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Nick McCarthy, designer
Jo Carter/Tom O'Rourke, developers
Will Munhoz, lead developer
Neil Evely, project manager
The Mill, project design and development/client

“Anyone who has gone through the ultra-important but often impossible and gargantuan task of creating an agency portfolio will appreciate the beauty of this.” —juror Natalie Lam

“A beautifully designed application. The experience and usability of this idea is so well thought out that it is truly transformative for the business.” —juror Mark Renshaw

Overview: Fearing sluggish buffering, snail-paced Wi-Fi and an ever-growing archive of work, the Mill, a visual effects studio, needed an efficient way to access more than 2,000 assets for client meetings. So it developed Mill Touch 2.0. By storing all content locally on a handheld device, this new app enables users to easily search for assets, build presentations and reels, and stream high-definition (HD) videos on any external screen via Airplay—no Internet needed.

•The project took six months to produce.
•Each asset record contains an HD video file, thumbnail images and PR copy, all with full credits and tags.
•Mill Touch 2.0 and its supporting content management system (CMS) can be configured to integrate with any digital asset management (DAM) system, not just the Mill portfolio.

Comments by Neil Evely and Nick McCarthy:
Did you meet with any out-of-the-ordinary obstacles during development? “One of the biggest challenges was integrating the playback of video assets—full screen—to an external screen. This process needed to be quick and easy, with no additional hardware or setup required. Another challenge was adapting the app’s user interface. Mill Touch 2.0 provides a ‘presenter view’ to control the playback on the app while not interfering with the content delivery to its paired screen.”

Are there any other technical features you’d like to call attention to? “There was a significant amount of work done behind the scenes to configure a CMS that spoke to our internal DAM system. It needed to find the same asset on our website and combine the relevant file, metadata and images into one database. When the CMS has confirmed that an asset meets all the criteria, it gets published to Mill Touch 2.0 automatically. It doesn’t require any manual interaction to sync the database and push the new assets to the app.”

Are there any special navigational features? “The Spotlight view is a constantly updating presentation of our eleven most recent examples of work. It automatically configures itself based on the date it was created. We also provide default collections that collate similar and up-to-date content into predefined groups, such as Sports or Beauty. From within these sections, you can filter by A–Z or the date or build a bespoke Spotlight view of that category.”



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