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IRFS Weeknotes #122

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Barbara Zambrini | 17:15 UK time, Wednesday, 12 September 2012

This week at the office there has been lots of activity as our two main projects are going towards the finishing line with demos in big events like IBC and NEM. In parallel other projects are shaping up - but more about those later in this post.


This week on the ABC-IP there has been lots of activity with Yves preparing to wrap up the work on the World Service Archive prototype as well as preparing for the talk at IBC where we ABC-IP has a stand for the duration of the conference in the Future Zone. They will also have a poster session on Friday in the Future Zone as well as a talk in the archive session on Saturday afternoon and another talk at the EBU session on Saturday. Pete has been helping getting the site ready for the year-long trial by designing a new homepage and thinking visually around other experiential improvements. Chris L. has also been working on the homepage getting ready for a larger public launch and for demos at IBC. To support Pete and Andrew's work, Chris has also added "recently listened" and a slightly faster set of queries as well as a parser for the Wikipedia On This Day block, which he open-sourced. . Andrew N. was busy wrangling (to use his words) with the new feeds that Chris L has made for the World Service Archive prototype to make them look and work like Pete's new homepage designs. The overall aim is to showcase the great programmes available in the archive.


This week I have been busy discussing, writing a draft proposal and attending telcos on phase 2 of this project together with Chris G. Myself, Chris G. and Vicky had an interesting call with Lancaster University about the proposal and ways we can collaborate. Then even more detailed discussions and was work done with one of our French partners on Thursday in Paris.

In the meanwhile the rest of the FI-Content team has been working towards getting the prototype ready for the demo at NEM next month. Chris Needham has been working on polishing the functionality getting ready for an end-to-end integration of the elements. Andrew W. has been finalising work on the Egbox interface and Dan has continued on the egBox polishing with the EPG data and volume levels now being updated using pub-sub channels. This keeps the TV UI and the smart remote up-to-date. Andrew N. has been testing the egBox smart remote web app on an actual iPhone. Few bugs to fix but it has been great to be able to demo it on a real TV screen at the team show and tell.

In parallel, Joanne has been working with Penny and Vicky on an ethnographic study into authentication on everyday services and devices. She has spent the week piloting and refining the diary study, which participants start this weekend. Next week she will be working on the second phase of the study - piloting and refining the home visit tasks.

There has been lots of activity on our new project based at the North lab, Internet of Things project, with Vicky beginning work with Dave and Michael on the prototype for the first use case on the theme of 'live events'. This is about tagging time and location at live events, to control something public (a thing/ display), and to re-live the experience online. They have been working out what's in scope, working out the build plan for the first cycle of work which will take us up to December, and what will be the first release at the end of this month. Vicky is also creating storyboards of the user experience and working on a literature review of design challenges for the IoT.

Rob, Anthony and Andrew have been finishing off the user interaction patterns for the Keyframe tool which Anthony is building and thinking hard about the easiest ways to navigate and snip on second screen devices. Rob's had some fruitful meetings with the Public Catalogue Foundation about using their paintings in an object recognition project with Oxford University.

Chris Newell has been studying clustering algorithms to see how we might group viewers based on their viewing behaviour. The aim is to provide alternative, scalable methods for providing recommendations.

Theo has attended the News Labs kick off ­and got a really insightful understanding of the news innovation problem space. He also attended with the rest of the UX team The shape of knowledge event at the London College of Communication. He has also been working on the data structure, prototype and wireframes for the R&D site refresh. This week together with Olivier they've launched a survey to better understand who uses the site today, and how we could make a better job of serving their needs. Please take the survey!

Finally, Olivier has sent out with his co-editor their draft of the Web Audio Use Cases document to the working group, and are working on processing the group's feedback. He is working behind the scenes to get that document, alongside a first draft of the Web Midi spec, published in the next few weeks.


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