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  • 1. Challenges and opportunities for theBBC and the WebSouthampton, Dec 6th 2012 Internet Research and Future Services George Wright, Head of IR&FS @georgieFuture Media © BBC 2012
  • 2. Intro• Background• Overview of the BBC• Brief History of the BBC• R&D at the BBC• The Internet and the BBC• What we do on and with the Web• Questions Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 3. Me George Wright Head of Internet Research & Future Services > 17 years at the BBC Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 4. BBC Overview• Largest Public Broadcaster in Europe• Not for profit• Licence fee funded (£154.40/ year)• Independent of Government• Incorporated under Royal Charter• 70 radio stations, 10 TV channels, large content website• Main domestic UK service• Worldwide News service• Commercial subsidiary (for overseas sales/ DVDs etc)• 27,000 staff• £4.8 bil annual revenue Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 5. Our Charter Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 6. Service Overview• Begun in 1922• TV broadcasts begun 1936• Colour TV started 1967• FM radio 1955• Website 1993• Digital Radio 1995• DTV 1998• HDTV 2006 Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 7. BBC R&D• 160 staff across 3 labs• Been in existence since 1930• Incorporated by Royal Charter: “..maintain BBC’s position as a centre of excellence for research and development in broadcasting and other means for the electronic distribution of audio, visual and audiovisual material, and in related technologies.”• “The UKs NASA” (House of Lords Select Committee on the BBC Charter Review 2005-6) Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 8. Some highlights of BBC R&Ds history Noise-cancelling microphone (1927) VHF/FM transmitter(1945)• Colour TV (1954)• Digital TV standards proposed (1964)• Digital audio recorder/playback demonstrated (1971)• CEEFAX (text service on TV) (1974)• NICAM stereo (1986)• BBC Internet service (1989-1995)• Multicast internet streams (2004)• Freeview HD (2008) Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 9. Who my team are• Internet Research and Future Services section within BBC R&D• Working at the audience end of the broadcast chain• Full range of skills (Engineers, designers, producers) Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 10. What we do• We build new prototypes, demonstrators and services across all digital platforms• To try things out• To explore things• To solve problems• Focus on user-facing things• Also, protocols and standards for emerging platforms• Engineering and UX [User Experience] /HCI [Human Computer Interaction] research• 5yr time horizon Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 11. Who we work with• BBC programme makers (Dr Who, Springwatch)• Mobile and TV Platforms product development teams• Academia• SMEs• Collaborative research partners (TSB, European Commission - EU FP7, EU PPP)• Standards bodies (W3C, EBU, DVB) Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 12. We work in the openSite http://www.bbc.co.uk/rd/prototypingBlog http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/rdCode: http://github.com/bbcrdWeeknotes http://bbc.in/rdweeknotesWhite papers http://www.bbc.co.uk/rd/publications/Conferences (IBC, W3C etc)Standards bodies (W3C, DVB) Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 13. Issues and questionsCorporate R&D traditionally has a different pace to it30 years ago, competition came after 5-25 years of preparation (Channel 4, BSkyB, commercial radio)Now, a service can be conceived, developed, tested, deployed and acquired in <12 monthsMany new user-facing services come from the West CoastMost are either PPU (pay per use) or ad-supportedWhere does this leave BBC/ Corporate R&D? Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 14. The BBC and the WebBbc.co.uk since 1994First Website 1995Strong early promoter/ adopter of Web standardsNow most popularcontent site in Europe Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 15. R&D approach● Standards● Usage/HCI● Low level plumbing● Distribution platform● Web as medium/canvas● ID/personal data● Prototyping● SemWeb/Big Data● Archives● Cross-platform work● Future Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 16. Standards● BBC member of, strongly involved in, W3C ● Chair W3C Audio WG ● Involved in many other WGs ● Drive adoption eg SemWeb● DVB and EBU● Learning by doing● Avoid vendor hype● Evalute new standards, proposals Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 17. HCI and UX● Advanced UI research● Browser moving target closing● Mobile/STB whole new series of challenges● Recommendations Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 18. Low level plumbing● Ipv6● Multicast trials● P2P work● Mobile broadcast/ spectrum/whitespace● Future Internet● Vista TV Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 19. Distribution platform Requests for programmes continue to rise: 145m in Dec 2010, 200m in Dec 2011 Available on 20+ devices and rising Future Media & Technology © BBC 2012
  • 20. Web as medium/canvas● Whole new platform● Cant just reuse old designs● Non Web safe palettes● Flash was the answer – what was the question?● http://futurebroadcasts.com/ Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 21. ID/personal data● Bbc.co.uk always worked without login● Commercial rivals drive login (twitter, FB)● Strict UK and EU rules on DPA● OpenID..● Sibyl Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 22. Web as toolchain/shopfront● Github, wordpress, puppet,AWS● Timesheets, document sharing, wikis● BBC locked down desktop vs access anywhere● R&D website useful recruiting tool, library of our white papers● Production staff using as AV search, playback, transcode platform Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 23. SemWeb/Big Data● BBC very early SemWeb adoptor● Bbc.co.uk/programmes massive resource● Page for every programme● Always available● 70mil triples● Each term also in Dbpedia● Twitter work – whole of firehose● Massive amounts of throughput Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 24. Archives● BBC huge archive● Locked up in leaky warehouse :(● Moving to the Web● Redux, Snippets, WSA● Mood, genre, topic Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 25. Cross platform work● One service,many devices● Universal control API● DLNA?● RadioDNS as binding control system for new devices● Android – fragmented but niceRaspberry PI, Little printer● IoT Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 26. Future● Massively big data● ID and brokerage● Mobile Net and broadcast● Handoff and cacheing● HCI and UX● Increased window for repeat viewing● IP end to end for all our content● Loads of possibilities, loads of questions... Future Media © BBC 2012
  • 27. Distribution platform Requests for programmes continue to rise: 145m in Dec 2010, 200m in Dec 2011 Available on 20+ devices and rising Future Media & Technology © BBC 2012
  • 28. Thank you – questions? george.wright@bbc.co.uk @georgieFuture Media © BBC 2012