(From InfoComm 2005)

Though it did not formally announce its latest technology until after InfoComm had ended, Dukane Corp. previewed a new software application called the ConVA Media Control System. This Windows-based program unites the various multimedia devices found in classrooms and meeting rooms, giving school leaders the ability to monitor and control these devices remotely from a single workstation, Dukane says.

ConVA is a non-proprietary product that, once configured, reportedly controls almost any type of AV equipment with a unified, “activity-based” approach. (To control a DVD player, for example, users would choose “Watch the DVD” from the software’s menu.) Built on Microsoft’s .NET framework, ConVA enables control of any device that uses an infrared remote and has an RS-232 connection, a LAN port, or any other control interface, according to the company–including digital projectors, document cameras, VCRs, DVD players, and even screen operation or room lighting controls.

With the ConVA software, school administrators reportedly can get centralized alerts of equipment failure or reminders of necessary maintenance. They also can schedule activities on a calendar basis for any room or group of rooms. In addition, the software keeps comprehensive, time-stamped logs of every control action taken for later analysis. This feature gives school leaders the data they need to correlate technology use with classroom performance, Dukane says.

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