[Matroska-devel] Does Matroska Suck ?

Christian HJ Wiesner chris at matroska.org
Tue Oct 18 11:03:36 CEST 2005

Steve Lhomme schrieb:

> http://www.scottberkun.com/essays/essay46.htm
> The answer is not there. But it's a good article to understanding what 
> it takes to do something good.

Great article ! As i am basically presenting the user fraction in the 
team, forming a 'counterforce' to you guys being developers, i can't 
agree more on what he writes for example about the 'beauty of code'. As 
this may be very relevant to you, we users couldn't care less about it.

The biggest downsides of matroska for us users, compared to AVI, is 
still the missing convertability of MKV files into other formats, DVD 
having the highest priority. For this reason i was trying to find a 
cooperation partner here for us, but you see what is happening to my 
emails, for example the ones i sent the people from DVD Santa. These 
people, having decided to read files into their app via DShow, are so 
close to a working solution, but still they don't care nor respond (i 
might ask Dan Marlin to write them an email, signed with 'CEO Corecodec' 
... maybe this will help ;-) ).

Another thing is STILL, despite all the hard work from Haali, the 
serious playback problems we are facing on some machines. Now, its easy 
to stand at the position  '...well, this is their fault, they shouldnt 
have installed so many codec packs and other shit....'   but i believe 
we are making things to easy for us here. Did you know that a CD/DVD 
burning app is installing about a dozen different DirectShow filters 
these days, for their multimedia support ? Now lets think for a moment 
you knew that, but do you think a normal user has the faintest clue of 
what Nero is doing to his machine, when he decides to install even the 
Demo Version only, for testing ?

In other words, its too easy to say its their fault. Its not, because 
many apps and 'codec packs' are raping their machines, and they won't 
know. All they experience, when trying to play this fancy MKV files they 
jut got, that
- they dont play at all
- no video or audio files will play anymore
- the PC is crashing when trying to play MKV files

Being a normal user, who would you believe is the guilty, if either one 
will happen after installing our DShow playback pack ? Nero ? A codec 
pack you installed more than a year ago, and about which you forgot 
about in the mean time ? Now, we could show a state of mind like '.... 
well, we cant care about anybody ....' , but then we have to be aware 
that one sole negative voice is often louder than 100 positive voices. 
If people are frustrated, they make themselves heard, and the internet 
will help them because it will save your anonymity.

For this very reason i am more and more inclined to believe, that we 
should be able to offer an alternative (NOT a replacement) to DShow, and 
soon. This can be VLC or Gstreamer or anything else built on top of 
FFMPEG, but it needs to have
- a nice GUI, similar to what people are used to from DShow players (VLC ?)
- a DShow reader module, to be able to use DShow decoders like Gabest's 
Realmedia splitter, or the ON2 decoder
- another significant advantage to DShow players, like lower CPU 
consumption for h.264, to make at least some Pro's (multiplicators) using it

Besides that, the success of our project is based on the user 
friendliness of the matroska tools compared to similar projects. This 
should not be reason for us to stand still, there is still a lot of work 
to do to be the best. On the other, without mmg.exe, VdubMod (especially 
in the beginning) or the DShow splitters we could offer, matroska would 
be nowhere. Lets build on this experience, try to progress from where we 
are today and make sure that only a very small percentage of the 
matroska users are of different opinion about this.

matroska project admin

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