News article with some screenshots of the first Norwegian newspapers online.
And we've done something which will be less obvious to you, but hugely important to the journalists working on the site. We've completely rebuilt the content production system (CPS) which we use to create content and run the site. The new version of the CPS is designed to be easier to use and – crucially when we want to get stories out to you fast – quicker too. It's also built to be more flexible, so it should be easier to keep the site evolving, and to produce the content in ways that work well on other platforms, such as mobile.
Yet in many ways a digital journalist is more likely to struggle with design than coding. Before you can begin coding you have to have this side of things clear, whether you are working on your own independent blog or developing a complex data rich piece for a much larger news website.
My opinion is that, like coding, you’ll get the best results when you’re working in a team of professionals; that digital trinity of a journalist, a coder and a designer.
As an online editor for a digital media company, I am aware of just how important coding is, although I don’t believe that journalists and coders will ever meld into the same role. I just think that a modern journalist should be able to understand and talk about web architecture fluently. The same applies to basic design principles.
Make that information architecture and I'll agree – should be understood by all modern journalists.
Gestures are often not obvious and hard to discover; the user interface doesn’t tell you what you can do with an object. Instead, you have to remember which gestures you can use, the same way you had to remember the commands you could use in a command line interface.
The gesture is the verb. This works if the gesture is intuitive, but breaks down if there is no «natural» gesture for a verb. And since there is no intuitive, natural way of moving an object by one pixel (or skewing it, or mirroring it), we have to learn that command, and memorize it. The user interface doesn’t tell you how to nudge an object by a pixel; in fact, merely from looking at the application, you wouldn’t figure out that this feature even exists.
When natural user interfaces resort to non-obvious gestures, they essentially regress into a really pretty, modern version of the quaint old command line interface.
Rose acknowledged it may be used only by early adopters but said it’s “the best feature” of the upgrade: “If i see Erik is watching EastEnders, I can join in and watch. The integration of chat with live TV has been the holy grail. This, for some, could transform the way they watch television.” The feature has missed today’s beta for Rose’s third-generation iPlayer, but is due in two to three weeks.
Shame that chat facility will be powered by Microsoft's Windows Live Messenger (or whatever it's called now).
Now, today iPlayer does a fine job of satisfying the time-shifted desires created by the scheduler: the BBC schedulers create the desire to watch a programme; iPlayer lets you see it at a time that's convenient to you.
But what if you no longer watched linear TV? Who becomes the tastemaker then? Right now this is a largely theoretical problem as very few people watch no live TV at all. However, for a small but growing number of people this is indeed the case, and the fundamental problem that I sought to address was "who becomes the tastemaker for such people in a world without schedules?"
The BBC wasn’t the first mainstream media company to offer a video-on-demand service, but I do think we were the first to get it right. Some important early decisions contributed greatly to its appeal with audiences.
He then goes on to describe simplicity of access (i.e. streaming), quality of content, clarity of message, and platform neutrality as those important decisions.
Bringing the benefits of emerging technologies to the public is in the BBC’s DNA as its sixth public purpose, and the idea behind BBC iPlayer was to give audiences greater control over the programmes they enjoy, guarantee subscription-free access to BBC content in an on-demand world, and provide better value for the content they have already paid for.
Too often people forget that technological innovation is part of the BBC’s public service remit…
Times assistant editor, Tom Whitwell:
Whitwell said that in the 18 months of developing the pay strategy for the Times he had seen an "infinite" number of ideas but that the digital plan was not to become a "news aggregator or a social network".
"What we are trying to say is we are not going to show you all the news, [like] going to Google News and seeing 4,000 articles, we are going to give our take," he said.
Whitwell said that the paper aims to build real, meaningful community relationships between journalists and readers. Part of this strategy will see users having to post under their real names only – there will be no anonymous posting or use of pseudonyms, which Whitwell believes does not build real community.
"The principle is to encourage comment under real names," he said. A colleague added that the Times and Sunday Times would only consider allowing users to post anonymously if they had a real reason to protect their identity.