Veterans Affairs Department deploys multichannel in-house display system

Signage provides fully automated display of programming schedule for the VA Medical Center Employee Education System

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has deployed a fully automated system for the display of its in-house television-programming schedule. The VA’s VDS VidInfo System includes VidInfo software operating on standard PCs controlling five Chyron graphics systems, one for each channel of programming. All programming schedules and information is extracted from a Meyers Information Systems ProTrack Scheduling System running on an Informix Database.

The system displays the programming schedule for the VA Medical Center Employee Education System. The VDS Scheduler application reads the programming schedule from the ProTrack System and then creates graphic playlists for each of the output channels. It also periodically updates the current schedule information from ProTrack for each of the five channels along with the program titles and descriptions. The update process can also be initiated manually from the user interface allowing last minute changes to be displayed. The playlists, schedules, titles and descriptions for each channel are all stored locally on a standard SQL Server. This allows the system to continue to display programs and information in the event of communications failure.

The Scheduler also provides the ability to create graphic text pages positioned anywhere in the playlist as well as up next lower-third promo displays. The VDS Graphics Engine controls each graphics device independently so that the correct information is generated for each assigned channel. Display parameters such as page dwell time and transitions between pages are adjustable.

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