SMF vs Expression Player?

Jan 11, 2010 at 6:07 PM

I've used Expression Player for quite some time and it has a powerful architect and feature list. Are there any competing differences to using SMF? Do you think the frameworks will ever merge into a unified media framework (the ideal solution)?

Jan 13, 2010 at 11:48 PM

Hello and thank you for the question.  You are correct that the Expression Player does have a rich set of functionality, some of which is not implemented in SMF.  There are a number of other video players on the web with notable features as well.  We are currently planning the v.2 effort, and one of our goals is to incorporate many useful features that are common to players on the web.  The details regarding v.2 are not available right now but as soon as they are we will post them on this site.  If there are specific features you believe are most beneficial and would like to see in SMF we would like to hear about them.



Jan 14, 2010 at 1:40 PM

Thanks for the feedback Kevin. How will v2 affect the current framework API? Do you feel some major adjustments will need to be made or will you try to minimize that sort of impact?

There are many useful features (I've already implemented my fair share with Expression Player), but the key ones are:

1) Playlists. Not necessarily processing ASX files or other formats, but keep it simple like Expression Player were you simply provide the data structures for submitting playlists to the player. Among the normal playback handling, events should also be dispatched from the framework as playlist items are triggered.

2) Advertisements are a big thing, but they are also very specialized in how they get implemented. VAST, which was listed on the front page, is a good starting point for preparing the data structures, though it's wise not to tightly couple the code to the VAST protocol. That could be left as a plugin.

While not major features, commenting your code and providing API documentation (you can auto generate one using Doxygen) would make the framework more professional. I know it can be difficult at times, but Visual Studio does make it easy. Just put in three slashes and fill in the blanks :) Grouping code into directories would also make the framework more organized, You could also label your classes with the license agreement or at least copyright at the top. This way if people do make modifications, it will be clearly identifying which parts are yours vs there's.


Jan 15, 2010 at 5:59 PM

Thanks for the feedback, those are all great suggestions.  Also, there is nothing regarding Advertisements or VAST on the front page of this site, nor have we published any intent to add support for those features.

Jan 18, 2010 at 12:30 PM

I got that info from here: Not sure if that's a legit source or not, but the front page does link to it.

Jan 18, 2010 at 4:35 PM

Thanks for the link, Mike Downey's site is indeed a credible source.