24 October 2008

BBC Maps Medal Parade With GPS

A real-time map boosted with geotagged multimedia content formed part of the BBC’s coverage of last week’s “parade of heroes”.

Visitors to bbc.co.uk followed the progress of the Olympians and Paralympians via the map’s red line, which slowly crawled its way through the streets of London.

Along the route, journalists on the ground added geotagged text updates using a combination of GPS-enabled mobile phones, Twitter and Twibble to provide users with a flavour of the atmosphere among the crowds.

They also submitted geocoded photos, using Flickr and Shozu, of some of the now familiar faces of Team GB.

While members of the public were encouraged to upload their photos of the parade to the specially created Flickr group.

Sports journalist Ollie Williams said of all the technology used for the coverage: “It’s clever stuff, and it allows us to tell the story of events in a complex, live, graphic environment for the first time.”

He added: “In the future, mobile technology like this could help us cover big sporting events (for example, Wimbledon or the Open golf) in new ways.”

Further details on the map, which uses Microsoft Virtual Earth technology, can be found on the BBC Olympics blog and the Mapperz blog.

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