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A Practical Guide to Video and Audio Compression by Cliff Wootton

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1

Introduction to Video Compression

1.1 Starting Our Journey

We (that is, you and I) are going to explore video compression together. It is a journey of discovery and surprise. Compression might seem daunting at this point, but like the old Chinese proverb says, “Even the longest journey starts with a single step.” Let’s head into that unknown territory together, taking it carefully, one step at a time until we reach our destination.

1.2 Video Compression Is Like …

It really is like trying to get a grand piano through a mailbox slot or an elephant through the eye of a needle. In fact, we thought the elephant was such an appropriate description, my friend Russell Merryman created a cartoon to illustrate the concept:

Video compression is all about ...

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