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Great British CAKE offers responsive TV

Cook-Along-Kitchen-Experience (CAKE) is a real-time, interactive cookery show that changes as you cook with it. It customises recipes based on your familiarity with ingredients and methods, your tastes or dietary preferences, and how many people you’re inviting round for dinner.

The experience reacts ‘in the moment’ to your progress and presents appropriate information using a mix of AV and text segments, allowing you to create new dishes at your own pace.
Culinary skills aside, this is BBC R&D’s first wholly object-based experiment from production to experience.

The segments are constructed as a collection of ‘objects’ that are compiled using a metadata structure, which defines relationships between them and how they should change or reassemble in response to a user. This creates an interactive piece of content, seamlessly rendered in the browser using BBC R&D’s IP Studio technologies.

John Fletcher, lead technologist, BBC R&D, said: “Our challenge is to begin to get production methods defined by CAKE adopted and integrated as workflows for producing new responsive content and experiences. This requires them to be frictionless, mature and modular interventions that blend with, or even speed-up, existing workflows.”

As part of the production BBC R&D captured data about the position of crockery and ingredients in shot, and tool orientation and activity. In the future it could be possible to use this data to inform edit decisions and track people and props on set.

“It is also compelling to consider how this new production data could convey subjective information such as the texture and consistency of food materials, by comparison with connected tools in the audience’s home kitchen,” said Fletcher. Newcastle University Open

Lab designed and built sections of the kitchen set and embedded wireless sensor technologies to capture data about the presenter, tools and surfaces in shot.