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ajt (2546)

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UK based. Perl, XML/HTTP, SAP, Debian hacker.

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Journal of ajt (2546)

Monday March 08, 2004
04:47 PM

Real Death

[ #17814 ]

Rather appropriately as I was moaning about CarTalk switching from RealAudio format to Microsoft, there is an article on slash discussing Reals fall from grace, and even quoting CarTalk and why they dropped Real in favour of Microsoft...

Anyhow with any luck the EU will force MS to remove their MediaPlayer from Windows, which won't make any difference to their monopoly, but at least it will encourage a few Windows users the opportunity to try something better.

I tried mplayer that some kind soul mentioned, however it segfaulted like mad, so I've given up on that for a while - if it worked mplayer looks good on paper though.

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  • WMP is available for OS X, and I bet that vlc will play it too.
    • Apparently MPlayer will play Windows media files, and if you build on an x86 platform, you can even use various "Windows" codecs directly from their DLLs. So far trying to use MPlayer for Debian stable from debs, resulted in a multitude of Segfaults, and I've not tried to build from scratch yet.

      I suppose it's one of my pet hates, but why do media players all have stupid graphic interfaces? with silly skins that make them terrible to use. The early ones were okay, but these days they all do it, and it's a

      -- "It's not magic, it's work..."
  • It kinda makes sense that CarTalk would switch to something people have to futz with to get it to work, and which people can mess up in various ways that require them to read magazines or call radio shows for help (this coming from a car-less and Windows-less person who listens to CarTalk).
    • Their official reason are: Real is unreliable; Real trick people into buying their product, when they only wanted the "free" version, and WMP is free and installed by default so what could be simpler?

      I've never found Real to be unreliable, their web pages are awful to navigate to get at the free version, and they do provide a version for Linux - something Microsoft don't. The fact that WMP only runs on some version of Windows, it comes free only in a $100 bundle, and it's not available on any other operat

      -- "It's not magic, it's work..."
      • The free version of Real Player is a pain in the ass to get, indeed. I know it is there and have trouble getting to it with each new version.

        As for unreliable, I am not sure what they mean by that. CarTalk is the biggest selling public radio, so they should have the scratch to pay for reliable hardware, but that may not be the case. Who knows?

        I do know that WBEZ (Chicago) pays $100,000 each year to provide the Real stream of This American Life []. I assume that since CarTalk is more popular, it costs a lo
        • I think Real do them selves quite a disservice by hiding the free version, and pushing the paid version. I'm quite happy to pay for something if I think it's a good buy, I've bought Opera and Eudora in the past, but, the in your face behaviour of Real is a real turn off.

          I've never had problems with Real, only compatibility problems when the server is a generation ahead of the client, but you can get that problem from anything. There was a lot of bitching on Slash about Real, but I don't know how much of t

          -- "It's not magic, it's work..."
  • I don't understand why so many people think it is a "good thing" that the EU will force microsoft to remove WMP. It is a good thing that consumers will get less for their money? that they will have to go out and get a media player instead of the easy path? I have several installed on my system because I test different software compatibilities -- and I have to be honest, I really don't like Real. I don't like their nagging "buy me" windows; I don't like how they confuse people into getting the for pay vers
    • I agree that Real have shot themselves in the foot, with various underhand and annoying antics. They do deserve a slap in the face for that, and they will either learn or go bust.

      Microsoft's bundling of their media player is quite different from a manufacturer installing a radio in a car and selling it to you. First off you don't need a special "Ford" tuner to listen to special "Ford" radio stations, that other radios are unable to tune to. Second, "Ford" don't produce a new radio that can't be retrofitte

      -- "It's not magic, it's work..."
    • mo·nop·o·ly Audio pronunciation of monopoly ( P ) Pronunciation Key (m-np-l)
      n. pl. mo·nop·o·lies

            1. Exclusive control by one group of the means of producing or selling a commodity or service: “Monopoly frequently... arises from government support or from collusive agreements among individuals” (Milton Friedman).
            2. Law. A right granted by a government giving exclusive control over a specified commercial activity to a si
      • I don't care what the dictionary says, Microsoft has been convicted in a court of law of breaking various anti-monopoly laws. These laws are there to prevent and regulate monopolies. Okay the punishment was a joke, but they were still convicted.

        Last time I looked in a shop, I could have any PC I wanted as long as it had Microsoft Windows on. Most users, most of the time have no choice, you get Windows or Windows. I know you can buy another kind of computer, and Mac seems to be be doing well for a change,

        -- "It's not magic, it's work..."