In all honesty I must log onto the BBC website and my local news website at least 20 times a day mostly through my smartphone or work computer, and I can honestly admit that I learnt more about today's events by logging onto this 3 times today
This quote from an early user of the ITV News prototype illustrates what's exciting about the news stream; this is the kind of behaviour we wanted to tap into, but it's ill-served by most news sites because they are tied to the idea of the article - something that's published once and is rarely updated (like a newspaper or news broadcast). When we started working with ITV, we knew we had to do something different. We wanted to explore realtime news and use it to show how news stories develop over time, i.e. that news is an ongoing process not a finished product
An early diagram of the possible components of a filtered stream, and throughput across the day
Testing the concept of a news stream and what that might entail with users was central to the creative process. It was through understanding use cases and user needs that we were able to develop the key design principles that underpin the stream: 'tell me what the world's talking about today' and 'whenever I come back show me something different'. We needed to make change highly visible.
We kicked off the project in May last year. After an initial warm up period getting to know stakeholders, digesting research and shadowing the news teams, we moved quickly to sketching ideas and simple keynote concepts. Within 5 weeks of starting the project we built a prototype in Node.js.