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About Pervasive.TV

IN3's research into the future of video includes a daily blog, a weekly e-newsletter, special research reports, public seminars, private workshops and this web site
POSTED DECEMBER 10, 2004 BY JACK POWERS, EDITOR

Video is breaking free of the TV sets in our living rooms and finding new forms on our office PCs, in mobile phones, pocket computers, car dashboards, advertising billboards and retail store signs. Pervasive.TV will transform our graphic environment and create new communications business models, new advertising and marketing opportunities, complex creative challenges and a culture of the moving image.

Frequently Asked Questions

What do you mean by "pervasive?"

Is this like streaming media?

Where is all this pervading happening?

Is this about broadcasting, cable, satellite, Internet, WANs or LANs?

How big is this phenomenon?

What kind of programming will this be?

Is this a world of cheesy, poorly lit, jerky, pixelated programs?

Who should care about pervasive TV?

What is IN3.ORG?

How do I contact IN3.ORG and the Pervasive.TV Project?


What do you mean by "pervasive?"

We're borrowing the term from "pervasive computing"  (more infelicitously known an "ubiquitous computing"), the computer science idea that computation is gradually being integrated into the environment instead of being limited to standalone computer devices in computer rooms or on desktops. There are CPUs and network links and digital data in cash registers, bank machines, smart cards and toll booths, for example, but we don't think of them as classic computer systems. Similarly, video is moving out of the standalone TV set into the everyday world, doing more than just playing back sitcoms and olds movies, pervading our visual environment and changing how we consume, create and communicate with moving images.


Is this like streaming media?

Streaming media digitized video that's fed over the Internet to web browsers running Windows Media, Real Networks or Apple Quicktime plug-ins is one of the first examples of TV pushing its way into a new application. Before the Internet, not many people watched television at the office. Today, millions of employees use their company's juicy broadband line to watch TV for fun as well as for business. Streaming and downloading video over the Internet is one of many delivery technqiues that characterized pervasive TV.


Where is all this pervading happening?

We think of five main avenues for pervasive TV:
Office TV: streaming and downloaded for business news, webinars, teleconferencing, security and vertical applications;
Personal TV: personal video players, multimedia PDAs, streaming media mobile phones, heads-up displays, and augmented reality;
Auto TV: rear seat entertainment systems, visor and headrest video screens, and multimedia navigation aids;
Outdoor TV: video billboards, digital signage, retail shelf TV, chain store networks, and place-based media;
and the consumer electronics applications that are driving advances in
Home TV: networked home media servers, TiVos and PVRs, WiFi TV, , plasma, LCD and OLED screens, HDTVs, DVD-Rs and home theaters.


Is this about broadcasting, cable, satellite, Internet, WANs or LANs?

Yes. Programming gets to all of those pervasive screens through many different channels, including on CDs and DVDs.


How big is this phenomenon?

That's one of the things we'll track in the Pervasive.TV Project. In the U.S., for example, we know that there are 108 million U.S. homes using television and at least 51 million broadband PCs regularly streaming video. Worldwide, at least 250 million streaming media players have been downloaded, some 5 million video-capable PDAs are sold each year, another 5 million cars have a rear seat entertainment system with more to come, and digital signage equipment sales are projected to double from $1 billion in 2004 to $2 billion in 2006. Japan expects 25 million 3G video mobile phones by 2006, while European analysts project 240 million 3G users by 2009. By the end of the decade, we could easily see four or five times as many TVs out of the home as in the home.

 

What kind of programming will this be?

Advertising, mostly. Sponsored content. It won't be 30 minute sitcoms or 2 hour movies except maybe in cars. For one thing, Hollywood is too dumb to break its copyright fetish and distribute video to all the new markets coming on-line this decade; for another thing, there's just no time for old fashioned television. Pervasive TV producers have to grab our attention and tell their stories in the 2 minutes it takes to make a phone call, the 30 seconds it takes to drive by a billboard, the 5 seconds it takes to walk by a store sign. Building on the fast cuts and strong visual themes of the 500-channel cable universe. With digital cameras and desktop editing, the most interesting pervasive TV may be created by amateurs, the video equivalent of bloggers, who zap their work around virally from mobile phone to desktop PC to car TV to cafe billboard.

 

Is this a world of cheesy, poorly lit, jerky, pixelated programs?

Professionals will surely make high quality programs, commercials and collateral video adapted to the new pervasive formats, but there will be many more prosumers at home making spots, and plenty of broadcast TV segments and movie sequences dubbed off the air (or off DVD) and passed around for comment. The moving image fulfills a basic human need. If you shoot it, they will watch. Let a thousand terabytes bloom.

 

Who should care about pervasive TV?

Advertisers tracking the future of television
Retailers and consumer product managers visualizing new in-store environments
News and entertainment producers and publishers
Media company executives
Hardware, software and telecom professionals
Architects and urban planners
Video producers, designers and event planners
Journalists, educators, media analysts
Technology and media investors

What is IN3.ORG?

Since 1982, the International Informatics Institute has offered original research, education and consulting on emerging media technologies. From digital imaging, minicomputers and desktop publishing in the 80s to interactive media, CD-ROMs and the Internet in the 90s to wireless communications and digital video in the 00s, our mission is to analyze and explain the important communications technologies shaping our world.

 

How do I contact IN3.ORG and the Pervasive.TV Project?

Pervasive.TV is the project web site with the latest research and information about our hands-on workshops and the P.TV NEWS. Jack Powers' Pervasive.TV Blog provides daily news and comments on the field. Add your own notes and comments on the blog and subscribe via RSS with this XML link. The Institute main site is IN3.ORG.

Pervasive TV developers, innovators and marketers of new video systems are invited to keep us up-to-date on their latest work.

Contact:

Jack Powers, Executive Editor, Pervasive.TV Project
IN3.ORG: International Informatics Institute
405 Fourth Street, Brooklyn NY  USA 11215
phone +1 718-499-1884 | email jpowers (at) in3.org


 


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