A Day surrounded by technology…

What I did today:

  • Attended PG01 Unit – Discussing learning strategies and looking toward the latter of the year
  • Talked with Ex BBC staff member Michelle Melkmen about BBC D&AD brief
  • Attended a 3 hour Flash Action Script 3 Workshop
  • Attended a 3 hour PHP workshop

Well thats the break down of the day lets get into it.

Discussing the latter of the year

In groups today we talked about where we are heading with a projects this year to ultimately get to the final project. I had to start narrowing down where I was going. I really feel that something that uses developer skills for a final project is a wise goal due to the demand for those particular skills. What I need to do now is really home down of which developer skills work best together and that I need to accomplish my goals. It was a good start to the day, as there were a couple of workshops that I attended this evening, so thinking about the projects was useful as I could contextualise what I was doing.

Talking to an Ex BBC staff member

I get on really well with Michelle Melkmen and she has mentioned before that she has come from the BBC. As she is doing a project that uses similar skills that I want to develop I found it very interesting about what shes up to and visa versa. In the discussion there were a few things that really made sense and ways of tackling the project such as:

  • Looking at the relationship between BBC television and how the archive intersects
  • How the user is approached/prompted to address the user
  • The user journey
  • Linking TV strongly with the web
  • Being in one place while linking BBC related media
  • BBC News

IPTV was also something she clarified with me, about it being using the internet through a television. So using the internet in a different way. Things need to be able to be options rather than a multitasking place compared to using a computer. The idea of having prompts on screen at appropriate times to be advised to use the Archive for a more enhanced experience, this could be a behind the scenes view, or link to older versions of a show etc etc. Apparently IPTV is in a MHEG format, which I need to research and understand.

Flash Action Script 3 Workshop

Action Script 3 is something that I have really wanted to learn for a while but never had a really push or constructive tutorial in it. However today that changed. Straight away I saw parallels with AS3 and Processing. However AS3 seems a lot more manipulative. We were given a wide range look at some of the expressions and coding used in AS3, very useful stuff, and at the end of the workshop I felt that this unit would be a proof of concept and by using AS3 I could mock up how the final product could work. This would give me skills in AS3 and set me up to research further into more suitable technologies for future development of this project.

PHP workshop

As I understood it, PHP is a general purpose scripting language that is used for web development and dynamic websites. I found it useful as some of the expressions used are things I see everyday on sites but never really knew how they worked. We created a few examples such as variables were introduced to determine things like outputs of if a person was male or female and also how it could be used in databases to display large amounts of data with variables.

It was a rather fast paced workshop, I feel I understood what was going on, but really need to play around with the coding to really understand it comprehensively.

Well that was pretty much the whole day!


Annoyingly enough I haven’t managed to still narrow down which platform I want to choose. Looking into IPTV has opened my eyes to the project in a whole new way, and has really interested me to develop in this manner. In some ways though I don’t really need to pick a platform. I feel this because I need to start to get an idea and let it gather momentum. At the point where it is obvious I have to go in one direction, that is when I will have to chose one. I will break down the three platforms personally about whats good and bad about them in the context of an archive.



  • Using a large screen
  • Being able to open multiple windows at once
  • Being able to navigate using a mouse and keyboard
  • Portable on laptops
  • Very manipulative
  • Can be viewed on multiple device from desktops to smartphones
  • An online archive can be found via google
  • Cheap
  • Many different ways of building, versatile to combining different coding
  • Open to the majority of people


  • Can be borring and not innovative enough
  • Doesn’t converged with BBC television and radio seamlessly
  • The BBC archive already exists in web form already
  • Not as mobile as an App



  • Portability
  • Navigation generally are very simple
  • elements such as GPS and cameras can be integrated
  • Estimated that more people will use smart phones than desktop computers by 2013 (Mike Short – O2)
  • Enable more exploration based activity alongside the Archive


  • Can be slow and laggy if internet is weak when connecting to 3G
  • Small screen not the most ideal for large amounts of information
  • Appropriateness of looking at the BBC archive out and about, would this happen?
  • Doesn’t connect seamlessly to BBC media, is its own separate entity
  • Access to the App excludes people, especially of the older generation
  • Apps are trends, they could possibly go under in 5 years



  • Seamlessly flows between that of the television
  • Everything can be viewed in one place, no need to wander the house
  • Brings a more in depth viewing experience
  • Can jump in and out of programmes
  • Additional information can accompany a programme
  • Blends into your TV so no additional equipment is needed
  • Quality Broadcasting due to subscription needed
  • Said to be the future of broadcasting
  • Can be converged with TV, games consoles and other media sources


  • Not portable
  • Navigation is the most difficult out of the 3
  • Usually has to be part of a paid service
  • Not the general way to consume data, would have to be intuitive
  • Most difficult to demonstrate

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