November 27, 2011
I keep running into this: software which is originally developed for the Mac, and then ported to the PC, is nearly always at least partially crap.
It may actually work pretty well, but it will seriously betray its Mac origins in many ways. Poser was like that, for instance. Flash is like that. The UIs of those programs don't really follow Windows norms; we get an island of Macness inside our PCs. (It wasn't until OSX came out that Poser finally started using threads, for example, instead of round-robin cooperative multitasking implemented at the app level. Because that's what you had to do in Mac OS Classic; even when it finally supported threads, they didn't work very well and no one who was sane used them.)
This is part of why I hate the Mac. Mac app programmers saw PC users as heathen, to be converted to the One Truth (i.e. the Apple way of doing things) rather than as a ten-times-larger market who really should be given what they want and are used to. (Apple itself was guilty of this, too; I have nothing but foul memories of all my experiences with QuickTime and now I won't allow it anywhere near any of my computers.)
So now I've got another example of that. I hadn't really realized that Handbrake was originally a Mac program, but now I know it for sure.
I just upgraded to the latest version, 0.95. And all the presets are Apple stuff: iPod, iPhone, iPod touch, iPhone 4, iPad, AppleTV, AppleTV 2, and several others.
There aren't any presets specifically for anything that isn't Apple. It's rather annoying.
I'm seeing whether it can convert one of the Dog Days m2ts files into an MKV. Unfortunately, I'm a little afraid that it's hard-coding the subtitles.
The subtitles on the BD are in PGS format, which apparently is a bitmap, like the DVD subtitles. PGS is 256-color, as opposed to the DVD 4-color, but it's still a bitmap.
I will give Handbrake credit for using all four of my CPU cores, though it's a bit disconcerting to see the CPU usage meter pegged and hearing the cooling fan running full blast. Speedfan says that my CPUs are 78C, which is a bit uncomfortable. I'm going to have to check the settings on Handbrake to see if I can limit it to three, or two.
With 4, it's converting about 11 frames per second. Considering that this is 1920*1080 video, that's not actually shabby at all.
I didn't mess with any of the video settings, except to tell it that I wanted the output file to be about 1.3 gigabytes. After I see what the quality looks like, I might do it again with a bigger or a smaller number.
And if it really is hardcoding the subtitles, then I'm going to have to hunt around to see if there's any other tool I can use for this.
A few years ago I had a pretty cool program which would convert a DVD's bitmapped subtitles into text. It relied on the fact that character generation for DVD subtitles was consistent, no matter what it was, so as it parsed the bitmap, whenever it ran into a character it didn't know, it would display it and ask me to type in what it was. That was only necessary once per character, so at the beginning it happened a lot, but after the first couple of minutes of material, it was pretty smooth sailing for the rest of the file. It may still exist around here somewhere on some backup, but I don't know, and I don't remember what it was called.
I'd be willing to do something like that for PGS, too.
UPDATE: No, it didn't hardcode the subtitles. But it didn't soft-code them either. They're not present at all, which makes the result useless for me. Grumble.
I know this is possible; I downloaded a rip of these exact same BDs which had conversions of the subtitles. So it's a matter of finding out what tool they used.
WRT the rest of the post, Mac users hate Windows ports just as much. See Microsoft Word 6.0.
Posted by: benzeen at November 27, 2011 08:12 PM (R9i5E)
Posted by: Avatar_exADV at November 27, 2011 09:11 PM (pWQz4)
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 27, 2011 09:14 PM (+rSRq)
Posted by: Avatar_exADV at November 27, 2011 09:32 PM (GJQTS)
Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at November 28, 2011 09:39 AM (G2mwb)
I understand what you are talking about vis-a-vis ports to Windows. I get it, no one wants to support significantly different code bases, but please (software development organizations), suck it up and do it.
Windows apps work a certain way. Mac apps work a certain, slightly different way. Linux apps are yet again different.
I used to work for a storage company that started out building primarily for *nix environments. They bought Neuron Data in order to compile for Windows with no code changes. They wound up with a dodgy old *nix app running horribly under Windows. It was embarrassing.
(For really bad implementation, see Lotus Notes on Windows - I don't know how in the world anyone ever thought that was a good idea, but I think it probably morphed out of a DOS version - if I had to guess.)
Anyway - whenever I end up with a bit of software that just doesn't look like it was designed for the OS on which it is running, I wack it. I don't have time for annoyances, and there is always another bit of software out there that can do just as good a job (give or take).
Posted by: dkallen99 at November 28, 2011 09:50 AM (2lHZP)
I don't think there's any Linux transplant that I've used extensively. I think I installed GIMP once and used it for a few minutes, but it doesn't really offer me anything I need that I don't already have with Photo Magic and Paint Shop Pro. And you know how I feel about VLC.
Anyway, the Linux folks don't have quite the religious fervor about their GUI. Generally they try to stay consistent with Windows standards, because they're trying to woo Windows users to start using Linux instead.
Whereas for the Macolytes their different approach is a badge of honor, a symbol of spiritual purity, and suchlike.
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 28, 2011 09:54 AM (+rSRq)
Then you get an island of *nix-ness inside your PC.
Maybe I see this more often due to the niche in which I work.
Posted by: dkallen99 at November 28, 2011 10:53 AM (2lHZP)
Posted by: Mark A. Flacy at November 28, 2011 06:05 PM (Lbkvv)
Posted by: dkallen99 at November 28, 2011 08:26 PM (PP7wf)
Posted by: benzeen at November 28, 2011 08:44 PM (R9i5E)
I don't think that's the program I used (back in 2003) but it looks like it would work for DVDs. However, they don't mention BDs, and I bet it doesn't work for them.
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 28, 2011 09:02 PM (+rSRq)
Posted by: benzeen at November 28, 2011 09:48 PM (R9i5E)
As a User, I mostly have a few issues that are probably related to Windows UI actions that were dictated by the old Apple lawsuit. For example: in a Mac text box, clicking below the text puts you at the end. In Windows, it puts you somewhere in the last line based on your x coordinate. Annoying.
But that's as far as I'm going to go on this bit.
Posted by: Mauser at November 29, 2011 02:09 AM (cZPoz)
Mauser, what you're describing is how Win 3.1 worked.
Win 3.1's application model was a travesty. But it was changed completely with the WIN32 API, first introduced with Win95, which is more normal and modern.
Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 29, 2011 09:31 AM (+rSRq)
Posted by: Mauser at November 29, 2011 01:43 PM (cZPoz)
Enclose all spoilers in spoiler tags:
[spoiler]your spoiler here[/spoiler]
Spoilers which are not properly tagged will be ruthlessly deleted on sight.
Also, I hate unsolicited suggestions and advice. (Even when you think you're being funny.)
At Chizumatic, we take pride in being incomplete, incorrect, inconsistent, and unfair. We do all of them deliberately.
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