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Building Interactive Entertainment & E-Commerce Content for Microsoft TV. A discussion paper for the IBDGroup. Book originally Published 2000 by Microsoft Peter Krebs Charlie Kindschi Julie Hammerquist. A Presentation by Derek Seabrooke http://www.rcc.ryerson.ca/webtv/notes.

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building interactive entertainment e commerce content for microsoft tv
Building Interactive Entertainment& E-Commerce Content for Microsoft TV

A discussion paper for the IBDGroup

Book originally Published 2000 by Microsoft

Peter Krebs

Charlie Kindschi

Julie Hammerquist

A Presentation by Derek Seabrooke

http://www.rcc.ryerson.ca/webtv/notes

building interactive entertainment e commerce content for microsoft tv1
Building Interactive Entertainment& E-Commerce Content for Microsoft TV
  • For More Information
    • http://www.webtv.net
    • http://www.atvef.com
    • http://www.microsoft.com/tv
    • Also see companion CD
contents
Contents
  • Part 1- Microsoft TV Primer
  • Part 2- Microsoft TV Design Guide
  • Part 3- Delivering Microsoft TV Content
  • Part 4- Microsoft TV E-Commerce
  • Part 5- Microsoft TV Programmer’s Guide
part i microsoft tv primer
Part I- Microsoft TV Primer
  • Chapter 1- Possibilities for Microsoft TV
  • Chapter 2- Introducing the Microsoft Platform
  • Chapter 3- What You Need to Create & Deliver Microsoft TV Content
  • Chapter 4- Fast track for Creating Microsoft TV Content
chapter 1 possibilities for microsoft tv
Chapter 1- Possibilities for Microsoft TV
  • Standards Make Interactive TV Content viable
  • Types of Content Best Suited for Interactive TV
  • Personalized TV
  • Viewer Participation
chapter 1 possibilities for microsoft tv1
Chapter 1- Possibilities for Microsoft TV
  • Standards Make Interactive TV Content Commercially Viable
      • Microsoft TV technology is based on tried and true standards
        • ATVEF
        • HTML
        • Cascading Style Sheets
        • JavaScript
    • Microsoft Supports Platform Independent Standards
    • Microsoft TV will be present in 10 Million Homes by 2002
chapter 1 possibilities for microsoft tv2
Chapter 1- Possibilities for Microsoft TV
  • Types of Content Best Suited for Interactive TV
    • See 1998 Forrester Report – Lazy Interactivity by Bernoff, Mines, VanBoskirk, Courtin
    • Computer Platforms are best suited to Effort Interactivity but TV platforms are best suited to Lazy Interactivity
    • User input should be minimized
    • Interactive TV is not well suited to Narrative Story telling – instead it should be used for specific applications like advertising, news casting, game shows etc.
chapter 1 possibilities for microsoft tv3
Chapter 1- Possibilities for Microsoft TV
  • Personalized TV
    • Microsoft TV allows television viewing experiences to be customized to meet user’s specific tastes – customized sports score layouts, news preferences, stock portfolio – or adds a twist to a show
chapter 1 possibilities for microsoft tv4
Chapter 1- Possibilities for Microsoft TV
  • Viewer Participation
    • Some of the material already being produced on television takes advantage of user input – like talk shows, game shows, certain types of series etc.
    • Microsoft TV provides a more efficient mechanism for feedback than traditional telephone or letter writing
chapter 2 introducing the microsoft tv platform
Chapter 2- Introducing the Microsoft TV Platform
  • Genesis of Microsoft TV
  • Microsoft TV Platform
  • Delivering Content to Microsoft TV
chapter 2 introducing the microsoft tv platform1
Chapter 2- Introducing the Microsoft TV Platform
  • Genesis of Microsoft TV
    • 1995 – WebTV Networks is founded by three Palo Alto entrepreneurs
    • 1996 – WebTV Networks introduces the WebTV Plus Internet Receiver set-top box
    • 1997 – Microsoft Purchases WebTV Networks spawning Microsoft TV
    • 1998 – Microsoft Includes WebTV client software for the PC in Windows 98
    • 2000 – Microsoft promises to be a leader in television industry by producing software to drive PC’s and set-top boxes plugged into their cable companies – such as Rogers
chapter 2 introducing the microsoft tv platform2
Chapter 2- Introducing the Microsoft TV Platform
  • Microsoft TV Platform
    • Microsoft TV is set of client and server applications which run on Windows 2000 or Windows CE systems
    • Microsoft TV client is a platform independent suite that can be licensed from Microsoft and integrated into any TV ready box and is fully customizable to meet specific needs of a products
chapter 2 introducing the microsoft tv platform3
Chapter 2- Introducing the Microsoft TV Platform
  • Microsoft TV (client side software) is intended to be licensed to terrestrial, satellite or cable television providers
  • Microsoft TV Server (Server side software) is intended to be licensed to Interactive TV producers and can be used for a myriad of functions across the industry
chapter 2 introducing the microsoft tv platform4
Chapter 2- Introducing the Microsoft TV Platform
  • Microsoft TV Server (con’t)
    • Platform Services – Core Services (Global television & Internet Service setup)
    • Device Services – Supports communication, configuration & updating of client machines (software patching / channel line up)
    • Application Services – Server side applications (SQL & E-Commerce)
    • Deployment & Admin Services – Handles administrative side of ISP and television services (such as billing)
chapter 2 introducing the microsoft tv platform5
Chapter 2- Introducing the Microsoft TV Platform
  • Delivering Content to Microsoft TV
    • In order to effectively use Microsoft TV – hardware manufacturers should consider designing front, fore and back channel capabilities
    • Front Channel – Terrestrial, Satellite, Cable
    • Fore/back channel – Telephone, Cable, LAN
    • ATVEF TRANSPORTS – Transport A: Context (event triggers, links, JavaScript calls), Transport B: Content (text [HTML], sound, pictures, video, animation)
chapter 3 what you need to create deliver microsoft tv content
Chapter 3- What You Need to Create & Deliver Microsoft TV Content
  • Minimum Setup for Creating Microsoft TV Content
  • Recommended Setup for Creating Microsoft TV Content
  • The Ultimate Interactive TV Studio
chapter 3 what you need to create deliver microsoft tv content1
Chapter 3- What You Need to Create & Deliver Microsoft TV Content
  • Minimum Setup
    • 166 MHz CPU; 32 MB RAM; CD-ROM; 2 GB HD; Internet Access
    • Windows; notepad, MS Visual Editor or MS Front Page 97; Photoshop; Microsoft TV Simulator 3.0
chapter 3 what you need to create deliver microsoft tv content2
Chapter 3- What You Need to Create & Deliver Microsoft TV Content
  • Recommended Setup
    • Development Machine which exceeds minimum requirements
    • HTTP server access
    • WebTV Internet Receiver & Colour Television set
    • Local Area Network
    • Windows 2000; MS Interdev; MS Access or SQL Server
chapter 3 what you need to create deliver microsoft tv content3
Chapter 3- What You Need to Create & Deliver Microsoft TV Content
  • Setup for the WebTV Plus Service
    • WebTV Plus Internet Receiver with keyboard
    • Colour Television set
    • Terrestrial, Satellite or Cable television service
    • Analogue Telephone Line Service
    • Internet Service
chapter 3 what you need to create deliver microsoft tv content4
Chapter 3- What You Need to Create & Deliver Microsoft TV Content
  • Ultimate Interactive TV Studio
    • If it is feasible within budgetary constraints, it is recommended that anyone serious about Microsoft TV Development setup the Ultimate Interactive TV Studio as illustrated in the book
    • The Ultimate Interactive TV Studio consists of a VBI Inserter; Video Tape Recorders; TV Modulators
    • IBDG’s current setup is very much like the Ultimate TV Studio
chapter 4 fast track for creating microsoft tv content
Chapter 4- Fast Track for Creating Microsoft TV Content
  • Copying the Source Files
  • Overview of template_main.html
  • Modifying template_tv.html
  • TV Object & Full Screen Button
  • Modifying template_option1.html
  • Testing on Microsoft TV Simulator
  • Testing on TV
chapter 4 fast track for creating microsoft tv content1
Chapter 4- Fast Track for Creating Microsoft TV Content
  • Copying the Source Files
    • The template files have been copied from the Companion CD to \\elvis\itv\generic
    • template_main.html - defines basic structure for templates
    • template_tv.html - hosts TV object & main navigation controls
    • template_options1.html - content pages that are dynamically swapped out of the content frame when the user selects links, which may be either on the template_tv.html page or one of the options pages.
chapter 4 fast track for creating microsoft tv content2
Chapter 4- Fast Track for Creating Microsoft TV Content
  • Overview of the Template_main.html page
    • Main Template example
    • Divides space into two frames
      • content space
      • television space
    • e.g.
      • content.src = template_optionsxx.html
      • tv.src = template_tv.html
chapter 4 fast track for creating microsoft tv content3
Chapter 4- Fast Track for Creating Microsoft TV Content
  • Modifying the Template_tv.html page
    • Copy \\elvis\generic\* to working directory
    • Rename template files to new names
    • Open template_main.html (new name) in Internet Explorer
    • Right-click a cold-space on the left-hand side of the document
    • Select View Source from resultant menu
chapter 4 fast track for creating microsoft tv content4
Chapter 4- Fast Track for Creating Microsoft TV Content
  • The style sheet section of Source
    • The sample HTML files use JavaScript to detect the browser application. It sets up the Cascading Style Sheet for display attributes appropriate to that browser.
      • E.g. 16 pt font for TV, 12 pt font for IE
chapter 4 fast track for creating microsoft tv content5
Chapter 4- Fast Track for Creating Microsoft TV Content
  • The TV Object & Full Screen Button
    • Television Object is any DOM object with its source attribute set to tv:xx where xx=station or channel name
    • The Full Screen Button is a button (or link) which references tv:xx
chapter 4 fast track for creating microsoft tv content6
Chapter 4- Fast Track for Creating Microsoft TV Content
  • Navigation is handled by text links and changing frames
  • You can create a powerful page by customizing link texts and references
  • When modifications are complete, save the file and press refresh in IE to view changes
chapter 4 fast track for creating microsoft tv content7
Chapter 4- Fast Track for Creating Microsoft TV Content
  • Modifying the Template_options1.html page
    • Open template_options1.html in IE. View Source in notepad like before
      • This document consists of a body an options section and a Marquee
    • The Options Section defines anchors and objects presented to the user – it is designed to be easily modified
    • The Marquee demonstrates the ability to use HTML attributes to scroll division across the screen a given rate
chapter 4 fast track for creating microsoft tv content8
Chapter 4- Fast Track for Creating Microsoft TV Content
  • Testing Content on the Microsoft TV Simulator
    • The Microsoft TV Simulator 3.0 is a software tool that simulates Microsoft TV for content developers
    • Microsoft TV Simulator consists of two modes: TV Mode & Web Mode just like the set-top box
    • All of the templates in Building Interactive Entertainment & E-Commerce Content for Microsoft TV comes with a viewset.html page with simulates the interactive TV link which appears during interactive television spots
chapter 4 fast track for creating microsoft tv content9
Chapter 4- Fast Track for Creating Microsoft TV Content
  • Test the Page on TV
    • To view templates on TV, you must visit Microsoft’s website
    • In the Interactive Television Development Office, this site has been book marked under Interactive TV
    • There is no way to view local content on TV
part ii microsoft tv design guide
Part II- Microsoft TV Design Guide
  • Chapter 5- Guidelines for Designing Microsoft TV Content
  • Chapter 6- Layering Web Content over Full-Screen TV
  • Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
  • Chapter 8- Styles and Style Sheets
  • Chapter 9- Selecting Colours for Microsoft TV Content
part ii microsoft tv design guide1
Part II- Microsoft TV Design Guide
  • Chapter 10- Creating Text for Microsoft TV Content
  • Chapter 11- Adding Images to Microsoft TV Content
  • Chapter 12- Adding Animation to Microsoft TV Content
  • Chapter 13- Handling Navigation
  • Chapter 14- Audio & Video
chapter 5 guidelines for designing microsoft tv content
Chapter 5- Guidelines for Designing Microsoft TV Content
  • Fitting Content into Microsoft TV’s Design Area
  • Web Mode vs. TV Mode
  • Strategies for Designing Content
chapter 5 guidelines for designing microsoft tv content1
Chapter 5- Guidelines for Designing Microsoft TV Content
  • Fitting Content into Microsoft TV’s Design Area
    • Microsoft TV’s Design Area is the region of screen space where objects can be displayed
    • 560 x 420 pixels – 4:3 aspect ratio
    • Microsoft TV is not scrollable in TV mode
    • Microsoft TV automatically creates a 6 pixel margin from the top of the screen and 8 pixels from the sides of the screen – margin can be increased by designers
    • Microsoft recommends a using a 16 pixel margin
    • Margins can be set using topmargin & leftmargin attributes of the body tag
chapter 5 guidelines for designing microsoft tv content2
Chapter 5- Guidelines for Designing Microsoft TV Content
  • Web Mode vs. TV Mode
    • Web Mode
      • scrolling
      • Printing, saving
      • Internet options
      • Picture-in-picture TV Window
    • TV Mode
      • Channel options
      • TV embedded in web site
      • Some web content may not display correctly
chapter 5 guidelines for designing microsoft tv content3
Chapter 5- Guidelines for Designing Microsoft TV Content
  • Strategies for Designing Content
    • Avoid MSTV client/server modification
      • Page width < 544 pixels
      • Graphic width < 544 pixels
      • Font should be set with Cascading Style Sheets – JavaScript should be used to detect TV and set type face to TV approved font & size
      • JavaScript should be used to detect TV and set colours to NTSC-compliant colours.
      • Be cautious about using frames
chapter 5 guidelines for designing microsoft tv content4
Chapter 5- Guidelines for Designing Microsoft TV Content
  • Strategies for Designing Content
    • Make TV Object as large as possible
    • Consider aspect ratio (NTSC=4:3; HDTV=16:9 etc.)
    • Design content to be viewable from across the room
      • If you are designing a page for computer & TV, always use JavaScript to optimize elements for TV viewing
    • Avoid scrollable content if page is to be displayed in TV mode
    • Use absolute positioning for DIVs
      • If page is for computer & TV viewing – use JavaScript to change positioning so that page displays right on both browsers
chapter 5 guidelines for designing microsoft tv content5
Chapter 5- Guidelines for Designing Microsoft TV Content
  • Pages should be simple on TV
    • Pages made for TV viewing should very simple and navigation should be intuitive
    • Interactive pages and games should have a simple user interface and minimize user input
  • Use NTSC-Compliant Colours
    • The National-Television-Standards-Committee (NTSC) specification for colour television cannot correctly display certain colours and is known to cause distortions if certain incompatible colours are adjacent without a gradual transition
    • Designers should be aware of NTSC limitations and avoid problem colours and colour combinations if possible
chapter 5 guidelines for designing microsoft tv content6
Chapter 5- Guidelines for Designing Microsoft TV Content
  • Design to ATVEF specs
    • Microsoft TV is an implementation based on the recommendations of Advanced Television Enhancement Forum (ATVEF) – for best compatibility design your pages to use elements recommended by ATVEF
    • HTML 4.0; CCS1; Level 0 DOM; ECMAScript
  • Use DHTML with caution
    • DHTML support is not among ATVEF’s recommendations – Microsoft TV only supports a subset of DHTML – implementation is very poor
chapter 6 layering web content over full screen tv
Chapter 6- Layering Web Content over Full-Screen TV
  • Creating an Overlay
  • Limitations of Overlays
  • About Hiding and Showing DIVs
  • Integrating Full-Screen TV into Web Page
  • Making TV Appear in the TV Object
chapter 6 layering web content over full screen tv1
Chapter 6- Layering Web Content over Full-Screen TV
  • Creating an Overlay
    • One way in which enhancements can be presented to the user is by means of a television overlay
    • (According to the research of IBO thus far – it would seem that television overlays only work on Full Screen TV)
chapter 6 layering web content over full screen tv2
Chapter 6- Layering Web Content over Full-Screen TV
  • Limitations of Overlays
    • Refreshing enhancements causes significant interruption to the viewer
    • Microsoft TV supports a special HTML attribute called transparencywhich allows see-through objects to be created and laid over TV or web content
chapter 6 layering web content over full screen tv3
Chapter 6- Layering Web Content over Full-Screen TV
  • Hiding & Showing DIVs
    • DHTML works over full-screen TV on Microsoft TV but may not work on all set-top boxes
  • Integrating Full-Screen TV into a Web Page
    • The TV object is any object with the URL tv:xx – it can be set as the background or as an object with height & width set to 100%
chapter 6 layering web content over full screen tv4
Chapter 6- Layering Web Content over Full-Screen TV
  • Making TV Appear in the TV Object
    • In order to view television in the TV Object you must view the web site in a viewer built to ATVEF spec – in Microsoft TV viewer must be set to view=tv
chapter 6 layering web content over full screen tv5
Chapter 6- Layering Web Content over Full-Screen TV
  • Creating the Overlay for Lakes & Sons
    • In this case the TV Object is placed in a DIV where Z-Index <= 0 Object is bottom layer & Full-Screen
  • Absolute Positioning
    • Attribute defined in Cascading Style Sheets
    • DIV elements are mapped to the screen using an absolute co-ordinate system based on pixels
chapter 6 layering web content over full screen tv6
Chapter 6- Layering Web Content over Full-Screen TV
  • Positioning Overlays for Microsoft TV
    • Absolute positioning is supported for overlays
      • In Full-Screen TV Microsoft TV increases the left margin by 8 pixels – for consistency Microsoft recommends setting a top margin of 8 and left margin of 0 (which is 8 pixels)
chapter 6 layering web content over full screen tv7
Chapter 6- Layering Web Content over Full-Screen TV
  • How the Z-Index Property Works
    • All elements in document are assigned unique Z-Index attribute
    • Body tag is assigned Z-Index = 0
    • Elements are assigned Z-Index by order in which they are defined
    • Z-Index can be overridden by developer
    • Elements with Z-Index < 0 appear behind the document body
chapter 6 layering web content over full screen tv8
Chapter 6- Layering Web Content over Full-Screen TV
  • Transitioning from a Web Page to Full-Screen TV
    • To transition from a Web Page to Full-Screen TV simply create an anchor reference to the TV Object
chapter 6 layering web content over full screen tv9
Chapter 6- Layering Web Content over Full-Screen TV
  • Implementing an Order Now Button
    • An Order Now Button is an anchor element which references a site with E-Commerce capabilities
    • For more information see Lakes & Sons sample
chapter 7 layering tv over web content
Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
  • Using a Frameset to Lay Out Interactive
  • Designing an HTML TV page
  • Formatting Text with Style Sheets
  • Creating an Interactive E-Commerce Page
  • Creating Overlays for Lakes & Sons
  • How Absolute Positioning Works
  • Positioning Overlays for Microsoft TV
  • How the Z-Index property works
  • Transitioning from a Web to Full-Screen TV
  • Implementing an Order Now Button
chapter 7 layering tv over web content1
Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
  • Using a Frameset to Lay Out Interactive TV Content
    • With framesets you can continually monitor the TV Object while change data in other frames
    • Frames are the only way to dynamically change data within the constraints of JavaScript 1.1 – the minimum level recommended by ATVEF
    • Frames divide up documents in various download sessions – DHTML pages tend present longer download times in a single chunk
    • Frames can avoid annoyances such as wait screens from interrupting the user
    • Frames contents can be swapped with Broadcast Triggered Events
chapter 7 layering tv over web content2
Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
  • Avoid Iframes
    • Iframes are incompatible with Microsoft TV’s implementation of JavaScript – it should only be used for static HTML which does not use JavaScript on Iframes
  • Designing the Frameset for Lakes & Sons
    • Lakes_main.html – defines the frameset
    • Lakes_tv.html – contains TV Object
    • Lake_content.x – contains content
chapter 7 layering tv over web content3
Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
  • Using JavaScript to remove the frameset borders
    • Bizarre grey border cannot be cancelled with frameborder HTML tag – it can only be removed by the hspace & vspace tag in the body
    • JavaScript can be used to detect Microsoft TV and construct necessary body tag on the fly
chapter 7 layering tv over web content4
Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
  • Creating the TV and Content Frames
    • If frameset is specified using [ rows | cols ] = “x,*” – the later frame will automatically resize fill the remaining space on the screen
  • Creating Non-scrollable Content
    • Microsoft TV does not support scrollable documents in view=TV
    • Microsoft TV does not support scrollable frames – frames are displayed as they would be if they were tables
chapter 7 layering tv over web content5
Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
  • Designing an HTML TV Page
    • Designing the page that contains the TV Object
    • Margins are set by using the absolute positioning properties of DIV tags
    • TV border is a 4:3 graphic placed in a DIV with the TV Object overlapped over it on another DIV
chapter 7 layering tv over web content6
Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
  • Creating TV Object
    • <object data=“tv:nn” height=x width=y> , where nn is channel or station name, x is height of object and y is width of object.
    • Place the TV Object into a DIV tag and set the attributes so it fit into the space left for it in the TV border
    • Height to Width ratio should be maintained at about 4:3
    • Subtract the width and height of the border respectively from the width and height of the TV Object
    • If TV is linked from Web – TV mode must be enforced using view=tv tag or TV Object won’t work on Microsoft TV
chapter 7 layering tv over web content7
Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
  • Implementing the Full Screen Button
    • Providing the user an easy way to switch between picture-in-picture enhancements and full screen enhancements left to the designers
    • Usability studies show that buttons are best understood if labelled Full Screen or TV Only
    • Positioning the Full Screen Button
      • The Full Screen Button is usually best understood by the user if it is placed near the TV Object and is often integrated into the TV border
chapter 7 layering tv over web content8
Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
    • Defining the Anchor for the Full Screen Button
      • <a Href=“tv:xx” >yy</a> , where xx is station or channel name, yy is button object
  • Positioning Content at the Bottom of the Page
    • For artistic reasons the space under the TV Object should be filled with multimedia content
      • The book make the assumption that the TV Object will always be placed at the top of the TV frame – question – why not place TV in middle or bottom?
chapter 7 layering tv over web content9
Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
  • Formatting Text with Style Sheets
    • Dynamically Applied Style Sheets are a great way to setup a page to look good on different browsers
    • cssTV.css
      • 18 pt font
    • cssPC.css
      • 14 pt font
    • Style Sheets can also change colours to be TV safe on TV browsers or optimized for PC on PC based browsers
chapter 7 layering tv over web content10
Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
  • Assign Classes to Format Text
    • Using the class attribute of the HTML font tag is useful because it specifies a class defined in the Style Sheet rather than using hard coded fonts – since the designer can create a different Style Sheet for TV than PC text will be beautiful on both systems
chapter 7 layering tv over web content11
Chapter 7- Layering TV over Web Content
  • Creating an Interactive E-Commerce Page
    • Setting a Background Tile
      • Microsoft TV support a proprietary gradient tag but for compatibility it is preferred to use an image background
    • Positioning Content on the Page
      • Absolute positioning is used to layout the page and to enforce a 14 pixel margin
    • Using the Selected Attribute
      • Selected is a keyword attribute proprietary to Microsoft which places an object in focus on load
    • Creating the Form
      • Microsoft TV supports standard HTML form tags
chapter 8 styles style sheets
Chapter 8- Styles & Style Sheets
  • Microsoft TV’s CSS Support
  • Applying CSS Properties to Interactive TV Content
  • Strategies for Implementing Styles: Inline; Embedded; Linked
  • DHTML
chapter 8 styles style sheets1
Chapter 8- Styles & Style Sheets
  • Microsoft TV’s CSS Support
    • Microsoft TV is not compliant with W3 Consortium recommendations for Cascading Style Sheets
  • Applying CSS Properties to Interactive TV Content
    • See toys_main.html
chapter 8 styles style sheets2
Chapter 8- Styles & Style Sheets
  • Strategies for Implementing Styles: Inline Styles; Embedded Styles; Linked Style Sheets
    • Using Style property with DIV and FONT tags
      • Instead of applying style properties to individual objects – in Microsoft TV – objects are placed in DIVs (Divisions) which are essentially sub-documents overlaid over their parent
chapter 8 styles style sheets3
Chapter 8- Styles & Style Sheets
  • Inline Style Definition
    • Style properties are defined inside of HTML tag
  • Embed Style Definition
    • Classes are declared which define a set of reusable style properties that can be applied to objects
  • Linked Style Sheets
    • Classes are declared in external module source files that can be used by multiple documents in a project or by many documents in multiple projects
chapter 8 styles style sheets4
Chapter 8- Styles & Style Sheets
  • Dynamically Applied Style Sheets
    • JavaScript can be used to dynamically apply CSS as in the sample HTML – this is a great way to ensure that attributes like font and colour are optimized for your browser
  • DHTML
    • Microsoft TV’s subset of DHTML includes the ability to hide and show DIVs and to animate DIVs on the screen
chapter 9 selecting colours for microsoft tv content
Chapter 9- Selecting Colours for Microsoft TV Content
  • Selecting and Adjusting Colours
  • Specifying Colours with HTML and Style Sheets
  • Testing Colours on Microsoft TV
chapter 9 selecting colours for microsoft tv content1
Chapter 9- Selecting Colours for Microsoft TV Content
  • TV’s handling of colours and shades may not be as good as can be expected on computer monitors
  • Certain types of distortions that have been experienced in IBLC may be well-known and perfectly normal and expected problems – glowing; bleeding; crawling;blurring – the colour distortion that we experience on sites with a pure-white background may be bowing – a documented issue with bright NTSC signals
chapter 9 selecting colours for microsoft tv content2
Chapter 9- Selecting Colours for Microsoft TV Content
  • Selecting and Adjusting Colours
    • NTSC Filter
      • High Colour and True Colour graphics usually always look great on computer but TV may not be able to display them correctly – to ensure that a graphic can be displayed correctly on TV it should be processed by a good NTSC graphics filter
    • Browser Safe Colours
      • There exists a palette of 216 well-known colours that are said to be browser Safe – this means that they will probably not be dithered by most computers – if you are designing a page for multiple platforms including TV then it might be wise to use this palette but this palette is not recommended for TV
chapter 9 selecting and adjusting colours
Chapter 9- Selecting and Adjusting Colours
  • Using Graphics Software with NTSC Filter or Converter
    • Adobe Photoshop is recommended for NTSC Filtering
  • NTSC Monitor
    • Serious designers of Microsoft TV content should set up an NTSC monitor in addition to their high-resolution high-colour monitor so that they can better judge how content will appear to TV users
chapter 9 selecting and adjusting colours1
Chapter 9- Selecting and Adjusting Colours
  • Creating a Design Mock-Up
    • Rudimentary layout created by graphics artist to illustrate graphics; text; video
  • Applying NTSC Filter or Converter
    • Apply NTSC filter to mock-up – if results do not look good try modifying the mock-up to correct look
  • Adjusting Colours Applied by the NTSC Filter or Converter
    • If results of NTSC filter are not to the designers liking or still look bad on some televisions then the graphic designer may take the liberty to change colours to correct these problems
chapter 9 selecting and adjusting colours2
Chapter 9- Selecting and Adjusting Colours
  • NTSC Filter on Pure White (#FFFFFF)
    • This colour is not handled might by most TVs
    • Photoshop’s NTSC Filter does not effect this colour
    • Try using a shade of bright grey instead of pure white – e.g. #CCCCCC
  • The Zen of Colour Selection
    • TV colour is effected by many factors
      • Amount of colour
      • Neighbouring colours
      • Background colour
      • Brand of TV
      • TV Display Settings
chapter 9 selecting and adjusting colours3
Chapter 9- Selecting and Adjusting Colours
      • Cool Colours tend to work best on TV
      • It may take a lot of time to find colours that work on most TVs and also work from an artistic perspective
  • Specifying Colours with HTML and Style Sheets
      • After viable colours have been found – its possible to match colours between elements by using the eyedropper tool in Photoshop
chapter 9 selecting and adjusting colours4
Chapter 9- Selecting and Adjusting Colours
  • Converting Values to Hex
    • One of the cool things about HTML is that colours are specified in hex – which means people like me can laugh at you guys who haven’t got a clue
  • Specifying Colour HTML Elements of toys_main.html
    • Colours in this example are defined using Dynamically Applied Styles – NTSC-safe colours can be used for TV while High-Colour or True-Colour can be applied for PC
chapter 9 selecting and adjusting colours5
Chapter 9- Selecting and Adjusting Colours
  • Testing Colours on Microsoft TV
    • The ultimate test of your colour design is of course to upload to a server and test on a set-top box
    • Design should be tested on all the most popular brands of TV sets and any other brands that the user will be most likely to view the page on
chapter 10 creating text for microsoft tv
Chapter 10- Creating Text for Microsoft TV
  • What to Avoid When Creating Text for Microsoft TV
  • How the Microsoft TV Proxy Server Handles Font
  • How to Use Styles to Control Font Sizes
  • How to Reconcile Font Sizes on Computer & TV
chapter 10 creating text for microsoft tv1
Chapter 10- Creating Text for Microsoft TV
  • What to Avoid When Creating Text for Microsoft TV
    • Small Text & Serif Font Hard to Read
      • Font Size < 18 pt cannot be read
      • Use Font Helvetica or Font Monaco
      • Always use Sans Serif type Font
      • Beware of text embedded in images – it may not be legible on TV
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Chapter 10- Creating Text for Microsoft TV
  • Design Breaks Down When User Changes Font Size
    • Microsoft TV gives user ability to choose between small; medium; large type Font
    • Design must be tested and approved for all three settings or the page may look wacked out to the user
  • Bright Text Causes Distortion
    • One way to rid text of distortion like glowing; bleeding; crawling is to use a cool colours
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Chapter 10- Creating Text for Microsoft TV
  • How Microsoft TV Proxy Server Handles Fonts
    • MSTV Proxy adjusts type faces of HTML pages to display on TV
      • Type Face changed to Font Helvetica or Font Monaco
      • Font size < 18 pt is resized to Font size = 18 pt
      • Font size > 18 pt is scaled accordingly
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Chapter 10- Creating Text for Microsoft TV
    • MSTV Proxy can be overridden
      • Fonts size = 7 is not resized (I don’t know why)
      • Fonts size set by CSS is not changed
      • It is recommended that designers override the proxy modifications by Dynamically Applied Style Sheets
  • How to Use Styles to Control Font Size
      • When fonts are controlled by styles – neither the proxy nor the user can modify your design
      • Only two fonts are supported by Microsoft TV – Helvetica; Monaco
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Chapter 10- Creating Text for Microsoft TV
  • How to Reconcile Font Sizes on the Computer and TV
    • Designing a style sheet that will work on TV is difficult because development happens on the PC platform – see this section in the book for more information
chapter 11 adding images to microsoft tv content
Chapter 11- Adding Images to Microsoft TV Content
  • Using Supported Image Types
  • Adding Images to Microsoft TV Content
  • Creating a User Interface with Images and JavaScript
  • Adding Images as Background
  • Using Image Maps
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Chapter 11- Adding Images to Microsoft TV Content
  • Using Supported Image Types
    • .gif
    • .jpg
    • .png
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Chapter 11- Adding Images to Microsoft TV Content
  • Adding Images to Microsoft TV Content
    • Width should not exceed 544 pixels
    • Colours should be NTSC-safe
    • Embedded Text Should Font type Sans Serif – Font size <= 16 pt
    • Images should be tightly compressed
      • Remember some Microsoft TV clients only use 56 Kbps like WebTV Plus Internet Receiver
    • Horizontal lines should be thicker than 1 pixel
      • NTSC interlaces graphics into two fields – each containing half of the pixels – horizontal lines only 1 pixel thick will appear in only one field – this might make them look like they are vibrating
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Chapter 11- Adding Images to Microsoft TV Content
  • Creating User Interface with Images and JavaScript
      • A cool way to make a professional looking page is to make graphical buttons that use JavaScript to roll-over when they are in focus
    • Caching Images
      • It is possible to cache images by instantiating them in JavaScript
        • WebTV’s cache persistence is not to be trusted
    • Making an Image Clickable
      • Images must be anchored with HTML before they can spawn onClick events
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Chapter 11- Adding Images to Microsoft TV Content
  • Referencing an Image
    • Images are referenced in JavaScript using the document.images array – they are referenced by the name given to them by the designer with the nameattribute
    • Creating Functions to Swap Images
      • Write a JavaScript function to swap images and associate it with the onClick event of the corresponding anchor tag
    • Adding Images as Background
      • Background images can be added to the document or any division on the document
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Chapter 11- Adding Images to Microsoft TV Content
  • Using Image Maps
    • Microsoft TV supports client and server side image mapping
    • Client side image maps are defined with HTML as per samples
    • Server side image maps submit co-ordinates of the pointer to a CGI engine which acts accordingly
chapter 12 adding animation to microsoft tv content
Chapter 12- Adding Animation to Microsoft TV Content
  • Using Animated .GIFs
  • Using DHTML to Create Animation
  • Adding Macromedia Flash Movies
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Chapter 12- Adding Animation to Microsoft TV Content
  • Using animated .GIFs
    • Microsoft TV fully supports animated .GIF
      • Animated .GIFs are matrix based so they are very large
    • Creating animated .GIFs
      • Software is available to create animated .GIFs
  • Using DHTML to Create Animation
      • Using DIVs and JavaScript it is possible to create elaborate page-wide interactive animated effects
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Chapter 12- Adding Animation to Microsoft TV Content
  • Adding Macromedia Flash Movies
      • Flash movies are vector based so they are surprisingly small
chapter 13 handling navigation for microsoft tv content
Chapter 13- Handling Navigation for Microsoft TV Content
  • How Navigation Works for Microsoft TV
  • Forms and the Selection Box
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Chapter 13- Handling Navigation for Microsoft TV Content
  • How Navigation is Handled by Microsoft TV
      • Navigation is handled by arrow keys that control the focus of various hot spot that appear on the page
    • Image Maps
      • Client side
        • Client side image maps are handled like regular hot spots by Microsoft TV
      • Server side
        • Server side image maps use a pointer interface to allow the user to select co-ordinates to be passed to the server for action
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Chapter 13- Handling Navigation for Microsoft TV Content
  • Forms and the Selection Box
    • Controlling where the Selection Box appears
      • By default the selection box appears on the top-most left-most hot spot
      • The default focus of the selection box can be defined by the designer using the selected tag
    • Controlling movement
      • Microsoft TV’s handling of focus selection can be micromanaged using the anchor attributes nextleft; nextright; nextup; nextdown
chapter 14 audio video
Chapter 14- Audio & Video
  • Supported Audio Formats
  • Supported Video Formats
  • Volume Control of TV Object
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Chapter 14- Audio & Video
  • Supported Audio Formats
      • .AIFF
      • .AU
      • .GSM
      • .SWF
      • .MIDI
      • .MOD
      • .MPEG
      • .QT
      • .RA (streamed)
      • .SWA
      • .RMF
      • .WAV
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Chapter 14- Audio & Video
  • Supported Video Formats
      • .MPEG (MPEG-1)
      • .SWF
  • Volume Control of the TV Object
    • You should not view audio or video content with audio in view=tv because the sound of the TV Object will interfere with enjoyment of sound
part iii delivering microsoft tv content
Part III: Delivering Microsoft TV Content
  • Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Microsoft TV Content
  • Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links
chapter 15 fundamentals of delivering interactive tv content
Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • Overview of ATVEF Transport Methods
    • Transport A
      • Contextual information (synchronization)
      • Added to analogue signals
      • Shares line 21 with CC
      • Most compatible transport with analogue signals
    • Transport B
      • Content information (data)
      • Added to digital signals
      • Multiplexed with sound & video information or uses other VBI lines
      • Is compatible with some analogue signals but is very fagile
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • What is VBI?
    • Vertical Blanking Interval of analogue television signal
    • Lines (band-width) of the signal not used for video or picture-synchronization information
    • Can be unused or can be used for CC; teletext; V-codes; time-code; current-time; ATVEF Transport A; ATVEF Transport B
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • Transport A: Interactive TV Links
    • VBI Line 21 is Sacred
      • FCC mandated VBI Line 21 be set aside for CC
      • Designers of CC created a way of adding additional text to Line 21 which would not be displayed as captions by CC decoders
      • CC uses the Caption Field of Line 21 – ATVEF Transports use Text Field
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • What Are Interactive TV Links
    • Text tag in the form <URL><NAME>[CHKSM] where URL = Uniform Resource Locator of actor document , NAME = Name of tag , CHKSM = ASCII-Encoded Hexadecimal number used to verify tag
      • Check-sums are complicated to do by and hand are best left to a program to calculate
      • For a complete list of attributes see ATVEF specifications
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • Check-sum verifies Transmission Accuracy
    • Conventional video signals are unidirectional – a redundancy check must be included along with tag or receiver will have no way to verify correct reception
    • Receiver generates checksum for received tag and compares it with checksum attribute included in tag
    • If the generated checksum matches the included checksum then the receiver acts
    • If the generated checksum does not match the included checksum the receiver ignores the tag
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • Using the Microsoft TV Simulator to emulate ATVEF tag receipts
    • Select the view menu and confirm that the Link Creator Window is checked
    • Focus the Link Creator Window and type the address of the actor document into the URL Field
    • Type the name of the tag into Name Field
    • If you wish to emulate a javascript call – type the message into the Script Trigger Field
    • Check View asWeb or TV
    • Select whether or not you wish the link to expire – type in the date and time of expiration
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • Generated tag is previewed in Generated Link frame
  • Press Copy to Clipboard to copy tag
  • Press Trigger in Browser to watch link receipt emulated
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • ATVEF Interactive Link Recommendation
    • Tags should not take up more than 25% of line 21
    • Never send a tag less than three minutes into show
    • Tags can be added in post production or live
    • Transport B must be used unless receiver has fore/back channel
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • Transport B: IP over VBI
    • Best inserted by satellite or cable companies
      • Cable & sat companies have ultimate control over content unlike producers
    • Best with digital signals
    • Can be used with analogue signals
      • 1-3 VBI lines minimal
      • 3+ lines recommended
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • What is so Cool about Transport B?
    • Transport B can preload content into the cache before it is triggered so that it will appear immediately and will not congest forechannel
    • Receivers do not need fore/backchannel capabilities to act on Transport B triggers
    • Transport B is interpreted by TCP/IP Stack and interpreted no differently from forechannel data
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • TCP/IP Multicasting Overview
    • Transport B encodes information in TCP/IP protocol and uses a special technique known as multicasting
    • Announcements & Triggers use UDP while files use UHTTP
    • Announcements tell receiver how much cache is needed so it can decide how to handle the session
    • All data is losslessly compressed
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • TCP/IP Protocol 101
    • TCP/IP Protocol is used for WAN and internetworking
    • All computers using TCP/IP protocol must have a unique IP address
    • There are four classes of TCP/IP networks on the internet
      • Class A: Large networks – U.S. Gov; [email protected]
      • Class B: Medium networks – Ryerson University; Rogers
      • Class C: Small networks – Macromedia; Lucasfilm
      • Class D: Reserved (Multicasting)
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • How Announcements get heard
    • ATVEF receivers always listen to well-known IP address and port
    • Announcements use LID URL scheme to identify Transport B content to cache
    • Triggers use HTTP URL scheme to identify content to act
    • If content exists in cache then trigger action is ready as soon as trigger is received – otherwise receiver will pull content from forechannel
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • Political Considerations of Using IP over VBI
    • Transport A is preferred over Transport B because of expense of uplinking additonal VBI lines to satellite
    • Transport B data can only be reliably inserted by cable or satellite providers
    • Digital Video Signals
      • Digital signals include Transport B data differently so uplinking it is more practical
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • Trigger Receiver Object
    • ATVEF outlines a Trigger Receiver Object – a sort of plugin that handles Interactive TV triggers
    • Microsoft TV does not require this – acting as if one is included automatically
      • Microsoft has the right idea here (for a change) – Trigger Receiver Objects are purely academic and there is no actual need such a thing to be defined on the document
    • For stylistic reasons it is recommended that Trigger Receiver Object be defined for maximum compatibility
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Chapter 15- Fundamentals of Delivering Interactive TV Content
  • Transport A – B tradeoffs
    • Transport A currently most popular
    • Popularity of Transport B limited only by imposed VBI line restrictions
    • Transport B expected to win popularity in pure-digital services (like DCT5000 STB)
  • Interactive TV Vendors
    • Norpak; Motorola
chapter 16 creating interactive tv links
Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links
  • Creating Interactive TV Links with the Microsoft TV Viewer
  • The Microsoft TV Interface for Interactive TV Links
  • Creating Links to Humongous Insurance
  • The Link Type and View Attributes
  • Trigger Expiration Date
  • Creating Interactive TV Links with Script Triggers
  • Interactive TV Link Sequencer
  • Inserting Links into the VBI
  • Trigger Syntax
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Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links
  • Creating Interactive TV Links with Microsoft TV Simulator 3.0
    • For a comprehensive guide on using the Microsoft TV Simulator 3.0 see the textbook
    • To insert real tags into an NTSC signal you must use software like Microsoft Station Link Interactivity Manager or Extend Media’s Tag Broadcaster in conjunction with a VBI Inserter and NTSC formatted video production
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Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links
  • The Microsoft Interface for Interactive TV Links
      • Note that one improvement of Microsoft TV over WebTV is that Microsoft TV has a better interface – the crude semitransparent ‘i’ which alerted users to interactive content is replaced with a neater ‘Go to Web Page’ prompt
    • Interactive TV Link Limitations
      • Tags are encoded like CC – so like CC they are limited to 60 char/sec
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Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links
  • Creating a Link to Humongous Insurance
    • Humongous Insurance has been created as a project in Extend Media’s Tag Broadcaster on TRANSMIT_VBI so that it can be demonstrated on set-top box
    • You can explore Humongous Insurance by trying it on the set-top box from Broadcaster or by experimenting yourself on the Microsoft TV Simulator 3.0 as per instructions in the textbook
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Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links
  • The Link Type and View Attribute
    • The meaning of the type attribute is controversial – ATVEF specifications differ here from WebTV implementation – it is unclear what the meaning will be in future implementations of Microsoft TV – for more information read the textbook
  • Trigger Expiration
    • Television content – once released – may float around indefinately on any number of video tapes – it is unlikely that a website enhancement will be available forever – therefore tags should include an expiry date to invalidate links a reasonable amount of time after the program is created
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Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links
  • Creating Interactive TV Links with Script Triggers
    • On attribute that can be included in an Interactive TV Link is a javascript message which acts on the document specified in the URL attribute of the tag
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Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links
  • Creating a Script Trigger for Humongous Insurance
    • To test out script triggers either examine the Humongous Insurance project on TRANSMIT_VBI or follow the instructions in the book to emulate the receipt of the tag in Microsoft TV simulator 3.0
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Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links
  • Ending an Interactive TV Program with a Script Trigger
    • Any interactive TV experience should of course for stylistic reasons be closed by returning the browser to full screen television
    • Building Interactive Entertainment and E-Commerce Content for Microsoft TV recommends closing interactive experiences by sending a tag that calls a javascript method equivelant to window.top.location.href = “tv://”
      • I have also invested using method document.location.href.replace(nn), where nn is new href to transition viewer between pages – this may be the perferred method for IBO to use since it does not retain the original document in history and thereby prevents users from backing into cancelled interactive sessions
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Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links
  • Trigger Matching
    • Trigger matching is a technology pioneered by Microsoft to solve the dilemma of uncertainty that surrounds the href of the user upon the receipt of a trigger – instead of matching an exact URL – Microsoft TV can match a regular expression and will perform the javascript method if the user is viewing any page in the expression
      • E.g. www.rcc.ryerson.ca/webtv/demo/* would match www.rcc.ryerson.ca/webtv/demo/set and www.rcc.ryerson.ca/webtv/demo/windows
    • Because a regular expression is a set of documents and not an exact actor document regular expressions cannot be used to actually link a page – since the viewer would have no way of knowing what page in the set to search for
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Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links

Interactive TV Link Sequencer

WebTV and Microsoft viewers provide INTERACTIVE TV LINK SEQUENCER to enable variety of Interactive TV links:

  • Script triggers for viewers who tune in late.
  • Script triggers that dynamically swap out a page or change content of a page.

.

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Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links

Using the Interactive TV Link Sequencer

  • Open the Link Sequencer In Microsoft TV by clicking on View/Link Sequencer Window
  • This is internal to the Microsoft TV Simulator.. Simulates an interactive TV broadcast.
  • See pgs 213, 214
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Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links

Encoding Links to the VBI

  • Open the Interactive TV Link Creator, by selecting View/Link Creator Window.
  • This utility lets you encode interactive TV Links with the Norpak Encoder
  • A step-by-step installation procedure is shown on pg. 214.
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Chapter 16- Creating Interactive TV Links

TRIGGER SYNTAX (ATVEV Compliant)

  • Triggers are real-time events delivered to enhance the TV program.
  • Triggers always include URL, and may include name, expiration date and a script.
  • Triggers are text based
  • Triggers must always start with a <
  • General format for a trigger is

<url> [atrrib1, val1] [atrrib2, val2]……[atrribn, valn] [checksum]

  • Attribute/value pairs can be

name:string, expires:time , script:string

  • [checksum]
  • Example:

http://www.rcc.ryerson.ca[name:ike]

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