[Wikipedia-l] BBC planning to open source its archives

Rowan Collins rowan.collins at gmail.com
Fri Sep 17 23:10:31 UTC 2004

On Fri, 17 Sep 2004 23:39:11 +0200, Gerard Meijssen
<gerardm at myrealbox.com> wrote:
> I read this story on Newsforge, the imminence of this (expected THIS
> fall) makes it really something. The material is of such a quality, the
> breath of their data, the pictures alone, this is really big news ! As
> the article says, openining up this content to the public, will make the
> British culture much more important.

Sorry to add more nit-picking, but "expected THIS fall" is a slight
exaggeration on your part. The original announcement that they were
going to spend the next few years working out how to put all their
archives online was a few months ago; this is just a little "taster"
of a couple of thousand clips, presumably to float some ideas, see if
the public will get interested, etc. Not that that's not great in
itself, just don't hold your breath for the whole "breadth of their

On the other hand, their embrace of Open Source is a welcome shift -
things move slowly in the beeb, and their insistence on using Real
streaming (yuck!) has irked a lot of people. They actually flirted
rather casually with Ogg-base streams, but they were practically in
secret, and I've never heard what it was exactly that was deemed a
failure about them. (Perhaps nobody used them, since they only covered
one program, and nobody knew they existed; that could be it ;).

Sorry, I think I may be rambling. Or maybe not, it's a while since I
looked at this window. My eyes hurt. Good night!

Rowan Collins BSc

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