Sigh. I'm not sure you understand the situation with DVDs. And when you
toss around names like that, as if the tail wagged the dog, your circular
argument fails. Let me see if I can straighten this out for a second.
Long, long ago, in a land, far, far away,
there were FORMAT WARS.
And this ain't a play thing, this is the very soul of modern society.
Modern media includes all mega corporations and multinational
businesses engaged in trillions of dollars in product. The stakes
could not be higher for the entire world.
This war was not started recently. It's been going on for decades.
VHS/Betamax. CD Standards. DVD standards. It's all about the
patents and the royalties. Because without those, these companies
wouldn't make very much money back on their investment into
developing these media.
First off, props to Sony for doing so much over the years. But
in the DVD arena, I am not for Sony and the +R/+RW.
The whole story is a bit longish, but interesting, and you should read
it for yourself in DVD Demystified, by Jim Taylor, author of
the DVD FAQ.
First A Little Video History
Videotape recording for the home started in 1965 when Phillips and
Sony introduced a B&W reel to reel system for about three grand.
The alliance between those companies persists to this day and is
central to the DVD wars.
Sony came out with a video cassette tape system in 1972 and
released Betmax in 1975. In 1976, JVC released the VHS format,
which was lower quality but won out because it was the chosen
format for pr0n. It was also 1/3 the price for a VHS tape deck.
Phillips and Pioneer released videodiscs in 1978. Those were the
big record sized discs. Now everybody tried to get into this
arena but we don't hear much about their failed attempts. MCA
came out with DiscoVision in 1979, and in 1981 RCA came out
with SelectaVision, which failed for technical reasons. JVC and
Matsushita (Panasonic) came out with VHD shortly after, and
it was not a big hit, being sold in Japan and in England. JVC
introduced S-VHS in 1987.
Onto CD History
Sony and Phillips released CD-DA in 1982, which is an audio cd.
The technical specifications book had red covers, so this was
called the Red Book standard.
In 1985 we saw the CD-ROM format appear, and it was a kick
to get ahold of one of HPs early recorders and try to make it
run on Windows 3.11. Later some crazy standards like CD+G
and CD-Video and CD-i were released, but we can forget about
Because CD-ROMs were designed by different manufactureres,
who had their hands in Operating Systems at this time, like M$,
there were several filesystem formats. In 1986, industry reps
gathered at the High Sierra Hotel and Casino near Lake Tahoe,
and delveloped the High Sierra Format. Because it had to support
MS-DOS, it was restricted to 8.3 and didn't work well for Apples
and Unix boxes. This is called ISO 9660. To it, people have
added extensions to make it work with longer filenames.
Unix created RockRidge extensions.
Microsoft created Joliet extensions.
In 1989 there was the Yellow Book standard, CD-ROM XA,
which mixes sector types and can interleave data and audio.
In 1990 there was the Orange Book standard for Magneto
Optical ( MO ) drives.
Orange book Part II is CD-R.
In 1991 is was Sony with the Mini-Disc.
Kodak and Phillips developed the Photo CD in 1992.
Orange book Part III is CD-RW, came in 1997.
Now for DVDs
In 1993, there were sputtering attempts at high quality video by
a few small players. Sony and Philips chimed in and said they
were working on something. Toshiba said it was too.
Hollywood got together and demanded a standard. Columbia (Sony), Disney,
MCA/Universal (Matsushita/Panasonic), Paramount, Viacom and
Warner Brothers were all calling for things liks 135 minutes of space
and other standards.
You see, standards are good.
Well, when there's all those big players, that means splitting
the pie many many ways, not just between Sony and Philips.
So they tried to make their own DVD format.
In late 1994, Sony and Philips came out with their own 3.7 GB
Multimedia CD, MMCD, single sided disc.
A month later, all the other big companies listed above came
out with their own standard, the Super Disc, SD, a double sided
5GB per side disc. Seven super big companies and the SD format.
So Philips and Sony gathered over 10 companies to their
side. But computer companies balked and said, HEY, get
your act together. Apple, Compaq, HP, IBM, and M$ now
now demanded a standard that said these DVD drives
must be able to read CDs and CDRs and CDRWs.
"Sony refused to budge and a month later said there would
be 'no adjustment in it DVD standards' Norio Ohga said,
'. . . a split on the standard is unavoidable because we are
in a world of democracy.' He rejeced the possiblilty of a
third standard and defended his decision ont he grounds of
'liberalism and democracy.'" p.49.
IBM told Sony they were going to side with the SD camp
and Sony caved, and over the next three years all these
groups hammered out the standards and evolved the
main committee into the DVD Consortium: Philips, Sony,
the SD camp (listed above), and Time Warner.
Matsushita: 25% of the patents
Pioneer: 20 % of the patents
Philips, Hitatchi, Toshiba: 10%
Mitsubishi, Time Warner, JVC: negligible
Well at this point, we begin the whole DVD-RAM and
DVD-R and DiVx stories, and guess what, I'm tired.
So you'll have to buy the book. But the bottom
line is that DVD-R and DVD-RW are the approved
official standards from the DVD-Forum, as is DVD-RAM.
DVD+R and DVD+RW are renegade formats being
run out by Sony and Philips and HP so that they
can hold all the royalties between three companies.
Their egregious format was considered and holds
no advantage, so it was not chosen by the Forum.
Go with the standard DVD-R, DVD-RW, DVD-RAM.