Results from the 2014 TV Hack Day


Over the weekend in Berlin, Germany, technology enthusiasts gathered to contribute to a 24-hour television hacking session known as TV Hack Day. Participants were provided with APIs from ARTE, FIcontent, IRT, Tweek, Watchmi and Microsoft, and had to come up with a brand new TV innovation in the form of an app, device or other visionary concept.

Anyone interested in “the future of TV” could be involved. The event was hosted by Medienanstalt Berlin Brandenburg at the TV United Studio.

The Winners

Two teams were victorious for first place. The first winning project, termed “fJUzza,” consisted of three apps – one for iOS, HbbTV and the back-end. According to the development group’s mission statement, it allows a viewer to “mark interesting TV-content with their remote on the couch and get ... personalized updates on the road at their smartphones.”

The second champion, “Till I Collapse,” utilizes Microsoft Kinect, and provides an alert that a viewer has fallen asleep after analyzing his or her face. When the person awakens, they can continue watching from the spot that they had last seen. The hack was cobbled together by developers Olcay Buyan, Donnie Ray Crisp and Devran (Cosmo) Ünal.

Worth noting, Netflix’s own internal Hack Day this past February led to a similar hack with the Fitbit wearable device.

Le Connaisseur” from Kai Mysliwiec, Christoph Ziegler and Artem Brigert won the Watchmi API prize. The app monitors the viewing experience of an individual and offers EPG programming suggestions based on a ratings system.

Other Participants

A grand total of eight teams contributed. Here’s what the other five developed:

Watchneverever - Sten Anderßen, Michael Praetorius, Raul Krauthausen and Stefan Meyer developed a video-on-demand mobile app that’s inspired by the swipe functionality of popular dating apps like Tinder. While browsing through a video library, users are provided with the option to move on to another selection. The app monitors what is skipped, and offers up new choices determined by what the viewer is uninterested in.

According to the project’s description, the team states “Let the app learn what you don’t want to see instead of setting up personal preferences, or doing the paradox of choice.”

“What if a TV library would work like a flirting app?”

Join the Band, from Jollicode team Benjamin Schneider, Thibaut Lion, Marie Gosse and Thibault Lenclos, is a game that operates simultaneously with a live video stream, allowing the player to engage with a concert. It was developed with the API from ARTE.

StoryWalk - This team of developers created a mobile app “for location-based videos.”

InteracTV This app utilizes Microsoft Kinect, which instructs viewers on how to engage with the on-screen content. Viewers must obey the Kinect instructions by moving their body, and based on their performance, a score is provided for “an ultimate immersive TV experience.”

SplitrSplitr allows video clips of live television shows to be selected with a special QR code; these videos can then be saved and shared with friends.

Author: Brian Cameron

H/T Hackpad; L

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