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Ball State Students To Try Out Interactive TV Application Development

Starting next fall Ball State University students will be able to create interactive television applications and test them on actual digital cable environments. The university is trying out the Academic ITV Software Developer Kit from the OCAP/EBIF Development Network (OEDN) in their programming classes. The kit is designed to give American universities the ability to build applications locally--while testing them remotely--which will allow them to take an application from conception to development to test and playout on a cable set-top box.

"Ball State and the Center for Media Design (CMD) are excited to participate in the OEDN community," said Mike Bloxham, director of Insight & Research for the center. "We look forward to applying our strengths in research, usability, and the talent of our students by integrating this project into emerging curriculum that will lead toward new career paths."

"This commitment to advance the knowledge base in interactive television fits perfectly into Ball State's recently launched $17.7 million emerging media initiative," added Dave Ferguson, Ball State's associate VP of emerging media initiatives and executive director of the center.

The mission of tOEDN is to drive application development efforts using the two primary interactive cable television open standards for middleware: OCAP (known to consumers as tru2way) and EBIF. Through its developer network Web site and via other well-known social networks such as LinkedIn and Facebook, OEDN aims to broadly socialize the advantages of developing interactive applications for digital cable.

OEDN will provide student developer support through the OEDN.net Web site.

"In orchestrating all the parties at the table, OEDN seeks to kick-start ITV app development for digital cable in U.S. universities," said Will Kreth, Sr., director of advanced video strategy for Time Warner Cable and founder of OEDN. "The time has come to share with a new generation of developers what EBIF and Tru2Way (OCAP) can do.... Our role as an intermediary is to get students excited about the potential of digital cable, show them the paths to development, testing, and deployment--and connect them with the resources necessary to build a career path. That has been our charter and remains our focus going forward."

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a writer who covers technology and business for a number of publications. Contact her at dian@dischaffhauser.com.

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