[Athen] FW: WGBH Releases "CC for Flash" - Free Tool to Simplify Captioning for Flash

Pratik Patel pratikp1 at gmail.com
Thu Mar 8 20:37:05 PST 2007

March 8, 2007

WGBH Access Division Creates "CC for Flash" to
Simplify Captioning for Adobe Flash Technology

Accessibility and Search Enhanced by Free Tool;
Easy-to-Embed Flash-Based-Media Player also Available

Use of AdobeR FlashR technology to add dynamic
and engaging video content to Web sites is
growing exponentially. With WGBH's new solution,
developers are able to more easily add captions
in Flash. Now, millions of users who are deaf or
hard of hearing are better able to experience
Web-based video in Flash and search engines are
able to capitalize on captions as search metadata for SWF content.

WGBH, Boston's public broadcaster and a
decades-long pioneer in developing access
solutions to media for audiences with
disabilities has created a component for Flash,
CC for Flash, that can be authored into any SWF
file for playback in Adobe Flash Player. The
component is easy to use, and freely available
from the NCAM Web site at http://ncam.wgbh.org/webaccess/ccforflash.

Funding for development of CC for Flash was
provided by a grant to WGBH's Carl and Ruth
Shapiro Family National Center for Accessible
Media (NCAM) from the NEC Foundation of America,
with additional support provided by Yahoo!

CC for Flash: The Details

. Uses external files produced in the W3C's
Distribution Format Exchange Profile (DFXP) of the Timed-Text Authoring

. Imports existing formats such as Apple
QuickTime's QTtext, with support for Microsoft's SAMI format soon to follow.

. Exposes many of its internal functions through
ActionScriptTM language so that the author can
control and customize many of the features.

. Can play back caption metadata that has been
embedded in the video by tools such as Captionate.

. Can be linked to any video playback components
in Flash or directly to Netstream objects in the SWF of the FLV file.

. Allows the author to set the caption display
box coordinates and default text attributes, like
background color, text foreground color, font
face and size, opacity, etc., at authoring time.
At playback time, any text attributes that are
explicitly defined in the external caption file will override the defaults.

. Captions can be added after the video content
in Flash is posted, allowing for flexibility
across production and distribution environments.

. Allows captions to be searched.

. Comes with an optional player, ccPlayer for
Flash, which allows those unfamiliar with Flash
programming to embed video content in Flash into
a Web page with minimal effort.

. Is compatible with Flash MX2004 (7) and 8 authoring packages.

A Best Friend for CC for Flash: MAGpie

MAGpie, NCAM's free do-it-yourself captioning and
description application allows developers to
create captions once, and then to output those
captions in multiple formats, including QuickTime, Windows Media, and Real.

NCAM has now added the W3C's new timed-text
format, the Distribution Format Exchange Profile
(DFXP), to MAGpie's caption export options.
MAGpie version 2.0.2 is the only tool available
today for authoring DFXP caption files. With
MAGpie and CC for Flash, it's now easier than
ever to provide captions for Flash Player compatible video content.

WGBH's Media Access Group can also provide Flash
caption authoring services for long-form content
not easily handled by MAGpie, and for producers
who would rather outsource their captioning work.
WGBH's Media Access Group, since 1972 the leader
in providing captioning and description to the
broadcast, film, educational and online media
worlds, is now the first organization that can
provide DFXP captions for Flash presentations.

About NCAM and WGBH

The Carl and Ruth Shapiro Family National Center
for Accessible Media at WGBH is a research,
development and advocacy entity that works to
make existing and emerging technologies
accessible to all audiences. NCAM is part of the
Media Access Group at WGBH, which also includes
The Caption Center (est. 1972), and Descriptive
Video ServiceR (est. 1990). For more information, visit access.wgbh.org.

WGBH Boston is America's preeminent public
broadcasting producer, the source of fully
one-third of PBS's prime-time lineup, along with
some of public television's best-known lifestyle
shows and children's programs and many public
radio favorites. WGBH is the number one producer
of Web sites on pbs.org, one of the most
trafficked dot-org Web sites in the world. For
more information, visit www.wgbh.org.

Adobe, ActionScript and Flash are either
trademarks or registered trademarks of Adobe
Systems Incorporated in the United States and/or other countries.

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