At NCTE, the ISTE NETS-A session went on for quite awhile…and I recorded it using the FLIP video camera. Since I’m using UbuntuLinux right now, I thought I’d convert the AVI video file that FLIP recorded to using some esoteric linux tool.

Here’s what I found out that worked:

Slightly pixellated but passable for Web video…at the command line, type (or paste)

ffmpeg -i original.avi -ar 44100 -ab 32 -f flv original.flv

Change original.avi to reflect the name of the AVI file. I’m not sure how to improve the quality so that will mean doing some reading but…it’s nice to know how to do the file conversion on UbuntuLinux!

BTW, to go the other way:

  • The open source mencoder is one possibility. See this how-to for a simple usage example.
  • Another common solution is to use ffmpeg. Here’s an example :
    ffmpeg -i myvideo.flv -f avi -vcodec mpeg4 myvideo.avi
    Or, if you prefer the MPG format :
    ffmpeg -i myvideo.flv myvideo.mpg

You can also convert AVI to MP3 audio file:

ffmpeg -i original.avi -vn original.mp3

Nifty! Other neat ffmpeg commands are available online here at CatsWhoCode.

Some of my favorites:

  • Turn X images to a video sequence
    ffmpeg -f image2 -i image%d.jpg video.mpg
  • Turn video to X images
    ffmpeg -i video.mpg image%d.jpg
  • Extract Audio from AVI video
    ffmpeg -i source_video.avi -vn -ar 44100 -ac 2 -ab 192 -f mp3 sound.mp3
  • Convert AVI to Animated GIF
    ffmpeg -i video_origine.avi gif_anime.gif
  • Mix a video with a sound file
    ffmpeg -i son.wav -i video_origine.avi video_finale.mpg

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