March 4, 2013We continue our report about the new Cordes Junction Interchange at Highway I 17. Here we are on the highway, facing north right in front of exit 262 going into Cordes Junction. We can see the new ‘fly-over’ bridge to Highway 69 towards Prescott.[photo: Chihiro Saito]This is a view of the other side of the fly-over set of bridges and we can see the Paolo Soleri relief designs, as of yet unpainted.A closer look at the same view.Here we are at the left side of same bridges.We will report more on the new Interchange in upcoming reports.
TV technology provider Espial has contributed additional software to the code base of the RDK initiative that it says will enable HLS and MPEG DASH adaptive streaming in an RDK environment.According to Espial, the additions will enable pay TV operators to offer additional OTT options as well as adopt a simplified software approach for set-top boxes, other IPTV platforms and OTT devices.The Espial software is now available as open source for use by RDK members.“We’re pleased to bring support for HLS and DASH streaming to RDK devices – capabilities which are critical for the next generation of Pay TV services. As the RDK environment grows, it allows Pay TV operators to quickly intercept new OTT markets with a wide range of platforms and services,” said Kumanan Yogaratnam, CTO, Espial.“The RDK provides a common software foundation for the Pay TV community – including cable, satellite and telco operators – by enabling new services and applications to be developed faster,” said Jason Briggs, Senior Director of Licensing and Strategic Development, RDK Management LLC. ”Espial is a key contributor to the RDK community and, through these contributions, are helping to move the entire RDK community forward.”
The BBC is due to launch a discovery app called BBC+ in the coming months, as it moves forwards with its content personalisation plans.In a progress report that comes a year after BBC director general Tony Hall outlined his vision for a more personal BBC, the corporation said that the new BBC+ mobile app will help viewers to discover collections of content from across the BBC.The corporation will also roll out a new BBC Identity (ID) system that it said will be “more robust and even more secure” than the existing one, and will offer viewers personalised experiences on whatever devices they are using.Meanwhile, a new ‘privacy hub’ area on the BBC will explain the broadcaster’s approach to data and privacy.The BBC’s director of homepage and myBBC, Phil Fearnley, said that in the last year 6.4 million people have signed in to the BBC, with over a third coming back to the BBC on a monthly basis to benefit from “personalised signed-in experiences”.Some 1.6 billion BBC programmes have been recommended to viewers based on what they’ve previously listened to or watched, 1.4 billion personalised alerts have been sent via the BBC Sport app, and in the last three months alone 1.7 million people have personalised the myNews section on the BBC News app and website, according to Fearnley.The myBBC progress report also revealed that the personalisation tools are also helping the BBC when it comes to commissioning programmes.“How audiences are engaging can be useful in informing commissioning decisions such as what further programming would help people delve a little deeper into that subject,” according to the report.Last year Tony Hall said that “the internet age strengthens the case for the BBC” and that the corporation planned to introduce a raft of new features, including better recommendation and personalisation tools.“We face much greater competition for ideas and talent [today]. BBC services won’t be as prominent in an on-demand world. And younger audiences are using linear channels less than their parents,” said Hall at the time. “There’s real jeopardy here. If the BBC doesn’t address these challenges, we could become irrelevant. But I’m confident that we can deal with them, precisely because each of those challenges is also a huge opportunity.”
Emad MorcosMiddle East pay TV operator OSN has named Emad Morcos to the new position of chief content officer.Morcos will be responsible for driving OSN’s consolidated content strategy and is also mandated with the acquisition of programming rights across all OSN platforms.He was previously senior vice-president, media partners and digital at OSN. He has been part of the group’s senior management team since 2007 and was responsible for the launch of digital platforms OSN Play and Go. He also led the acquisition of channel provider Pehla, which enabled OSN to target the sizeable Filipino migrant community in the Gulf.Morcos will report to OSN CEO David Butorac.Butorac said: “The differentiating strength of OSN is its extensive portfolio of exclusive and premium content tailored for all our platforms including linear TV, OSN Play and Go online TV. Emad brings strong industry insights and experience that will enable us to continue to build on our leadership position. Emad’s new role will mean consolidation of content across platforms which is key to our success going forward.”Morcos said: “Today’s audiences are discerning about how and what they view. They demand the newest content at the same minute as global audiences. This calls for a comprehensive world-view on our content strategy for all our platforms to add sustained value for our subscribers. We will continue to focus on building global partnerships with the world’s premier content and channel providers, alongside an emphasis on local content creation to maintain our cutting edge as the premier provider of world-class entertainment.”