The Concept

What is Videodisc?

Videodisc is an audio-visual delivery medium which offers a wide range of totally new communications opportunities in the field of teaching, training, learning, marketing and general information distribution.

Because it is a replay medium it has a dense storage capacity for exceptionally high quality pictures and sound.

Because it is a disc — encoded in a spiral form — very fast random access can be gained to any part of the material.

Because special codes can be pressed into the disc a high degree of control can be exercised by the programme designer which affect the way the disc is used.

Together these offer a new opportunity — interactivity.

What is Interactivity?

In an interactive programme the otherwise passive viewer becomes an active participant — a user. He controls the message, he progresses at his own pace, absorbing and learning unhindered by others.

The programme maker can design the programme material in such a way that choices made by the user direct him along the most appropriate path.

For the first time the user feels that he is in charge, and for the first time the programme designer knows that his message is being tailored to that user’s needs.

Why Interactivity?

There is already substantial evidence that interactive video is the most effective tool for delivering a complex message — simply and clearly.

Because the interactive programme cannot progress without the user’s active participation fie is more inclined to pay particular attention to the information he is being asked to absorb. Systems can be designed to examine the user on his reactions and understanding, and he can be accurately directed to the most appropriate next step.

Why Interactive Videodisc?

Adding computer control is simple — and even small micro computers can add a new dimension to interactive programming.

The only way to grasp the potential of Interactive Videodisc is to experience it. Only a demonstration can do justice to this powerful tool.

The videodisc has an unparalleled capacity for storing information. Sixty minutes of video material can be packed into one side of a to inch VHD disc together with two audio tracks. Two complementary commentaries, different comprehension levels, question and answer, second languages – all are immediately possible on one disc. A capacity of 45,000 still pictures, each with its own unique address, turns videodisc into a database of immense density. And these capabilities can be coupled on one disc, with one videodisc player performing all the required access and replay functions.

PETER MORLEY OBE – Controller of Programmes
ALASTAIR BOWES – General Manager

The Service


In Commerce, in Industry, in Institutions — whatever the applications — interactive video is only as good as its software.

That is why THORN EMI VIDEODISC is making available a comprehensive service you can draw on, ranging from the development of the initial idea right through to the delivery of the system — and beyond.


Consideration of a videodisc system may involve major investment decisions by a company. Careful planning of both software and hardware requirements is needed.

THORN EMI Videodisc can provide it full consultancy and advisory’ service to translate these needs into decisions, and then actions.

Programme Design

THORN EMI has the videodisc design experience. This experience is available to your team to assist in the development and design of your interactive programmes. Help can be given with the new conceptual approach, flow-charting and with technical requirements.


Our Software Advice Centre is available to work with your own in-house video or film unit, or with your chosen production and facility companies, keeping a close liaison with both creative and technical teams.

Post Production

We will monitor progress during this important phase and ensure that the programme design, programme material and videodisc technical capabilities are correctly integrated.


We will supervise this final post-production stage where the video and audio information is committed to 1″C Format video tape.

Our associate company THORN EMI Video Facilities is able to quote favourable rates for this stage of the work. They are one of London’s leading video facilities companies and have gained unique experience in videodisc pre-mastering.

Making the Disc

Our own factory at Swindon is dedicated to the mastering and pressing of VHD videodiscs for the commercial, industrial and institutional markets.


The VHD videodisc players will be delivered and installed by trained THORN EMI personnel. Demonstrations will be given to familiarise staff with the system.

The Service Continues

Apart from maintenance and warranty arrangements, we offer to monitor — with the user — the effectiveness of this new form of communication and will advise on future applications.