Yournews, a video interface for mobile video and citizen journalism (graduation project)

Yournews (renamed to Medialandschap) is a project designed to amplify the power of low-end video content people create. At a growing speed this by users created content – so called ‘citizen journalism’ – is created and spread online. Yournews ask users to upload this video, usually created with mobile phones or digital photo-cameras and uses meta information to create a rich set of data.

The visual interface and structure enhance the value of the information in order to get more and a better coherent information structure for users to play with, form and reshape.

The news videos created by people will connect to videos with content alike.


The button is click and drag, the raised level of a box indicates the amount of videos, the color signals how long ago a new video was posted in a box, the slider allows you to go back into time. The 3 layers above the map are video channels automatically generated.

The interface uses many different axes to sort information, giving the user freedom and make it easy to search large collections of data. Axes like: time, location, popularity, latest changes, additions, amount, subject or on a visual selection (attractive images). Users are also able to view broadcasts based on predefined values. The goal of the interface is to be very clear and easy to use, like an infographic.


Thinking about starting a new blog

A while ago we lost all the stylesheets at the Dutch electronic music blog Eclectro. So we rebuild it.

Eclectro tries to be a blog with a positive vibe about electronic music. By using the tools the web offers we try to connect producers and listeners in a way that everyone benefits and has a great time. For me the most exciting experiences with the blog are those where an artist we follow (and who follows the blog) get to do new great things.

I think for what Eclectro is doing in the music scene there is also some space for a Dutch blog about (electronic) art, clothes, architecture, photography DIY, and more with a focus on Dutch upcoming artists. We have enough blogs about internet and marketing 😉 we could use some positive and easy to read blogs about art.

Just do It, think later screenshot
So I started it. Just to try out the idea. It’s a beta version, not in any technical way, since I can use the Eclectro templates.

It is a beta from content perspective. I started posting short articles to see if I there are enough interesting things to write about. And if the collection makes something that is adding something to the Dutch blogosphere.

I also started reaching out to some people with different interests and background to ask them if they are interested in sharing things, thoughts and knowledge.

For me right now the only reason not to continue the adventure is time, everything new costs time. And starting a group blog is incredible time consuming. But it is for the greater good!

You can find the blog at If you want to share something, or a link. Let me know.



Last week I received the book Web-tv written by Bob Timroff. The Dutch book describes everything you ever wanted to know about publishing video or videoblogs on the web. From copyrights to video formats to aggregators, everything. ( and my graduation project are featured in the book as well.

A video is personal
It is more personal than text and even more personal than a picture. If you record video with your webcam or your mobile phone and you are in it you are broadcasting yourself.

Not only your thoughts (blog), not just your voice (podcast) or your esthetic moments (photo blog). You are broadcasting your mimics, how you move, how you talk, how you look.

By default we seem to be afraid to see ourself on video. It’s like watching a 3d mirror with a delay. You notice every little thing. Things you don’t always like about yourself. After a while you get used to this and it matters less.

The video blog, or the option to easily share ‘personal’ video is a new form of personal expression made public. More personal and more direct. We have to get used to this. Video feels very strong connected to privacy.

Video was always a very scarce medium. You needed access to movies or television and you needed to have message or idea. Television had to be interesting to be broadcasted. This does not longer exist.

Social networks are changing how we think about privacy. Privacy is retreating actively from the web, in other words privacy is not signing in to your profiles or comment on your virtual hideouts.

If you act in public spaces off- and online you will end up somewhere on the web, probably without knowing. This could be party pictures, your MySpace profile or a videoblog you make.

Seesmic is a service by Loïc Le Meur that tries to convert the conversation into video. Make video comments instead of text. It’s an interesting idea, I don’t know if it will always work, but I think this is the time for it. We are making a cultural shift. We’re less afraid to publish video featuring ourselves talking directly into a webcam and use video to give our personal opinion.

This poses new problems of course. Video is difficult for scanning by humans and by computers. How do you find the things that matter most without watching hours of (sometimes irrelevant/funny) comments.

The videoblog still exists. Only it’s a format for structural video. Like programs on television. The production is often far less professional than television, but there is some structure.

The large amount of video that is coming to the web has no structure at all, it will be thoughts and comments that have no meaning without the right context. And I think this is great. It makes the web a more personal space and this is the next step to a more immersive online experience.