Wired profiles The Auteurs, a new online movie service that specializes in streaming hard-to-find arthouse films online:
The site’s tech is as groundbreaking as the content it features. Unlike Apple, which requires iTunes, and Netflix, which relies on a third-party app, Auteurs sends compressed files to your browser’s Flash plug-in for instant streams. What’s more: Engineers work behind the scenes to boost the viewing experience, painstakingly tweaking the compression settings for each film with a tool chain that includes mplayer, x264, ffmpeg, and mp4box. They also add lush 5.1 Dolby surround sound. “Our office is a combination of film geeks and AV nerds,” says Efe Cakarel, the company’s founder. “Even if a film is available elsewhere, it’s not going to be the same because of the expertise we’ve brought to encoding.” For further quality control, a selection judge from the Venice Film Festival curates the library.