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Messages - warwickwater

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Enterprise edition, branding and reselling / Re: Powered By...
« on: December 26, 2012, 04:04:51 PM »
we don't support editing it as of current release..

 it shows only "media signage"......

So having sold a  multi thousand dollar hardware / software / content deal into a chain of xyz stores / locations, the first thing they see, first time out  is the NON generic term 'media signage' which if you google gives you the first result "The world's most popular FREE Digital Signage platform". Superb. Really professional.

We LOVE your system, but if you want our dollar we need to KEEP  *** OUR *** customers. It needs to be 100% non traceable white label!

although as a note of caution, on a site shared with 10000s who are not so good but talk the talk. Go in with your eyes open, and get everything in writing!!

Enterprise edition, branding and reselling / Re: Powered By...
« on: December 20, 2012, 02:03:35 PM »
White labelling is a key point for many - the lack of COMPLETE white labelling has held us back for some jobs.

Would a simple fix be just have a separate build of the software without the logo that reseller customers could be directed to?

There are some markets we would love to pitch in to where ANY hint that we were 'selling' 'free' software would get us booted out the door there and then, without getting any chance to explain our value add - so it is important!

Bit late in replying, but hopefully useful....

The answer is 'it depends'  - on two things really, the content, and the environment.

Content: How long does it take to read? A simple logo with 'please dont drop litter' needs 5 seconds, a list of 8 upcoming events needs longer. Displaying simple content for too long is just as bad as too short - you will bore your viewers!

Environment: The total loop time needs ideally to be shorter than the 'dwell time' of the people near the screen. If its a sit down lunch venue a 20 minute loop might be ok, if its in a bust school corridor, 30 seconds may be too long.

The key is to actually use your signage the same way your viewers will - sit and have a coffee or walk up and down the corridor - but keep a 'mental distance' and be realistic about how much attention you give the screen. Minimal words, maximum high impact images.

Hopefully of use to someone!

General discussion on the mediaCLOUD / Re: HTML5 - Offline content cached
« on: November 24, 2012, 04:34:23 PM »
I'm using a weather forecast that we developed in HTML5 and sits on top of a video in the background. The problem is that when the internet connection drops, the content disappears.

Sounds interesting. Treat us all to a Youtube (and/ or a step by step tutourial!)

General discussion on the mediaCLOUD / Re: linux on V4.0
« on: October 26, 2012, 05:24:34 PM »
Turning off transitions so we end up with a 1990s style still slideshow isnt really the solution though is it? What we (all) need is a solution that will play 'real' content without $100 of Microsfot tax on each player. Hell I'd rather bay Mediasignage the $100 each time!

If you can afford (and choose to use) the 'proper' commercial screens at $1500 a go

I disagree with you in the matter of price of commercial displays, you can buy LG 42" with rs-232 for about 700-750$, so don't mislead anyone with 1500$

This is my local discounter at exactly $1500 (or UK equivelent):

This is my local retail shed, same screen size for a fifth of the cost ($300 before sales tax):

If you can pay 2 -4 times as much for your displays, you aren't using this software.

You asked originally if there was a way of telling whether the screens were on - not actually turning them on - big difference! You can fire an infra-red 'turn on' command at a screen as often as you like, but if it is unplugged, switched off by a 'hard' real switch, broken etc it will still NOT be displaying your content 6 months later. We tried home made IR zappers, and whilst they worked on the limited case that someone has turned the screen off with a remote, they failed on all the other use cases above.

General discussion on the mediaCLOUD / Re: linux on V4.0
« on: October 24, 2012, 05:58:15 AM »
I don't see any transitions on that video - just 2 stills and a video. My experience is that 'weak' systems fail at things like fades between still frames etc

Your own specs at http://www.digitalsignage.com/html/mediabox_models.html suggest that even your demo of 720p should not have worked!! I'm confused. Could you post some more of the multi screen output so we can judge the smoothness of that scroller and the transitions on the weather slides etc. If its all smooth for $90 (with no Windows OS to buy) you should clean up the whole market!

Does the Enterprise studio 'station' screen work correctly- ie I can leave it on screen for a week and it will still auto update and show the status accurately? That and Ad engine will guarantee you one new Enterprise customer.

Where can I find the API documented? Is it live released and working? Do you know of anyone developing in it who might be open to a project (paid or collaborative)

Have completed and put live another MS installation today - thought it might be useful to share some experiences with anyone/ everyone. Yours comments very much welcome.

The venue is an existing leisure centre, built around 30 years ago. It has 20+ large flat screen  TVs dotted around the building in bar and cafe areas, which until now had been playing the dreaded 'TV with the sound turned down'. The venue has its own remote computer played out audio channel, installed recently and through independent speakers. The cabling to the TVs is just an aerial distribution, so we had to use a composite video output (generated from the native HDMI 720p playout) from our playout PC (HP Microserver - cant beat them!) followed by an RF modulator. The picture quality is not great, but relative to what they are used to, its acceptable. Rewiring isnt an option, due to the age and construction of the building.

Our connection back to the Internet is just the buildings standard broadband. The PC is in a back office, location dictated by the TV cabling. We run Logmein on the playout PC, but all is stable so far. We have tried using the MS Studio 'stations' page as a kind of health dashboard, but after a while it fails to update - so we either have machines showing online that aren't, or vice versa. Logmein at least shows if the PC is still up. We also have an IP webcam in one area, that is a useful 'traffic monitor' to show advertisers how busy the venue is, and shows us that the screens are live and OK.

The content is re-purposed from printed materials - we take the venues quarterly marketing brochure in Illustrator format, and produce stills and animations from it without substantial redesign. There are additional 'channel branding' graphics that we use across all out screens (including non MS ones) that we intersperse. In addition, we have some third party ads that are played out from local businesses that ultimately will fund the installation (remember we didnt pay for the screens, and the content creation is quite trivial).

All working well to date  - the main issue is with readability of the content on poor quality screens - colour choices are critical and the amount of underscan on the screens varies. We aim to add some new screens soon that will be fed direct with HDMI at 720p, hopefully that may encourage some thoughts on upgrades elsewhere!

All in all very happy. The software is still quite limited in many respects (timed playout of ads being one obvious one) but it is stable and didn't require a big upfront investment. For speculative ad funded locations it is ideal, but we still use other software for locations where the customer is paying us (typically $3000) for a complete system with artwork design.

What would we like to see next? A status page for screens that works and can be relied on. Timelines with start and stop dates and times. Real full 'unbranding'.

Your thoughts and questions welcome!

4.0.90 stable for us now.

General discussion on the mediaCLOUD / Re: 4.0.90 broken as well!
« on: October 22, 2012, 04:20:13 PM »
Playing solid for a couple of days now, 4.0.90 on both player and studio, same VERY simple content, but stable for me.

General discussion on the mediaCLOUD / Re: linux on V4.0
« on: October 22, 2012, 04:19:12 PM »
How do low power Android devices fit in with your constant reminders that we need high power, memory rich machines to play out content? Maybe post some videos showing how the new cheap Android devices cope with transitions and HD video in real world situations?

If you can afford (and choose to use) the 'proper' commercial screens at $1500 a go, you possibly arent a $0 Mediasignage customer. Also the kind of savvy punter that has discovered MediaSignage for free is probably not going to be fooled into paying 5 times too much for their screens!!!

Another option for 100% proof of screens working is putting a $100 wifi IP webcam in the room looking at the screen. Again, low tech, but works great!

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