Internet Librarian 2013 – Digital Signage: Bridging the Divide
Suzanna Conrad and Young Lee
Young then presented about his library’s attempt to make legal resource orientation more engaging and interactive. His library was looking for digital signage that had interactive capabilities, could provide an orientation in an engaging fun manner, and which leverages game theory. Some of the commercial systems available are the Viewsonic 42” ePoster ($2500, built-in media player) or the 22” ePoster. Commercial system pros: turnkey, features, quality, support. Commercial system cons: proprietary, limited options, expensive. Things to keep in mind if you choose a DIY solution—content, delivery method, display method, make it easy to use and maintain, secure, reliable, inexpensive, looks good, and upgradable. Tons of options: Smart HDTVs, HDTV monitor + desktop computer/Raspberry Pi/Android mini PC, streaming devices like Roku/AppleTV/Chromecast, all in one computer+monitor, or tablets. He chose to set up an Android driven system. The Android OS (mobile) is light on resources, popular, has good management tools, and many available apps. With Android you can choose tablets, all-in-ones, or mini PCs. Performance is decent, the devices are readily available, and they’re inexpensive. AutoStart is a good app that will start an app at boot. SureLock Kiosk Lockdown secures the system and has a free version available. Dropsync lets you do a full autosync with Dropbox –keep the files all in one place and have multiple kiosks grab the updated files immediately. Other apps to look at for digital signage: Web Server Ultimate (fully functional server), SureFox Kiosk Browser, OfficeSuite 7, and Digital Photo Frame Slideshow (or Web). They’re using an HTML5 WebApp–it’ offers offline caching and updating, is content cross platform, interactive and touch-capable, you can easily reuse content on a website, and the kiosk browser app has lots of features built-in. Some caveats–Android mini PCs have weak wifi strength, some lack true 1080p capability. Design challenges include mounting and installation. For the future–no touching but swiping in the air.