Cutting Edge 3D Graphics for the BBCs Election Night


Spanish real-time 3D graphics manufacturer, Brainstorm, provided a full suite of data driven 2D and 3D graphics for the BBC’s recent UK Election Night coverage. The BBC’s election coverage includes some of the most technically challenging and innovative graphics on air, providing an excellent showcase for the power and sophistication of Brainstorm’s software. David Dimbleby’s graphics consisted of an updating tally, lower third flashes, name straps and full-form results showing 3D map location and vote share, change and swing in real time.
As with past elections, Brainstorm worked closely with the BBC to implement their design in the form of a 3D virtual set with touch-screen panels and a range of sophisticated 2D and 3D graphics linked to live data.
Emily Maitus presented using a U-Touch touch screen running 3D graphics showing a data-driven map of the UK with the ability to select individual constituencies and show share, change, swing and turnout.
A multi-camera virtual set allowed Jeremy Vine to do further analysis using a 3D “swingometer,” a 3D model of the house of commons and a data table touch screen that enabled comparisons of possible coalitions and hung parliament scenarios. Vine entertained viewers setting off a spiralling chain of three-dimensional dominos displaying MPs who had been knocked out of the race.
Brainstorm produced all of the BBC’s live 3D graphics for their television coverage of the 2005 General Elections and UK local elections in 2006, 2007 and 2008 (virtual studios, lower-third, full-form graphics and maps). Following this highly successful coverage, in 2008 the BBC contracted Brainstorm to provide all its live election television graphics output, both national and international, through to 2011. This included the BBC’s spectacular coverage of the US Presidential Elections in 2008 and the European Parliament Elections in 2009 with interactive floor maps and charts and touch-screen panels.
Brainstorm has been providing election graphics services to television stations since 1997. By 2008 Brainstorm’ software and services were being used to produce stunning election graphics worldwide at the BBC, KBS and MBC in Korea, NBC Universal, MSNBC, TSR Switzerland, RTL Germany, at five Spanish television stations and a large number of TV stations in Japan, where Brainstorm solutions are used by over 90% of broadcasters.
In parallel to its success with elections, Brainstorm’s software has been used to generate state-of-the-art sports graphics by broadcasters worldwide for many years. The recent addition of the Aston 7 to Brainstorm’s product line up has resulted in the company achieving some high-profile sports graphics wins with this powerful character generator, now fully integrated and compatible with the rest of Brainstorm’s product range.
Brainstorm’s Aston 7 generated all the live sports graphics on the World Feed for the recent Dubai Carnival and Dubai World Cup, a thoroughbred flat race with a purse of US$10 million. Graphics were output in full 1080 HD and included menus, runners and riders, race IDs, formcards graphics and betting shows.
The Dubai Carnival and World Cup were held at the $1.2 billion Meydan Racecourse built by Sheikh Mohamed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the ruler of Dubai. Coverage consisted of five-and-a-half-hour shows with eight races per day during five weeks in the lead up to the Dubai World Cup. The Aston generated all the live graphics out of a studio in London for the Carnival and from the racecourse in Dubai for the World Cup.
The design and new-look graphics were created by David Phelan of ModeVision.tv. Once completed it took the graphics team four days to develop and create the graphics templates and put in the data hooks using the Aston’s unique Data Pools feature. With an Internet link up to the control gallery in Dubai, graphics were populated live with a Tote data feed from South Africa and a P.A. data feed displaying odds prices from London.
Astons also power a significant portion of Ireland’s live sports graphics, including horseracing at RTE, TV3’s Gaelic Games championships, TG4 soccer and Gaelic Games coverage and wide-ranging sports for Setanta Ireland (Premiership football, Irish football, Rugby, Gaelic Games, Champion’s League and Formula 1). Aston is also used by the ADI Group for live digital signage graphics displays at a number of UK football grounds.
In addition to elections and sports, Brainstorm offers solutions for all types of broadcast graphics as well as being the tool of choice for other real-time applications such as powering Nasdaq’s video wall graphics in Times Square, New York, and green-screen film production on Hollywood films such as Alice in Wonderland, Speed Racer, Artificial Intelligence and I Robot.
A Spanish company focussed more on technological excellence than global expansion, Brainstorm has long been one of the industry’s best kept secrets - but recognised by those in the know as the industry leaders in terms of 3D sophistication and flexibility. With the addition of the Aston 7, high-end customers worldwide, an expanding sales, marketing and support team and a growing reseller network, Brainstorm now seems well positioned to expand its reach and share of the real-time graphics market worldwide.

Tags: graphics | iss042 | brainstorm | election | 3d graphics | 3d | N/A
Contributing Author N/A

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