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The votes are closed. Envy and Other Sins are winners of Channel 4's mobileAct.
Phew... Everyone at Mint can breathe again. This was Channel 4's first online vote since the TV voting scandals earlier this year. We had to adhere to a super-strict set of new guidelines. We built a system capable of recording hundreds of thousands of votes a day. We've withstood penetration testing by a bunch of Channel 4 employed hackers. We've logged votes in two separate ways and securely transmitted them to an independent adjudicator at Olswang for analysis.
But this is rock'n'roll. It's about the parties. And it's great to know that Alex Zane (seen here carousing with Thomas Pomfret, VP Technology) digs our web technology.
I have just returned from the Sheffield Documentary Festival where at a glittering awards ceremony on Saturday night we scooped the Crossover Prize.
The idea entitled ‘Museums of our Future’ (then renamed ‘Tomorrow’s Today’) was the output of a week working with Diarmid Scrimshaw from Warp Films and Anna Higgs from Quark Films at the UK’s first ever Crossover Lab.
A few things that stand out for me about Crossover/DocFest:
Happily the idea was not spawned by some elaborate ‘let's all think about the future’ type of brainstorm. It emerged from a meeting of minds over dinner one evening. An intellectual debate ensued, a creative match emerged and, hey presto, an idea was born.
Three things that I learnt from the experience were:
On a more personal level, I found the whole experience quite emotional. I sometimes act like a 'cold as ice small town likely lad' (although, like many Welshmen, I burst into tears at the opening bar of a male voice choir or watching the rugby at Cardiff). At Crossover, I experienced a sense of hiraeth. Normally this feeling is reserved for Neath, Swansea and Port Talbot area but now I must add Skipton to that list. Very odd.
Marvellous memories, inspiring ideas, but most of all firm friends.
So, I spent the last couple of days learning about 'the future' at the Future of Web Design conference in wonderful New York City. It was great fun. There were lots of interesting topics and inspiring people. Here is a brief run down:
The evening finished off with a Media Temple hosted party in the heart of NYC offering free booze and three floors of DJs. I chatted to, amongst others, Tyson an awesome designer at Virb and Keegan from The Big Noob.
In the afternoon, I went to Lea Alcantara's branding workshop. This touched on many things I was already aware of from the web design sphere, but it was interesting to hear it from a branding perspective. A highlight was having to interview her as an Italian chef.
All-in-all it was an inspiring couple of days. I look forward to future events arranged by Carson Systems, along with getting back to a good round of Photoshop back in the UK.
We've just launched a new version of the mobileAct website for Orange, SonyEricsson and Channel 4.
1500 bands initially applied. This was whittled down to 50 when the show started and now twelve. Bands can upload video and pictures and write blogs - building their online fan base will be crucial as the series progresses.
Watch the show on T4, 12.15 Sundays.
For Empire's Children, Illumina built a map for users to submit their histories. Illumina felt it was important to bridge the gap between professional quality of TV content and amateur quality of much web content. From what Andrew showed, they did a good job of this.
When Wall to Wall saw the site, their immediate reaction was 'it would have been great if we'd had a tool like that when we were making the TV show'. Currently they are working together on a project to make that happen. That elusive 'genuinely 360 idea' edges closer.
Recently, Illumina have taken on some projects for museums. Like TV, museums group people together by shared passion. Unlike TV, museums exist in the physical world. This is interesting. Lots of the most interesting 360 ideas in advertising (e.g. Nike's RunLondon or Innocent's Fruitstock) exist mainly in the real world (and only secondarily online). I think this trend towards the real world will extend into TV cross-platform ideas. The MobileAct project we are working on for Channel 4 has a massive real-world element.
For the new Centre of Cell experience, Illumina created a website that you need to visit before and after visiting the museum. The museum itself becomes one part of a bigger experience.
For Kew Gardens, Illumina noticed there were 4 million photos on Flickr tagged 'Tree'. This shows a tremendous level of interest. Illumina's aim building the new site is to bring this conversation within the Kew site.
This half of Illumina's work is about user-generated content and the participatory web and is similar to what Mint do. The other half involves narrative and video production and is a whole different world.