We ask Exec Producer, Kate Bartlett to tell us all about the pilot
What is Whispering Stars?
Whispering Stars enables people to message each other via the stars. Users are able to explore the night sky with an accurate live 3D star map, find an interesting star and write a message on it to share via social media. The recipient can use a mobile to discover the message on a real star. Both sender and recipient can discover amazing facts about the stars and visible planets to inspire them to write a message and share with their social network.
What’s the most exciting aspect of the pilot?
The most exciting aspect is to get people to look up and discover something about the stars above them via something as familiar as messaging their friends and family.
We are hoping the public will find creative ways of using the product, and surprise us with new uses of the product and with the creativity of their messages.
What are you trying to achieve?
We want to make the stars above more accessible to a broader audience. By using the public’s social networks to reach new audiences, we hope to make facts about the night sky more accessible to a wider audience.
We are looking for people to use the product creatively to string messages together, to use facts about the night sky to make their messages more inspiring.
What has been the most challenging part?
We are trying something quite difficult – to create a live 3D star map within a web browser as opposed to an app. We wanted to do this because a web browser is far more accessible to a general audience than downloading an app.
However, it is really pushing what is technically possible at the moment. Using the motion sensors of a phone via a web browser in this way is quite challenging. For example, different browsers have different was of handling the phone's compass, accelerometer and gyroscope - so it's not always easy for it to find north!
What happens now?
We would like to further develop the scope of the pilot, to add additional features to enhance the audience experience. But first of all we want to know what people think of it, and whether this kind of thing appeals to their inner stargazer.