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View Article  Springboard on Facebook
Sign up to SpringboardTV on Facebook and get regular updates on new content and upcoming events.

Thanks to Peter for setting this up, we have over 70 friends already.
View Article  Time table and work experience changes
The timetable has been rejigged for the new term and we have allocated time for staff to train, reflect and meet in a production meeting. The student production groups have been changed, we still have three separate groups but now the basics of production have been taught First Diploma and National have been separated so each can move forward at their own pace. The national first and seconds are still mixed but each group have their own final major projects to work on as well as the joint projects.    more »
View Article  Back to the future
College resumes and a new year begins and after what was admittedly a hectic first term for the live project we were looking forward to a more settled beginning to the new term. Alas this was not to be and mother nature has scuppered our plans, we have had some very cold and snowy weather and due the long journeys many teachers and staff have to take into the college attendance has been on the low side.   more »
View Article  Time lapse Vocal Point
Here a time lapse film shot during the set up of the first Vocal Point debate show. It was shot at 10fps and sped up by 3000%
View Article  Immigration recorded TV debate - Vocal Point
We are preparing frantically for our live studio debate next Thursday. The show is called Vocal Point and is being put together by the 2nd year students. It's been a hard slog getting to this point as motivation has been a factor, unfortunately the debate subject that was given to them was not glam enough. It's an important issue for the area and Tony stuck to his guns as he felt it was a debate that would be really vibrant and would engage the local community. Fair play to the student as with a bit of cajoling they have pulled themselves together, organized themselves and we have the semblance of a show put tother. I have attached the premise and a flyer to gove you a broader picture of the production, we are still confirming panelist but we hope to have all major parties represented (we have two already) and a diverse and interested audience of about 30-40. The crew will number 20 including sound, camera, light, presenter, producers, directors, make up, autocue and hangers on. We are really excited and the nerves are jangling, it will really give the students a taste of what the pressures are really like in industry. Will update you will more info when appropriate.
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View Article  First Press!
The project has received it's first press coverage, The EDP came in whilst we were rehearsing for the immigration debate which will be recorded live next Thursday. They took plenty of snaps but chose to include the desk based student rather than the 20 other students operating cameras, lights and sound. Oh well can't complain as all press is good press, lets hope this is just the start.
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View Article  Blue Screen Fun!!
Hi all, bit of spare time so I thought I would tell you about the fun day we had in ...   more »
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View Article  Howdy Folks
Hey, just dropping by to say hi to all, You may well of met me already, but if not I ...   more »
View Article  New teaching format

The students seem to be responding well to the new format and are all working hard, it has been a ...   more »

View Article  Interim Evaluation

The first interim evaluation was written and sent through to JISC at the beginning of September.  We got the feedback earlier this week and it was very positive.  They have suggested a number of things that they would like us to look at for the project.  Ben and I are both wuite happy with what they were asking for and we will be putting the things togther in the next few wekks.

The next interim report is due at the end of Feb, so no doubt I will be going around staff to get various bits of information. 

View Article  IT Issues

We are well into our second project cycle of the year so we have about 15 films already in can. ...   more »

View Article  New technician

We have a new technician just started with us called Peter Naylor, he has taken over Gary’s role as Gary ...   more »

View Article  Uuummm Shiny Shiny... The new macs have landed

Just been up and had a look at the lovely new Macs... so pleased for the whole team and more importantly the learners that these are now in place ; )



View Article  New Macs

It been a while I know but I have a good excuse - we have just launched Springboard TV in ...   more »

View Article  New student survey

Click here to view the new student survey

   more »
View Article  It's alive
Well my good people the site has gone live, from Monday students and staff will begin using it in earnest.  IMO the site is about 90% bug free, so the next few weeks will be very telling, browser support is reasonable with only Safari causing a headache because the Ajax commenting system won't play ball.  The main things is that there is some excellent video content on the site and that learner now have a focal point for their efforts.

Over and out
View Article  The hidden work of creative people (designers)

I saw this and it just brought home how much work and expertise goes into getting things looking just so...

Whatever you are: Graphic designer, Photographer, Film maker, Desktop publisher or Web monkey... this one's for you, the average person will never fully understand what goes into it, but maybe if you show them this it will help.

Respect ; )

Cover creation from Peter Belanger on Vimeo.

View Article  Big week!

It's a big week for the channel this week, Neil and I are locked in a room in the tower ...   more »

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View Article  Create a programme in a week!

We ran have just completed a staff day training course entitled 'make a programme in a week'. Six staff attended and ...   more »

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View Article  Dissemination at the RSC e-Fair

The SpringboardTV team descended on mass to Epping Forest last Friday to run a workshop at the 2009 RSC e-Fair, a ...   more »

View Article  Nine Lives
We visited Paul Mayer Course Director Performing Arts over at Isle yesterday with Sophia and Jonny to find out more about how he has successfully integrated a fully functioning and highly succesful theatre company called 'Nine Lives' into his general teaching programme. He spoke about the pride students feel knowing they in a close team and not just 'doing a course' - they are part of a real theatre company. This is exactly the feeling we want to instill with SpringboardTV and the media cohort. There's loads of cross over so Paul's experiences will be invaluable - we recorded his words which I'll edit a post when I get a moment, plus he has agreed to help us out by lending his dulcet tones for voice work on the channel next term, bravo that man!

Sophia and Jonny got some great ideas from the session and found it really useful.

Here's where the Nine Lives company put on their shows
View Article  How to use Twitter
Here's an easy step-by-step video on how to use Twitter, also gives some useful educational uses.

View Article  A Visit From DMU
Richard Hall ILT coordinator from De Monfort University payed us a visit in Kings Lynn last week. He's the Project Manager of the MoRSE project which is part of our CAMEL cluster group as assigned by JISC. He was unable to attend the recent CAMEL event hosted by ourselves on the 8th May but he wanted to see the project for himself and talk technology with us.

Richard was particularly interested in the technological solutions that we're developing and the impact on professional development/student learning these will have. We were obviously delighted to have him here and so we gave him the full tour, showed our progress so far and demoed the virtual studio. We also conducted a brief interview with Richard in the virtual environment which we'll post up on the blog soon.

Apart from being eager to hear his thoughts on all of the above, we also had a good discussion on IPR and copyright, Richard pointed us towards this really useful JISC Web 2.0 checklist which DMU have integrated into their general institutional procedure and we are now looking to do the same. On that subject we (project management team) have been talking about who should be driving policy on this subject - the college or the project? It was decided that the project would be the catalyst but we should engage with both the ILT team and IT in order to put guidelines together for feedback from the institutes SMT. Waiting for Toby George head of ILT to return from leave so watch this space.

Check out Richard's own project blog and comments on his visit to us
View Article  Social Media.... Is this what springboard will be all about
This illustrates how a(the) new model of media production, distribution and sales works...

View Article  Blogging as a route to publication
Billed as 'A First-time Author's Gateway to Publication' Sulekha's BLOGPRINT is a collaboration with Penguin Books and is primarily about promoting creative writing.

It's worth looking into the background and outcomes; one notable outcome was that Boy's contributed more that Girl's... Anyway worth taking a look to see if any parallels can be drawn with our use of blogs etc. Perhaps journalism!
View Article  Jisc Legal Web 2.0 & Accessibility Webcasts
Follolwing todays projact steering group meeting I just wanted to post the links to the Jisc Legal webcasts that Mark Stiles recommeded... so here they are:

JISC Legal Webcast: Web 2.0 and the Law for e-Tutors
or link directly to the video

JISC Legal Webcast: Accessibility Law Webcast

or link directly to the video
View Article  An Epic Journey
Tony and I visited the Epic studios in Norwich last Tuesday - one of the most advanced broadcast production facilities in Europe. We were primarily there to visit the teachers visual media fair but also to have a good look at their recent £1.5 million HD upgrade.

We met Dave the head engineer, he gave us a tour of the very impressive facilities. The main studio is 6000 square feet and can accommodate up to 300 people in the audience, it has 4 dressing rooms and three viewing galleries. In the past it has hosted Trisha, Vanessa and Graham Norton - but not at the same time according to their website. Studio one is available for hire for 5k a day - a bit out of our budget but Epic do cater for colleges by offering a package of different experiences for learners. One that caught our eye was a full studio tour combined with a production exercise. Learners get assigned roles in the studio and actually get to create their show and take it away with them.

Dave offered the college some of their old equipment at what we were told was a very reasonable price - unfortunately the mixing desk he was pointing at would struggle to get through the doors of the college let alone fit into our compact gallery.

Later after a brief introduction to Epic's director we visited the fair in the main studio. Representatives from local creative and media industries were well represented. We spoke at length with the Creative & Media Diploma Employer Engagement team who said they'd been receiving some excellent feedback from students. They felt it gave them otherwise unavailable opportunities to build links with the creative industry and give them a taster of a variety of different creative areas. This was really helping them to make up their mind about where they want to go when they complete the course.

Donna Chessum of Tribe PR told us about the increase in demand for web video in the city of Norwich and how they have set up their own TV Channel online 'Tribe TV'. She also mentioned that they are working with the council on a film competition which is open to all ages - Create a 3 minute film on any device (stills camera, mobile, film camera) dispelling the myths of Norfolk, i.e. that you come here to retire and nothing ever happens. We're too late for this year but we spoke about SpringboardTV and we will keep in touch and crossover where appropriate.

The BBC where present and I was interviewed for their East community channel, again we spoke about Springboard and potential collaboration opportunities. Wendy (BBC) has invited the college to come to their studio sometime in the future, we also discussed the potential of Springboard feeding them content on local bands and news etc - real kudos for the channel if we can make it happen.

There were a number of independent filmmakers who are currently very busy involved in online video, they also spoke about real growth in this area. It was really encouraging to see that although some of Norwich's larger broadcasters have scaled back operations, smaller and more dynamic digital agencies were doing well. All in all a really worthwhile day out.
View Article  Progress Report

Hi folks,

This is just an update on progress. We have completed some filming which we will shortly upload to ...   more »

View Article  Day 2

If I can do this - then anyone can.  I can see now how people get so addicted to this. 

I have rather surprised myself that I can do this at all as I am not that good when it comes to new technolology - as my colleagues in the staffroom will confirm.  (Also those who have had, for the past few weeks,  tried to teach me at evening class how to use new technology in the classroom - a big thank you.  Their patience is amazing and for that I am eternally grateful.  Who after all would want to teach teachers?)


I have in the meantime concluded it is just a case of overcoming my fear.  I cannot bear heights, cruelty to animals, the national lottery or learning how to use anything more sophisticated than a manual can opener - and then that can get the better of me!


So watch this space.  After yestersday's amazingly interesting, informative and inspriational look at using new technology who knows what I can do now? 


How do you post this again Jonny?

View Article  To Be Or Not to be
From this monment forward we will proceed to success
View Article  Bonjourno from Jonny
Bonjourno, not much to say at the moment, no doubt lots to say further down the line, so until then, adios!
View Article  Sophia's first blog

Greetings and Salutations blog readers! A new addition to the blogging team today, this is my first and most exciting entry to the springboardtv blog.  Enjoy....

View Article  Hello - Kay's first-ever blog!
Hey - This is a new experience.  Don't you just love this new technology stuff?  No text talking here.
View Article  Web Streaming Technologies
Over the past few months I've been looking a range of video streaming and delivery methods for the project, here are a few items of note:

CDN (content delivery network)

View Article  Catch up

Well it’s been nearly three months since the project began form my point of view and I’ve been playing catch up. I’ve been familiarising myself with the finer points of the project, trying to get my head round the huge number acronyms used in education and generally trying to find my way to the college canteen (turn left out of the tower!).


The project blog/website is another area where I need to catch up so apologies for not getting to this sooner but we this will effectively be a repository for all project elements, including team member profiles, project documentation (where appropriate), pertinent videos (visits, student and teacher reaction/views, events) comments, progress and general musings from the team.


So, what have we been up to, what is our progress, where are we at?


Equipment: One of the first jobs was to indentify and quantify the level of stock equipment currently held within the department, ascertain what was in good order and decide what was worth sending out for servicing and what needed replacing.


The first items we decided to put out of commission were the original studio cams, these were good beasts in their time but we felt their time had past – they shoot in 4:3 and we aspire along with the industry to capture in 16:9. Plus after enquires we established that they would be quite expensive to service and we though that money would be better spent elsewhere. The other camera stock was checked and found to be in pretty good order so these will stay in rotation whilst while begin looking for cameras for the project itself.


We then set about testing out the general setup of the current studio which had not been used for a while so Gary rolled up his sleeves and began the task of checking all the wiring and the suitability of the power supply to the lighting rigs and the control area. Turned out there was plenty of life in the old studio and coupled with the procurement of some choice new elements we thought we could be up and running in no time. (see Gary’s update for more info)


A working studio for a our TV portal is essential, this is where our fast turnover content will be created, this is where we can guarantee good shooting conditions and bring together different faculties in the college into a suitable environment to create content... our bread and butter.


Cameras – the college had recently purchased three Panasonic AVCHD, these are solid state (they record to memory rather than tape) shooting HD at a 16:9 ratio. Dedicated studio cameras are very expensive so we decided to try these out as our permanent studio cameras – they worked pretty well with our set up and they communicated with the Tricaster (see separate update for info on this beauty). 


So what about general project cameras well this is where it get sticky, what is the industry doing


We had two visits to expos and from that and general industry knowledge possessed within the team it’s easy to see, we’re going solid state ie, recording to a hardrive, a memory holding device such as Panasonic’s P2 or Sony’s SxS or just general freely available SD or compact flash. Solid state improves the production workflow - instead of having to digitise media in real time from a tape format you can literally drag and drop video content into your editing system and straight onto the timeline for cutting. This has massive implications for content turnaround; you can get news pieces out fast and efficiently. Sounds perfect but the flip to this is that the format is still in an early stage and the type of camera range to budget we would be looking at the products are relatively new to market and do we really want to be guinea pigs, can we afford to take the risk? Also the media itself is expensive; P2 cards are £900 for a 16 gig card which will shoot about an hour at HD resolution. Alternatively DV tapes are just £1.50 a pop in the college shop and therefore very accessible for the average student. Decisions, decisions...


Other updates to follow will be the curriculum integration update, tricaster and studio update, programme plans and work experience and placement plans.