Posts Tagged ‘dual-screen’

LRC teacher screen new and improved


The above screenshot (taken from a screencast) does not do the new screen justice: Teachers can actually read all the ongoing student work, and, with two clicks, intervene surgically, where necessary.

On the right screen of the teacher PC in the main LRC classroom, we went from WXGA to HD1080, gaining almost 60% more screen real estate (=(1920*1080)/(1280*1024)), a crucial improvement for displaying all the information the Sanako Study 1200 provides the teacher with.

Or in more graphical terms (thanks to Wikipedia), we went from 2nd lower left to 3rd upper right:


To fit the actual classroom layout into the display, we would however need the bottom lower right resolution (WQXGA). We still have to split the classroom you see into 2 halves and tilt those by 90 degrees clockwise to fit them onto the right teacher screen.

Since our left screen is still the original 1024*768 (and will be until not only the screen, but the switch and projector get upgraded), you have to work (= move your mouse pointer) around the “wall” formed by the black block in the lower right of this screenshot.


How in Windows 7 multiple windows can share in one screen, and multiple screens in one window

  1. The windows management improvement I use most in Windows 7, in order to view multiple windows simultaneously (after introduction of preemptive multi-tasking in the late 80s, the operating system was renamed from MS-DOS to MS-Windows, not to “MS-Window”) is the snap-to-edge which you can access
    1. either by “throwing” your window (drag the title bar) to the left or right edge of your screen (top or bottom will maximize or minimize your window);
    2. or if you rather use the keyboard, image + left/right arrow (+ up/down arrow will maximize or minimize your window). Keep pressing the combination and you will cycle the window position. Note that this works also across dual-screens.
  2. Also a welcome relief: In Windows 7 dual screen environments, you can drag and drop maximized windows between screens.
    1. The fact that you could not in Windows XP (where you have to de-maximize the windows first before dragging it) has caused much confusion wherever I introduced multi screen computers for teachers;
    2. in spite of the fact that you could not drag a maximized window away in the single screen environment that our users are more accustomed to.
    3. Guess I can now rather focus on upgrading a 11-year old OS to Windows 7 than on coming up with a more memorable explanation. Actually, people are currently raving about the dual-screen management improvements in Windows 8, but I that will take a bit longer to trickle through. 

PowerPoint 2010 upgrade from 2007 disables setup show display on secondary screen

  1. Symptom: Without hardware changes (a visualizer that seemed to enter into the equation as an AV source seems to have been ruled out as culprit), PowerPoint cannot display show from primary right screen to secondary left screen.
  2. Cause: Upgrade to PowerPoint 2010 from 2007, but seems really an underlying video driver limitation that has given us grieve in our – admittedly uncommon: 1024*768 on secondary, projector-connected screen, dictated by the projector – setup before.
  3. Workaround: Make the 1024*768 left screen the primary screen.
    1. Upside: this allows to project the show to the class, but teacher can still move the underlying PowerPoint presentation onto the right screen (for previewing answers. The PowerPoint 2010 upgrade did fix the PowerPoint 2007 bug that interactive animations from PowerPoint 2003 where briefly revealed on slide load before they went into the default hidden state). CIMG0008 - Copy
    2. Downsides:
      1. Presenter view is still not possible, complains about seeing only one screen connected, even though “Check” button brings up the windows screen properties dual screen. CIMG0010 - Copy
      2. The Windows taskbar displays on the left screen, so teacher staging is visible to the class when projector is on (as it always was with a single screen. Only the  secondary right screen added a staging area for the teacher).

How to set up your laptop to use with the LRC portable Projector

  1. re LCD projector
    1. First, book the projector from this list of bookable items (manual included). 
    2. Here is what we have as Projector: CIMG0016<
    3. connect the VGA-adapter which is in the package: CIMG0017 
    4. CIMG0018 (if your laptop does not have a secondary VGA connector, you may need to bring an adapter).
    5. power the projector on: CIMG0019 (also always power it off using the power button; never just pull the power plug).
  2. on your laptop:
    1. find the key combination to enable the secondary output
    2. CIMG0037CIMG0038
    3. right-click the windows desktop, access the graphics card settings; CIMG0041
    4. Enable the graphics card to send a video signal to the projector you just connected.  CIMG0040. I the projector native resolution is not automatically recognized, it is 1024*768.
  3. If you want to show a slideshow on the projector, go to PowerPoint 
    1. ribbon, (1) Slide Show/ item: (2)) set up show, and bring up the (3) set up show dialogue  CIMG0042
    2. here you can configure to show on monitor 2 (numbers correspond toe the numbers 1 and 2 in the graphics card dialogue above): CIMG0044. Same principle as with other dual screen computers, like the teacher station in LRCCOED434.

Sanako Study-1200 slow spanning 2 screens with different resolutions

2011/08/31 1 comment
  1. UPDATE2: 2013-09: apparently new video driver crashes with autoscan window, this time even on primary screen alone?
  2. UPDATE: 2011-01:Problem seems to have disappeared (windows update?)
  3. Symptom: This is on a Dell Optiplex 760 (B6CCLK1) which has no problems with Sanako’s screen sharing application, as long as you do not attempt to span the windows across two screens with different resolution which makes even the mouse jerky. Not sure, but do not remember having this problem across two screens with the same resolution. Actually, the Sanako subwindow (remote ctronl specifically) slows down the computer even if it is only on th secondary screen.
  4. Solution: Relatively easily fixed, if you can afford upgrading not only the screen, but also the LCD projector that hangs on one of the screens…
  5. Workaround: Do not span sub-windows of Sanako Study-1200 across screens. This problem can become so bad that the Sanako sub window becomes completely unresponsive and cannot be moved or closed (neither with the close button in the upper right nor with ALT-F4). Try CTRL-ALT-ESC then and kill the process. You could also try and upgrade the video card driver which may be the true culprit. However, on the Sanako sub windows seem to display the problem (screensharing with remote control, chat also). E.g. Internet Explorer windows do not have the same problem when spanned across screens.

How to set up PowerPoint show on dual screen computers

2011/08/10 1 comment

Before trying to show your PowerPoint on the classroom projector, with your PowerPoint file open on the teacher computer, go to the dialogue: “Set up Show” and choose from the dropdown: “secondary monitor”, click “OK”, like so:


Then proceed as normal.

How to enable screen cloning and switching between display modes on the LRC reception desk dual screen Dell OptiPlex 780 with WinXP

Short, non-technical answer: on the keyboards of the reception desk computers, press key combination

  1. ALT+CTRL+F10 to mirror the same image on both monitors;
  2. ALT+CTRL+F11 to return to extending the primary screen, i.e. showing something different on the second screen.
  3. if this stops working, restart the computer.

We do not use any more key combination ALT+CTRL+F10 to cycle through the different desktop configurations, which include cloning/mirroring the same image on both screens (also keep pressing the key combination, in order to get back to extending the image to the 2nd screen, for running an informational display (calendar, PowerPoint) to display on the 2nd screen after mirroring the lab assistant’s screen onto the 2nd screen when interacting with a client on the other side of the help desk counter).

Longer, technical answer: You have to configure this. But the Win XP dialogue: Display Properties / tab: Settings only allows for “extending” the desktop to the secondary screen. However, button: Advanced leads to another dialogue, with a tab: ATI Control Center, by the graphics card manufacturer.

If you also enable the advanced settings in this dialogue, you can get to the hotkey settings where, among other things, you can enter a key combination for cycling through Display Configurations, one of which being cloning.


In addition, you can save this configuration as such:


Why all these minutiae? You cannot have LRC clients and staff at the help desk communicate with the help of a computer (and all the goodies accessible now, from intranet to interwebs) if they cannot easily share the screen (and, in order to both even interact with the screen, share keyboard and mouse, which are easy to duplicate, if you have some spare USB input devices lying around). If you can make them share, you have applied AI to business problems (compare dual screen system in the LLC entrance area here). If calling the after state “AI” sounds too lofty to you, you may call the before state  “flying blind” instead: I just care about the delta which remains the same.

Multi-monitor setup on teacher podium in the LRC main classroom

  1. Like most modern computer workplaces, the LRC main classroom teacher podium needs multiple monitors, if you want to truly take advantage of gathering up to 28 students at 28 multimedia-enabled, networked computers which, thanks to classroom management systems like NetOp School and Sanako Study1200, can be remote controlled by the teacher.
  2. That’s why we built a simple extension on the teacher podium to connect a 2nd screen and more than double (resolution-wise) your on-screen teaching space.
  3. sanako-lab-from-with-teacher-podium
  4. lrc-sanako-lab-teacher-podium
  5. Note: MS-Windows is set to “extend my screen onto this monitor”, except “maximized” windows still only maximize across 1 of 2 screens. De-”maximize” a window to be able to drag a window from one screen to the other (e.g. to prepare it on the teacher screen and then display it on the classroom projector) or to span a window across both monitors (note that, while this could be very useful to display larger thumbnails of more students computer screens, the Sanako Study1200 apparently cannot be spanned across two monitors. I yet have to test whether the Mosaic/separate thumbnail window can, but even if, this one lacks the feature of being able to take advantage of the great class overview by jumping to where teacher assistance is needed).
  6. The left monitor is monitor 1 for Windows and being projected to the classroom. The right monitor, monitor 2 for Windows, is your staging area and control room.
  7. Note, however, that both NetOp School and Sanako Study 1200, normally housed in the control room, are able to project the right monitor: onto (some or all of) the student’s  computer screens.  While I prefer not to hog the students computers for extended periods of time (effectively “dumbing down” computers to TV screens), this feature can give you more flexibility:
  8. E.g. during a recent workshop on the Sanako Study, with the Sanako feature “Teacher screen to students”, I could demonstrate live operation of the Study 1200 software on my right monitor to participants’ computer screens while being able to keep up the PowerPoint overview slide show onto the classroom screen (after setting up my PowerPoint slideshow to display on the secondary screen).
  9. Note that, even though multicast is being used for projection, only still images, including PowerPoint Slides, and, to some extend, computer screen video can be projected in high resolution over the network at reasonable speeds. The Sanako Study 1200, Version 5 also allows for an extremely low resolution video projection to students. For high resolution video streaming, you need the add-on module Sanako Video Live, which comes with its own streaming server hardware.