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MediaCrush for Nerds

If you aren't familiar with MediaCrush, a quick introduction: MediaCrush is a media hosting website designed for speedy hosting, without sacrificing quality. We run uploaded static images through various lossless compression tools, but the big draw is our GIF support. Whenever you upload a gif to MediaCrush, we convert it to a video using h.264 and Theora to encode it, which gets us dramatically smaller files. More details are available on the about page. You might also check out this corresponding post aimed at non-technical users. In addition to GIFs and static images, we also support video and audio uploads.

We're just tidying up around the place here before entering public beta. We're happy to have support from Reddit Enhancement Suite on day one, which we think will really benefit us. All the features we wanted to get in have gotten in, and we're pretty satisfied with the site. I just wanted to take a moment to ramble about our thoughts behind the site, from a developer perspective.

Privacy and Transparency

First, I want to talk a little bit about how much effort we put into making it perfect for our users. We wanted to be sure it was everything you could ever want out of your image hosting site. Here's a few things we made sure to do for the sake of our technically adept friends:

You can learn all the gory details about our stance on privacy and such on our "serious" page.

Open Source Software

Everything about MediaCrush is completely free, as in freedom. The site is written in Python, runs on Linux, and uses open-source tools for media processing. Not only that, the site itself is completely open source. We welcome your contributions. Additionally, we tried to be as encouraging of clones as we can. In the repository, you'll find instructions on how to set up your own MediaCrush clone. We're not too scared of competetion - clones won't get our name, server capacity, RES support, etc, but we still want to make it so that you're able to set up your own version if you'd like. We selected the very liberal MIT license for MediaCrush, so feel free to do whatever you want with it.

MediaCrush is also pretty dependent on open source software. The biggest of these is ffmpeg, an amazing piece of software that can do anything with video files. It runs our processing server and makes those gifs into videos for extra sexy load times. We also use software like jhead to strip exif tags out of JPG files.

Beta Time

Most of you will probably read this after we hit beta, but for us, we're still getting ready. We're pretty damn excited about this software, and hope it'll go far. You can let us know your thoughts by commenting here. You can also join us and listen in on (or contribute to) development chatter on our IRC channel (irc://). If we've missed anything at all, please let us know and we'll do our best to get it in. Thanks for using MediaCrush!

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