JP2006129468A - Contents conversion apparatus, and reproduction client device - Google Patents

Contents conversion apparatus, and reproduction client device Download PDF

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Publication number
JP2006129468A
JP2006129468A JP2005286944A JP2005286944A JP2006129468A JP 2006129468 A JP2006129468 A JP 2006129468A JP 2005286944 A JP2005286944 A JP 2005286944A JP 2005286944 A JP2005286944 A JP 2005286944A JP 2006129468 A JP2006129468 A JP 2006129468A
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Japan
Prior art keywords
conversion
content
data
content data
client device
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JP2005286944A
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Japanese (ja)
Inventor
Masaki Kitahashi
Yuji Tanigawa
昌樹 北橋
裕二 谷川
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Matsushita Electric Ind Co Ltd
松下電器産業株式会社
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Priority to JP2005286944A priority patent/JP2006129468A/en
Publication of JP2006129468A publication Critical patent/JP2006129468A/en
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Abstract

<P>PROBLEM TO BE SOLVED: To reproduce contents data in such a data form that the contents data can not be reproduced by a reproduction client device. <P>SOLUTION: A conversion enabled client 101 has a function for reproducing contents data in a data form B, for example, and if contents data of the data form B are inputted from a network or a recording medium, these contents data are reproduced to output a contents reproduction signal. Furthermore, if contents data of a data form A are inputted, a request signal of conversion into the data form B is transmitted to a conversion server 201 together with the contents data of the data form A. Content data of the data form A is changed to the content data of a data form B according to the request signal of conversion of the data form B and return to client 101 corresponding to conversion by the conversion server 201. <P>COPYRIGHT: (C)2006,JPO&NCIPI

Description

  The present invention provides a data format in which content data acquired by a playback client device from a network, a recording medium, or the like cannot be directly played back by the playback client device (this data format is a content encoding method, encryption method, digital copyright, etc.). In particular, the present invention relates to a content conversion apparatus and a reproduction client apparatus that enable reproduction by converting the data format.

  In order to reproduce content data such as video and audio, a reproduction client device such as a DVD-Video player, a DVD recorder, or a personal computer in which software having a reproduction function is incorporated is used.

  On the other hand, the content data to be played back has recently been changed to a variety of content encoding methods such as AVI, DV-AVI, WMV, Quicktime, DivX, MPEG-1 / 2, RealVideo, CSS, CPPM, CPRM. Various analog rights management such as encryption method, Copy Generation Management (CGMS), Electronic Media Management (EMMS), Windows Media Digital Rights Management, Adobe Content Server, Digital Rights Management (DRM) etc. Distributed and sold in a data format. For this reason, a situation in which various content data cannot always be played back by the playback client device may occur. In particular, the data format that can be played back by a built-in LSI or the like, such as a DVD-Video player or a DVD recorder, is determined in comparison with a computer that is relatively easy to handle various data formats by software update. In such a case, it is very difficult to support a new data format only by simple software update.

  Therefore, conventionally, a technique has been proposed in which a data format conversion is performed by a content server or a relay device when a playback client device receives content data from a content server or the like via a network.

  Specifically, for example, Patent Document 1 includes a portable information terminal (client), a proxy (conversion unit) with a content conversion function, and a WEB server (content server), and acquires data from the portable information terminal to the WEB server. A technique is disclosed in which a request is transmitted, a content is transmitted to a WEB server, and a proxy is converted into a reproducible format of the portable information terminal.

  Patent Document 2 includes a PDA (client) and a PC (content server / conversion unit). The PDA transmits a data acquisition request in order to play back content stored in the PC. A technique is disclosed in which requested content data is retrieved from the HDD, converted into a PDA reproducible format, and transmitted to the PDA.

  Patent Document 3 includes a client, a content distribution server (content server / conversion unit), and a content creator terminal, and the content creator's own content and the allowable range of its reproduction quality are stored in the distribution server. A technique is disclosed in which the client transmits a content data acquisition request to the distribution server, and the distribution server converts the content into a format that can be reproduced by the client within an allowable range of reproduction quality.

  Patent Document 4 includes a portable information terminal (client), a content conversion server (conversion unit), and a content server, and transmits a data acquisition request from the portable information terminal to the content conversion server. There has been disclosed a technique of acquiring specified content from a server, converting the content into a format that can be played back by a portable information terminal, and transmitting the format to a client.

Patent Document 5 includes a client and a content server / conversion unit. The client transmits a content data acquisition request to the content server / conversion unit, and the content server / conversion unit stores the data in a compressed format in the HDD. A technique is disclosed in which a requested content managed is extracted, decompressed into a format desired by the client, and transmitted to the client.
JP 2001-222487 A JP 2002-262220 A JP 2002-328831 A JP 2003-016001 A JP 2003-259330 A

  However, in order for the relay device such as a proxy or the conversion unit to perform data format conversion as described above, the playback client device requests or receives content data via such a relay device. Must-have. That is, in the case of content data that needs to be converted, even if the playback client device directly accesses the content server, it cannot be played back, and therefore complicated access control is required.

  Further, when the content server itself has a data format conversion function, it is not necessary to access via the relay device as described above, but it is provided from a server that does not have such a conversion function. Content data cannot be reproduced.

  Further, when the content data is provided by a recording medium rather than via the network as described above, there is no attempt to reproduce the content data unless the reproduction client device has a reproduction function of the provided data format.

  SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention has been made in view of the above points, and it is an object of the present invention to enable a playback client device to play back content data in various data formats in a flexible access mode without incurring complicated access control. .

In order to achieve the above object, the invention of claim 1
A content conversion device,
Content data receiving means for receiving content data transmitted from the playback client device;
Content data conversion means for converting the received content data into a data format that can be played back by the playback client device;
Content data transmitting means for transmitting the converted content data to the reproduction client device;
It is provided with.

The invention of claim 2
The content conversion device according to claim 1,
Furthermore, it is characterized by comprising conversion control means for controlling the data format converted by the content data conversion means in response to an instruction from the reproduction client device.

The invention of claim 3
The content conversion device according to claim 1, further comprising:
Reproducible information storage means for storing reproducible information indicating a data format reproducible by the replay client device;
Conversion control means for controlling the data format converted by the content data conversion means based on the reproducible information;
It is provided with.

  As a result, the data format of the content data transmitted from the playback client device is converted by the content data conversion means into a data format that can be played back by the playback client device.

The invention of claim 4
The content conversion device according to claim 1,
Further, when the content data conversion means cannot convert the data format that can be played back by the playback client device, the content data conversion means can transmit the received content data to another content conversion device and play it back by the playback client device. A conversion requesting means for requesting conversion to a data format is provided.

  As a result, the content data that cannot be converted by the content conversion device itself is converted in data format by another content conversion device.

The invention of claim 5
The content conversion device according to claim 1,
Furthermore, a relay means for relaying the content data transmitted from the content data providing device to the reproduction client device is provided,
The content data converting means is configured to convert the content data to be relayed into a reproducible data format when the content cannot be reproduced by the client device.

  Thereby, the data format is also converted when the content data provided from the content server or the like is transferred to the reproduction client device.

The invention of claim 6
The content conversion device according to claim 1, further comprising:
A storage means for storing the converted content data is provided.

  Thereby, when the conversion of the same content is requested from the reproduction client device or when a retransmission request is received, it is possible to transmit the data without conversion using the already converted data.

The invention of claim 7
The content conversion device according to any one of claims 1 to 6,
The data format converted by the content data conversion means is at least one of a content data encoding method, encryption method, analog copyright management method, and digital copyright management method.

  Thereby, it becomes possible to cope with various content encoding methods, encryption methods, and copyright management methods.

The invention of claim 8
A playback client device,
Reproducibility determining means for determining whether the acquired content data is in a reproducible data format;
Conversion request means for transmitting content data determined to be unreproducible to a content conversion device that performs data format conversion, and requesting conversion to a reproducible data format;
Receiving means for receiving content data whose data format has been converted by the content conversion device;
It is provided with.

The invention of claim 9
A playback client device according to claim 8, wherein
The reproduction permission / inhibition determining means determines whether or not reproduction is possible at a predetermined operation by the user, at the start of acquisition of the content data, during acquisition, at completion of acquisition, at the start of reproduction, at the start of copying, during copying, or at the completion of copying It is comprised so that it may do.

  Accordingly, even when content data in a data format that cannot be reproduced by the reproduction client device is read from a recording medium or received from a network, it can be easily reproduced.

The invention of claim 10 provides
A playback client device,
Conversion request means for transmitting content data to a content conversion device that performs data format conversion and requesting conversion to a specified data format;
Receiving means for receiving content data whose data format has been converted by the content conversion device;
It is provided with.

The invention of claim 11
A playback client device according to claim 10, wherein
The conversion request means requests the conversion at a predetermined operation by the user, at the start of acquisition of the content data, during acquisition, at the completion of acquisition, at the start of reproduction, at the start of copying, during copying, or at the completion of copying. It is comprised by these.

  Thus, even if the data format that can be played back by the playback client device is read from the recording medium or received from the network, the content data in the data format to be converted is converted to the specified data format. Can be played back.

The invention of claim 12
The playback client device according to any one of claims 8 and 10, further comprising:
A storage means for storing the converted content data is provided.

  As a result, once converted, the content data can be reproduced without requesting the server to convert again and converting it.

The invention of claim 13
The playback client device according to any one of claims 8 to 11,
The conversion requesting unit is configured to request retransmission of the converted content data instead of the conversion request when the converted content data is already held in the content conversion device. It is characterized by.

  As a result, for the content data that has been converted once, the conversion result can be acquired without transmitting the content data before conversion to the server again.

The invention of claim 14
A reproduction client device according to any one of claims 8 to 13,
The data format converted by the content conversion apparatus is at least one of a content data encoding method, encryption method, analog copyright management method, and digital copyright management method.

  Thereby, it becomes possible to cope with various content encoding methods, encryption methods, and copyright management methods.

  According to the present invention, even with content data in various data formats that cannot be played back by the playback client device, the playback client device can acquire and play back in a flexible access form without incurring complicated access control. Can be.

  Hereinafter, embodiments of the present invention will be described in detail with reference to the drawings.

Embodiment 1 of the Invention
(Overall configuration of conversion system)
FIG. 1 is a block diagram illustrating a configuration of a conversion system configured by connecting a conversion-compatible client 101 (playback client device) and a conversion server 201 (content conversion device) according to the first embodiment via a network.

  The conversion-compatible client 101 has, for example, a data format B content data playback function. When content format B data is input from a network or a recording medium, the conversion compatible client 101 can playback the content data and output a content playback signal. It is like that. When content data in the data format A is input, a conversion request signal to the data format B is transmitted to the conversion server 201 together with the content data in the data format A.

  The conversion server 201 converts the content data of the data format A into the content data of the data format B in response to the conversion request signal to the data format B and returns it to the conversion compatible client 101.

  Further, the content data converted to be reproducible by the conversion server can be once recorded in the conversion server and read later. Thereby, once converted content data can be transmitted at a time, or when conversion of the same content data is requested from the client, it can be transmitted to the client side without being converted again. At this time, if analog or digital copyright management is necessary, it is once recorded in a form that complies with it.

  Hereinafter, examples of specific configurations of the conversion-compatible client 101 and the conversion server 201 will be described.

(Configuration of conversion compatible client 101)
Specifically, for example, as shown in FIG. 2, the conversion-compatible client 101 includes a content reception unit 102, a content reproduction availability determination unit 103, a distribution unit 104, a content reproduction unit 105, and a content transmission unit 106. Has been.

  Specifically, the content receiving unit 102 includes a network receiving unit 102a, a user interface 102b, and a recording media recording / reproducing unit 102c as shown in FIG. 3, for example. The network receiving means 102a receives content data via the Internet, an IEEE 1394 bus, a telephone line, a network such as broadcasting, or the like. The user interface 102b is configured to accept a user's content request operation and content conversion request operation and output a content request signal and a conversion request signal. Further, the recording medium recording / reproducing means 102c is connected to a recording medium 301 inside or outside the apparatus such as an HDD (hard disk drive), a DVD (Digital Versatile Disc), a memory card, a USB interface memory (including an HDD or a DVD drive), an internal memory, or the like. In addition to reading out the content data recorded in advance on the recording medium 301, the content data received by the network receiving unit 102a (before or after conversion) or from the user interface 102b is recorded. When the output content request signal or the like is not immediately output to each part in the conversion-compatible client 101, these data can be temporarily recorded on the recording medium 301 and read later. That is, the conversion-compatible client 101 temporarily records the content data before conversion or the content data converted by the conversion server on the recording medium 301 or other storage means (not shown) inside or outside the apparatus, and then reads and reproduces it later. You may be able to do. In particular, when the recording medium is removable or external, the converted content data can be easily stored and then reproduced by another device. Here, if analog or digital copyright management is necessary when recording on a recording medium in the above case, the recording is once performed in conformity with it.

  Further, the content reproduction availability determination unit 103 of the conversion-compatible client 101 includes, for example, as shown in FIG. 4, for example, a content correspondence determination unit 103a, a corresponding data format database 103b, and an actual reproduction determination unit 103c. The content correspondence determination unit 103a determines whether or not the content data received by the content reception unit 102 can be reproduced by the conversion compatible client 101. Specifically, for example, when the content data itself includes information indicating the data format of the elementary stream content, the corresponding data format in which information indicating the data format that can be reproduced by the conversion compatible client 101 is registered in advance. Whether or not reproduction is possible is determined by referring to the database 103b. In addition, when the data format cannot be determined depending on the content data itself, the actual playback determination means 103c actually tries various decoding, and when it can be played back, the data format is determined to be playable. ing. Based on the above determination, the content correspondence determination unit 103a further transmits a destination instruction signal corresponding to whether or not reproduction is possible to the distribution unit 104, and outputs a conversion request signal to the content transmission unit 106 when reproduction is impossible. It is like that.

  Further, the content correspondence determining unit 103a does not determine whether or not playback is possible according to a user instruction or the like, and transmits a destination instruction signal to the distribution unit 104 based on a user instruction or the like, and also transmits a conversion request signal to the content transmission unit. 106 is transmitted. In other words, even when playback is possible, conversion to another data format can be requested. Thereby, it is possible to easily enable reproduction by another device. For content that has been converted once, if the converted content data is stored in the client (in the distribution means, etc.) or in the recording medium 301, the converted data stored there is read. The destination instruction signal is transmitted to the distribution unit 104 so as to be transmitted to the content reproduction unit 105. Similarly, for content that has been converted once, if converted content data is stored in the server, a retransmission request signal for requesting the converted data stored therein is sent to the content transmission means. The data is output to 106.

  When the distribution means 104 can reproduce the content data received by the content reception means 102 in response to the destination instruction signal output from the content reproduction availability determination means 103 (when the data format is B), While outputting to the content reproduction means 105, when impossible (when data format is A), it outputs to the content transmission means 106. When the destination instruction signal indicating the reproduction of the converted content data stored in the recording medium 301 or the like is output from the content reproduction availability determination unit 103, the stored converted content data is read and the content is reproduced. The information is sent to the means 105.

  The content reproduction means 105 reproduces the content data in the data format B output from the distribution means 104 and outputs a content reproduction signal.

  For example, as shown in FIG. 5, the content transmission unit 106 includes a network transmission unit 106a. The content transmission unit 106a receives the content data of the data format A output from the distribution unit 104 and the conversion request signal output from the content reproduction possibility determination unit 103. The data is transmitted to the conversion server 201 and converted into content data in the data format B. In the same manner as described for the content receiving unit 102, content data or the like can be temporarily recorded on the recording medium 301 by the recording medium recording / reproducing unit 106b and transmitted later. Further, the content transmission means 106 is configured to transmit a request signal for content data to another content server (not shown) or the like in accordance with a user instruction operation or the like. The content transmission unit 106 can also transmit the retransmission request output from the content reproduction availability determination unit 103 to the content server.

(Configuration of conversion server 201)
Specifically, the conversion server 201 includes, for example, a content reception unit 202, a content conversion determination unit 203, a content conversion unit 204, and a content transmission unit 205 as shown in FIG. The content receiving unit 202 has the same configuration as the content receiving unit 102 (FIG. 3) of the conversion-compatible client 101, for example, and receives the content data in the data format A and the conversion request signal sent from the conversion-compatible client 101 (simultaneously. Alternatively, the content data is received and output to the content conversion unit 204, while the content data and the conversion request signal are output to the content conversion determination unit 203. For example, the content conversion determination unit 203 determines the data format before and after conversion from information indicating the data format included in the content data and the conversion request signal, and outputs a data format conversion instruction signal to the content conversion unit 204. It is like that. In response to the data format conversion instruction signal, the content conversion unit 204 converts, for example, content data in the data format A into content data in the data format B. The content transmission unit 205 has the same configuration as the content transmission unit 106 (FIG. 5) of the conversion-compatible client 101, for example, and sends the converted content data back to the conversion-compatible client 101.

  It should be noted that a database indicating a data format that can be reproduced by the conversion compatible client 101 is provided, and there is no instruction for conversion to the data format B by the conversion request signal, or only content data in the data format A without the conversion request signal. Even when received, conversion to an appropriate format such as data format B may be performed.

(Operation of each part of the conversion system)
When the user performs a content playback operation or the like on the conversion-compatible client 101 by the conversion system as described above, for example, content data acquired from the content server via the network, or read from a DVD or the like is read. The content reproduction enable / disable determining unit 103 determines whether or not the converted content data can be reproduced by the conversion compatible client 101. For example, content data in reproducible data format B is reproduced by the content reproduction means 105. On the other hand, if it is content data of data format A that cannot be reproduced, it is sent to the conversion server 201 via the content transmission means 106 together with the conversion request signal.

  In the conversion server 201, the content receiving unit 202 receives the content data in the data format A and the conversion request signal. Based on these, the content conversion determination unit 203 instructs the content conversion unit 204 to convert from the data format A to the data format B. The content data converted into the data format B by the content conversion unit 204 is returned to the conversion compatible client 101 via the content transmission unit 205.

  When the content data of the data format B is received by the conversion-compatible client 101, it is determined that the content playback possibility determination unit 103 can play back, and the content playback unit 105 plays back the content playback signal.

  As described above, when the content data once acquired by the conversion compatible client 101 cannot be reproduced, the conversion server 201 is requested to convert the data format, and the conversion server 201 can reproduce the content data by the conversion compatible client 101 accordingly. By performing conversion to the format, the conversion compatible client 101 can output a content reproduction signal for content data in various data formats.

  As a more specific example of actually applying these devices, a conversion server and a portable terminal connected by the Internet or a telephone line outdoors, a home server and a DVD player connected by a home LAN in the home, an in-car Then, a head unit with DVD navigation function connected via in-vehicle LAN and an AV receiver with a memory card interface installed in the rear seat, and an entertainment server connected by in-flight LAN and an AV receiver with a USB interface for each seat in an airplane can be considered.

  Note that the content reproduction signal output from the conversion-compatible client 101 is not limited to a video / audio signal or the like for displaying video on a display device or the like as it is, but also decrypted data obtained by decoding the original content data, This may be data that has been subjected to various processes and transferred to another device, such as encoded data that has been further encoded.

  Further, the conversion compatible client 101 may receive content data from a content server or the like, transfer to the conversion server 201, and receive and play back the converted reproducible content data. . That is, for example, at the start of reception of content data, whether or not playback is possible is determined, and when playback is not possible, the conversion request signal to the conversion server 201 and the received content data are immediately transmitted and converted. Content data can be received and played back. Also, once all the content data sent from the content server or the like is received and stored in the recording medium 301 or the like, the conversion server 201 is requested to perform conversion at an appropriate timing, and the converted content data is converted into the original content data. Instead, it may be stored together with the original content data to prepare for actual playback. Further, only the original content data is stored, and when a reproduction operation is performed, it is possible to determine whether or not reproduction is possible, request conversion, and reproduce while receiving the converted content data. .

  Further, the determination timing of whether or not playback is possible (and the conversion request timing) is not limited to when content data acquisition starts or when playback starts, but during acquisition, when acquisition is completed, or when copying is started. Also good. Further, when a predetermined operation is performed by the user (not limited to an operation for actually starting reproduction, but also includes an operation that does not reproduce or performs conversion prior to reproduction), during copying, or when copying is completed. In addition, it may be determined whether or not playback is possible.

  In addition, when conversion according to a user instruction or the like is requested regardless of whether or not reproduction is possible, the conversion request may be similarly performed at various timings.

  Further, as specific contents of the conversion request signal, for example, information (for example, network address, usable temporary storage memory amount, reproducible data format, etc.) related to the conversion-compatible client 101 that requests conversion, or conversion is performed. Information related to the content (for example, information for specifying the content such as the title and file name, the data format desired to be converted, whether conversion of the entire content data is required or only part of it), and the conversion method (real time May be included).

  In addition, for example, the content transmission unit 205 can have a storage device. If the conversion requested by the client has been executed once, the converted data is stored, and the subsequent conversion request You may make it transmit the converted data recorded on the memory | storage device, without actually converting. Further, when the retransmission request transmitted from the client is received, the converted data recorded in the recording device may be transmitted in the same manner. At this time, if analog or digital copyright management is necessary, it is once recorded in a form that complies with it.

  The specific contents of the data format shown in the above example include, for example, resolution, bit rate, content encoding method, encryption method, analog or digital copyright management method, etc. Includes resolution conversion, bit rate conversion, content encoding system conversion, encryption system conversion, copyright management system conversion, and the like.

  Also, each piece of information as described above can be transmitted and received separately by using, for example, a network application layer.

<< Embodiment 2 of the Invention >>
Describes an example of a conversion server that requests conversion by transferring content data to another conversion server when the conversion server requested to convert the data format from a conversion-compatible client cannot perform the requested conversion To do. In the second embodiment, components having the same functions as those in the first embodiment are denoted by the same reference numerals and description thereof is omitted.

  The conversion server 401 has a configuration similar to that of the conversion server 201 of the first embodiment, but includes a content conversion determination unit 403 instead of the content conversion determination unit 203 as shown in FIG. Means 406 are provided. In addition, the content receiving unit 202 outputs the received content data and conversion request signal to the relay unit 406 as well. The content transmission unit 205 is configured to transmit content data output from the relay unit 406 in addition to the content data output from the content conversion unit 204.

  The content conversion determination unit 403 outputs a relay instruction signal to the relay unit 406 in addition to the same function as the content conversion determination unit 203 in the conversion server 201 of the first embodiment. Specifically, as shown in FIG. 8, for example, the content correspondence determination unit 403a, the corresponding data format database 403b, the actual reproduction determination unit 403c, the conversion instruction unit 403d, and the relay instruction unit 403e are configured.

  The content correspondence determination unit 403a determines whether the requested conversion is possible in the conversion server 401 in accordance with the content data received by the content reception unit 202 and the conversion request signal. Specifically, for example, in the same way as the content reproduction availability determination unit 103 in the conversion-compatible client 101 of the first embodiment, when the content data itself includes information indicating the data format of the elementary stream content, Whether conversion is possible is determined by referring to the corresponding data format database 403b in which information indicating data formats that can be converted by the conversion server 401 is registered. Further, when the data format cannot be determined depending on the content data itself, it is determined whether or not the data format can be converted by the actual reproduction determination unit 403c similar to the actual reproduction determination unit 103c.

  Based on the above determination, the content correspondence determination unit 403a outputs a conversion request signal to the conversion instruction unit 403d, or outputs a content conversion request and a content data relay request signal to the relay instruction unit 403e. ing. The conversion instruction unit 403d outputs a data format conversion instruction signal to the content conversion unit 204 in response to the conversion request signal and the like, while the relay instruction unit 403e outputs a relay instruction signal to the relay unit 406. Yes.

  For example, as shown in FIG. 9, the relay unit 406 includes a relay filter 406 a and is received by the content receiving unit 202 in accordance with the relay instruction signal output from the relay instruction unit 403 e of the content conversion determination unit 403. Whether to output the content data or the conversion request signal to the content transmission means 205 is controlled.

  For example, it is assumed that a conversion request signal to the data format B is sent to the conversion server 401 configured as described above together with the content data of the data format A from the conversion compatible client 101. At this time, if the conversion is possible in the conversion server 401, the conversion by the content conversion unit 204 is performed based on the determination by the content correspondence determination unit 403a of the content conversion determination unit 403, and the converted data format B The content data is returned to the conversion compatible client 101. On the other hand, if the requested conversion cannot be performed by the conversion server 401, the content correspondence determination unit 403a of the content conversion determination unit 403 determines that conversion is impossible, and the relay instruction unit 403e sends the content data and content conversion. A request relay request signal is output, and a relay instruction signal is output from the relay instruction means 403 e to the relay means 406. Therefore, the content data in the data format A received by the content receiving means 202 and the conversion request signal to the data format B are relayed to other conversion servers.

  Also, content data converted to data format B by the other conversion server, for example, data determined to be reproducible by the original conversion compatible client 101 by the content correspondence determination means 403a by referring to the corresponding data format database 403b When the content data in the format is received by the content receiving unit 202, a relay instruction signal is output from the content conversion determining unit 403 to the relay unit 406 in the same manner as described above, and is returned to the conversion compatible client 101 via the content transmitting unit 205. Is done.

  As described above, even content data in a data format that cannot be converted by the conversion server 401 itself can be converted more flexibly by relaying it to another conversion server.

  As a more specific example of actually applying these devices, a conversion server connected by the Internet in the home and a home server and DVD player connected by the home LAN, and a conversion connected by a telephone line in the car A head unit with a DVD navigation function connected to the server and an in-vehicle LAN, an AV receiver with a memory card interface installed in the back seat, a conversion server connected by a satellite line in an airplane, an entertainment server connected by an in-vehicle LAN, and each seat An AV receiver with a USB interface can be considered.

  The relay of content data or the like is not limited to being performed via the relay unit 406 as described above, and may be performed by causing the content conversion unit 204 to output input data as it is, for example.

  Further, various modifications as described in the first embodiment may be applied to the present embodiment.

  The conversion server 201/401 further relays the content data request signal transmitted from the conversion compatible client 101 to the content server, and relays the content data provided from the content server to the conversion compatible client 101. In addition to determining whether or not the content data to be relayed can be played back by the conversion-compatible client 101 based on a supported data format database or the like that is stored in advance, if it cannot be played back, it is converted to a playable data format. Thus, a relay function may be provided.

  Further, when the conversion compatible client 101 stores the content request signal or data corresponding to the content conversion request signal and the content data in a recording medium, and the recording medium is mounted on a conversion server or the like, the same as above The conversion may be performed and stored in a recording medium.

  Further, when content data recorded on a recording medium is copied to another recording medium, the above-described conversion may be performed.

  The content conversion device and the playback client device according to the present invention allow the playback client to flexibly access the content data in various data formats that cannot be played back by the playback client device without causing complicated access control. If the content data acquired by the playback client device from the network or recording medium has a data format that cannot be played back as it is by the playback client device. It is useful as a content conversion apparatus and a reproduction client apparatus that can be reproduced by converting the format.

1 is a block diagram illustrating an overall configuration of a conversion system according to a first embodiment. 2 is a block diagram showing the configuration of a conversion-compatible client 101. FIG. 2 is a block diagram showing the configuration of content receiving means 102. FIG. 2 is a block diagram showing the configuration of content reproduction availability determination means 103. FIG. 2 is a block diagram showing the configuration of content transmission means 106. FIG. 2 is a block diagram showing the configuration of a conversion server 201. FIG. It is a block diagram which shows the structure of the conversion server 401 of Embodiment 2. FIG. 3 is a block diagram showing the configuration of content conversion determination means 403. FIG. 2 is a block diagram showing the configuration of the relay means 406. FIG.

Explanation of symbols

DESCRIPTION OF SYMBOLS 101 Conversion compatible client 102 Content receiving means 102a Network receiving means 102b User interface 102c Recording media recording / reproducing means 103 Content reproduction possibility judging means 103a Content correspondence judging means 103b Corresponding data format database 103c Real reproduction judging means 104 Distribution means 105 Content reproducing means 106 Content transmission means 106a Network transmission means 106b Recording media recording / playback means 201 Conversion server 202 Content reception means 203 Content conversion determination means 204 Content conversion means 205 Content transmission means 301 Recording medium 401 Conversion server 403 Content conversion determination means 403a Content correspondence determination means 403b Supported data format database 403c Actual playback Determination means 403d Conversion instruction means 403e Relay instruction means 406 Relay means 406a Relay filter

Claims (14)

  1. Content data receiving means for receiving content data transmitted from the playback client device;
    Content data conversion means for converting the received content data into a data format that can be played back by the playback client device;
    Content data transmitting means for transmitting the converted content data to the reproduction client device;
    A content conversion apparatus comprising:
  2. The content conversion device according to claim 1,
    The content conversion apparatus further comprises conversion control means for controlling the data format converted by the content data conversion means in response to an instruction from the reproduction client device.
  3. The content conversion device according to claim 1, further comprising:
    Reproducible information storage means for storing reproducible information indicating a data format reproducible by the replay client device;
    Conversion control means for controlling the data format converted by the content data conversion means based on the reproducible information;
    A content conversion apparatus comprising:
  4. The content conversion device according to claim 1,
    Further, when the content data conversion means cannot convert the data format that can be played back by the playback client device, the content data conversion means can transmit the received content data to another content conversion device and play it back by the playback client device. A content conversion apparatus comprising conversion request means for requesting conversion to a data format.
  5. The content conversion device according to claim 1,
    Furthermore, a relay means for relaying the content data transmitted from the content data providing device to the reproduction client device is provided,
    The content data conversion means, wherein the content data conversion means is configured to convert the content data to be relayed into a reproducible data format when it cannot be reproduced by the client device.
  6. The content conversion device according to claim 1, further comprising:
    A content conversion apparatus comprising storage means for storing the converted content data.
  7. The content conversion device according to any one of claims 1 to 6,
    A content conversion apparatus characterized in that the data format converted by the content data conversion means is at least one of a content data encoding system, encryption system, analog copyright management system, and digital copyright management system. .
  8. Reproducibility determining means for determining whether the acquired content data is in a reproducible data format;
    Conversion request means for transmitting content data determined to be unreproducible to a content conversion device that performs data format conversion, and requesting conversion to a reproducible data format;
    Receiving means for receiving content data whose data format has been converted by the content conversion device;
    A playback client device comprising:
  9. A playback client device according to claim 8, wherein
    The reproduction permission / inhibition determining means determines whether or not reproduction is possible at a predetermined operation by the user, at the start of acquisition of the content data, during acquisition, at completion of acquisition, at the start of reproduction, at the start of copying, during copying, or at the completion of copying A playback client device configured to:
  10. Conversion request means for transmitting content data to a content conversion device that performs data format conversion and requesting conversion to a specified data format;
    Receiving means for receiving content data whose data format has been converted by the content conversion device;
    A playback client device comprising:
  11. A playback client device according to claim 10, wherein
    The conversion request means requests the conversion at a predetermined operation by the user, at the start of acquisition of the content data, during acquisition, at the completion of acquisition, at the start of reproduction, at the start of copying, during copying, or at the completion of copying. A playback client device configured as described above.
  12. The playback client device according to any one of claims 8 and 10, further comprising:
    A playback client device comprising storage means for storing the converted content data.
  13. The playback client device according to any one of claims 8 to 11,
    The conversion requesting unit is configured to request retransmission of the converted content data instead of the conversion request when the converted content data is already held in the content conversion device. A playback client device.
  14. A reproduction client device according to any one of claims 8 to 13,
    A reproduction client device characterized in that the data format converted by the content conversion device is at least one of a content data encoding method, encryption method, analog copyright management method, and digital copyright management method.
JP2005286944A 2004-09-30 2005-09-30 Contents conversion apparatus, and reproduction client device Pending JP2006129468A (en)

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