Apr 302011

ITunesSpeak is a very simple program I made for iTunes on Windows that uses voice synthesis to read aloud the name of the song currently playing.

This can be useful if you put your music on random and people keep asking you “What’s that tune?

Once launched, the program sits in the system tray (icons on the bottom, beside the clock) and offers a simple menu.

There is no installation; simply open the archive and execute the application.

Photo of the menu

You can download it here


If you have any ideas for improvements, let me know.

The source code is available on request. It is based on the iTunes SDK and Microsoft SAPI (Text to speech TTS), both communicating with COM.

Apr 042011

More and more people have video (or photo) camera that can capture high resolution videos.

If you don’t own a Blu-ray burner but you have a DVD burner and a Blu-ray player, I have good news for you:

It is possible to put about 30 minutes of “Full HD” (1080p) video on a standard DVD. This type of DVD is called an AVCHD-DVD.

The best part: it is free!

Here are the easy steps to create your Full HD DVD using multiAVCHD:

  1. Produce some HD footage.
    • If you use Adobe Premiere CS5, export your video in H.264 (.mp4) using the HDTV preset.
    • Many formats are acceptable but, if you can, choose H.264 as it does offer the best quality.
  2. Download and install multiAVCHD  from here.
  3. Download and install ImgBurn from here.
    • Pay attention to refuse any third party offer such as the Ask! Toolbar.
  4. Launch “multiAVCHD” from the Windows Start menu.
  5. In the “settings” tab, check “Use ImgBurn”.
  6. Click on the “Add video files” button and choose your source video(s).
  7. Click on the “Start” button.
  8. Many output formats are available, choose “AVCHD for optical media → AVCHD (strict)” as it is the most compatible format across different brands of Blu-ray players.
  9. The processing could take a while if your video needs recompression, when it is finished ImgBurn should launch and burn the DVD automatically.
  10. Put your DVD in your home cinema Blu-ray player.