Video Using Table Background Colours

If any of you have ever idly wondered whether it would be possible to do web page video using a large table with very small cells and messing with the background colours, wonder no longer – it doesn’t work.

Having spent a random 45 minutes messing around with the idea this morning before breakfast, it turns out that my 3GHz Pentium can do about 5000 table cell background colour changes a second in Deer Park alpha 1, which isn’t nearly enough for video of any decent size, frame rate and movement. Our DOM is good, but not that good :-)

If anyone wants my test code, let me know.

18 thoughts on “Video Using Table Background Colours

  1. You should be able to emulate 80×25 character mode okay, though – had a bad clone of Nibbles once. For some reason Firefox was faster than IE at setting backgrounds of table cells (at the time, which was IE6 / Firefox pre-1.0)

    Maybe you can try using aalib :)

  2. You could use the same information you would use to change the background colors to render new tables for every frame in advance (loading…) and show video frames by switching the entire table visibility.

  3. Surely then this would be an example of analogue TV.

    What with being at the cutting edge of technology you should be using colspans and rowspans to make a digital codec where only what changes is shown with keytables every few seconds.

  4. Because you’d have to place them properly…which is more intensive Imagine than tables.

  5. Ok, even for a geek, this is pretty geek.
    What’s next?
    A pure css chess game?

  6. Wow.

    Its an idea I’ve never had come to mind… but even with it not working for video, what about instead of using animated gifs, have something like a company logo be DOM-powered using this method?

    In the words of the great Mitch Hedberg: “totally unnecessary”

  7. Gerv, please file a bug, cc me, attach the files needed to test? I’ll profile when I get back to town.

  8. you know, I can also go to school by walking the 40000 km around the other side of the earth.

  9. There’s now a bug, as bz requested, and attached to it is a canvas implementation of the same thing for Neil M..

    The canvas version is probably fast enough, if you consider that you could do multiple contiguous pixels at once, and that it wouldn’t suffer from pixel jitter, and that performance is still improving, to do cartoon animation at a reasonable size.