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Roku BrightSign players installed at three new locations

CAMBRIDGE, U.K. — Roku BrightSign interactive media players, supplied by the company’s Benelux reseller Visual Hardware Services (VHS), have been selected for a variety of high-profile public exhibits that opened during the summer of 2008. The units provide synchronized still images, sound and video for two exhibits at the International Triennial festival centered on Apeldoorn, and for an exhibition of photography and video art at the Jewish Historical Museum in Amsterdam.

The Triennial Apeldoorn showcases landscapes, gardens and culture, running for 100 days up to September 28. VHS supplied 63 BrightSign units for an exhibit called “Invisible Work” set up in the Nettenfabriek — a former fishing net factory in the center of Apeldoorn. A further 20 units were provided for touchscreen interactive displays in a former radio station venue in nearby Kootwijk.

Floor-projected aerial image uses 60 synchronized players

Hecla BV, one of the major systems integrators in the Netherlands, installed 63 of Roku’s BrightSign HD600 Media Players for the Nettenfabriek “Invisible Work” exhibit. Sixty of them serve a wide-angle XGA LCD projector for top-down projection of a 600m squared aerial view of the Netherlands, enabling visitors to walk up and down on the floor-projected photo and video mosaic to discover the rich variety of multiple Dutch landscapes.

All 60 HD600 players run in synchronization where one HD600 acts as the master and controls all the 59 others simultaneously. The projected display cycles through 10 different aerial views of the Netherlands. To complement the floor-projected aerial display, three other HD600 players are used to simultaneously project video and images of the corresponding landscape on the walls.

“There are several systems on the market, but none could do this job so perfectly as Roku’s HD600 — and within our initial budget estimate,” said Han Klein Kranenbarg, director of Hecla BV.

The looping and synchronized presentation runs continuously, operating daily from 10 am until 10 pm utilizing a simple synchronization script. Roku provided a basic synchronization script which supported a single master and four slave BrightSign units. Hecla simply modified this script to allow a single master BrightSign unit to control 59 other units instead of four. Utilizing this customized script, placed on a flash memory card along with the image and video content, the synchronized BrightSign HD600 units play back the 10 scenes easily in a continuously looping fashion. Following the Triennial exhibition, the 63 unit system will be reused for smaller and single playback systems.

Interactive information with BrightSign

The second Triennial project is called “A Wider View” and is located in a massive concrete building, formerly the home of Radio Kootwijk. Some 20 BrightSign units have been installed here by the exhibition’s design, construction and system integrators, Bruns BV. Each display features an Elo TouchSystems LCD panel with touchscreen interactivity, which is driven by a BrightSign HD2000 digital signage controller. BrightSign HD2000 connects simply and easily to the Elo touchscreens via its USB connection and requires no special drivers or software, which makes for a “highly simple implementation,” according to Maarten Bus, system engineer at Bruns. As standard, the HD2000’s twin high-speed USB ports support touchscreens, speakers, mice, keyboards, trackballs and barcode scanners straight out of the box.

Following the exhibition’s theme of centuries-old cultural landscapes in Europe, the interactive displays show a wide variety of landscapes, using a combination of still photography and video interviews featuring international landscape designers. The HD2000 can display images in BMP, JPEG and PNG formats, as well as MPEG-1 and -2 high-definition videos at up to 1080i resolution, via component or HDMI outputs.

360 degrees of creativity in high-definition

Eighty kilometers west of the Triennial event, a further seven BrightSign HD2000 Media Players are in use at the Jewish Historical Museum (JHM) in Amsterdam, controlling a new exhibition of photographic and video arts from Israel. VHS supplied the equipment to the museum’s Ted de Leeuw who was in charge of systems integration on site. Without involving external AV specialists, the BrightSign units were readily synchronized together to run a 40-minute display as a 360-degree immersive video presentation. Featuring works by 16 artists from Israel, the screens display a broad range of still and moving images, sometimes complementing and at other times contrasting with one another. One player controls the soundtrack, while the other six players keep the video footage running in synchronization, all controlled through the HD2000’s software.