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James Cridland's Blogs Are Worth More Than A Glance

Jeff Zycinski | 23:32 UK time, Wednesday, 10 September 2008


He likes cats, real ale and gadgets and he's a man with a vision for radio. Who is he? None other that James Cridland, the Head of Future Media and Technology for BBC Audio & Music Interactive. (Yes, long job titles are back in fashion here at the Beeb).

I had the pleasure of introducing James at the multi platform festival that's been taking place at Pacific Quay this week. Initially I thought that I had to provide my own presentation, but a quick check with the organisers revealed that my job was simply to warm up the audience with "a few witty remarks". ( At the very last second I decided against making a joke about Gary Glitter and settled on some feeble comments about web jargon.)

James then presented a stunning array of video clips which showed exactly what's possible when you marry radio programmes with visuals. That's happening online, on red button telly and on new digital radios with little screens. The big opportunities, of course, are on mobile phones.

Then I got the chance to ask James one of those questions people ask me whenever I evangelise about the use of videos and slideshows to accompany our radio programmes.

"Surely the joy of radio is that you can listen to it while doing somehing else. If we add all these fancy visuals wont we just be competing with TV for the attention of the audience?"

James made a distrinction between the immersive experience of watching television and the kind of useful "glance-ability" that would be offered with some of the ideas he and his team are developing.

Anyway, if you want to know more about James and his various adventures then have a look at his personal blog by clicking here.

Or if you want to learn more about the recent move of the BBC Radio Player into the BBC iPlayer then click on his official BBC blog here


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