Crunch Time

This week was the big editing week and the final push. It was our final week here in Nairobi and there was still a lot to do. We needed to full edit the raw footage into two professional final pilot episodes, we still had a final few things to shoot and we needed to finish of creating technical user guides for people to use to easily carry on video production once we had gone.

After many mouse clicks, various button presses and a ‘sprinkling’ of frustration, I had created a final pilot edit for bioinformatics BLAST starring Bernice. This video taught the fundamentals of BLAST searches in bioinformatics and had interactive segments where the audience could engage with the content. There were then additional exercises for the viewers to try for themselves and get feedback by posting the answers in the comment section of the video.

A ‘sprinkling’ of frustration….

We were able to fit in our final remaining filming sessions and I was able to complete the user guide as planned. Now it was time for the big final render. The video was created in multiple parts to make the editing process more manageable. In the final file, all of these parts were combined, transitions, music and credits were added and then it was all exported into a single output file.  

Success, I have a final video! Ah, but there are about 5 annoying mistakes in it – re-render time. You can go over something a hundred times in the editing screen, but you’ll always notice something not quite right in the initial render. After a few quick fixes and a few more renders, now I have a final video!

On the Friday morning, we were planning to present our work to all of the capacity development team (known as CapDev). We were the final talk of the morning following some interesting talks from researchers associated with the department.

The first talk was on the molecular characterisation of Samonella isolates from Ethiopia. The second focused on the application of digital technology to improve market linkages in drylands. The third talk before our own discussed the spatial distribution of Anthrax in Kenya. Lastly, the session ended with us presenting a bit about who we were and the project we had been working on during our time in Nairobi. This was a nice way to start to wrap things up and share our work within the department.

The fun didn’t stop there, however. Immediately after this presentation, we were invited to MC the Friday morning coffee site-wide meeting. Hans and I took hold of the microphones and led a session focusing on review and reflection in relation to peoples work. This was a lot of fun and served as another good way to wrap up our time in Nairobi.

On the weekend, we packed up our things, headed to the SGR train station and it was off to Kilifi via Mombasa, located on the Eastern Kenyan coast.

The train itself was an experience worth talking about. Some of the views outside of the windows were incredible, especially so towards Mombasa. As we whizzed past, we could see miles and miles of savannah filled hundreds of elephants going about their business. These were the first elephants we had seen since we had been in Kenya and they were impressive.

We arrived at our destination station and continued our onward journey on to Kilifi. A new chapter in our internships was about to start.

Danny Ward

[“This work was supported by the Norwich Research Park Doctoral Training Partnership (NRPDTP), by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council of the United Kingdom (BBSRC) through the BBSRC-STARS grant with reference BB/R020272/1 awarded for the ABCF Bioinformatics Community of Practice, and by the BecA-ILRI Hub through the Africa Biosciences Challenge Fund (ABCF) program. The ABCF program is funded by the Australian Department for Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) through the BecA-CSIRO partnership; the Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture (SFSA); the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF); the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and; the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida)”

Key personnel/contributors linked to this project:

BecA-ILRI hub (Nairobi) – Dr. Jean-Baka Domelevo Entfellner ¦ Dr. Peter Emmrich ¦ Dr. Wellington Ekaya

John Innes Centre/UEA – JIC Graduate School Office ¦ UEA Internships and Placements team ¦ Hans Pfalzgraf ¦ Danny Ward    

We would like to extend our gratitude to all those listed, along with all others, who contributed and supported towards this project in various capacities – this wouldn’t have been possible without your help]


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