(Pocket-lint) - The BBC is opening its R&D labs to the general public in order to have its innovations and experimental ideas tested and trialled by everyone. Called BBC Taster, the scheme will be a "place to try, rate and share something new".

The BBC Taster service will be accessed initially through a dedicated website where you can head to a number of different digital projects that might see the light of day sometime in the future.

One idea, for example, is a sub-site where you can see the news stories of your life, by entering your own birthday to get a Facebook style archive of stories and events that happened on your birthday, gleaned from BBC News coverage over the years.

Many of the other innovations available feature interactive online video. Again, another example is a poetry creation site where different poets can be chosen to give snippets of their work mixed with others, providing a number of different permeations along the way. New comedy and drama talent will be utilised for interactive content too.

There are other demos and Taster elements that users can try that involve external technologies too. Voice control over BBC News coverage on a website is one that will be added in future, and there are other demos available for Oculus Rift and other wearable tech that might be implemented - although you will need your own specific hardware to try them out.


"Innovation has been at the heart of the BBC since the birth of radio and TV, right through to the digital age - having pioneered products and services like the BBC Micro, Ceefax, BBC iPlayer and the first truly digital Olympics in 2012," said Ralph Rivera, director of BBC Future Media.

"BBC Taster is the next step, bringing together our editorial and technology experts and opening the process up for audiences. This will give us valuable feedback and technical insights, helping us further develop our ideas and work on those with the greatest potential."

Pocket-lint will be checking out some of the demos ourselves, from BBC Broadcasting House in London. We'll let you know what we think, but you can also head to the website, part of bbc.co.uk, to see for yourself too.

Writing by Rik Henderson.