View Full Version : Program or hardware that will run a school TV channel???

12-11-2016, 08:24 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.

12-11-2016, 11:05 AM
Maybe Scala?

In the good old days, Scala started in the Amiga as a multimedia presentation/titler, with amazingly smooth effects and transitions, text scrolls and animations that would make any powerpoint freak drool in envy.

Later it was ported to the PC with enhanced features and was a decent Multimedia content creator. I did a bunch of CD-Rom presentations in the end of the 90's using it (with the advantage that I didn't have to add "Made with Director" at the end of the presentation) and allowed to do complex things, like interactive magazines with embedded video and animations.

Later they changed it's name and it became "Interchange" or something like that, but kept evolving into the multimedia presentation business, being adapted by hotels, and retail stores, airports, supermarkets and other places with local broadcast. I lost track of them by 2001/02 but it seems that nowadays they are a mamooth company that spread into a bunch of fields and I think the program is called "Scala" again.


I find their site very cumbersome to navigate and really understand what is capable right now. Took me a while to reach this, where you can see the interface and other stuff:
also this, that mught help you to understand if this is something you might use:

Maybe it's not what you want at all, but that's what I remembered.

12-11-2016, 12:04 PM
I'll check into this. It looks interesting.

12-12-2016, 07:03 AM
Go with CasparCG.


Then, find this app and give it a whirl. The link below is to the forum conversation, I believe, pointing at a post from the guy who coded it. AMAZING STUFF!
Simple Video Playout. (http://casparcg.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=783&p=27143&hilit=easy#p27143)

We had a cooly set up system here for a while. I can not tell you how useful this is if you have the support of your tech people.

12-12-2016, 07:09 AM
On another site someone told me about the casparcg.com I checked and it says free. Is it REALLY FREE????

12-12-2016, 07:42 AM
So in the casparcg site what do I download? The server installer? The client installer? Template generator? All of it? I also run Windows 10 on some of my computers. It says Windows 7.,

I just read in the readme that it does work on W10 for the client.

12-12-2016, 09:11 AM
Download it all.

Play with it.

It's free and QUITE powerful. Vimlesh has done a great job on the Simple Video Playout script. He even includes the code to augment it as you see fit.

The server, from the site; the client for playout, see where Vimlesh is hiding it nowadays. Those two make for a complete, tv station player, complete with more bells and whistles than the op request. Oh, but it does have scheduling and the like, too.

12-12-2016, 09:24 AM
I will read more about it but out of ignorance on this when you say server from the site and client for playout what are you meaning? What is the difference between the two? I am looking at it now but just would like to pick your brain. Thanks.

12-12-2016, 10:01 AM
Sure. Most understood.

Server: hosts the videos, parses them out, allows overlays... all the stuff you see advertised on their site.
The client: Allows you to control the server, what plays when, who overlays what -- all the usefulness out of the server you can get.
In this case, clocks, made by you, can be overlaid; an emergency broadcast-like scroll can be added; top news of the day. I say all these things based on what we see on tv but in the schools it's the same: what's up for the day; what events are when; clocks to show betwixt class; scheduling so that the tv system can be your bell, too.

12-12-2016, 10:04 AM
Okay, I hadn't found that stuff out yet. I'm downloading it all right now.

12-12-2016, 10:07 AM
I have not used them, but you might want to check out one of the products at www.microvideo.com. It has been a while since I looked at them, but I recall them having a nice system for scheduling live events mixed in with the scheduled programs.