ADAPT: the Adoption of New Technological Arrays in the Production of Broadcast Television

ADAPT is a five-year (2013-2018) research project, funded by the European Research Council and based at Royal Holloway, University of London. The aim of the project is to research and document the history of British broadcast television technology between 1960 and the near-present. Television has seen vast technological changes since 1960. In 1960, the revolutionary technologies were two-inch videotape and 16mm film with synched tape-recorded sound. Tape and film editing gave way to non-linear post-production in the 1990s. Now we have tapeless production in high definition. All these changes have affected what has appeared on the screen. It also affected the lives of skilled technicians, who sometimes had to adapt to new ways of working, and just as often took a hand in adapting the available equipment to their specific needs. ADAPT will now draw together the threads of this complex story. This is important now that archival television footage is becoming available at an astonishing rate, either online assets, in archival programming and through DVD release.A key aspect of the project is the filming of a number of ‘simulations’, reuniting professionals with old equipment and asking them to explain and demonstrate how they used to work with it.

Name of Project Contact:

John Ellis