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Prototyping Weeknotes #95

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Libby Miller | 15:14 UK time, Friday, 10 February 2012

This week Sean, Dan and Chris Lowis have been busy preparing for next week's European Broadcasting Union Radio Week. Following our work on the RadioTAG specification and its success last year at the Radio Academy Awards there is considerable interest in the broadcasting community about what RadioTAG can do for listeners and broadcasters, and how engineers can go about working with and contributing to this new standard for radio interactivity.

On the first two days of Radio Week the team will run a workshop, demonstrating RadioTAG and giving a technical overview of the specification aimed at developers who wish to build their own RadioTAG services or clients. Working with Frontier Silicon last year we have a small number of prototype RadioTAG devices, but not enough to allow people to try RadioTAG for themselves. Dan and Sean have been working on a HTML5 radio application that plays OGG radio streams transcoded from the source using VLC and provided by an Icecast server which Matt has been working hard to set up.


RadioTAG Player Screenshot


It can also play our RadioVIS slides, which are pushed to the client using websockets from a Faye pub/sub server which has been bridged to the RadioVIS Stomp adaptor. Crucially for next week they have also added tagging support to the HTML5 client to allow listeners to register the client with our prototype RadioTAG web application which allows the listener to tag shows and resume listening to them at a later date on the iPlayer.

Meanwhile Chris has been working with Robin at Frontier Silicon to make sure our servers correspond to the published draft of the RadioTAG specification, and has also added a few features to support the Radio Week workshop, such as the creation of accounts using existing Google or Twitter credentials and the addition of some APIs to support some prototype attention data aggregation applications to be built.

The team hope to open source the client code soon to allow developers to prototype new RadioTAG features and applications.

In other news -

ABC-IP World Service Project:

Penny Allen has joined our team for 4 months. It's great to have access to her brain and talents as a Research Scientist. She, Yves, Dom and Theo have been working on the ABC-IP World Service project, gathering research around persuasive design, motivation for user participation  / crowdsourcing, and the issues and benefits of tagging. Theo visited the World Service UX team in Bush House to get their insight on audiences and hooks into the archive based on user interest and behaviour.


Yves has also been spending some time on the ESWC 2012 In-Use track, which he is co-chairing, as it's approaching notification time. He, Chris Lowis and Jonathan Tweed from MetaBroadcast have had a demo paper accepted at WWW2012 which they are very pleased about. Olivier gave a talk on BBC linked data at QMUL as part of a workshop on Social Networks and Communications - where there were very interesting discussions on the importance / impact / choices of linking on the web. Tristan has been meeting with various groups in the BBC to forge closer links and is attending Southampton University's Web Science forum today. Michael has been writing a couple of HTML5/javascript demos/tutorials for BBC Learning's Hack To The Future event this weekend.


The online diary application is ready for the diary study, after implementation and guerilla user testing by Andrew. Meanwhile Pete, Barbara, Joanne and Dom have been working on the next stage: Pete on wirefames, Joanne on the detail of the lab based interviews, Barbara and Dom on the deliverable document, all of them working towards determining the features for the visualisation of the results of the diary study.


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