The Facilities Management Group for resources?

Conversations around originating a webcast for conference, including cameras and mixers.
michaelfish
Member
Posts: 414
Joined: Sun May 10, 2009 3:44 pm
Location: Gilbert, AZ USA

The Facilities Management Group for resources?

Postby michaelfish » Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:58 pm

[font=Calibri]I am SERIOUSLY thinking about volunteering my services to other Stakes (possibly through the FMG). I’ve read about so many botched attempts of Stakes struggling year after year, to do what we have successfully accomplished in our Stake because they lack resources and technical experience. It’s so sad. We are so fortunate to have a qualified technology committee and technical resources already in our Stake.[/font]
[font=Calibri][/font]
[font=Calibri]Other Stakes however, still poke and play around with silly poor quality, Mickey Mouse setups, and the results are depressing. Just last Monday, I found out that a neighboring Stake used cheap surveillance cameras to broadcast their conference to other buildings. Their CCTV cameras zoom capability was so poor and they had to place them in the Chapel (against handbook guidelines) to get close enough. The video quality was very poor, and they could not get their newly purchased $1,000 Meetinghouse Webcast unit’s settings worked out. I cringed when I heard this – and pleaded with them to call me next time. I would have been happy to help with their problems or make constructive suggestions, and warn them of potential difficulties![/font]
[font=Calibri][/font]
[font=Calibri]Wouldn’t it be wonderful if a FMG in the area could have a few resources available and a few professionals called to offer assistance to help make a Stake’s special broadcasts (i.e. multi-building Stake Conference) run smoothly and seamlessly? I’m not saying that the FMG needs to be the only source (some Stakes are already set up adequately) but a Stake President or High Council representative could at least call for advice, recommendations or resources.[/font]
[font=Calibri][/font]
[font=Calibri]Imagine a FMG purchasing and sharing resources like a Meetinghouse Webcast unit, remotely controlled robotic like the Sony EVI-D70 camera, microphones and mixer for the choir, professional projector, large portable screen, etc. Perhaps they could offer technical support for video/audio reinforcement, or access to a conference call bridge for audio redundancy.[/font]
[font=Calibri][/font]
[font=Calibri]You get the idea.[/font]
[font=Calibri][/font]
[font=Calibri]Why must each Stake to duplicate purchasing expensive A/V or Streaming equipment (sometimes the wrong equipment) only get used two or three times a year! Most equipment becomes outdated after a few years anyway and the Stakes will eventually have to purchase upgrades all over again…[/font]
[font=Calibri][/font]
[font=Calibri]The costs of the FMG’s equipment/services could be offset by renting the equipment to various Stakes. And the Stake would most certainly spend less to rent from a FMG, rather than to purchase, maintain and replace it themselves.[/font]
[font=Calibri][/font]
Finally, the cost-to-use ratio of purchasing and loaning (or renting to a Stake) professional, commercial equipment would be, in my opinion, be so much more cost effective. Professional equipment doesn’t become outdated as quickly as consumer quality equipment. In addition, Stakes would enjoy professional quality, reliability, and professionalism that comes by using the right equipment for the right situation.

lajackson
Community Moderators
Posts: 6149
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2008 9:27 pm
Location: US

Postby lajackson » Thu Nov 12, 2009 10:36 am

michaelfish wrote:[font=Calibri]I am SERIOUSLY thinking about volunteering my services to other Stakes (possibly through the FMG).[/font]


If you have the time, please do. I do not know of a single FM Group worth their salt that would not welcome such help.

I think you would need to be willing to work within the guidelines the Church has established for the FM Group.

And if the FM Group was not willing, I would certainly call you if our next stake conference was being held in your area. Alas, . . .

russellhltn
Community Administrator
Posts: 20779
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 2:53 pm
Location: U.S.

Postby russellhltn » Thu Nov 12, 2009 11:02 am

michaelfish wrote:I am SERIOUSLY thinking about volunteering my services to other Stakes (possibly through the FMG). I’ve read about so many botched attempts of Stakes struggling year after year, to do what we have successfully accomplished in our Stake because they lack resources and technical experience. It’s so sad.


In many ways, that's what this forum is about. I realize that you're talking about in-person.


michaelfish wrote:Their CCTV cameras zoom capability was so poor and they had to place them in the Chapel (against handbook guidelines) to get close enough.


I'm aware of the handbook, but I can tell you from personal experience years ago that if your chapel is selected to be the origination point for a regional broadcast, the church will put cameras in the chapel. Big ones. And not remote controlled. But then our overflow goes off the side, not out the back like most.

But we've also set up our camera for the overflow in the chapel and visiting authorities have never said anything that got back to me. I'm not sure how to reconcile my experience with the handbook. Perhaps it's the difference between getting video for a "overflow" situation and recording a routine meeting.

michaelfish wrote:Why must each Stake to duplicate purchasing expensive A/V or Streaming equipment (sometimes the wrong equipment) only get used two or three times a year! Most equipment becomes outdated after a few years anyway and the Stakes will eventually have to purchase upgrades all over again…


That's a good point. My biggest concern is that the equipment the FMG had might not solve my particular problem, or be in a unknown state having been though different hands with different ideas of how it should be set up. Not insurmountable, just a concern.
Have you searched the Wiki?
Try using a Google search by adding "site:tech.lds.org/wiki" to the search criteria.

User avatar
aebrown
Community Administrator
Posts: 14693
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2007 8:48 pm
Location: Sandy, Utah

Postby aebrown » Thu Nov 12, 2009 11:08 am

michaelfish wrote:[font=Calibri]Why must each Stake to duplicate purchasing expensive A/V or Streaming equipment (sometimes the wrong equipment) only get used two or three times a year! Most equipment becomes outdated after a few years anyway and the Stakes will eventually have to purchase upgrades all over again…[/font]

[font=Calibri]The costs of the FMG’s equipment/services could be offset by renting the equipment to various Stakes. And the Stake would most certainly spend less to rent from a FMG, rather than to purchase, maintain and replace it themselves.[/font]

Finally, the cost-to-use ratio of purchasing and loaning (or renting to a Stake) professional, commercial equipment would be, in my opinion, be so much more cost effective. Professional equipment doesn’t become outdated as quickly as consumer quality equipment. In addition, Stakes would enjoy professional quality, reliability, and professionalism that comes by using the right equipment for the right situation.


This makes a lot of sense. I've wondered how many stakes can afford the high cost of Meetinghouse Webcast (on the order of $3000). It's so expensive that I can understand a tendency to try to buy cheaper components. Centralizing the cost for equipment that is used so rarely makes a lot of sense.

Some FM Groups may be willing to coordinate this, but others might not. But there should be no reason why a group of stakes couldn't get together and pool the costs and efforts. Then you could buy top-notch equipment, with each stake bearing only a fraction of the cost of low-quality equipment.

Pooling the expertise makes a lot of sense. Personally, as an STS I'm quite comfortable with any computer-related issues, but for audio and video issues I'm sort of winging it. There's probably another STS in a nearby stake who does great with A/V but needs computer help. Why should every STS (particularly those with minimal A/V skills like me) have to go through the learning curve himself and make several potentially expensive mistakes?

Of course this wouldn't be feasible in areas where stakes are hundreds of miles apart, but there are hundreds of stakes that are within a reasonable distance of several other stakes, so it would be helpful for them and could save the Church a lot of money.

russellhltn
Community Administrator
Posts: 20779
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 2:53 pm
Location: U.S.

Postby russellhltn » Thu Nov 12, 2009 11:15 am

Alan_Brown wrote:Pooling the expertise makes a lot of sense.


I wonder if that's something that can be coordinated somehow though ldstech?

I don't particularly like to give my stake out on a public forum, but that doesn't mean I'm unwilling to help others in my area.
Have you searched the Wiki?

Try using a Google search by adding "site:tech.lds.org/wiki" to the search criteria.

User avatar
mkmurray
Senior Member
Posts: 3241
Joined: Tue Jan 23, 2007 9:56 pm
Location: Utah
Contact:

Postby mkmurray » Thu Nov 12, 2009 11:17 am

Alan_Brown wrote:Pooling the expertise makes a lot of sense. Personally, as an STS I'm quite comfortable with any computer-related issues, but for audio and video issues I'm sort of winging it. There's probably another STS in a nearby stake who does great with A/V but needs computer help. Why should every STS (particularly those with minimal A/V skills like me) have to go through the learning curve himself and make several potentially expensive mistakes?

Of course this wouldn't be feasible in areas where stakes are hundreds of miles apart, but there are hundreds of stakes that are within a reasonable distance of several other stakes, so it would be helpful for them and could save the Church a lot of money.

I wonder if there is a potential solution using either LUWS, CDOL, or something similar to help stakes and their FM Group better communicate and coordinate.

I'm thinking of some type of web site or communication ability (like email) where stakes within an FM Group can coordinate sharing resources or bounce ideas off of each other, all with the FM Group having visibility of the discussion and being able to weigh in when they desire or as needed. If it's an email system, the FM group could be CC'ed. If it's a public communication like forum software, then again the FM Group has the visibility to guide discussions, offer resources, teach policy, or whatever else is required.

Anyone else think this idea could go somewhere? And can it be plugged into an existing website or system the Church has already established?
Many questions are already answered on the LDSTech wiki. Check it out!

User avatar
mkmurray
Senior Member
Posts: 3241
Joined: Tue Jan 23, 2007 9:56 pm
Location: Utah
Contact:

Postby mkmurray » Thu Nov 12, 2009 11:18 am

RussellHltn wrote:I wonder if that's something that can be coordinated somehow though ldstech?

I don't particularly like to give my stake out on a public forum, but that doesn't mean I'm unwilling to help others in my area.

Or LDSTech perhaps. ;) But I'm wondering if it could be hidden behind LDSAccount authentication and coordination and communication is limited within an FM Group, so that they can keep tabs on the stakes they oversee.
Many questions are already answered on the LDSTech wiki. Check it out!

russellhltn
Community Administrator
Posts: 20779
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 2:53 pm
Location: U.S.

Postby russellhltn » Thu Nov 12, 2009 12:58 pm

CDOL allows them to see who their neighbors are, but doesn't provide information on who is volunteering and what the areas of expertise are, if it's computer, video , etc.

A forum for each FM group doesn't sound like it would scale well.

An email would work, but I'd think it would have to be scaled out from CDOL or LUWS. I think I'd rather see it as part of LUWS because there's other groups that would like to coordinate on a multi-stake basis (like singles groups).
Have you searched the Wiki?

Try using a Google search by adding "site:tech.lds.org/wiki" to the search criteria.

Paulbb1
Member
Posts: 91
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2007 10:28 am
Location: Saline, MI

Resources for Video

Postby Paulbb1 » Thu Nov 12, 2009 8:47 pm

This is a great discussion!

The FM groups out here in the midwest have all they can do to keep up with building maintenance. They have no computer or video technical skills. With stake buildings an hour between them it is hard to get the STS to talk much less share equipment.

Remember what is driving the use of webcasting. The visiting authorities don't want to do two stake conferences meetings. Non-the-less there are limited resources and the church offices in Riverton and they are low on the priority list for resources. We must band together to get this done.

I suggest that we use this forum that has been provided us. Those who have setups working should document it with text and photos. In detail with model numbers and maybe source. I need to do mine. Have yet to finalize how to control the camera via RS422.

There should be discussions on video cameras and alternatives to the webcast box.

Which video capture cards work well.

How to control the camera remotely. RS422 vs infrared.

How to get the s-video transmitted over 125 feet. Pulling cables for fixed installations.

These questions could be discussed here and a single thread could be created with recommended equipment and software. We know that there will be multiple setups just because of the building structure.

Any thoughts?

Arlan

User avatar
aebrown
Community Administrator
Posts: 14693
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2007 8:48 pm
Location: Sandy, Utah

Postby aebrown » Thu Nov 12, 2009 10:12 pm

PaulBB1 wrote:I suggest that we use this forum that has been provided us. Those who have setups working should document it with text and photos. In detail with model numbers and maybe source. I need to do mine. Have yet to finalize how to control the camera via RS422.

There should be discussions on video cameras and alternatives to the webcast box.

Which video capture cards work well.

How to control the camera remotely. RS422 vs infrared.

How to get the s-video transmitted over 125 feet. Pulling cables for fixed installations.

These questions could be discussed here and a single thread could be created with recommended equipment and software. We know that there will be multiple setups just because of the building structure.


This forum is a good place to bounce around ideas, but a better place to capture the conclusions is on the wiki. Over the last several days two Church employees have been diligently adding some great content to the wiki for Meetinghouse Webcast, and we can add more.

Some of the content contains recommended equipment, and some pros and cons. There's a pretty good structure in place already, and work continues to flesh it out.


Return to “Webcasting”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest