How can I scrool messages across my TV?
October 13, 2005 10:42 AM   Subscribe

My boss wants to put a Plasma TV up in our lobby that will be running CNN, MSNBC, etc... He also wants to be able to scroll internal company info accross the screen (Welcome Clients, Happy Birthday, Sales Numbers etc.) Anyone ever done this or know how it can get done?
posted by keep it tight to Technology (15 answers total)
 
The usual method is a surplus PC running PowerPoint or a custom Visual Basic app.
posted by cillit bang at 10:51 AM on October 13, 2005


you'd have to have the ability to switch between video 1 and 2.
Vid 1 would be the cable/sat feed for TV, vid 2 would be connected to a pc or graphics generator, in which you would author your desired message.

Someone would have to switch back and forth to vid modes, or you would maybe want to have picture in picture show both feeds at once.
posted by phredhead at 10:52 AM on October 13, 2005


Depending on how sophisticated you REALLY want to get (and how much of a budget you have, you should check out video titlers, video mixers, and video special effects generators at B and H. You may want to consider mixing S-video from a computer with the cable TV feed and sending that to the monitor. Give them a call.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 11:13 AM on October 13, 2005


There's an open source project, infojection, that claims to provide something like this, i.e. digital signage.
posted by bachelor#3 at 11:14 AM on October 13, 2005


This is a cheap (cost and maybe appearance) solution. It's hardware based and uses RS232, so it's very hackable...
posted by PantsOfSCIENCE at 11:19 AM on October 13, 2005


Simply use Xpresenter . It is an add-on to PowerPoint, so if you know how to use the latter, you basically know how to use the former.

See here for a review.
posted by notcostello at 11:22 AM on October 13, 2005


There's two different problems that people are trying to solve here. Are you going to be scrolling the company information by itself or will it be scrolling on top of live television? (Not that this changes my answer, I'm just curious...)
posted by PantsOfSCIENCE at 11:25 AM on October 13, 2005


Honestly, I would love to be able to have the Company Info scrolling across the screen WHILE the video feed is running (think ticker at the bottom of CNN)
posted by keep it tight at 11:27 AM on October 13, 2005


Obligatory warning about burn-in, esp. during the first 1000 hours of set life, blah blah blah.
posted by deadfather at 12:01 PM on October 13, 2005


There's two different problems...

Honestly, I would love to be able to have the Company Info scrolling across the screen WHILE the video feed is running (think ticker at the bottom of CNN)


Xpresenter can do both as you seek. Take a look at the demo .

The "CNN ticker" you are refering to is possibly is being run by one of VertigoXmedia's other services.

BTW, I do not work for the company or anything. I have just seen it work and was impressed.
posted by notcostello at 12:23 PM on October 13, 2005


Newtek makes Hardware/software packages that would meet your needs (CNN and company info at same time). The tricaster system would be perfect.
posted by ryanissuper at 12:25 PM on October 13, 2005


Similar approach using Flash.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:59 PM on October 13, 2005


Here's a trick. I'm not sure I'm going to describe it well though.

Find a TV tuner card that uses a chromakeyed overlay to display the video. Typically they use bright pink as the colour that should get overlayed with the video. Maximize the video then run something (eg; Powerpoint, IE in kiosk mode) over the top of it with the chromakey colour as the background and the ticker you want. The video should show through and your ticker should be the only thing displayed over the top.
posted by krisjohn at 6:45 PM on October 13, 2005


Dig up an Amiga 500 and scrounge for an external Gen-Lock on eBay? I did some stuff like this ten years ago on that sort of equipment.

A Gen-Lock allows two video sources to be synchronized and allow overlaying one video source over another.

With more modern hardware, the TV tuner card option krisjohn mentions above is probably the most straightforward method.
posted by xiojason at 7:46 PM on October 13, 2005


Second the Amiga suggestion - Newtek used to make something called the Video Toaster (popular in the States), and the necessary hardware is (a) pretty easily available secondhand, and (b) more reliable than a Windows PC! ;-)
posted by Chunder at 4:04 AM on October 14, 2005


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