Libraries are important spaces in any city or town, serving as community hubs. And, though we often take their presence for granted, Canada is home to some impressive ones. Last year, Calgary’s new Central Library was named one of Time magazine’s Greatest Places of 2019 and an “architectural masterpiece”. Compared to many other impressive libraries in the country, Calgary Public Library is a new kid on the block. However, what it lacks in age, it makes up for with serious design inspiration. Most importantly, it has a modernized communications infrastructure. And, this is where Display5’s digital media platform plays a vital role.
The new library has plentiful reading and learning spaces. It has a huge children’s and teen area, more than 30 meeting spaces, a café, a 350-seat performance hall, and 7,000 square meters of outdoor gathering and seating space. Any messages communicated by physical signage, to library patrons are expected to be dynamic, engaging, and effective. With 21 branches spread out through the greater Calgary area, CPL has to manage hundreds of digital displays locally and remotely. So, it is imperative that the IT team is equipped with one single signage content management system (CMS) platform that is robust, and sophisticated. Further, it has to be engineered to control displays of all types, including room management panels, video walls, and digital signage. Finally, it must be able to control them with great flexibility and a wide range of capabilities.
“To be able to innovate and perform in such a complex infrastructure environment, the solution needs to be versatile, flexible, customizable and easily integrated with our existing platforms. Display5, as an open platform, enables our team to build an interface that allows doors to be locked and unlocked for booking purposes. A true realization of IoT! We love the ease of use. We have lots of freedom for IT and are able to simply embed content, using our favorite content design tools. And, all of the many Display5 widgets are all part of Display5’s CMS. Above all, this provides content flexibility. We were able to add on functions without much restriction.”Anton Chupin, Manager, IT Interfaces, at Calgary Public Library
Content is King
The marketing team at the Library is the mastermind behind all the content being played on the screens. Graphic Designer Zack Aboulazm, describes the Display5 digital media platform as a huge benefit, particularly the scheduling aspect of it.
“We appreciate how easy it is for us to activate and deliver content from our existing sources. For example, PowerPoint, Adobe, or Canva, on the full screen, or combined with Display5’s other widgets. It’s convenient and efficient, saving us a lot of time on the job. So, we can be more productive with other priorities.”Zack Aboulazm, Graphic Designer at Calgary Public Library
Display5’s digital media platform is known on the market as a top choice for designers to create content days/weeks/months ahead of time. And then, schedule it to play in the future, and be confident that it will be played as scheduled.
The video wall solution provider is Userful, a leading visual networking platform for the enterprise. The company’s Research and Development team is based in Calgary as well. The critical requirement in this project is the ability to manage displays of all sizes in a single platform. From 10-inch room tablets, all the way to the 16-foot wide Userful video wall. One platform, one CMS.
Internet of Things and Digital Media Platform
The room panels are considered a critical system function at the library. Certainly, for the information about room availability. But also, because it is a key component in automatically unlocking the room and making the room available to library patrons. Display5’s platform allows the library to create and customize the look and feel of the content on the panels. CPL uses two different suppliers for the room management panels. One is Creston, the leading innovator of advanced control & automation system, headquartered in New Jersey. The other is IAdea, a recognized pioneer in the global digital signage market, headquartered in Taiwan with an office in Irvine. Display5 works seamlessly with both, in addition to all other browser-based digital signage devices on the market. Many player brands are supported simultaneously on a single platform with single CMS.