Media Perspective: Awards ceremonies signpost the latest media innovations

I'm sitting here trying to write this, watching the Baftas in the corner of my screen and desperately trying to think of a hook on which to hang this week's meanderings.

It occurs to me that whenever media folk are stuck for ways to fill a space, they hold an awards show. So now, ladies and gentlemen, for your delectation and delight, may I present the first, possibly annual, Totally Made-up And Spurious Awards For Excellence In The Fields Of Media And Digitally Type Stuff.

The first award is for Delighting With Data, and goes to Dopplr, a social network for frequent travellers. It works incredibly hard to ensure that the travel data its users enter is something more than just boring numbers, and it helps you to understand this data better through thoughtful visual analogies. It shows you relationships and correlations of which you may not have been aware. It does this all with a twist of humour that gets the blogosphere buzzing with joy about graphs. Which is not easy.

The second award is for Best Use Of Twitter and that goes to @channel4news for the way in which it allows you to see behind the scenes of a news show. It's actually got me watching the news.

This is particularly impressive because it's not a faceless stream of anodyne RSS. In fact, a real person lies behind it, using Twitter's 140 characters to give you access to the buzz of a news operation.

The third award tonight, for the Best Seemingly Pointless Thing That Nevertheless Points To The Future In A Significant Way, goes jointly to Botanicalls and Bubblino (both of which you can Google, but I'll explain quickly).

Botanicalls is a little kit that you can buy, solder together, thrust into a plant pot and connect to the internet. It will give your plant a Twitter account, so it can badger you if it's not getting enough water. Bubblino is a machine that connects to the internet and blows bubbles if it detects certain keywords being mentioned on Twitter.

I know, I know, both ideas sound silly. However, they demonstrate a kind of interaction between the web and the real world that's coming quickly. If it's not going to be sinister or boring, then it's going to have to be playful. Botanicalls and Bubblino are great illustrations.

The final prize this evening is for Platform Of Tomorrow and is again split: between Twitter and Apple's iPhone/iPod App Store, both of which have enabled the emergence of all sorts of experimentation and novelty.

Since we have already talked too much of Twitter, we shall discuss the marvels to be found in the App Store in next week's continuation of the pointless awards. In the meantime, you can admire all the lovely frocks on the red carpet. See you next week.