December 1, 2003

xine 1.0 previewed/Interview with project leaders

Author: John Knight

Anonymous Reader writes "One of the older projects in the area of Linux multimedia is xine. When I first used this application, several years ago in its early stages, it was about as stable as my grandma after having several RedBulls and vodka (...) Now xine is in the release candidate stage for its big 1.0 release and it certainly has come a long way. xine has since evolved into a fully fledged multimedia player, capable of DVD playback, video and audio files, digital CD audio playback and internet streaming.

To find out more about this exciting chapter of the Linux desktop's future, I caught up with the lads from the xine team by email for their thoughts...
What coding help did the Ogle team give, in terms of subtitles and menus, etc? Was it hard to integrate into the existing xine code, and were any major overhauls needed in the code?

Miguel Freitas: "(...) They have always been very helpful with us. One must notice that the effort to create a complete open source DVD player is a great example of community effort. It was built over several smaller pieces that have being created by independent people, like MPEG2 decoding, AC3 decoding, reverse engineering of subtitles format and finally complete menu and navigation support. Some developers contributed to projects that don't exist anymore, but their work is still part in some degree of what we have now. "
There are currently a lot of UIs available for xine, all with a different feel to the others, is xine more of a library based project where developers then design an application around the playback libraries?

Mike Melanson: "Most of our development is focused on making the most capable multimedia backend possible. As a result, many outside developers have gravitated towards the project to build frontends KDE, GNOME, the command line, etc. One interesting story is that of Rhythmbox. The author used another multimedia backend for the app. One day, he decided to give xine-lib a try and in a few hours, was able to make it work considerably better than the previous backend. ""

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