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Mac DevCenter

Run with the Mac Pack!


Java Media: QT or Not QT?
Chris Adamson, Subsequently and Furthermore, Inc.

Track: Programming
Date: Thursday, October 03
Time: 1:30pm - 2:15pm
Location: Lafayette/San Tomas/Lawrence

As Mac programmers, we find QuickTime to be an old and trusty friend; as Java programmers, we usually tend towards Sun's API's because they're de facto “standards.” So what to do when we want to write media apps in Java on our Macs? We can choose between QuickTime for Java and the various JavaSoft media API's, including Java Media Framework (JMF), JavaSound, Graphics2D and Java Advanced Imaging (JAI). So how do we make the choice?

Java consultant Chris Adamson offers an overview of the two sides of Java media, helping those who haven't invested deeply in one or the other (or both) see the issues that face Java media programmers:

  • Supported platforms: The status of what works where, and how well
  • Supported media types and codecs: What can you play or display, and how much freedom you have to work with it
  • Deal-killers: Which framework has MIDI device support that doesn't actually work with physical MIDI devices? Which has broken sound-input support? Which doesn't play nicely with Swing?
  • MPEG-4: Is it really the future, and how can we work with it?
  • Future support: Will QuickTime keep pace? Is JMF dead? Does it matter to you?

Aimed at Java programmers new to media programming, Adamson’s talk provides both a taste of the media API's and a road-map for how to use them.

What made Adamson pick this topic for his presentation? "Client-side java seems to get the short-end of the stick, even from JavaSoft sometimes, and the idea of doing media work in Java seems inconceivable to some people--adding MP3 support to Java is one of the top-10 feature-requests on Sun's website, even though playing an MP3 is a one-line program with the Java Media Framework, and maybe five lines with QuickTime for Java. Since Mac people tend to be so media-savvy, I'd like to help them see that if they're java programmers too, then robust media API’s are here today, they work, and that we should start doing great things with them."

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