I spent a week in Munich. I went there for two reasons: to attend the Web & TV workshop organized by the W3C and to hack along with the gst-gang in the GStreamer Hackfest 2014. All these sponsored by Igalia, my company.

I arrived to Munich on Tuesday evening, and when I reached the Marienplatz metro station, I ran across with a crowd of Bayern Munich fans, chanting songs about the glory of their team, huddling and dancing. And a lot of police officers surrounding the tracks.

The workshop was organized by the W3C Web and TV Interest Group, and intended to spark discussions around how to integrate and standardize TV technologies and the Web.

The first slide of the workshop
The first slide of the workshop

On Wednesday morning, the workshop began. People from Espial and Samsung talked about HbbTV, and japanese broadcasters talked about their Hybridcast. Both technologies seek to enhance the television experience, using the Internet Protocols, the first for Europe, and the former for Japan. Also, broadcasters from Chine showed their approach using ad-hoc technologies. I have to say that Hybricast awed me.


Afterwards, most of the workshop was around the problem of the companion device. People showed their solutions and proposals, in particular about device discovering, and data sharing and control. All the solutions relied on WebSockets and WebRTC for the data sharing between devices.


During the panels, I enjoyed a lot the participation of Jon Piesing, in particular his slide summarizing the specifications used by the HbbTV V2. It’s like juggling specs!

Specifications used by HbbTV V2
Specifications used by HbbTV V2

Broadcaster are very interested in Encrypted Media Extension and Media APIs, for example the specification for a Tuner API. Also there’s a lot of expectation about meta-data handling and defining common TV ontologies.

Finally, there were a couple talks about miscellaneous technologies surrounding the IPTV broadcasting.

The second stage of my visit to Bavaria’s Capital, was the GStreamer Hackfest. It was in the Google Offices, near to the Marienplatz.

Christan Schaller has made a very good summary of what appened along the hackfest. From my side, I worked with Nicolas Dufresne with the v4l2 video converter for the Exynos4, which is a piece required for the hardware acceleration decoding for that platform using v4l2 video decoder.

using bugzilla, the right way

Yes, I admit it, I hate bugzilla. I mean, the bug tracking is something indispensable for every software project, but digging in its web interface for quick searches, I just find it unbearably awful.

But I guess I came across with the right tool for overcome this web madness: pybugz

On the other hand, I’ve to say that I agree about using bugzilla to keep track of patches, it’s a bad idea too. A properly organised mailing list and maybe a patchwork, if the traffic is massive, as helper.

apache configuration for video tag in firefox

In contrast with Epiphany-WebKit, Firefox seems to be quite picky at rendering videos through the HTML5 tag <video>: it demands the correct HTTP headers.

It doesn’t assume anything. If the stream doesn’t have the correct headers, Firefox just will put a black box in you face without any further explanation.

In order to overcome this issue, struggling a little with the sparse information available through the Internet, I came with this .htaccess file:

AddType video/ogg          .ogv
Header set Access-Control-Allow-Origin "*"
Header unset Etag
FileETag None

First of all, my Apache server doesn’t recognize the video/ogg mime type.

Second, the header MUST NOT include the ETag key.

And finally, there’s new header, which isn’t fully implemented by the all browsers, but it will be, and will mess up all our pages with embedded videos, is the cross domain accessibility.

More information: