[AG-TECH] Adams Platform

Frank Sweetser fs at WPI.EDU
Thu Jan 15 10:57:48 CST 2004

On Thu, Jan 15, 2004 at 09:59:16AM -0600, Jeff Carpenter wrote:
> I just read about this on one of my streaming video lists.  Has anyone 
> heard of the Adams Platform compression algorithm?
> They claim to be sending DVD quality video & audio over 24000 kbps modems 
> with their proprietary compression.
> http://web.archive.org/web/19990430015742/http://www.theage.com.au/daily/980519/infotech/infotech1.html 

Ignoring the fact that I've seen this type of claim ("Shannon's limit broken!
Infinite bandwidth for all!") before, this whole thing sounds pretty fishy.

To start with (quotes from the above link)

	His solution, which he calls "Adam's Platform'' is a compression
	algorithm that can, he says, perform the miraculous transfer a 1.3
	gigbyte video file to a 1.4 megabyte floppy disk.

I've never heard of *any* valid compression scheme that gets a 1000 to 1 ratio.

Later on, he goes on to say

	Clark said he got the idea while working on content for video display
	walls for the Knox City shopping centre more than two years ago.

	"I sat down day and night for two weeks to devise a computer algorithm
	to deliver files down a standard phone line,'' Clark said. "There were
	no high bandwidth lines at the time; it wasn't an issue.

While not completely impossible, I think anyone who's done major work on
software projects of this kind of complexity would agree that it's pretty

The bit that really sets my Bogosity meter off the scale though is

	And indeed, in a system test for IT at his premises, Clark demonstrated
	what appeared to be full 768 x 576 video and 44.1Khz stereo audio
	streaming in real-time down a 2400bps modem line from the server to the
	PowerPC client.

	But he declined repeated offers to replicate the results on quarantined
	equipment at The Age offices, citing "security concerns''.

I'm also not encouraged by the impression I get that he's doing everything he
can to secure as much revenue as possible before letting anyone actually *use*
this Wonderful! New! Technology!  It could be really need if he can deliver,
but I'm not holding my breath for it.

Frank Sweetser fs at wpi.edu
WPI Network Engineer

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