There’s no denying that Flash has changed the world of entertainment in some pretty profound ways. Sure, some might argue that we could have done without the flash-enabled advent of floating ads, gaudy movie websites and cheaply-animated stoner cartoons , but we think that the good outweighs the bad. After all, without Flash, we’d be missing out on a whole slew of rad flash games , clever web interfaces and cheaply-animated stoner cartoons . And let’s not forget YouTube and its ilk, which have truly revolutionized the way we waste time.
However, there’s a problem with streaming video: you don’t get to keep it on your computer when you’re done. So if you want to watch something again, or to show it to your friends, you have to go back and find it on the website again. But it’s pretty easy to rip streaming video to your hard drive, and in this article we’ll show you how, as well as how to convert that video to other formats so that you can play it on your device of choice.
Nobody can beat the sheer, monolithic number of videos hosted on YouTube, but that doesn’t mean there’s no reason to check out other video sharing sites. Most of YouTube's competitors offer a higher signal-to-noise ratio than the video giant, as well as better-quality streams. For instance, we recommend that you check out some of these excellent streaming video sites:
Blip.tv – A video site that only hosts user-submitted content, largely composed of TV show-style amateur programming, without Google’s 10 minute length cap. Blip.tv stands out as having some of the best video quality of any of the streaming video sites, featuring widescreen video at a high resolution.
Once you've found some clips you like, keep reading; we'll show you the easy way to save them to your hard drive with a free program called Moyea FLV Downloader .
You can now view the downloaded video with the .flv player that comes with Moyea (if you don’t already have your own).
Note that Moyea doesn’t work for every source of streaming video. For instance, if your plan is to snag episodes of TV shows from Hulu, you’ll need to think again. It’s not impossible, though it is of dubious legality, so we’ll let you Google for programs that can accomplish that particular task on your own.
So, that’ all well and good, but what can we actually do with that .flv? A couple things, actually. Keep reading and we'll show you how to convert your .FLVs so you can play them on your mobile devices and your TV.
Here's three of our suggestions for what you can do with your downloaded .FLV files: