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That was the question that arose after the announcement of SciVee. One only needs to see recent blog posts across the life science blogosphere to realize there there are a number of video-related life science sites that have arisen in a very short period of time. For convenience, I am going to stick to three, since they fill, at least in my mind, complementary roles in the life science video landscape. It also helps us figure out where Bioscreecast fits in the life scientists arsenal.JoVE to my mind is the most ambitious project. Being able to capture experiments (visual experiments) with high quality production is no easy task, but having met Moshe and Nikita recently, I think they can pull it off. The challenge is always going to be on the user end. If we are at the tipping point, people are going to become a lot more comfortable opening up their labs to a video camera. If nothing else, SciVee and JoVE suggest that video is a viable form of communicating formal science.Which brings us to Bioscreencast, and why I think there is a ton of scope here. Screencasts are easy to do, especially compared to other forms of video. In theory, all you need to do is turn on a video screencapture software app and do what you need to do, with the one caveat that recording a narrative at the same time is usually a good idea and probably the one thing that needs some thought prior to starting the screencast recording. We see ourselves as more of an informal user generated site, where the power comes from diverse content uploaded by people with different backgrounds. We all have something to share. Hopefully people will choose to share their software chops on Bioscreencast.Video is just hitting the tipping point in mainstream consumer usage, where more and more people are spending their time uploading material to YouTube, creating content and hosting it on Brightcove or Blip.tv, or like I do, Kyte.tv. In the world of science, there are a number of people, some listed here who have developed platforms that enable those who are interested to take advantage of the tangibility and immediacy of video. The future is now!!!

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Over at bbgm, I have a post about SciVee, a new service from the NSF, PLoS and the San Diego Supercomputer Center. The new service allows scientists to publish video podcasts in support of published work. This is big on many fronts; the organizations involved alone validate everything we’ve believed in here at Bioscreencast, and slowly, video for scientific content and online communication around scientific works, whether published or user generated in our case is going to continue to grow.

It’s been a week since Bioscreencast.com saw the light of day. We’ve seen some growing pains and we would like to thank you for your support, especially those who have tested out a few things for us.

Without a vibrant user community, it just becomes a site for us to upload our favorite videos. We are looking Please let us know what we can do to make your experience better

Talking about experiences, this weekend will also see some cool new features being rolled ou. We hope that they will make your experience at Bioscreencast a lot better. In the meantime don’t forget to check out the Wiki for tips and tricks.

In a wonderful post-foo camp post at Nascent, Timo Hannay writes about the promise of online scientific communication. Part of his commentary of the subject has to do with the rising role of audio and video in scientific communication. The falling costs of hardware and software, and changing patterns in “consumer” behavior are key reasons for the success of the iPod, YouTube, etc. The question that we have been asking ourselves is how can science take advantage of these changing trends in communication and continue to make sure that we are not only educated, but that young people continue to remain interested in the sciences. Timo mentiones JoVe as an interesting experiment in this area. Just as JoVE helps to communicate the “tacit skill” in laboratory experimentation , we definitely believe that screencasting can do its bit considering that all experimentation today involves the use of computers and computational data analysis. Hopefully, with all your help, we will find out that video is an effective means of communicating science, especially disseminating information on how we apply it in our daily research lives.