Sometimes, when you're putting together a presentation (or, like I can be, a talk or something) there's a bit of video on Google Video that you'd to make use of, but Google Video's proprietary player makes it a pain to do - who wants to stop in the middle of what they're doing and get into Google's software just for a clip?
A little bit of Googling (heh) let me piece together how to convert them into whatever format you want (for the bits you're allowed to anyway - copyright and all that). This is done on the Mac, but the same software is all out there for Windows; also, there's a small amount of expense involved here, but it can be probably be done legitimately for free with different software.
- Find your clip. I selected this one at random.
- Click the download button. Download and install the Google Video Player, then download the video.
- The video download is a very small .gvp file. Open this with the Google Video Player and it will proceed to download the actual video file.
- Find where GVP put the video file. It will have a .gvi file extension. (On OS X it'll go to your Movies folder by default.) It's actually a DivX-encoded AVI file, so rename the file to have the extension .avi - on Windows your Folder Options will need to be set to show file extensions, on OS X it will ask you if you're sure you want to, but it's okay. Your computer won't explode if you do.
- Open the file - it will go to your default video player. If you have the DivX codec installed (there's a good chance you do already) then you should be watching it by now. If not, go to DivX.com and download it.
- That's all the magic that isn't magic. If you want to convert the file to a not-DivX format, QuickTime Pro is cheap and user-friendly. There's better and more powerful out there, but it does the job just great.