RealProducer Code Hits Open Source Helix

The all-out push by Seattle-based RealNetworks for control of the digital media sector got another boost Monday with the release of source code for the Helix DNA Producer.

On the heels of the recent release of the Helix DNA Client, RealNetworks said the move to lift the lid off the RealProducer code would give developers access to the guts of the technology use to create multi-format content for PCs, Web cams, traffic cameras, personal video recorders and mobile phones.

Helix DNA Producer is the second of a three-part strategy by RealNetworks to launch a counterattack against its largest rival Microsoft . The ambitious Helix Community strategy is to let developers use the source code to build digital media software (like media players) that allows playback in a range of formats, including Microsoft Windows Media.

Ever since the move was announced in July, RealNetworks said more than 5,000 developers have registered with the Helix Community. “Momentum for Helix continues to accelerate. Now with the Helix DNA Producer we are taking Helix to the next level, by making it easier than ever for developers to create applications for content creation in the professional, industrial and consumer markets,” said RealNetworks CEO Rob Glaser.

He said application developers can use the source code to integrate RealAudio, RealVideo and Ogg Vorbis output and to expand the outputs to any number of media formats — including rival formats like Windows Media, Apple’s QuickTime, MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MP3 and MPEG-4.

Helix DNA Producer code is available for the Windows and Linux operating systems and RealNetworks said a pre-beta release of the Mac OS X version is also available. The company plans to license the Helix DNA Producer under both an open source and a commercial community source license, which are free of charge and include development and distribution rights.

Community source licensees porting Helix DNA Producer to other platforms can access the source code of RealAudio and RealVideo for that purpose.

Features within the Helix Community include an SDK encoding engine, logging capabilities, input filters, Ogg Vorbis support, capture from Audio and Video devices, ability to encode in RealAudio/RealVideo (available in binary code form), RealMedia file output and broadcast capabilities and RealEvent support.

Separately, RealNetworks unveiled a new plug-in for Adobe Premiere versions 6.0 and 6.5 that provides support for RealVideo 9 encoding.

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