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R&DTV: a collaborative project between BBC Backstage & RAD

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Ian Forrester Ian Forrester | 16:08 UK time, Thursday, 9 April 2009

We're very excited to announce that today we are launching R&DTV, a pilot project that we've been working on with our colleagues in RAD. I've been working on this as producer, with co-producer Hemmy Cho, as well as Ian Forrester and George Wright.

So what is R&DTV? It's a monthly technology programme made up of interviews from knowledgeable BBC developers, BBC project experts and external experts from around the world.

We're looking at how we can use off the shelf technology, various codecs and different methods of distribution to create and share content - it's a voyage of discovery, so watch out for news on how this project develops. This is our first pilot episode, we'll release another in May and hopefully (if you like it) we'll make some more! In Episode 1 we have interviews with The Digg guys, Nicholas Negroponte of OLPC as well as Graham Thomas, Ant Miller and George Auckland talking about their work for BBC R&D & Learning Innovation.

The content comes in 3 forms.

  1. A brief 5 minute video, containing all the very best bits
  2. A longer 30 minute video, containing deeper conversations
  3. The Asset Bundle, containing everything we used and didn't use to make the videos above

We expect most people will just enjoy watching the videos, but if you want to explore or see footage which didn't make it into the cut for what ever reason, the asset bundle is your friend. The clips are mostly uncut & straight from our cameras and although this may be too much for most people, it makes great footage for those who want to remix and mashup our interviews with their own or others.

Where do I go to download?

There are some versions to download here:

There are even more formats available on FTP site or take a peep at the read me. You should download the version which your machine can play safely without additional software. Generally Quicktime plays on Macs, Windows Media files on Windows and Mpeg4 and Xvid versions work across the board. Ogg Theora is a new open codec which you will need software for it to play. We are also going stick the same videos on YouTube and Blip.TV. As for the Asset Bundle, well that's a lot trickier but we're hoping to host it at Archive.org alongside the next generation peer 2 peer service P2PNext.

What's the catch?

You can watch, rip, redistribute and remix all the contents of this package under a creative commons non-commercial attribution v2 licence. We're pretty excited and ask you to please tell us what you do end up doing with the asset bundle, so we can learn what works and what does not work and fix it next time we release another asset bundle.

We'd love to hear your comments and if you have any problems, questions or emails of support for these videos, please contact us on rdtv at bbc dot co dot uk.

Update: as requested I've added the file sizes above (and added MKV & AVI) and we also have RSS feeds if you'd like to subscribe to the episodes as they get released: 5min RSS and 30min RSS.


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