Hack, Remix, Recreate Online Videos With Mozilla's Popcorn Maker

The free online video editor lets you add Wikipedia links, Twitter feeds, and other web bits to your videos to make the act of watching them less passive, more active.

If your definition of "interactive" web video doesn't include much more than clicking off the red annotations that pop up on YouTube videos, Mozilla wants you to meet Popcorn Maker, a free web app that lets you remix online videos by adding links, social media feeds, maps, and photos.

Start by taking a media link from YouTube, Vimeo, or SoundCloud, or an HTML5 video. Then customize it by dragging and dropping multimedia extras, which Mozilla calls "Events," right on top of the video in the Popcorn Maker interface. Event include anything from basic images, text, and pop-ups to Twitter feeds, Wikipedia excerpts, and Google Maps footage.

All these additions help to turn the otherwise passive viewing experience into a feature-rich interactive experience that fosters deeper viewer engagement, all done with a minimal learning curve. And Mozilla isn't the only one exploring the potential of interactive video: Advertisers on YouTube, for example, are experimenting with shoppable videos and video ads that are bringing us one step closer to the day when we'll be able to click to instantly buy products featured in the videos we're watching.

"Until now, video on the web has been stuck inside a little black box," says Popcorn Director Brett Gaylor in a blog post. "Popcorn Maker changes that, making video work like the rest of the web: hackable, linkable, remixable, and connected to the world around it."

[Image: Flickr user superiphi]

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