The prototype of Dimensions
Today we are launching the prototype of Dimensions.
When I took over the online History commissioning job, I knew that we would need a mix of traditional, trusted BBC content with some attention-grabbing digital stuff to get people to it.
It's easier said than done. Many technologists and designers are not really interested in history. Like much of the audience they were turned off by dull lessons at school. Our challenge was to make it relevant to audiences.
This is a common desire. Commissioning editors often want stuff 'made relevant' - TV producers might translate this as putting a celebrity in it - one we can relate to (Who Do You Think You Are does this very well). How does digital media make something relevant?
Following a development session with BERG about a year ago, we were most excited about this particular project.
It used the central premise of digital media - that of connection. Connecting by juxtaposing two datasets:
Historical plans, events and routes
Where you are.
It sits by itself at the moment but we are discussing using on BBC History and maybe News pages (even off the BBC?) when we can make sharable modules in version 2.
The BERG blog discusses the tech and design reasoning more.
What I would like is feedback on this prototype:
- What do you want to see?
- What doesn't work?
- How can we make it better?
We think this is a decent first attempt but it is one so rich with possibility that we want your voice in the room when we take it to the next step.
Max Gadney is Commissioning Executive, Multi-Platform Team, BBC.