phorm asks: "After getting a much-awaited DVD-burner for Christmas, I've yet to use it to actually burn a video DVD. The main reason thus far: I've yet to find decent DVD-authoring software (either for Linux or Windows) that does what I want and doesn't have a high pricetag. So far, Freshmeat projects seem to be extremely alpha/beta quality, with not much support for buttons, animated menus/backgrounds, and all the other things that make commercial DVD's truly beautiful. Does anyone know of any affordable/free DVD authoring software that has these features? Preference to open-source or Linux software, but Windows software will do if there's nothing better." phorm is not alone in this quest, read on for another query on this topic.
To add on to phorm's query, smz420 asks: "A few months ago, I acquired a DVD burner and have had a lot of fun creating discs. While they come out well, they're very much cookie-cutter, due to the software I've been using to create them. There just doesn't seem to be a lot of flexibility built into the consumer level authoring systems out there, and I'd like to take my discs to the next level. Can anyone in Slashdot-land recommend books, links or software packages that could lead me down the road towards 'prosumer' DVD authoring? I'd like to be able to take full control over authoring: design my own button shapes and structures; place text where-ever I want on a menu page; create custom navigation structures, and possibly plant an easter egg or two. So far, I've tried Pinnacle Studio 8, Sonic MyDVD and Nero on Windows 2000. While each had very good aspects to them, all of them fell short of enabling 'next level' DVD authoring. Any advice would be most appreciated."