A Book on Multimedia

I presume those interested in multimedia coding have heard of “Data Compression: The Complete Reference” by David Salomon. Personally I consider this book very good but maybe we should write our own book concentrating on multimedia only. Why? I have not seen books where video (and audio) compression is not merely outlined (like in most books on general data compression) or is not solely dedicated to some standard
(MPEG usually).

I gladly remember this book as it’s quite outdated but at least it covers many codec, container and even implementation issues (unfortunately, sound only))!

My proposal for book outline:

  • General multimedia concept (pixels, samples, PCM, DCT)
  • Audio compression
    • Simple time-domain codecs (DPCM, ADPCM)
    • Complex time-domain codecs (lossless mostly)
    • Speech codecs
    • MDCT-based codecs and friends
    • How to write a fast decoder and good encoder (or otherwise)
  • Image Compression
  • Video compression
    • Lossless coding
    • Game video codecs (who will write this?)
    • Modern standard and non-standard codecs
    • Implementation tips and tricks
    • Known codecs (implementation-wise) overview
  • Containers
    • Why making codecs dependent on custom container is idiotic 🙂
    • File-based containers
    • Streaming containers

And I know where to get information ;-). Well, let’s see if this catches up.

8 Responses to “A Book on Multimedia”

  1. lu_zero says:

    Sign me up =)

  2. Benjamin Larsson says:

    I have several books covering lots of theoretical concepts. What I would like a book to be is that it covers both teoretical and practical issues. For example it is easy to describe vlc/huffman coding in theory but how to implement it in a good way I havn’t seen.

  3. Robert Swain says:

    I enjoy writing, illustrating, learning and teaching so I am definitely interested in putting a chunk of my time and effort into writing a book with ‘you guys’. 🙂

    Plus I’m looking to learn some more compression theory and what better way to understand something well than to try to explain it to someone else?

    I will have to compare Kostya’s post with some notes I made on the matter on IRC and possibly make a post about it myself but I think the general approach would be to consider what the aim of the book(s) is to be, what general topics we would like to cover and then more specific subtopic details.

    I also think, if we’re to make this somewhat a community effort, we should decide on some guidelines for the style of ‘articles’ within this tome.

  4. Benoit Fouet says:

    This sounds really good to me as i want to dive back into signal processing.
    You can definitely count me in !

  5. When I first started studying multimedia back in 2000, I had no trouble finding theoretical texts. But the math was too much for me and none of the books explained how to, for example, transform an MPEG bitstream into a picture. That’s why I started my documentation efforts– to focus on the practical.

  6. Steve says:

    Someone recommended the book “Digital Video Compression” by Peter Symes, and from what I’ve read of it so far, I’ve liked it. It makes the effort to connect theoretical concepts with something more concrete.

    I would definitely be interested in any book written by you guys.

  7. Gouchi says:

    Will be a great idea ! And then publish it on lulu or In Libro Veritas 😉

  8. Coderjoe says:

    I’ve read “The Data Compression Book” ( http://www.amazon.com/Data-Compression-Book-Mark-Nelson/dp/1558514341/ref=sr_1_7/104-6430753-5384715?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1194642261&sr=1-7 ) and it suffers from the same problem, it glosses over audio and image compression, and hardly mentions video compression at all.

    I would LOVE to see a well-written book that covers multimedia compression. One thing I don’t see listed in the video compression outline you gave is colorspaces. Perhaps that fits under image compression or tips and tricks.