I learned how to turn a DVD into a DivX today. The secret is the program Gordian Knot along with the guide from Doom9. It's very confusing hackerware, but the basic idea is
End result - 3:1 compression ratio for something that still looks very good (704x368@1600kbps, 160kbps MP3 audio). Three things would make this process better:
Essential software for an Athlon XP system with Windows - VCool. For some dumb reason typical Athlon systems don't go into power save mode when the system is idle. VCool fixes that, and dropped my system temperature from 50°C to 33°C when idle.
As I'm sure is obvious to anyone still looking here, I don't have time to keep this weblog. I'm working full-time at Google now, and between work and the commute my extra time is just too small.