Sidepodcast - All for F1 and F1 for all

Sidepodcast TV and the 2008 Season (Part 2) - Another catch up with our video podcasting past, present and future

Published by Mr. C

In part one we looked into the problems we faced when considering a second season of F1 video podcasting. In part two, we'll look into some of the things we're doing to stay fresh and up-to-date.

A video forum

On the same day that Renault released their R28 challenger in Paris, Sidepodcast was at the Broadcast Live and VideoForum in London. This forum is the traditional stomping ground for the great and the good of the British television industry... and Keith Chegwin (don't ask).

You might think we'd be a little out of place in such company, but the thing is, we don't do "video clips" and we have no interest in simply being a conduit for whatever video press release an F1 team decides to push out this week. We want to create brand new and original Formula 1 content, so although nothing we create goes anywhere near a television station, we're sort of making TV.

It turns out that our trip wasn't at all in vain, and the forum turned over a wealth of ideas that gave us a whole new viewpoint on the possibilities of video creativity. Aside from the millions of pounds worth of television equipment stacked high inside Earls Court 2, there were a whole bunch of fantastically invaluable seminars to sit in on. Also, Sequence Post Production were in attendance - F1 fans may recognise the name as the company behind Martin Brundle's brilliant F1 Insight series - and they were an amazingly helpful bunch of people.

Circuit maps

So what did we learn and what are we doing?

First and foremost, we discovered onscreen graphic overlays, and that gave us a jumping off point. You may have noticed we are doing race preview videos again this year, and we're doing them because we think we've found a number of ways to differentiate. The structure of the show has clearly changed, based on all the constructive feedback we received, but for us the one thing that currently stands out are the live circuit overlays.

Track overlay screenshot

A subtle change from last year, I'm sure you'll agree and hardly a paradigm shift by anyone's standards... but they represent a lot. We've created them in their entirety and synced that little dot to the car on the track, and you'll only see them on Sidepodcast TV (at least for the moment). Plus, we can do more, much more.

One thing we've never been able to complain about in F1, is the information graphics FOM put on screen during a race. They are second to none, and they are our benchmark. We already have a few similar samples in development and we'll be adding them to future episodes as soon as we're able to.

The above really only scratches the surface of what's now possible, so this year we'll be adding more and more unique experiences that should ensure we don't repeat ourselves, we don't get boring and we're different from everybody else.

There's more to cover and we'll come back to this subject in future behind-the-scenes posts, but do let us know if you think we're on the right lines, the wrong lines or if you'd just rather we got on with it, stopped all this yapping and created some bloomin' video.