Archives for February 2013

IRFS Weeknotes #135

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Tristan Ferne | 10:23 UK time, Monday, 25 February 2013

These are weekly notes from the Internet Research & Futures Services team in BBC R&D sharing what we do. We work in the open, using technology and design to make new things on the internet and the web. You can follow us on Twitter at @bbcirfs

When I asked people what they'd been doing this week I had a bumper crop of responses from the Snippets project team so I'll start there.

Snippets - tools for finding, snipping and sharing any moment

We have released a new version of our search page and genre filtering tool. This decision was based on user feedback and we believe the new design offers a much simpler experience. Chris F also noticed a lot of performance bottlenecks and the new release takes a much more efficient approach to displaying results in HTML. Anthony is finishing up on the keyframe tool, a new feature to make clipping really fast.

Matt H and Gareth are still working on indexing radio programmes and it is looking like we'll have close to 800,000 programmes available soon, doubling our current dataset size, so we are investigating how well it will perform and how we manage such a large set. James has been working on evaluating speech-to-text transcripts and looking into using some machine learning techniques to help us identify the most useful data in these automated transcripts.

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IRFS Weeknotes #134

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Olivier Thereaux | 16:21 UK time, Friday, 8 February 2013

I haven’t been around the office much this week, and my attempts to glean photographic evidence of what had happened in my absence provided me mostly with very puzzling material.

Thus, volunteering to work on our weeknotes was a rather selfish way to know a little more about what the team had been up to: new radio functionality in snippets, the world service archive taken over by radio drama enthusiasts, internet of things, conferences, website, and more!

Photo: There might be popular programes about... squirrels

The problem with squirrels

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IRFS Weeknotes #133

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Andrew Nicolaou | 15:12 UK time, Monday, 4 February 2013

This week seems to be full of projects being finished and new ones being started and explored across the IRFS team. Here are the highlights.

Vista-TV - exploring applications of real-time audience data

Status: building infrastructure

Chris Newell's exploring the capabilities of the ViSTA-TV project stream engine, based on Storm, an open source distributed real-time computation system. The stream engine gives us the ability to process audience logs and subtitle streams in real-time, rather than offline as in previous work, to create interesting live services and applications. Libby's been getting to grips with the Vista-TV code and fixing a few bugs.

World Service archive and ABC-IP - archives with machine-generated and crowd-sourced metadata

Status: researching

While Chris L has been busy fixing bugs and improving the search, Pete has been showing the World Service Radio archive prototype and some wireframes of new potential improvements to some volunteer test-subjects and this has helped identify user-experience issues, inform next steps and inspire future features. Meanwhile, Tristan has been doing some research and writing with Michael around tagging, controlled vocabularies, participation and agency.

Also, Yves deployed our first try at a topic extraction service for web pages.

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