TouchCast (iOS / iPad / PC Desktop)
type: Mobile





Touchcast Description edit
TouchCast was designed to bring the capabilities of a broadcast TV station to a touch screen mobile interface, with features, medias, effect, that can be added dynamically in a "Minority Report" style.

The beginning of this journey was a hardware project. It involved physics, optics, electrical engineering, industrial design, wood, metal and glass. We set out to build the first camera connected to the internet, and we called it TouchCast. It was to become the first (and only, as far as we know) transparent touchscreen built for broadcast television. This hardware rig allows the talent to manipulate objects sitting between them and the camera in the way we are accustomed to seeing in science fiction movies like Minority Report and Avatar.

But the end goal is not video as we know it, but something that is native web video, bringing the interactivity of the web to a video stream, what they describe as The Dawn of the Video Web

TouchCast is a new medium that looks like TV, but feels like the web.

TouchCast is a new kind of video that is part of the web, not apart from it. Each TouchCast can contain web pages, documents, videos, pictures and interactive regions we call video Apps (vApps) within it, bringing the world of video and the web together. Video Apps are active HTML objects inside the video. They include maps, polls, Twitter streams, clickable news headlines, photo galleries, and anything else developers can imagine (vApps are built on an open platform).

TouchCast now has an official manual (PDF) that explains the authoring process in detail, perhaps better than I explain below!

The layout for creating a TouchCast is the display screen to show the output, and a row of "shots" along the bottom that you can activate at any time, they are not sequential. Each shot can be video combined with one or more of their extensive set of video apps or "vapps" that can be on screen as a small resizable window, half screen, full screen with no video, or full screen with video in bottom right. Here is an idea of the things you can add to a shot:


The vapps can be moved around (when setting up or when recording). The thing about them is they become active when published- so for a web page, links can be followed (or watch a video), maps can be zoomed-- they act like bits of the web in the final TouchCast.

For each shot you set up, you can set the camera mode, add titles, use visual and audio effects, and overlay a whiteboard.


Now here is what I learned the hard way- you should organize all of these in advance, and have them available. The next step is where you actually record. When recording, you can movie between shots, move things around, annotate with the whiteboard tools. My first mistake was recording the video first; that is the wrong approach; you have to have all your media and vapps available at the time of recording.

One limit to know ahead of time is that a TouchCast is limited to 5 minutes. So practice first. You can pause a recording and do it in steps, but there is no way to go back and edit, remove, so you create it as a one take, or a series of one takes (My Dominoe TouchCast took about 6 to get it right).

You publish to the TouchCast site where it is visible as a link. Also, when viewing your TouchCast the little swirly arrow opens up the other sharing options to share the link in twitter, and Facebook, plus the embed code option (I almost missed that). In the iPad editor for your published TouchCast you can also find an option to export it as a video to YouTube.

This is an exciting platform, because it allows you to create a different kind of media than other tools. Some TouchCasts are used to animate content, like a voice over, but others really mix in the video and web content as well. There is a social network of sorts on the site, where views can favoritr your TouchCast or even "ReCast" or share it to others.

- cogdog cogdog Jun 27, 2014

add to / edit this section

Sharing Options: Twitter, Facebook, email, URL
Publish Options: Link on Touchcast site, embed code export to YouTube,
Import Media From: Saved Photos, flickr, Instagram, youTube, GoogleMaps, any web page (many more web integration options)

Dominoe Story

View on TouchCast

Embedded from Touchcast

Embedded from Youtube export

cogdog-watercolor.pngThis site was created by Alan Levine in October 2010, the second incarnation of the original 50+ Ways concept. A 2014 expansion for mobile apps is being co-created with Darren Kuropatwa. Everything here is open to be linked, re-used, re-mixed, re-cast, etc. This particular page was created on Feb 12, 2014 11:03 am and has been edited 10 times. The last tweak was made on Mar 14, 2014 9:58 am by - cogdog cogdog. Share freely, often, and voraciously by linking to