#BBCmicrobit micro computer free to one million schoolchildren – an annotated infographic

For those of a certain age, the words “BBC Micro” will evoke memories of playing simplistic, heavily pixellated but nonetheless incredibly thrilling computer games in the school IT cupboard, having booked it for that one precious hour a week under the guise of learning computer programming. Quite what we learned from Arcade Action – beyond the necessary action required in the event of alien invasion of Planet Earth – remains a mystery. Good times, nonetheless. Now a new generation of young programmers/alien blasters will be well served by this new Beeb computer, cutely called the BBC micro:bit, deftly positioning the … Continue reading #BBCmicrobit micro computer free to one million schoolchildren – an annotated infographic

#DrWho 50th anniversary: Doctors, assistants and enemies – an annotated graphic

From William Hartnell’s 1963 debut to Peter Capaldi in 2013, a total of 12 actors have portrayed the enigmatic Doctor, eponymous star of the TV series Dr Who. As the BBC and the Doctor’s many fans worldwide prepare to celebrate 50 years of this unique take on science-fiction, we offer this infographic detailing key characters from the series. Fans of the Doctor might enjoy our recent sci-fi special, in which we looked at the restoration of original Dr Who episodes; talked to Sir Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter about their Long Earth multiverse; celebrated the legendary sci-fi artwork of Chris … Continue reading #DrWho 50th anniversary: Doctors, assistants and enemies – an annotated graphic

#Quatermass at 60 – E&T magazine reflects on a technologist hero

This November marks the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who. It’s an important milestone for a show that, like its hero, will not die. However, some science-fiction fans are disappointed that the BBC is not celebrating another, arguably more seminal birthday this month: the 60th anniversary of The Quatermass Experiment. Mention Quatermass to anyone over 40 and you’ll invoke a very British sense of horror and a narrowly-averted apocalypse. Quatermass was never a cult character; he was decidedly mainstream. He was British TV’s first fictional creation who could ‘empty the pubs’. Kneale died in 2006, but his influence over UK media … Continue reading #Quatermass at 60 – E&T magazine reflects on a technologist hero

Not to be missed: BBC2 series “All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace”

DON’T MISS “All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace” – a series of three mesmerising films showing on BBC2, created by Bafta award-winning film maker Adam Curtis. This fascinating series examines the idea that the way we see the world today is a distortion of reality, created by the computers that we built. In his unique way (if a little bewildering at times), Curtis explores the notion that rather than liberating us, computers have simplified our view of the world and are dictating how we live. The first episode in the series, Love and Power, was aired on Monday … Continue reading Not to be missed: BBC2 series “All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace”

‘Acidhead Dr Who’ secret unearthed

Another attempt to spin even more interest in the new series of Dr Who by raking over old internal BBC memos, has been revealed by a confidential BBC News Web story. Among secrets from the programme’s past – disinterred from BBC archives by the BBC publicity department – is the revelation that the Doc’s first regeneration was designed to be modelled on a bad acid trip. Continue reading ‘Acidhead Dr Who’ secret unearthed