In our IBC2017 paper, we described our experiences with Object-Based Media (OBM) and outlined our aims for developing a toolkit to enable authors to make such experiences quickly and easily. Here, we describe the progress we have made developing this toolkit. We show how its development was shaped by collaborations with producers: first, how the data model and player were shaped by working with the BBC Arts programme MAKE! Craft Britain and second, how the tools and player were trialled at a workshop during the 2018 Encounters Film Festival in Bristol. We then describe the impact of two long-form productions on the tools. A commission designed to create a responsive media experience for a younger audience and an episode of the BBC’s technology magazine programme Click, who approached us to make an interactive edition of their programme. In addition to presenting the current state of the toolkit, this paper considers decisions made during the toolkit’s development, in terms of its design and architecture, how it integrates with other systems, and how we engaged with users, including experienced production teams. We reflect on how these decisions are helping with our long-term goals of discovering where OBM can bring out new forms of audience experiences.
In our IBC2017 paper we described our work in creating our Cook-Along Kitchen Experience (CAKE) as an example of Object-Based Media and our plans for building tools for OBM workflows. Our aim was to take the production of interactive and responsive content from one-off exercises towards being business-as-usual and this can only happen if the tools are visible and accessible (and usable) to potential users, flexible in the way they can be used and if the experiences they create have an impact with the audiences. Our hypothesis was that we needed to create tools which did not require coding skills and needed minimal training so that they could be used directly by artists and producers as they are the people who have the potential to develop these new forms of media. Over the past two years, there has been a long and often difficult process of turning the initial concepts and data model into viable cloud-based tools that can be accessed via a web browser and integrate with the BBC’s business systems. In achieving these aims the tools can now be used by anyone with a system login.