Re: [rtcweb] Finishing up the Video Codec document

Ron <> Fri, 12 December 2014 18:43 UTC

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Date: Sat, 13 Dec 2014 05:13:00 +1030
From: Ron <>
To: John Leslie <>
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Subject: Re: [rtcweb] Finishing up the Video Codec document
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On Fri, Dec 12, 2014 at 12:34:15PM -0500, John Leslie wrote:
> On Sat, 06 Dec 2014, Peter Saint-Andre - &yet <> wrote:
> > 2. A trigger that is more general and future-proof. That is: someday 
> > (perhaps before too much longer on the standardization timescale) we 
> > will have other alternatives to consider: H.265, VP9, VP10, Daala, and 
> > who knows what.
>    (I'd be amazed if we didn't have at least one of these ready to use
> before this document is published as an RFC.)

I hope I'll not be mistaken for hacking in to the pedantry game if I say
"that depends on how you define 'ready to use'" :)

In one sense you'd be correct, but "ready for this spec to use" is a bit
more elusive.

 - If H.264 is the 800 pound gorilla in the room, then H.265 has climbed
   to the top of the building with Fay Wray.  It's troublesome in all
   the same ways, but orders of magnitude more intensely.  And its
   licencing appears to have already responded to The Cisco Hack, making
   that a more difficult (or at least much more expensive) "solution"
   for anyone trying that sort of thing in future.

 - Both VP9 and H.265 are significantly more computationally expensive
   than the currently proposed MTI codecs.  It seems doubtful that just
   about any currently available hardware will be able to use them for
   real-time streaming.

 - VP10 and Daala are still WIP.  Despite holding a BoF in 2012, and
   there being continued interest, we don't actually have the WG for
   this established or chartered yet.  (and one of the objections to
   VP8 before "a dumptruck of Nokia IPR" became the excuse du jour
   was "but it's not a standard!!")

 - According to the charter of this group, the milestone for delivering
   this is ...  about 2 weeks away ...

It obviously won't be the first WG milestone where the whooshing noise
was heard by all and enjoyed by some, and I'm not sure what people
expect the time before it's delivered really will be now, but I'm kind
of doubtful we'll form another WG and complete its work before it does.

And other than happy news out of the ISO process for VP8, or something
other than coal in our stockings from the H.264 patent holders, that
really seems to be the only way we're likely to solve this once and
for all now.

I think the interesting question is whether or not we do want to say
something along those lines as part of a forward-looking rationale,
or whether people think it's still just a little too far over the
event horizon at this stage.