Program or hardware that will run a school TV channel???

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ingeborgdot
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Program or hardware that will run a school TV channel???

Post by ingeborgdot » Sun Dec 11, 2016 9:34 am

We have our own school TV channel that is broadcast throughout the surrounding area. It has become real popular over the last 3 years. We have a lot of people watching and that is great. The problem for us is that because we have a lot of people watching, they like to know when certain programs are going to be on and I understand that. The problem we have for this is that we have a lot of content and programs and games that may run for 45min, or 90 minutes or even 2 hrs.

We have a computer that runs an older program that is totally archaic and that was actually geared for VCR time. It was really made more for a power point type of product. I try to run it on a schedule but it is too time consuming to do so. We run our channel 24/7 and just loop a lot of content to play randomly as much is just student projects and start times are not important.

The issue we have is this. Let's say we want to schedule a game for 4pm on Tuesday. The day is not the issue. The issue becomes the time. Let's say a 45 minute program happens to come on at 3:55 and our game is scheduled at 4, that 4 o'clock start time will not happen. It won't start until 4:40. This never used to be an issue with our channel but because it has become so popular people are getting spoiled. So popular after a death of a patron they left his memorial to our network.

Is there something out there that is more geared to video and for time schedules. Hardware based? Software based?

Does this even make sense? Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.

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Bill DeFelice
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Re: Program or hardware that will run a school TV channel???

Post by Bill DeFelice » Sun Dec 11, 2016 2:24 pm

I know exactly from where you're coming from for the school district where I manage their channel. Up until a few years ago I was using the Leightronix Mini-T-Pro with a bank of DVD players and VCRs to keep both out internal video and PEG (Educational) access channel programmed with both static displays as well as programming Board of Ed meetings and other assorted programming. The cheap DVD players crapped out and I needed a much better solution.

My counterpart on the Government access channel and I both purchased the MediaZone Pro Digital Signage from KeyWest Technology. I can program video programs as well as static displays, including school closing and EAS alerts on our channel without jumping through major hoops. Their tech support has never failed either one of us and they can even design the static displays for the bulletin board portions of the channel. You can even play video as an insert to a bulletin board channel.

Hope that helps.
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ingeborgdot
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Re: Program or hardware that will run a school TV channel???

Post by ingeborgdot » Sun Dec 11, 2016 4:54 pm

What's something like that going to cost?

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Bill DeFelice
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Re: Program or hardware that will run a school TV channel???

Post by Bill DeFelice » Mon Dec 12, 2016 12:55 pm

I pulled my invoice from September 2014 and the system with 2 hours of training and two years of extended software support clocked in at under $4400.
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lewiscallaway
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Re: Program or hardware that will run a school TV channel???

Post by lewiscallaway » Mon Dec 12, 2016 8:10 pm

This doesn't answer your question, but it answers a life long one of mine:

How do you get your signal from your system into the cable tv feed? How do you get your signal to the cable company? I've always wondered how people do it!

ingeborgdot
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Re: Program or hardware that will run a school TV channel???

Post by ingeborgdot » Mon Dec 12, 2016 9:44 pm

Ours is a very basic setup. We have our computer that runs our programs. Our video card has HDMI which I put into a converter and then from there we go into a box from the cable company that has fiber attached that brings it to their main hub which then transmits our programming to everyone in town.

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Deep Thought
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Re: Program or hardware that will run a school TV channel???

Post by Deep Thought » Mon Dec 12, 2016 9:46 pm

The old way was to use the backhaul channels below TV channel 2 from 7 to 49 MHz. It's the same way the cable Internet upload path works today. I'm sure some still work that way. Back in the day when I was at WPGU in Champaign-Urbana, IL we'd simulcast stereo audio for live bands on the local origination channels of the cable system. The video and mono audio (this was before MTS stereo) went 'backwards' up the cable plant to the headend to be converted to the proper downstream channel. They could originate from anywhere with a cable outlet. These days there are highpass filters on the line unless you subscribe to cable HSI to prevent you from wiping out the node. :)

These days I am pretty sure they'd just run fiber.
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Bill DeFelice
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Re: Program or hardware that will run a school TV channel???

Post by Bill DeFelice » Tue Dec 13, 2016 6:51 am

lewiscallaway wrote: How do you get your signal from your system into the cable tv feed? How do you get your signal to the cable company? I've always wondered how people do it!
On our particular cable system we have what's called the institutional net, or I-Net for short. It's a private cable (fiber) loop that serves all the educational and government entities that are in the cable co's service area. We all have a backhaul channel that is converted at the headend and fed back down the I-Net so we can privately cablecast to other institutions, whether they're in our town or a neighboring one. Each city/town's backhaul signal is also converted to feed the subscriber's cable on the assigned PEG (Public Access - Educational - Government) channel assigned to municipality.
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