Need info on cheap Digital Signage
October 7, 2006 7:19 AM   Subscribe

How do I create a cheap Digital Signage Network that runs without any user interaction? (You know the screens showing stuff in-stores, movie theatres, etc.)

I want it to be cheap, and something that can start on its own once powered on. Ability to get updates on its own at night would be perfect.
posted by riffola to Technology (1 answer total)
I just implemented a cheapie version of this at work. Basically, your limited as to what you can do, depending on what sort of hardware you have. Video over ethernet is not cheap. Will you have a PC to run each monitor?

Here's what I did. Both the signs I'm running are secondary monitors on people's PCs. I've installed 2 pieces of software that handle the actual screen changing. One works while the user is logged in and working. It rotates the desktop background image on the secondary monitor through a series of JPGs in a folder. If the user leaves their workstation and it goes into screensaver mode, I've installed the "branding removed" version of Google's "googlepack" screensaver. It runs a slideshow from a folder of JPGs as well. If you set the software to browse a network folder and do your updates there, you've effectively updated all of them. If you have dedicated PCs, just run a slideshow from a network folder and have it auto loop and never go into sleep mode.

If you want something more professional, I suggest Magenta Research. Their products can do video over ethernet very nicely, albeit not cheaply.
posted by cosmicbandito at 12:44 PM on October 7, 2006

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