BBC R&D

Posted by Brandon Butterworth, Brendan Crowther on , last updated

So far at IBC this year we've been seriously busy on the BBC R&D stand with a constant flow of visitors and some great interest in the work we're showing.

Our IP Studio demonstration was picked out in the What Caught my Eye session as was the work we've been involved with in improving subtitling provisions for BBC content. You can see more on the subtitling work in this video from News Shooter.

Senior Software Engineer Matt Brooks Explains some of our enhanced subtitling work

Both the paper The IP Studio (Brightwell et al) and Investigations into the characteristics of technologies for TV white space applications (Waddell et al) were included in the The Best of IET and IBC which can be downloaded from the Institute of Technology's site.

One of the really hot topics at IBC this year seems to be 4k video or ultra high definition as it's also known. BBC Research & Development's Chief Scientist Brandon Butterworth has reported that the place is 4k crazy:

"BBC R&D have been looking at the consequences of moving to 4k and the whether it produces a need to move to higher frame rates. On both the R&D stand in the Future Zone and on the EBU stand we have been showing work on higher frame rate video and the difference it gives showing high motion content."

Just one example of the abundance of 4K displays at IBC this year

"Richard Salmon spoke in the conference about Higher Frame Rates for Television. It is very clear that for some material, sport probably being the most important, there is a huge benefit to be gained from moving to frame rates above 100fps. Not only does this reduce the motion blur captured in the camera, vitally important as we move to higher resolutions, but it presents much more lifelike images, since the brain fuses a series of still images into what appears to be continuous motion.  The paper presented recent advances in the understanding of the human visual system and work undertaken at the BBC on experimental higher frame rate video systems."

"This work aims to inform those writing the standards for higher resolution video to ensure that as broadcasters move to higher resolutions we are able to support the higher frame rates as we wish to give the experience we want to our viewers."

There's a day left of IBC this year and we'd love to see you at the stand where you can chat to our engineers and scientists about these demonstrations and the rest of the projects we've got with us. For a brief rundown of what we've taken to IBC this year take a look at this earlier post.

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