Spyders Drive Media at Microsoft Windows 8 Launch

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There were Spyders in the house when Microsoft unveiled Windows 8 at New York City’s Marine & Aviation Pier 57, which had been transformed into a press event venue for the launch announcement. Data engineer Dan Barry chose two Vista Spyder X20s supplied by VER to drive the show.




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“All Tier 1 Microsoft events are run by Spyder these days,” he said. “The Spyder X20 is the most reliable, most flexible high-resolution switching system available today.”

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer keynoted the launch, which marked the biggest overhaul of the company’s operating system in 17 years. Windows 8 has been designed to run on popular tablets and PCs; another version is targeted to smartphones. The event also introduced the Surface tablet, Microsoft’s first foray into PC hardware.

Barry deployed Spyders in two rooms built inside the Hudson River pier. In the main tent a Spyder drove a 40-foot wide 16×9 screen. The second space, known as the Surface Room for delivering details on the new tablet, was a reduced-size version of the main tent. Barry worked the Surface Room, which boasted a 16×9 screen, three cameras, six computer sources and three playback sources.

“We had a lot of feeds going in and out of the system. Any time you get more than one screen, one destination, you really want a Spyder there,” said Barry.

Barry customized High Resolution Systems’ software-based Universal Device Control (UDC) to drive the Spyder in his room. “I built a user interface on the UDC that looked like Windows 8,” he said. “Then we ran the UDC using Surface.”

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