I mentioned back in January that there was a push to improve open video, something I think is very important for the future of the web. Chris Blizzard pointed to a recent Theora update which includes screenshots of the progress that has been made. It’s very impressive to actually see. Even more impressive is the mention that it’s using the “same encoder parameters, equal bitrates”. This isn’t just turning up the bitrate in an attempt to improve quality.
Since these improvements are in the encoder rather than the format, or the playback library that means existing Theora users, as well as all Firefox 3.5 users will be benefiting from the work already done, as well as work done in the future without needed continued software updates, though I bet even playback will get some improvements over time.
Even better is that open video is free unlike most other formats out there.