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Spyders Drive Media at Microsoft Windows 8 Launch at New York City’s Pier 57

There were Spyders in the house when Microsoft unveiled Windows 8 at New York City’s Marine & Aviation Pier 57, which had been extensively transformed into a press event venue for the launch announcement. Data engineer Dan Barry, who is based in Seattle, operated two Vista Spyder X20s supplied by VER to drive the headline-making show. Steve Reardon of Seattle’s ATBE produced the event.

“All Tier 1 Microsoft events are run by Spyder these days,” he reports. “There really is no other choice. 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.

ATBE 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,” says Barry. “The Spyders performed rock solid. They were great.”

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 explains. “Then we ran the UDC using Surface.”

The Spyder operator for the main tent was Scott Francis from San Diego.

About Vista Systems
Vista Systems’ switchers have become the industry standard for live multiple-destination video and data mixed signal switching. Vista Systems was acquired by Christie, a global leader in visual solutions for business, entertainment and industry, to create a comprehensive source for image processing and projection solutions. The acquisition combines the power and flexibility of Vista’s video switchers and real-time windowing and composition products with the power, performance and reliability of award-winning Christie projection systems. For more information on Vista Systems, visit their website at www.vistasystems.net

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