XBMC media center package
XBMC media center bundled with a distro
Web 3.0 Multi-Media implosion and convergence
For starters have a look at:
Then consider pixelpipe and how it allows you to converge:
Ubuntu Studio is aimed at the GNU/Linux audio, video and graphic enthusiast as well as professional.
Ubuntu Studio provides a suite of the best open-source applications available for multimedia creation. Completely free to use, modify and redistribute. Your only limitation is your imagination !
The VideoLAN streaming solution includes two programs:
VLC is an open-source and cross-platform multimedia player for various audio and video formats (MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, DivX, mp3, Ogg, etc.) as well as DVDs, VCDs, CD audio, and various streaming protocols.
VLC is also a streaming server with transcoding capabilities (UDP unicast and multicast, HTTP, etc.) mainly designed for high-bandwidth networks.
You are spoilt for choice (if you include free and non-free formats).
First there is a choice of Multimedia Players:
then there are the formats:
and finally codecs: