#307: Link enhancer

Just a few years ago, the idea of being able to embed a video in your website would have been thought far-fetched. The whole YouTube phenomenon now makes that routinely possible (even if their website itself looks like some kind of cutting room jumble sale).

Looks are important in this highly visual medium, especially if you’re relying on ad revenue -which brings me to today’s invention.


Often, when I run across some kind of a video link on another website, the still image which contains the link is ‘muddy’, indistinct, blurred and frankly uninviting. It usually consists of a single frame of video, so it’s not surprising that the perceived quality will be low, given how much mental work goes into interpreting any flickering sequence of images into a meaningful, continuous film. Take a look here at an example of exactly what I mean.

More often than not, this smudge doesn’t tie up wth the crisp text which surrounds it -lessening the chance that you will bother viewing the movie at all.

Today’s invention is a tool which enables anyone creating a link to a video to choose one representative ‘frame’ (by stepping through the sequence). The tool will then grab several before and after images and use these (together with the usual automatic processes such as contrast and edge enhancement) to make a clearer, more inviting image link.

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