Converting File Formats

This is the third in a series of posts about Capturing and Captioning a Screen Reader Demo.

I have a recording of a screen reader demo that I want to post on the Web using the HTML5 <video> tag. The current format is .avi. In order to have the video work in both Windows and OS X in all common browsers (Chrome, Firefox, IE, Opera, Safari) with the <video> tag I need 3 formats:

  • .mp4
  • .ogv
  • webm

Although, according to this post, The State of HTML5 Video, all major browsers now support .mp4. I did a quick test and this does appear to be true. Thus, .ogg may no longer be required.

The captioning program I will use to caption the video will accept .avi and .mp4 as well as many other formats. Since I will need .mp4 I might as well convert to that format and the other Web formats now, before captioning.

I used the free online-convert.com site to convert my video from .avi to .mp4, .webm, and .ogv. It does have a file size limit of 100 mb for free conversions. You select the conversion type and select the file to be converted. There are plenty of options to change the screen size, bit rate, quality, and other parameters. I did not make any changes. Once you select the Convert File option, the file is uploaded, processed, and then downloaded back to your machine. Note that you are uploading your video file to a third party so you definitely don’t want to use it to convert a video with any confidential information!

Once I found a conversion program that worked well, converting the file formats was really the easiest piece of Capturing and Capturing a Screen Reader demo. The next step is Creating and Editing Captions.


About Becka11y

Web Accessibility Architect at IBM. Have worked on various open source projects including Dojo, Apache Cordova/PhoneGap, and Readium

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