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IPTV world forum 2011

March 25, 2011
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There were so many companies displaying their set top boxes with their own EPG and apps/widgets that link up with twitter, youtube etc

Some boxes facilitate iPad (mobile or PC) connectivity, this means that you could start watching a programme on TV that is stored on your STB then pause it, go to your iPad and continue watching the programme for the point you paused it on your TV, how cool is that. (Sexmi)

The widgets I saw tended to be separate full screen apps and didn’t overlay the broadcast tv pictures.

There seemed to be so many set top boxes all doing similar things.

I was particularly looking out for any 3D IPTV examples at this exhibition, but there were none.

Althos books kindly gave me 2 books that may be useful for my research question about tv immersion – Introduction to IP Television and IPTV Business Opportunities.

Protected: Ravensbourne Broadcast industry day

March 23, 2011
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Protected: When I leave rave

March 23, 2011
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Protected: New technologies being used for the 2012 Olympics

March 23, 2011
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Arsenal tv matchday +

March 18, 2011

In 2010 Arsenal football club did a trial inside their stadium with Sony PSP devices.

Eric Siereveld, Sony told Reuters (Siereveld, 2010) in a video interview that the PSP would be able to show replays, stream live video with a slight delay to see what you have missed, statistics, live scores and in the future link fans during the games and exchange messages etc

Also this service provides a “complete enhancement of the fans experience” (Siereveld, 2010)

Mark Grinyer, Head of Sports Business, Sony Professional commented on the Arsenal website “No one would deny that the live experience is the ultimate way to watch sport. What this new service offers is an even more immersive experience for fans.” (Grinyer, 2010)

As I am investigating about enhancing the sports fans experience this concept and service is very useful and could be built upon for Olympic sports.

The official arsenal website describe the Matchday service as a:
• Action replays from selected camera angles, plus slow-motion options
• Live match statistics
• Team sheets and Arsenal player profiles
• Pre-match video content and Arsenal.com editorial news
• Man of the match voting within the Arsenal TV Matchday + user base
• Barclays Premier League Table
• Live scores and results from other fixtures

The behind the scenes video by Philip Johnson explains how the system works and the technologies being used like multicast streaming, wifi access points, there is a specialist OB team and software required for producing the psp video stream and service.

The findings of this service could be very useful for my CARD. So far all the publicity seems to be positive, but I was unable to find out for certain if the trial had finished and if Arsenal and Sony had launched this service for the 2010/2011 season.

As a football fan who watches most of my football on tv I often rewind and watch bits again that I have missed. Having the ability to look at the match again via the delay can be really useful for seeing incidents or play down the other end of the pitch which can be hard to see. Keeping up to date with the scores in other games is very useful, I have noticed lots of fans at matches checking the other games scores on their phones and in the past lots of supporters used to listen to radio to find out the score in other matches (this becomes even more important at the end of the season).

Cowan, Matt. (2010) Arsenal’s PSP stadium stream dream. [online]
Available from: http://jp.reuters.com/news/video?videoId=97391&feedType=VideoRSS&feedName=JPSportsandLeisure&videoChannel=205&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+reuters%2FJPVideoSportsAndLeisure+%28Video+%2F+JP+%2F+Sports+and+Leisure%29&utm_content=Google+UK [accessed 18/03/11]

Unknown (2010) Arsenal and Sony launch Arsenal TV Matchday +. [online] London.
Available from: http://www.arsenal.com/news/news-archive/arsenal-and-sony-launch-arsenal-tv-matchday
[accessed 18/03/11]

Unknown (2010) Arsenal TV Matchday + COMING SOON!. [online] London.
Available from: http://www.arsenal.com/matchdayplus
[accessed 18/03/11]

Johnson, Philip. (2010) Arsenal Sony PSP trail. [online] London.
Available from: http://exposureroom.com/members/dvwarrior/25f4eb800613491eae8dd7dc78bc6527 [accessed 18/03/11]

Lighting and 3D

March 18, 2011
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Lighting is very important in 3D, with correct lighting the depth of field can be enhanced.

This Thursday, I got some more practical 3D experience where I converged and lined up the 3D beamsplitter rig, this was a very fiddly exercise.
To line up the camera one needs to adjust the screws on the side of the camera plate, small changes to these screws make a big difference. One needs a lot of patience for this but it is very rewarding when the camera is finally lined up.

To converge the camera’s on your 3D subject, this is done by
1. increasing the size of the interaxial (by 25mm or 50mm) this is measured using a ruler, between the edge of the plate and the camera
2. picking a point on the subject, maybe their eyes, then swiveling the plate of the horizontal (right) camera, so that the pictures are lined up on their eyes. This means every thing behind the subjects eyes will be behind the screen and everything in front of the subject eyes will be coming out of the screen.

A 3D beamsplitter shoot is much easier now Ravensbourne has a 3D tv (jvc).

This is the 3D setup:
Both cameras have to be timed and sync’d this done by connecting genlock from the cameras to the HDTV sync generator box.
The output of the cameras go into a 3D HDMI box which converts SDI signals to HDMI. The box has labeled left and right camera inputs, and also does the flopping of the left eye. The output of this box is fed directly in to the 3D tv via the HDMI input and can be viewed in 3D as a side by side picture.

Last week we did a camera shoot on the Thames clipper going into London using Craig’s side by side rig that is mounted on a wooden plank. For a few shots the cameras where taken off the plank and manually held and converged on a building by making the building the centre of the shot and lining the horizon up is key. But the problem with boats they are very bumpy and the camera will move at different times. It turns out that a lot of the footage was unusable, because the camera was not clapped in, the camera horizon was not horizontal and also the distances/landscape shots loose the depth of field becoming 2D.

3D Sports

March 7, 2011
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On Sunday I spent the afternoon watching sports in 3D from both indoor court and outdoor fairways.

3D Golf
When the players are in the middle of the fairway or on the putting green and the camera is placed low down, the viewer can see all the fairway bumps and the lay of the land. This gives the viewer a perspective to understand the uniqueness of the course, which you would not be able to otherwise see in 2D.

However, the long distance and landscape shots don’t work in 3D because the objects are to far away, so they in effect become 2D. A white ball against a blue sky is pointless in 3D, as there is no depth in the picture. There was an occasional shot that had objects too close to the camera and a shaky camera can make one feel ill.

In my opinion Golf has some benefits in 3D, but am not sure how well suited it is for a full 3D production.

3D Basketball
The camera position is crucial as when it is too high, the 3D is hard to see, but also if the camera is too close to the crowd, this can distract the viewers eye from the game. It is really important to get the camera position right. Not too high and not too many spectators obscuring the live play. When the camera is in the right position it is like having the best seat at the basketball game.

Basketball is very enjoyable in 3D, it works because there is lot of fast movement in a confined amount of space with a relative depth of field.

3D Ice hockey
The low camera behind the protective perspex around the ice provides a very engaging 3D shot, but sometimes the poles between the glass become in shot and because these are so close to the camera, it can make the 3D uncomfortable.

Ice hockey is very enjoyable to watch in 3D, it works because it is fast paced and there is a confined amount space with a relative depth of field.

3D Football
I found after watching a few football matches in 3D I could detect the cameras which are 2D conversions to 3D.

3D is great for seeing the direction of the ball, this you would not have been possible if watching in 2D. Also it provides a more realistic view of the players contact with the ball.

I enjoy watching football in 3D, the low camera angle and fast pace makes me feel like I am at the match.

Conclusion
The camera position is extremely important in 3D and makes a successful 3D broadcast. I think sports in a confined space like basketball and football work better in 3D than golf despite the beautiful landscape.

Also bad 3D can make you feel dizzy and unwell especially when there is too much mixing, the shots are not on screen for long enough so you eyes can’t adjust and when 2D is converted to 3D badly. A good director is crucial. Poor camera work/shots can lead to dizziness and illness during and after the broadcast.

I also watched some underwater 3D of fish and turtles, and would like to see some swimming and synchronised swimming in 3D. I think it would look breath taking. There are still other sports I would like to watch/analyse in 3D in particular, Rowing, show jumping and boxing.

Fashion catwalk 3D video – Anaglyph

March 5, 2011

First 3D video finally up online.

What a learning curve and great experience.

You will need red/cyan anaglyph glases to watch the video below.

Broadcasting

March 5, 2011
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So I finally got around to reading the Broadcasting supplement from the Daily Telegraph.

It was very informative, one of the things that I noticed is that there is more about IPTV than 3DTV in it. This is some thing that is coming as more and more TV’s have internet connections on them.

More later

Behind the scenes of Sky 3D

March 2, 2011
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An interesting blog post behind the scenes of Sky 3D

http://eint.sky.com/Sky-Views/Blog/Darren-Long/Dates/2011/1/An-exclusive-look-behind-the-scenes-of-Sky-3D-/

A very useful overview and gives an idea of the complexities of 3D sports production, and the crew needed to produce a 3D event

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