Best Children’s AIMIA Winner // ABC For Kids Portal

AIMIA Winner

Not sure how we missed this one, but a site we were involved with last year won an AIMIA for Best Children's, at the 18th AIMIA Awards earlier this year.

We developed several flash components for the site, including a player that would load games and media from the back catalogue of ABC developed games, audio and video and a series of games based around the "Giggle and Hoot" TV program. There's some more information on the components in a blog post that we posted earlier.

We've been so busy this year that this prestigious award must have slipped through but we were very happy to work with the ABC for Kids team and congratulate them on putting a great site together!

See the announcement here.

The AIMIA Awards are the peak Awards for the Interactive Media and Digital Content sectors in Australia, and year after year continue to deliver a strong and innovative showcase of award winning Australian digital content creations. Over 500 industry leaders, international and national interactive media celebrities, as well as federal and state ministers attend the ceremony.

distriqt’s ABC Black Saturday site picks up 2 AIMIA awards!

AIMIA

We're super proud to announce that our ABC Black Saturday site won 2 AIMIA awards on Friday night in both the categories it was nominated for!

Check out the full list of winners here.

We'd like to thank everyone else who contributed to the project - Priscilla Davies the producer (who didn't get a lot of sleep during the last few weeks of it), Bec Smith the designer, and everyone else who worked on it!

Simple KML Loader

Lately we have been playing around a fair bit with some google flash maps and have been amazed by the power and simplicity of the API. We used it heavily in the ABC Black Saturday site using custom markers with images and even a scrolling grid.

We were faced with another challenge of being able to mark out areas (districts) within Victoria that represented the most affected regions. These regions were sometimes complex and we needed to be able to update them simply and quickly as the need arose. The regions weren't to be displayed directly but used for two major items. Firstly to focus the map on a particular region, by moving the view to the region contained by these districts, and secondly, to assign events/markers to a district by calculating if they were contained within the bounds of the district lines.

The solution ended up being ridiculously simple. We created a shared map on google maps, with shapes defining the districts. We then could export from this online map to kml by grabbing the view in Google Earth link and changing the output parameter from nl to kml. This gave us the map of the districts in a nice kml format.

abc-district-google-map

Once we had the map in kml we needed to load in the objects and create overlays for google maps. Surprisingly there wasn't a simple "load kml" function in google maps, but there are some nice kml parsing utilities in the google map extras library. So we created a kml loader class that loads the kml file, extracts the objects and creates overlays for placement on a google map. Hopefully it can be helpful to others, check it out from the following:

https://github.com/marchbold/as3-gmaps-utils

Usage:

Firstly create the loader and start the load of your kml file. You'll need to add a listener to the COMPLETE event to process the code on completion.

  1. import com.distriqt.gmaps.kml.utils.*;
  2.  
  3. var kmlLoader:KmlLoader = new KmlLoader();
  4. kmlLoader.addEventListener( Event.COMPLETE, kmlLoader_completeHandler );
  5. kmlLoader.load( "your-kml-file-location.kml" );

Once the loading is complete you'll have to re-curse through the object list in the loader, adding the objects to your map. Note the "map" variable in the below should be your google map instance.

  1. function kmlLoader_completeHandler( _event:Event ):void
  2. {
  3. for each (var _object:KmlDisplayObject in KmlLoader(_event.currentTarget).objects)
  4. addObject( _object );
  5. }
  6. function addObject( _object:KmlDisplayObject ):void
  7. {
  8. // It may just be a container with child elements
  9. // so check if there is an overlay
  10. if (_object.overlay != null)
  11. {
  12. // Here you can add the kml object to your map
  13. map.addOverlay( _object.overlay );
  14. }
  15. // Add the children
  16. for each (var _child:KmlDisplayObject in _object.children)
  17. addObject( _child );
  18. }

Let us know if you find it useful.

ABC Black Saturday Interactive goes live

Our first major project, ABC Black Saturday Interactive, went live yesterday!

"It pulls together hundreds of pieces of media – professionally produced media, official documents and records and the best user generated content – to provide a stunning insight into the fires and the people who lived through them. An interactive map and timeline allow you to explore the events through time and location, and a series of dramatic video portraits provide a moving insight into the personal experiences of some survivors."

ABC Black Saturday Interactive

This project has been a great experience, and we're really happy with the end product. The site pulls together a heap of media data such as video, audio, imagery and news content from a multitude of sources and combines it into a great interactive experience. The Google Maps API also provided us with a really interesting way of exploring the data visually based on the time and location of every media item and story.

Huge thanks go to the ABC Innovation Department, the producer Priscilla Davies, designers Bec Smith and Sarah Fawcett, and everyone else who contributed to the project - it was a great team to work with.

We're really proud to see this online so please go and check it out and explore the site!

Black Saturday Interactive

ABC Black Saturday mini-module

Our first phase with the Black Saturday Interactive has been released on the ABC site.

The "mini-module" is a smaller version of the eventual full interactive site but is to be used on other news pages to draw people into the site. It displays a mosaic tiled wall of stories about the Black Saturday fires, each of which contains media items from a variety of sources including YouTube, Vimeo, flickr and ABC internal media sources.

ABC BSI Mini-Module Screenshot
ABC BSI Mini-Module Screenshot

Find it initially at: