YouTube is a new service that is pretty much like Flickr with photos, but YouTube is with Video. I must say, I am very impressed by it as well. It is a free service that allows you to upload up to 100MB each video, which in my opinion is a generous amount of space. You can share your videos, recieve commentary, browse other videos, make a favorites list, and even make a listing of your friends from YouTube.
One feature that I was pleased to see was that when you view videos, they are not showing the actual files with Quicktime or Windows Media Player plugins, but they convert the videos into Shockwave Flash (SWF) Files. I like this because it is faster loading, looks better (as you can see with the below screenshot), and it is probably a better move for YouTube space wise. It is a simple play, pause, and mute capable player, but that is all that is needed. Videos stream fairly fast (of course depending on the size of the video).
What I also liked was the commenting feature. It is your average comment system but also give you the ability to add an attachment (see below). It will generate a list of your uploaded videos and the videos that are your favorites and allow you to attach them to the comment you are making.
When adding a video, you are to provide a title, comment, and tags. Yes, tagging is involved as well, which is just splendid! I was in the mood for looking at Skateboarding videos, so I click on the skateboarding tag and I was instantly presented with a listing of home videos and interviews of skateboarding. You will also be asked three optional fields: Date Recorded, Location Recorded, and Country (I sense a Google Map hack coming!) to provide some more information for your video for your viewers.
Developers, your left out either! Integrate YouTube into your applications using their simple XML API! “With the set of YouTube XML APIs, developers can integrate applications directly into YouTube’s growing repository of videos. The API calls will allow you to conduct tag searches, fetch video details, list videos by user, etc. Furthermore, it is a fundamental belief of ours that web services and web-enabled desktop applications will be paving the road of future software. Along these beliefs, we will be putting a tremendous amount of effort into enhancing our APIs as well as assisting 3rd party developers in every possible way.”
Overall, I think that YouTube is a great service and I am going to enjoy watching everyones videos!