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AV Technology Enhances Corporate Collaboration, Part 2

Dec 23, 2010 12:26 PM, With Bennett Liles

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OK, I would think though that one big advantage you have in this environment is that you're having a fairly small group of the same people operating the system on a regular basis.

It is. We also had to build the system where the CEO can walk in and operate the room that he spends most of his time in. So what we did is we had several meetings where we went through with him and also his staff on how he would like to see the touchpanel laid out. So it was easy to use. He could walk in and set up a meeting relatively easy and be functional. So we worked with our programmer as well as the CEO and his staff, and the IT department for that matter, to go through what their touchpanel was to look like so there was no surprises at the end. So we ended up doing a graphical representation of the table on the touchpanel so one could come up and literally select table box 3 and it would be labeled on the table and you would have a visual representation of which one was table box 3 and you touch that and then that's what would show on the screens. [Timestamp: 5:48]

Yeah, that's a whole thing in itself, the challenge of being able to design a control system where all the fantastic technology is going on behind the scenes and you just push a button or two and something that starts an automated sequence from the touchpanel so that even a CEO can do it.

That's right.

So the participants come in and they connect their laptops. What all can they do in there during a presentation?

The goal was, and this was part of the needs assessment that we did with Cricket, was they wanted to have a video laptop connection for any person that's sitting at the table all at the same time. So for example, there are 11 table boxes in the table, but there's actually 22 connections, so in theory, 22 people could all have their laptops connected to the video system and then at a push of the touchpanel you could select any one of those 22 at any given time on any given screen. [Timestamp: 6:41]

All right and you were using, what was it, Extron's Window Wall?

Yeah, the Extron MGP 464 window processor, that's so you can do the four images simultaneously on one screen. [Timestamp: 6:52]

You did all the AMX controller programming in house, right?

That's correct, yes.

And I guess that one of the big considerations on this is always going to be one of the users' expertise level, and that's something you probably, I guess, have to assess during the earlier meetings with the client about who's going to be running this?

Absolutely, and then the thought was we were building the design for San Diego's corporate facility as well as building the design for the Denver corporate facility. So the thought was that we would use the copy exactly methodology where I could fly from Denver to San Diego, walk into a conference room, walk up to a touchpanel or a button panel that's in the room and it's going to look exactly like the one does in Denver so I don't have that learning curve to go over. So the thought was that we would make it as simple as possible and as common as possible because the folks travel between the two sites and then they can just walk into a room and they wouldn't need any training. They could just work on their presentation or operate the room without any training. [Timestamp: 7:53]

Wow, uniformity. What a concept.


So when they're doing the videoconferencing, what are they seeing on the two big monitors? Does it work like a free-standing unit where they see what they're sending out on one of the monitors and the remote site on the other or is it the same on both?

Yeah, typically the way that they would use it would be they could see the other people on one monitor, and then on the other monitor they would show anyone of those 22 laptop connections to the other side so you can share a PowerPoint or a spreadsheet to the distant end. [Timestamp: 8:23]

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