Mojiti and BubblePly offer time based video annotation for content posted on the main online video sharing sites. With these you can add your own subtitles or speech bubbles or other commentary to videos while they play for sharing and commenting by other viewers (who have to view the annotated video’ through either BubblePly or Mojiti).
The source file on YouTube etc stays untouched and what these two services are doing is hosting the annotations and then overlaying them as the source video plays embedded in their site.
This is a nifty idea and something that Mike Jones first suggested would be cool – in relation to some art and academic projects – about a year ago around our lunch table. Well, now it is here.
I’d assume that for most this will be a gimmick (see the sample movies on BubblePly) or useful for niche audiences (see the subtitling samples on Mojiti) but there are some really interesting possibilities for artists and others to play around with this technology too.
I remember a presentation by some academic researchers at University of Queensland who were experimenting with SMIL to build automated narrative generators and video search tools. I am not 100% sure of the project but it could have been related to the work of the Harmony Project.