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Wayne State University

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Apr 27 / Thomas Krupka

Digital Signage: Spotlight On

You may have noticed walking throughout campus recently and noticed the digital signs have a new content on it, a highlighted faculty member. We started rolling out what we are calling “Spotlight On” slowly throughout the signs on campus.

What is Spotlight on?

Every day our faculty are discovering new things, helping the community and making an impact on the world. We know this because we spread it through press releases and news items. To us this used to be great but it wasn’t good enough, only a small amount of our campus community read the releases or visit these random websites. Our solution is to bring these faculty members to the masses.

Since the signs are already in high traffic areas it is almost the perfect spot to make campus aware of their accomplishments. Above is an actual sign and what the spotlight looks like. It features a photo, impacting statement, name, title and a call to action to get more information. The goal was to make the signs impact the person walking by it enough to take a second and read or at least recognize the faculty member they may see walking around campus every day.

How to get spotlighted?

Are you doing something great or know someone that is on campus? Just send us an email, web@wayne.edu and we can get the ball rolling. We have found most spotlighted faculty have been nominated by others on campus. This is probably the best way to get someone highlighted.

We aren’t limiting the spotlight to faculty members only, we are open to highlighting anyone in the campus community who is making an impact on the world. Students and alumni are the next group to be featured.

What is that silly looking image?

That square image is a QR code.

QR code (short for Quick Response) is a specific matrix barcode (or two-dimensional code), readable by dedicated QR barcode readers and camera phones. The code consists of black modules arranged in a square pattern on a white background. The information encoded can be text, URL or other data.

The barcode can be scanned with a number of mobile barcode scanners, the most popular is Google Goggles. Once scanned the codes we are producing are combine with a “go.wayne.edu” URL (more on that later) which take the user to the faculty member’s profile. The plan down the road is to direct the user to a video or audio interview with the faculty member to give them even more of a reason to scan or type in the URL. It is our way of yet again extending the content beyond its original intent.

2 Comments

  1. Travis Brock / Apr 28 2011

    I like the new feature on your signage. However, I would be concerned at the amount of words on the feature. A passerby wouldn’t want to stop and read all of that and may not be able to read the entire paragraph (small font size), especially if there is a QR code on it for people to follow and read more about it while on the go. I would suggest cutting it down to one very catchy short and catchy sentence and make the font larger. Still include the name, title, photo, and QR code. This way, there is more of a mystery and intrigue around going to the QR code. And people can read the entire thing without stopping.

    Do a test, do a leisurely walk past the screen. How much of the current image can you read on the digital signage? My guess is, it is too long and too small.

  2. Nick DeNardis / May 2 2011

    Travis,
    I understand your concern about the amount of text, it was a concern of mine too. The faculty member pictured has probably the most text of any of the spotlights. We try to keep it to two lines.

    Thanks for the suggestion about the larger font size. We have been asking students what they think of the spotlight on and if they even care and that has definitely come up.

    Hopefully we will have an update soon. :-)

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