The Design Basics

Digital Signage Design – Templates

Design is of paramount importance for a successful and reliable Digital Signage Solution. Not only is it important to use dynamic rich media but how its used and how it is scheduled within a digital signage presentation is also very important. The required information must be presented at the right time engaging the right people. The experience of digesting the information must be engaging and easy to follow. It should not take too long to be understood – at the end of the day people are always in a hurry and want to be somewhere else. Included data should be up to date and have the ability to auto update. To be able to achieve this kind of sophistication in your displays you need great tools. The tool-set that comes with PADS Professional software enables you to create, great designs with schedule flexibility, playlists of presentation elements and unrivalled Database connectivity. You can also create rules that will trigger changes in the presentation when certain criteria exist. An examplewould be in the event of an emergency situation all displays would switch to a relevant evacuation or business continuity information page automatically.

The Tools for your Digital Signage Design Framework

You use any or all of the following in your presentations:

  • template master pages
  • text
  • picture (industry standard formats)
  • line
  • shape
  • video/sound (industry standard formats)
  • webpage
  • formatted text
  • scrolling
  • table
  • presentation-in-page
  • Analogue and Digital TV
  • plug-ins
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Flash
  • streaming video and TV

Each element’s display can be controlled by individual playlist durations and ordering and can also be triggered by rules and database connections. For example you might use text to show the price of your products. This can be sourced from a database that will trigger the display of the pictures and the prices of these products for a chosen length of time or by a rule that says only display on Mondays. As the data is sourced from a database you can externally alter the price and the picture of any product without compromising your presentation design or display. Real Time data is just that – you change the price in the database and the price changes on the screen!

Data Provider

This tool allows you to connect to databases. There is an inbuilt static table database and you can externally connect to SQL, EXCEL sheets, ACCESS databases, databases via ODBC connection, Generic OLE DB connection, XML files and RSS feeds. There is a wizard that helps you connect to your chosen source.

This gives PADS the ability to connect to any data and by querying one database against another you can create Rules that will perform triggers on when and how your data is displayed. Another example of how a rule can be applied could be if data from x = data from y then the result is to display text in RED and/or in larger font, or change the picture displayed. This makes the PADS software a very powerful tool for Digital Signage and also a very creative element in presentation design. You can control how your display reacts to data changes.

You can also connect to RSS feeds that will allow you to display Weather, News, etc

Scheduling

Your presentations can be scheduled to display at any moment in time and for the length of time you request. This is all done in the Manager component. You can schedule a recurring presentation whereby it will play every Monday or every weekday from 8.00 to 10.00am (targeting kids and school mums for example). This type of control also allows you to create relevant targeted presentation designs and not just display the same generic content all the time.

Agent – Control

Although the Agent component does not have a direct baring on your presentation’s design it is still worth mentioning here. It can take screen captures from your viewers so you can check on your designs. It will create statistics of what is displayed element by element. It will allow you to reboot your viewers and will notify you if a viewer becomes non responsive. It will also let you know what font each viewer has on its local PC and synchronize these fonts so your designs have conformity across your network. It will keep your viewers able to display your latest designs and updates to your designs. Try the software on a free 30 day trial. We know that you will be as impressed as we are.