In today's multi-media era, audiences expect to not only to hear from presenters but to see the "moving pictures" that help tell their story. With the explosive growth of YouTube, users can often find clips there that can help meet this objective. Unfortunately, the lack of transparency on how to download YouTube video files and format incompatibilities between YouTube .flv files and Microsoft acceptable video files don't make this the easiest task. In addition to YouTube videos, many presenters are recording their own videos that are created in QuickTime and struggling to convert these for use in PowerPoint presentations.
So how can you solve these problems? Here are a few recent suggestions that are worth exploring:
The Star Bulletin Tech Writer John Aksalud has written an article "How to Use YouTube Effectively" that delineates the two steps in the process to saving and converting a YouTube video for offline use in your presentations. He provides links to 3 video download services (Keepvid.com, Savevideodownload.com and Savetube.com) and 3 conversion services ( Pazera-Software.com, Flv-to-mp3 and Prism Video Converter) to help you with this task.
San Francisco Chronicle author David Einstein has another technique for downloading YouTube videos in a recent Q& A column where he references typing in the word "kiss" in the YouTube video URL right after the www. and before youtube in the address. This takes you to the Kiss YouTube site where with one click and the word kiss you can download your YouTube video in .flv format. This video can format can in turn be converted using a tool like Videopiggy. Interestingly the Videopiggy site says that their software will do this in one step, so it appears that the "kiss" aspect of the assignment might be avoided.
I watched a couple of YouTube video in their How To series that provides examples of server based video download and conversion services like MediaConverter.org, Vixy.net, Convertyoube.com, Modifyvideo.com, vconvert.net and flvix.com along with examples and benefits of downloading and converting at your desktop using the services like those referenced elsewhere in this posting. Here's one of the videos that I watched.
Meanwhile, The New York Times Personal Tech columnist J.D. Bierdorfer offers tips on how to convert QuickTime videos to a format like .avi that are supported by PowerPoint by using either QuickTime Pro or services like RAD Video Tools or MediaCoder.
Look elsewhere on this blog for other references for how best to accomplish this task.