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Connected Studio 4: Weather and Travel Build Studio

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Adrian Woolard | 18:00 UK time, Thursday, 5 July 2012

Man speaking in front of a TV displaying the BBC logo, and a Mozilla banner. Other men watch.

The teams finished the event with a ten-minute demo of their work

Last week, BBC Connected Studio ventured off site again, this time to MozSpace in central London for the second Build Studio, with the focus on the Weather and Travel Product.

From the 25 concepts that were pitched at the Creative Studio in Google Campus on June 12, six teams were selected to attend.

After my short introduction, and a briefing for each team from my colleagues in Weather, the teams began two intense days developing their proof of concept.

Some of the six teams were combinations of selected ideas from the Creative Studio day, as the other judges and I had identified overlapping but complementary themes. As a result, many members were working together for the first time, and we had teams that mixed staff from across the BBC with different companies collaborating on merged ideas.

The Weather and Travel team had created an environment for rapid prototyping and development, with access to a range of APIs and data sets so the six teams could build quickly on top of the BBC Weather site - thanks to Jeremy and his team (plus Joel from R&D who provided vital sys admin support) for going above and beyond to make that possible whilst also launching new services.

So let’s get to what you are all interested in; the pitches.

At the end of the second day, they presented the working prototypes or mock-ups they had created to the judges. The teams, with a brief idea of their concepts, were:

  • 383 & BBC – Personalised info that is all in one place and is relevant to you – a forecast for your life.
  • Kite and BBC R&D – How the weather affects every day plans and how BBC Weather can help you adapt your activities
  • CTI, Milky Tea and BBC Cardiff – a BBC Weather app with a crowdsourced weather data feature
  • The Swarm – Visualising weather information and user contributions by time and location
  • Nixon Mcinnes and BBC R&D – using Twitter to deliver personal weather forecasts for particular locations
  • BBC R&D - Weather stations for Schools providing location content

Once again it was impressive to see what could be built in two days. Great work by everyone and we will let you know within a few weeks which ideas we would like to develop as pilots - after a tough judging process by myself, Jo Wickremasinghe, Liz Howell, Ben Gammon, Jeremy Tarling and Stephen Robertson. Thanks also to John Bevan and the team at MozSpace, London for agreeing to host the Studio and provide an excellent working environment.

Finally, a reminder that we still have a few places left for the CBeebies Creative Studio up in Salford on July 12 – this is available to all BBC staff as well as external companies with relevant experience.

The CBeebies brief (MS Word .doc) is out. To apply email ConnectedStudios@bbc.co.uk with “CBeebies Creative Studio” as the subject line.

Information on Connected studio will be changing regularly so keep up to date with @BBC_Connected and our website www.bbcconnectedstudio.co.uk.

Adrian Woolard is the Project Director, North Lab, BBC Research and Development and is responsible for Phase 1 of the Connected Studio programme



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