Some pics of my setup at Lava

Just talk about kJams stuff with each other, describe things you did that worked, talk about your setup, anything that doesn't fit into the other forums!
DeusExMachina
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Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by DeusExMachina »

Set up for the next night's event at 3:30 AM, when everything was closed and empty. Thought I'd upload a few pics to show anyone who is interested in my set up there.
Sunday, Lava Lounge, Pittsburgh, PA.
Attachments
15" MacBook Pro, Yamaha EX312, Yamaha BR12s,19" HDTV, Shure SM58s
15" MacBook Pro, Yamaha EX312, Yamaha BR12s,19" HDTV, Shure SM58s
Two iBooks for kJams server by the front door
Two iBooks for kJams server by the front door
Three Fujitsu P1120 touch screens running XP for kJams server, one at each booth
Three Fujitsu P1120 touch screens running XP for kJams server, one at each booth
Last edited by DeusExMachina on Sat Jun 16, 2012 10:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

DeusExMachina
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by DeusExMachina »

All the computers are running an IM app (iBooks, iChat; Fujitsu P1120s, Pidgin) that lets people send instant messages back and forth as well as to me at my MBP.
Attachments
Another shot of the P1120 touch screen LifeBooks running Safari/kJams Server pages on XP
Another shot of the P1120 touch screen LifeBooks running Safari/kJams Server pages on XP
Another iBook at the end of the bar (to the right, Fujitsu P1120 touchscreen on left)
Another iBook at the end of the bar (to the right, Fujitsu P1120 touchscreen on left)

dave
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by dave »

cool!

Brendan
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by Brendan »

Sweet indeed! Hope u have those things locked in place or security guards at each exit.

dave
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by dave »

:shock:

DeusExMachina
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by DeusExMachina »

I was concerned about that at first, but turns out it is not that big a deal. I was considering Kennsington locks, but figured that the cables would create more trouble than they prevented, since moving the laptops would sweep the cables across the tables, potentially knocking over drinks, and ruining the machines I was trying to protect!
In the end, though, seems theft was not that much of an issue. All my regulars do a pretty good job of policing the machines, plus I use a feature of Adium (IM client) to let me know when a machine goes offline. So if someone shuts a lid, or takes one out of WiFi range, I get an alert.
I turns out that the real issue I had, right from the get go, was sabotage, both malicious as well as unintentional.
The very first night, some jerk thought it was SSSOOO funny to wait until I was busy and then put hard-core porn on all the machines, full-screen, with the display and keyboards locked (like I'm some kind of idiot, and can't figure my way around THAT!) Every time I went around and fixed them, as soon as I turned my back, they were messed with again. (Finally caught the guy red-handed.) My original intent had been to let people use the idle machines as they saw fit, for e-mail or whatever, but after that, I was forced to put parental controls on all of the macs. (The XP boxes are so damned slow, people wouldn't even bother!) Just takes one idiot to ruin a good thing!
The other issue was unintentional sabotage, people closing the browser window, thus making the machines useless, or shutting the lids when they were finished using them, making the machines inaccessible and all but invisible to people who didn't know to look for them. That and the occasional spilling of liquids.

All in all, though, things have gone pretty smoothly, and I had my first paper slip-free day last spring. Took a while to wean some of the hard-core regulars off the books, but now pretty much everyone is with the program. I was able to do it in the first place because I bought the machines in really bad shape, and then fixed them up myself, thus drastically reducing costs, toward $50 a machine (almost less than the cost of printing and binding a single song book, especially if you include putting each page in a plastic binder sleeve; and no need to reprint when I add new songs.)
For those who really need to just browse, I include tabs in the browser that link to pdfs of the song book, sorted either by artist or by song, allowing people who just want to browse for ideas a more natural interaction. My intent is to make those into flip books, but so far have not gotten that to work.
Last edited by DeusExMachina on Wed Nov 24, 2010 1:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

dave
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by dave »

Thanks for your awesome story! Great info! :D

Karanight
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by Karanight »

Thanks for these photos and advice on how to do it and avoid pitfalls. I like what you've done here and would like to do something similar but I'm certainly not savvy enough to get broken kit and then repair them. I'll have to look for cheap kit that works.
Just thought, does the power lead cause problems
Posted by Len of LensKaraoke fame

Web site at
http://lenskaraoke.com

DeusExMachina
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by DeusExMachina »

That was an issue, since unfortunately there are only two available outlets, one on the front wall, one almost at the back. Luckily there is a double ledge (as you can see in the pictures) that runs behind all the booths that I lie the cords and the notebooks on. I used to use an extension cord off the back outlet for all three of the LifeBooks, but after further thought (and having forgotten the extension cord one night) I realized that the cords are long enough on their own, if I use a splitter on the front outlet for the front-most unit.
As for causing mayhem being swept across the table, no, so far people instinctively try to keep the machine close to the back wall, near the ledge, and thus the cords stay out of the way.

For those without the aid of convenient architectural features, I would suggest a small riser to place the units on. You could just build it out of wood. This would keep them off the table, and out of potential spills. You could even build in a lazy-susan type of contraption to let it spin left and right, so the machine does not have to move to service both sides of the table. Might cost all of $5-$10 if you can find a cheap source of parts.

My next move will probably be android tablets, since I can get them for around $60, and even though they REALLY suck in terms of actual usage, since they will be single-tasking, the performance won't be THAT bad. But with those I think the likelihood of them walking out the door "unattended" is greatly enhanced, so I will have to give much more serious thought to anti-theft. (Maybe a Kennsington cable entwined with the power cord.)

If you are technologically inclined and not just a little geeky, you can also try your hand at really cheap WinCE netbooks, which if you hunt doggedly for, you can find for a bit over $50. The problem with WinCE (other than the fact that it BLOWS majorly) is that it has NO native support for BonJour/mDNS, so to get them to see the kJams server, you either have to hard-code the intranet address of your main machine (which can change each time your machine connects to the router) into each one, or use a hack to get mDNS working (there is one, but it is a bit technologically daunting.) At $50, though, they are a very cost effective substitute for printing song-books, which, if you use plastic covers, and have a large library, can easily run you that much. And you never need to reprint them when you add songs!

If you had the ability to do a permanent installation (like your own bar, or a karaoke bar) you could just get cheap-o WinXP boxes free on the side of the road on garbage night, and just install them under each table, and connect a cheap monitor and keyboard/mouse when you needed to. Or install them in the basement or back room, and just run long USB and VGA cables inside the walls to each table. Then just plug those in at the beginning of the night. Needless to say, if you move around from venue to venue, however, that can be VERY cumbersome.
Last edited by DeusExMachina on Tue Nov 30, 2010 11:19 am, edited 1 time in total.

dave
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by dave »

:shock:

Karanight
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by Karanight »

I've noticed I can get new Android tablets for around £62. There old style but will I be able to use them to do similar to what you've done
Posted by Len of LensKaraoke fame

Web site at
http://lenskaraoke.com

DeusExMachina
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by DeusExMachina »

You should be able to get them even cheaper. I have seen them for around $60, so that is more like £45

Karanight
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by Karanight »

So I presume they'd do the job then!
Posted by Len of LensKaraoke fame

Web site at
http://lenskaraoke.com

dave
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by dave »

if it has a web browser then yes! double plus good if it has Bonjour.

DeusExMachina
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Re: Some pics of my setup at Lava

Post by DeusExMachina »

Yes. mDNS.BonJour is the kicker. I have been unable to pry that detail from their cold, dead (Chinese) hands.

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