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1001 Computer Words You Need to Know$
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Jerry Pournelle

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780195167757

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780195167757.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 29 November 2021

Multimedia and You

Multimedia and You

(p.210) Multimedia and You
1001 Computer Words You Need to Know

Jerry Pournelle

Oxford University Press

While we haven’t yet reached the age of true interactive Internet, there are many video, audio and multimedia formats you will encounter that can enrich your computing experience. The big three are Windows Media Player, Quicktime, and RealPlayer. All three are compatible with Macintosh and Windows, although you may have to download them. Each handles streaming audio and video, and downloadable formats such as MP3 and MPEG. All three programs will automatically download software, if available, when they need it to play a file, and each has plugins which are automatically installed for use by your web browser, so you can play multimedia content directly from a web page. Be aware that the three programs will battle for control over which program plays which files. All three have preference settings which will allow you to make that program the default player for your chosen formats. However, each also handles a couple of proprietary formats which the others do not, so it’s good to have all three. Besides playing audio and video, the latest versions of Windows Media Player (http://windowsmedia.com/) can help you make audio CDs or import music from CDs to your hard drive. Be aware that if you rip music from your CD collection to certain Windows Media formats, those files might not be playable on other computers. WMP plays files ending in the suffixes .wmv and .wma, among others. Quicktime (http://www.apple.com/quicktime/) and iTunes (http://www.apple.com/itunes/) together handle audio and video playing, as well as advanced functions of CD-burning and music-importing. iTunes also offers the ability to share song lists over your local network—even between Macs and PCs—to convert music to MP3s, and to interface with an iPod. Quicktime plays files ending in the suffix .mov, among others. RealOne (http://www.real.com/) is the latest version of RealPlayer, which plays its own proprietary streaming formats, as well as many of the standard formats. It comes in free and pay versions, although you may have to dig for the free version. RealOne plays files ending with the suffixes .rm and .ram, among others.

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