Right then! It’s time to get everything out in the open and talk about some of the stuff that’s been going on behind the scenes over the last few months. First things first – and this will probably come as a bit of a surprise to a few people – I’ve decided to make a move from the BBC to go and try something new. The last couple of years have been extraordinary in a lot of ways – I’ve been lucky enough to work on (and occasionally initiate) some really significant projects around the organisation, I’ve been able to explore whole new areas of media navigation, interaction and distribution and I’ve done it all in the company of some absolutely extraordinary people.
In particular, working with Matt Webb was one of the weirdest, challenging and fruitful working relationships of my life. Similarly, playing once again with Mr Biddulph reminded me exactly how much I’d recommend the experience to everyone. If you need any freelance wizardry performed, I can’t praise him highly enough. And I also can’t say enough good things about Paul Hammond – whether he’s been driving me nuts or keeping me sane, he’s always been insightful and great company.
There are loads of other people I’m thrilled to have worked with in the organisation and I can’t possibly name them all, but various projects stick in my head and it’s probably worth opening them up a little. I had great fun on the first pass through the Programme Information Pages project (and the Radio 3 site that emerged from it), and it wouldn’t have been the experience it was without Margaret Hanley and Gavin Bell (and about a dozen other cool people). At the other extreme, rapidly building and deploying the Listen Live Widget with Duncan Ponting was enormously satisfying, as was the Phonetags project working with Webb, Jason Cowlam, Graham Beale and (again) Gavin. And I’d be remiss if I didn’t briefly mention the small team I’m currently working with (Helen Crowe, Chris Bowley, Tristan Ferne, Bronwyn Van Der Merwe and Paul Clifford) – hopefully I’ll be able to talk a bit more about what we’ve been up to before I leave.
So the second major thing that I should probably let people know is that I’m leaving the BBC to go and work for Bradley Horowitz in the Tech Development Group at Yahoo! (alongside Simon Willison and Jeremy Zawodny among others). My particular special skill – I gather – is going to be the power of my social media mojo, undercut with my feral design instincts. I’ll be based in London but out in the States pretty regularly – and here’s the best bit – playing with the Flickr team and the Upcoming crew and all the folks over at Yahoo Research Berkeley (among others). Anyway, as is probably fairly evident, this is not the kind of opportunity you turn down without a very good reason, and I’ve wracked my brains and I sure as hell can’t think of one. So wish me luck!