Under The Microscope

Perian Is Awesome

In yesterday’s Airfoil 3 tour, Mike talked extensively about Airfoil Video Player (AVP). As he noted briefly, we use Perian to play lots of video formats QuickTime doesn’t support by default.

QuickTime is able to play a nice variety of files, but it also misses out on many popular formats. Fortunately, it can be extended with additional components, and the good folks at Perian have provided a free QuickTime component which provides support for a large number of popular audio and video formats. In order to ensure that Airfoil Video Player can play as many files as possible, we’ve bundled Perian inside it, and it automatically loads it as needed. Ideally you won’t even be able to tell it’s there, except for how AVP is able to successfully open and play your media.

AVP uses its own internal version of Perian (we don’t install it, to minimize hassle and problems). If you have a newer version, however, AVP will pick that up and use it. So if you’re interested in using Perian with QuickTime Player, just install it globally. You can find everything you need at http://www.perian.org.

In the spirit of Donald Knuth, we sent 0x200 hex bucks to Perian on the day we released Airfoil (That’s $512 USD for those on a more normal monetary system). Apparently, in so doing, we shattered the single-donation record previously held by Michael Crichton (who also happens to own Audio Hijack Pro). You don’t have to work at a bizarrely-named software company or be a Hollywood big shot to enjoy Perian, though. Check it out at the Perian site, and if you use it, make a donation.

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