the way the brain interprets sound.” All forms of compressed audio use powerful algorithms to discard audio information that we can't hear. As an example, if I shout at the top of my lungs and also lightly tap my foot, you'll hear my voice but you probably won't hear my foot tapping. By getting rid of that foot tapping sound, there's less information and a smaller file size, but it will sound the same to your ear.

2. Psychovisual video compression. Psychovisual video compression is similar to its audio counterpart. Instead of discarding audio that we can't hear, psychovisual models discard data that are eyes don't need. An uncompressed clip that shows a chair in the same location for 60 seconds repeats the same data for that chair for each frame. With psychovisual video compression, the data for that chair from a single frame is stored and reused in subsequent frames. This type of compression—called “statistical data redundancy”—is one of the mathematical tricks that WMV, MPEG, and other video formats use to compress video while retaining good quality.

3. Lossless compression. The term lossless means “no loss of data.” When a file is compressed in a lossless fashion, 100 percent of the data is still there, much like when you zip a document—the document file gets smaller, but all the words are still there when you unzip it. You can save lossless video over and over without any loss of data—compression simply squeezes that data into a smaller space. Lossless compression saves less space because you can compress data only so much before you have to start discarding information.

4. Lossy compression. Lossy compression discards data in order to achieve a lower bit rate. Psychoacoustic compression and psychovisual compression are lossy technologies that result in smaller files that contain less of the original source data. And every time you save your file in a lossy file format, it discards more of the data—even if you're saving it in the same format. A good rule of thumb is to move to a lossy format only as the very final step in your project.


Basic Directing Workhsop

12:12 AM
I had my first directing workshop last January 26 and 27, 2008, at the Co-AVR, with the resource speaker Mr. Guiterrez Mangansakan II, a Davao-based film director. The workshop was attended by BSIT and Masscom students taking Video production subjects, CS faculty, and special guests, Mr. Sheron Dayoc and Mr. Al Jacinto. During the two-day workshop, we had fruitful discussions on what and how a film is done and lessons on directing.

Before, film-making is a very expensive job. But today, with the variety of technology that we have, it is possible to make film with any medium. A film basically starts with an idea. Some starts with a question "what if?", and some may have an experience that may lead to an idea. With this idea, we start to make a story and soon, the plot. The script is written by a screenwriter or scriptwriter (some directors are witers at the same time). With the script, the director's job is to put into look the gaze of the story. He has a vision on what the film will look like, and it is his job to tell the story through directing.

Like cells to an organism, film is composed of shots. There are various types of shots. Close-up shots (CU) and Extreme Close-up shots (XCU) are used to focus on the emotions of a character. There are also midi shots that are different with medium shots. Midi is a shot of a character from knees to the space above head (like ones in weather reports), while medium is a shot from waist to head. Long and Extreme long shots are used to establish the setting and mood of the scene. Camera movements are also important, like panning, zooming, tiliting, and some use contraptions like cranes and dolly.

Today, many innovations are used by filmmakers to explore different techniques and styles. As long as they are creative, they could use different combination as possible. But one important point in directing is discipline. As a director, one should be disciplined enough to know the limitations of films.

Anyways, that's just some information that i learned about film language. We also learned to compose a shot. We did a little activity wherein we were asked to draw a shot in a paper. He requested some students to explain their shots and gave feedback and reactions. During the next activity, we grouped ourselves and tried to make a story out of our shots. Different groups had interesting scenes and plots. Some had tragic endings, some had funny scenes. Everyone was very creative.

We also watched some films which are relevant in our discussions. The film Isaak by Nick Deocampo is an interesting short film that started with a painting. The director told a story of a boy who wants to be loved by his father but does not get it. The story is basically an interpretation of the director's past. We also discussed about the film industry in the Philippines. They say it is very commercialized and is now dying, but I don't think so. It is, rather, evolving. Indie films are now very popular and it has been bringing honor in the country, as well as documentaries.

Mr. Sheron Dayoc, a product of Ateneo de Zamboanga, is now a director of films. He was with us during the workshop and we also saw his short film about the Yakans titled Angan-Angan (Dream). Truly, the film industry has been reaching its way to Mindanao. Our speaker, Mr. Gutierrez Mangansakan II, has the advocacy of making Mindanao a breeding ground for directors, who will soon bring the talents, stories, and beauty of Mindanao to the world.

Photos are now available at


9:56 AM
With the fast development of technology, information is now accesible almost all ways possible. From radio, print and television, information technology has now gone to a new level. Gathering information could now accessed through the computers especially through the internet. Along with the progress, teaching has also developed using computer technology. The Computer-Aided Instruction or CAI is designed to create modules and make tutorials through multimedia. Examples of CAI's are tutorials, simulations, and interactive cd's.

According to Davis, (et al, licensee BioMed Central Ltd.) computer based teaching sessions have advantages over lectures: they are more flexible for doctors to fit into their work and learning programme; there is the ability to pause or revisit areas of the session; they have more learner led interaction; hyperlinks and additional materials can be provided instantly for the learner; they address the issue of standardizing the quality of teaching materials across a region; and they deal with the cost and logistical difficulties of specialist lecturers teaching large numbers of students in different locations. Existing studies of knowledge and attitudinal gain by computer based teaching have mainly been at undergraduate level. According to their study, they feel computer based teaching and learning is as effective as typical lecture based teaching sessions for educating postgraduates in EBM and systematic reviews.

CAI also allow teachers to provide computer technology for instructional
support and workplace simulation. They use computer assisted instruction as a supplement to, not a replacement for, traditional teacher-directed instruction. Through the use of computer and word processing software, they are able to foster the development of writing skills of the students. It also provide high-interest drill and practice programs to support learning, especially
for students requiring skill remediation. Teachers could also provide computer-assisted instructional activities for chronically misbehaving students and students with negative attitude toward traditional learning.

Blogging 101

1:24 PM
The AICG, with the help of ITMM instructors, Romeo Rabajante and Ryann Elumba, conducted the first Blogging seminar in Ateneo de Zamboanga University. The seminar, titled BLOGGING 101, was participated by ITMM105 and ITMM211 students, with Mr Elumba as the resource speaker. He discussed the basics of Blogging and on how to make it a profession. Blogging does not only give you the ability to share your thoughts, views, experiences, opinions, knowledge and resources, it also gives you the opportunity to gain revenue from posting interesting articles, videos and images. During the seminar, the students learned how to create and manipulate blogs, post articles, and tips on how to maintain it.

For more information, visit

Oh eight

11:42 PM
It has been an odd season for me, i think. There have been lots of things that has greatly changed and it has been bothering me lately. My December was just weird. During the Atfest, i had lots of fun, but i had more headaches and burdens. I was not focused in my studies and i screwed up in some of my subjects, i can’t even remember the last lessons i had before the break. I really hope i can put my head back to it. Christmas celebrations were also fun. I had three, actually. The first one was the CSIT Christmas/Victory party. Next was the Zabala family reunion, and last, the Safety/Unique Thanksgiving party. I enjoyed all parties but still, something’s missing, or lacking, i suppose. I am really disappointed with myself because I didn’t join the year-end training of our church. I’m really a procrastinator. Well i have my reasons too why i didn’t showed up, but because of this my sibling didn’t also joined the event. All the burden was just on me. It doesn’t mean that i don’t want to have time with Him, it’s just that i have to deal with my relations to the people there.

Anyways, i think my Christmas was just bitin. I haven’t spent my time with my friends and family fully and i was so lazy. There were also deviations in this year’s New Year celebration. There were no games, it means no money and prizes.hehe i think i was just being childish those times. There were less fireworks. Wala ba namang sparklers, ano ba yan. I only had one stick of roman candle and the others was enjoyed by our bunso and dad. Bitin talaga, hindi nga mausok and loob ng bahay. And that was just odd. I missed the aroma of burning gunpowder and the smokes in my room. but its ok, next year I’ll make sure that there will be tons of fireworks.haha. The time was just running fast. Upon arriving home, we prepared our homemade nicker bucker and the next thing i knew, the people were having the final countdown. Anyways the dessert was just delicious. Next year we should have more. I also enjoyed the whole night singing karaoke and dancing with my siblings and cousins. I rested after the fourth hour and woke up during lunch time. We went to La vista and enjoyed the beach. I enjoyed having time with my family.

They say that the way we start the year will tell how we will be throughout the year. For the first time in my life, I’ll be havin’ my new year’s resolution, and it will one single one word: FOCUS. This year I have to focus in my relationships, to my family, friends and most importantly to God. I have to focus in my studies over affiliations and do my best to have excellent grades. The past year, i was just not satisfied with my grades (tons of 85’s). I have to perform my best this year just to make sure that the Chinese people are wrong in saying that the people born in the year of the horse will be unlucky this year.haha I also include blogging in my list. I realized that blogging will help me in honing my skills in writing and it will be an instrument to express my views and opinions.

Before saying goodbye to oh seven, i like to thank everyone, people that i knew throughout my life and the ones that came lately. All of you are just great. You were very supportive and you believed in me, you know who you are. In case I had any shortcomings to you guys, I’m sorry. I would also like to forgive all people who made mistakes and leave all of these along with the year. Twenty o seven was just great. I hope Oh eight will be one too. I have so much to say but i don’t want to bore you guys. To cut it short, i want to bid goodbye to oh seven and hello oh eight. yeah!
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