Tuesday, August 2, 2011

BOB's your best friend!

I've now left Newport - after some 21 years - and my old blog will be closed in a couple of days time. I've now idea how many Newport students will be follow this blog but I hope that those that do will still find something interesting. This posting is probably only of interest to them - though students at other universities may also find it worth following up -

BOB (Box of Broadcasts) is an incredibly useful resource that allows you to watch, record and archive TV and radio programmes from over fifty freeview television and radio channels.  BOB is available to all University staff, researchers and students. It is available on or off campus but is not available outside the United Kingdom. 

Searching and viewing: You can search for programmes which other users have recorded or see other peoples clips and playlists. Your search results will be displayed as a list of programmes. To view, click on the programme thumbnail and click on the on screen 'click to play' option.
 Recording: There are two ways to find a TV or radio programme to record - you can either perform a search for a keyword or programme title in the search box, or look through a 7 day programme guide to find the programme you want. Users are limited to 3 programmes requests per day.
 Creating playlists and clips: Playlists can be used to collect and manage a number of related programmes. They might be related by title (all belong to the same series), or by topic (Politics etc). Clips can be created from longer programmes for lectures or tutorials.
 MyBob: Is your user account area where you can access and manage your recordings.
How can you access this? You simply need a computer with a broadband connection and an ATHENS account, and you can find out about that here. You can find out more about BOB here. Try putting the word "counselling" into BOB's search box, or "psychotherapy", and see what you find. Clearly this is an academic resource but from looking at the most highly rated playlists that's not all people are using it for - unless an awful lot of them are doing research on The Wire, Blade and NHRA Drag Racing!

It may be that the links above will only work if you're linked in to Newport's system - I'm sorry if that's the case, but it's still worth finding out whether you can gain access to BOB - it's a brilliant system

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