BBC launches interactive ‘Taster’ platform to test and develop new ideas

bbc launches online taster platform test develop new ideas
The BBC on Monday launched a new initiative aimed at showcasing its latest ideas linked to digital content and emerging technologies.

The British media behemoth said BBC Taster will feature “early and experimental concepts from across TV, radio, and online” and encourage feedback from users to help it develop the best of its most popular ideas.

The new platform aims to “try out new ways of telling stories, develop new talent, and put new technology through its paces,” the publicly financed corporation said, adding that it should lead to the creation of more social and interactive content, as well as material and services born out of “ideas from left-field.”

Content at launch includes Kneejerk, a comedy feature described as “unplanned, unscripted and unlike most of the things we do.” Kneejerk involves improv group The Noise Next Door taking trending social media material, including tweets, GIFs and Vines, and turning it all into “a comedy stage.”

There’s also a “no-holds barred conversation” between Girls creator and writer Lena Dunham and Brit comedienne Jennifer Saunders; exclusive and interactive material from American hip-hop duo Run the Jewels’ recent gig at London’s Koko venue; and Your Story, an online tool that “intertwines your back story with BBC archive news and events.”

The initiative should enable the BBC to gain a greater understanding of audience desires, and help it to create more original content across all platforms.

“Innovation has been at the heart of the BBC since the birth of radio and TV, right through to the digital age,” Ralph Rivera, director of BBC Future Media, said in a release. Describing BBC Taster as “the next step,” the executive said the new tool will help bring together the organization’s editorial and technology experts and take the production process closer to audiences.

“This will give us valuable feedback and technical insights, helping us further develop our ideas and work on those with the greatest potential,” Rivera added.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Write music with your voice, make homemade cheese

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Product Review

Gate’s Smart Lock is locked and loaded but ultimately lacks important basics

In a world of video cameras and doorbells comes the Gate Smart Lock, a lock with a video camera embedded. It’s a great idea, but lacks some crucial functionality to make it a top-notch product.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix right now (March 2019)

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Mobile

The best protective iPhone cases to defend against dirt, dings, and drops

If you’re going off-road or work outdoors, it could be a good idea to invest in a tough case. These are our picks of the best protective iPhone cases for all iterations of the iPhone, from the iPhone XS to the 7.
Cars

The mid-engined Chevrolet Corvette is so powerful it mangles its own body

Chevrolet has major changes in store for the eighth-generation Corvette. The coupe will arrive in 2019 with a mid-mounted engine. We won't see it at the Detroit auto show, but spy shots and rumors give us a good idea of what to expect.
Emerging Tech

Mind-bending model shows Venus isn’t our nearest neighbor — it’s Mercury

Every textbook and table on the internet agrees -- the closest planet to Earth is Venus. But a new mathematical model shows that this is wrong. In fact, the planet closest to us on average is Mercury.
Emerging Tech

Desk lamps take on a new task by converting their light to power

What if we could charge devices using light from indoor sources like desk lamps? A group of scientists working on a technology called organic photovoltaics (OPVs) aim to do just that.
Emerging Tech

Body surrogate robot helps people with motor impairments care for themselves

A team from Georgia Tech has come up with an assistant robot to help people who have severe motor impairments to perform tasks like shaving, brushing their hair, or drinking water.
Emerging Tech

New Hubble image displays dazzling Messier 28 globular cluster

Messier 28 is a group of stars in the constellation of Sagittarius, located 18,000 light-years from our planet. Thousands of stars are packed tightly together in this sparkling image.
Emerging Tech

Cosmic dust bunnies: Scientists find unexpected ring around Mercury

A pair of scientists searching for a dust-free region near the Sun have made an unexpected discovery: a vast cosmic dust ring millions of miles wide around the tiny planet Mercury.
Emerging Tech

Take a dip in the Lagoon Nebula in first image from SPECULOOS instrument

The European Southern Observatory has released the first image collected by their new SPECULOOS instrument, and it's a stunning portrait of the Lagoon Nebula, a swirling cloud of dust and gas where new stars are born.
Emerging Tech

Robot assistants from Toyota and Panasonic gear up for the Tokyo Olympics

Japan plans to use the 2020 Olympics to showcase a range of its advanced technologies. Toyota and Panasonic are already getting in on the act, recently unveiling several robotic designs that they intend to deploy at the event.
Emerging Tech

A.I.-generated text is supercharging fake news. This is how we fight back

A new A.I. tool is reportedly able to spot passages of text written by algorithm. Here's why similar systems might prove essential in a world of fake news created by smart machines.
Emerging Tech

Racing to catch a flight? Robot valet at French airport will park your car

Hate searching for parking at the airport when you need to catch a plane? Startup Stanley Robotics recently unveiled a new outdoor automated robotic valet system. Here's how it works.