Converting DVDs to DIVX files under Linux

I recently purchased an Iomega ScreenPlay device that allows me to copy a DVD to USB drive and then play it to my TV. Using a 500GB USB then allows me to access most of my DVD library without having to hunt for disks.

However, I am not running in High Definition, I am not connecting via HDMI, and I dont think my TV can handle anything larger than a standard TV signal, so why do I need to copy the full DVD? I have seen online how lower quality videos play fine on my home TV, so how could I import my DVDs at a lower size and quality?

I found this link referring to using a Linux program called DVD::RIP to convert a DVD to divx format:

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