Swedish Election 2006

Almost all of SVT’s broadcasts have at least some graphics played out by CasparCG in them.
This case is just one of many examples of a project that makes heavier use of CasparCG.

Swedish National Election 2006

What: The same Flash SWF (see below) was used both on the public web site and to broadcast the election results on TV. CasparCG was used for all broadcasts of the national and local election results, all fed by real-time data from external databases.
Where: SVT: Swedish Broadcasting Corporation in Stockholm, Sweden, plus 11 local broadcasts around Sweden.
Parts of CasparCG used: Flash Producer and Bluefish Consumer
Hardware used: Dell Precision 670s with Bluefish Technologies Deepblue SD cards
When: September 2006

TV stations tend to bring out the big guns when it comes to national elections. These are big budget live productions where everything must go according to plan.

In 2006 SVT chose to go an unconventional route by replacing the traditional broadcast graphics system used in previous elections with the in-house developed CasparCG system. One reason for this was to avoid having to build all graphics in proprietary graphics editors which very few designers know how to use. The main reason for this bold move was the promise of using the exact same back- and front-end for all election results on both national and local level, as well as on the web.

Previous elections the only information published on the eleven local stations and on the Internet was static images of a selected number of graphs, that had to be pre-determined months ahead. The license cost of deploying an additional eleven graphics systems around the country was just too prohibitive, and the only practical way of exporting data to the web was either dull spreadsheet data or plain charts.

Local coverage:

With CasparCG’s inexpensive hardware and software cost, each local station could now use the easy-to-use Flash application to have full access not only to all data, but also to choose how they wanted that data to be displayed with animations and transitions.

As an added benefit the exact same Flash SWF file used on the CasparCG broadcast servers was also published on SVT’s home page where web users could have the same access to up-to-date election results, both locally and nationally!

An interesting twist was that the national news broadcasts had just switched to 16:9 while the 11 local news shows were still on 4:3. This added complexity was handled by building a configurable option in the Flash SWF that automatically letterboxed the widescreen output for 4:3.

Here’s a few screenshots of the Flash application used to show results both to web users and TV viewers, thanks to CasparCG’s unique ability to play-out dynamic Flash! Unfortunately that file is no longer hosted at the original site…