ORTC Library – Introduction

Object RTC (ORTC) is a free, open project that enables mobile endpoints to talk to servers and web browsers with Real-Time Communications (RTC) capabilities via native and simple Javascript APIs. The Object RTC components are being optimized to best serve this purpose.Our mission: To enable rich, high quality, RTC applications to be developed in mobile endpoints and servers via native toolkits, simple Javascript APIs and HTML5. It is also a mandate that Object RTC be compatible with WebRTC.

The Object RTC initiative is a project supported by Hookflash, Microsoft, Google and others. The ORTC C++ Library is a project maintained by Hookflash. To sponsor ORTC Lib projects send an email to sales@hookflash.com

Do you really want a dual MTI video codec for WebRTC?

H.264 AVC for WebRTC VP8 - Webm

Update: There is now some healthy conversation in the IETF WG around what “compliant” and “compatible” actually mean. More on this as it unfolds.

We are now in the final throes of a consensus call in the IETF around which video codec should be made mandatory for those building WebRTC apps, services et al, who wish to be considered “WebRTC Compliant”. The codec contenders are VP8 and H.264, in many forms and combinations.

This latest consensus call is for both codecs to be mandated for all WebRTC endpoints, or “dual MTI codec”. I am sure I will catch hell from someone on language but that is the essence of it. As one might expect, there are some that are in favor and some that are against a dual MTI video codec. Those in favor seem motivated to accept this based on the promise of interoperability that might follow and other reasons. As one might expect, we are all quite eager to put this debate to bed so we could get on with other work.

This is not a decision that should be made lightly. Let’s consider the implications. Imposing a dual MTI suggests that every developer that wishes to produce a WebRTC compliant app must implement both codecs.

Coming from a co-founder of an RTC toolkit vendor I can tell you that this does not sit very well with me, nor others in the WebRTC WG. One glance at the thread comments should provide some insight.

I find it difficult to agree to mandate a dual MTI codec knowing that there are a great many developers who will not want or will be in a position to implement both codecs. Yes, many WebRTC SDK vendors will support both. Even if both codecs and their transports are provided as part or could be easily added to the application at compile time it doesn’t mean that every developer will want to implement or ship both codecs.

Bottom line is, according this consensus, if developers do not implement/ship both codecs they are not considered WebRTC compliant. To me, this seems like a rather unreasonable expectation. Developers should be able to choose which codec they ship, and not be forced to do 2x the work to become compliant.

I would love to hear from other developers on this. Do you plan on implementing both VP8 and H.264 in your apps?

ORTC Interview: webrtchacks’ Chad Hart & Robin Raymond #webrtc

webrtcH4cKS: ~ ORTC is not the “Other” RTC: Q&A with ORTC CG Chair Robin Raymond

Char Hart of webrtchacks.com interviewed ORTC Chair – Robin Raymond on a range of topics. Excerpt:

Biggie vs. Tupac. Gates vs. Jobs. Apple vs. Samsung.  Nothing catches people’s attention for no legitimate reason like a feud. Unfortunately this isn’t just a celebrity phenomenon. Feuds have been endemic even to real communications as well. From the very beginning, Elisha Gray’s dispute with Alexander Graham Bell over the original telephone patent showed the industry has a propensity for squabbles…

Read the rest here…

What’s a WebRTC app, exactly?

nojitter - what is a webrtc app

Dave Michels (Journalist: Nojitter, Talkingpointz) recently posted this article pondering what makes a WebRTC app, a WebRTC app.

It touches on some interesting points, namely “a WebRTC app is not defined by its wrapper.” Here is an excerpt from the post..

Google Chrome was the first browser to support WebRTC, and most of the new applications rely on Chrome in order to be plugin-free. Other browsers that support WebRTC include Mozilla Firefox and Opera. These browsers use much of the same code, yet compatibility issues exist because Chrome has considerably more capability than what’s specified in the WebRTC specification….

Read the entire article here..

2014 WebRTC & ORTC Events – Fall / Winter Schedule

September

  • Sept 30 – Oct 2 / Chicago – IIT Real-time Communications Conference
    (For me, this is “the” objective gathering of the brightest technical minds in the RTC space.) Robin Raymond will be speaking on ORTC / WebRTC 1.1 and also Cloud + P2P Communications.

October

  • 30-31 Oct / Santa Clara – W3C TPAC / WebRTC WG Meeting
    (W3C Technical Plenary / Advisory Committee Meetings Week which includes WebRTC Working Group meetings. This should be a rather interesting set of meetings for the WebRTC WG, for a variety of reasons.)

(tba) Oct ? / Web – W3C ORTC Community Group Meeting

November

December

Hookflash, Google and Microsoft lead on ORTC / WebRTC 1.1 Public Draft

webrtc1.1_logo

The first ORTC Public Draft Specification has been published, authored by Hookflash, Microsoft, and Google. (http://ortc.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/ortc.html ) This specification extends WebRTC 1.0 with new functionality to create a WebRTC 1.1 API with exceptional flexibility and no loss of compatibility.

Like WebRTC, ORTC (Object Real-time Communication) enables plugin-free real-time communications for mobile, web and cloud, but is specifically tailored to provide the direct control needed to enable advanced multimedia and conferencing features.

“We heard developers say that they wanted more direct control over the technologies available in WebRTC. At the same time, we didn’t want existing developers to have to start over with a new API. ORTC is our proposal for how we can accomplish both of these things – a new set of APIs for direct control, that builds off the existing WebRTC 1.0 API set. As an evolution of the existing API, we consider this WebRTC 1.1” comments Justin Uberti, Google Tech Lead, WebRTC. “We’re grateful to Hookflash for their work to get ORTC off the ground. They have been instrumental in making this cross-industry collaboration happen, and we look forward to continuing our work with them.”

This newly published public draft has come a long way since the W3C ORTC Community Group was formed in mid-2013. As it has progressed from an initial set of ideas to a fleshed-out draft complete enough for implementations, several companies have gotten closely involved, with Microsoft and Google now joining Hookflash as authors of the emerging specification.

“We have been working hard to get the ORTC API to the point where it can be implemented. This would not have been possible without the initial and continuing work of Hookflash”, commented Bernard Aboba, Principal Architect, Skype, “We also are excited by the ORTC API’s support for advanced video features such as SVC (Scalable Video Coding) and simulcast. The Javascript Object API approach has made these advanced video technologies more accessible, which has been difficult in the past.”

The W3C ORTC Community Group now numbers more than 60 participants.

“We believe the contributions to WebRTC 1.1 / ORTC will allow web communications technology to become ubiquitous and transcend nearly all communications technologies that came before it” says Hookflash Co-founder, Erik Lagerway, “We are honored to be working with some of the brightest minds at Google, Microsoft, and the other contributing members in the ORTC CG to mature WebRTC into a universal go-to toolkit enabling communications across the globe.”

For more information on ORTC, see:
W3C ORTC Community Group
ORTC.org – History and FAQs
WebRTC.is – ORTC & WebRTC news

Hookflash enables real-time social, mobile, and web communications for integration of voice, video, messaging with federated identity into world leading software, enterprise, applications, networks, mobile and computing devices. Hookflash and Open Peer are trademarks of Hookflash Inc.

Developers can register at (http://fly.hookflash.me) to start using the Hookflash RTC service and toolkits today. For more information on Hookflash RTC toolkits and White Labeling please visit Hookflash http://hookflash.com.

Come and work at one of the coolest companies in the space! We’re now hiring for these development positions: iOS, Android, Node.js & C++ send us your resume: jobs@hookflash.com.

Hookflash – Trent Johnsen
855-466-5352 Ext: 1

ORTC CG Meeting – 5

A few more changes to be made before we call for implementations, very, very close now. Should happen in next couple of weeks with new Editor’s draft.

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