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Re: generic multimedia reader ?

Salam all,

I made a quicky search on google, but I couldn't find any serious OSS authoring project... I certainly entered wrong keywords or something so maybe another essay is required ;)
The prog proposed by Hicham (gcompris) seem to be specific to children activities (i may be wrong) while Nadim wants a prog that may fit with any type of content: religious, educational, entertainment...

I have no idea about the amount of work needed to make gcompris become such a template program. But i know that it is sometimes (not always) better to start from scratch than trying to 'understand' a working program :) Besides, the idea proposed by Nadim can be brought quickly to life regarding to the experience aquired by the Quran project developers ;)

And we must keep in mind that software like 'Macromedia Authorware' are developed by big societies with a well established reputation and many developers working, and that they are charged very very very expensively (say $2500)... So I think that there's no way for a competition :( But the idea sounds promising !

Again, I think that it can be easily done regarding what has been achieved so far.



From: Nadim Shaikli <shaikli at yahoo dot com>
Reply-To: developer at arabeyes dot org
To: developer at arabeyes dot org
Subject: generic multimedia reader ?
Date: Wed, 22 Jan 2003 13:30:50 -0800 (PST)

Salam all.  I've had this idea for awhile and didn't have the time to sit
down and write anything about it till now.  With the recent success of the
'quran' project (the project has attracted a great number of new developers
which rates highly in my book, plus its a wonderful noble project).

A couple of thoughts come to mind,

1. Has anyone given thought to extending the current 'quran' project to
include Hadith or a means to link it in somehow ? Seems like a logical
next step.

 2. Start a new project (similar to 'quran') which is more generic in its
    purpose and content.  In other words, call it a 'generic reader' or a
    'multimedia browser'.  This agent/application would have a generic
    means of displaying whatever is given to it in a particular format
    (say like in an XML file or something).  It would be able to display
    pictures, text, etc.  The main purpose of such a thing would be to
    bring forth a means to display children's stories and various other
    learning/teaching material.  Given a particular file format
    specification people can port any (and all of their) stories, teaching
    documents, etc (could even be the Holy Quran itself) and be displayed.

    So now you see why I'm putting all of this under the quran project
    context -- there are similarities.  Some will say, just use HTML and
    a browser and my reply to them would be "we need to make it simple and
    easy".  In other words, if someone would like to scan a few pictures
    he/she drew and would like to add text to it to make a story about
    ducks and chickens :-), then we should try to make it really simple
    for him/her to do so.  Something like showing a 2-pan open page book
    (ie. go grab a book and open it in the middle and view if from top,
    that's what it should look like) with the right (or left) page showing
    the picture and the other page showing the text -- a couple of buttons
    for prev/next to show subsequent pages, etc; very simplistic (we can
    add voice/video later if need be).

Its been suggested that there are similar "for-money" (ie. closed source)
projects out there that do similar things (I'm not familiar with any of
them myself), but will mention them in case people are interested in
finding out more about them for discussion purposes,

  + Macromedia Director
  + Macromedia Authorware
  + Magenta Composer/Player
  + Opus

In short, its an idea which seems kinda-of an extension to what is already
taking place and as such I would love to hear what people think and have
to say with regards to this. Keep in mind that one of the things we're
trying to do is to increase Linux's circulation in the Arab world and we
most certainly need to do it in the Universities and Schools in general,
so why not generate content that approaches our kids and younger generations.
If we make things simple enough, we can have kids create their own stories
and content :-)

Does anyone know if there are similar ideas/projects in the open source
community that we could look at and learn from or maybe extend and use ?

Ideas/Thoughts/Comments ?


- Nadim

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