Heading Logo

On the cutting edge

Loudonville Public Library gets a new Microsoft Surface Hub

By DYLAN SAMS Published: May 16, 2017 4:00 AM
  • 1 of 2 Photos | View More Photos

It's the size of a large-screen TV, can be used as a whiteboard and can host video conferences, and is now sitting in the Loudonville Public Library.

It's the new Microsoft Surface Hub, the newest tool available at the library.

"It's about as good as you can get," said library director Michael Thornton. The Surface Hub was made possible through a grant by the Living Legacy Foundation to purchase the new piece of technology, which has been on the market for just over a year.

The 55-inch screen is erected onto a four-wheel stand in the library's conference room, has 4K video capability and runs Windows 10, which includes programs such as Office, Word and PowerPoint.

The library was interested in acquiring the Surface Hub to be used to assist local businesses in the area and, eventually, for use by the general public for collaborative projects.

[Article continues below]

"We know that not all businesses could have this on their own," Thornton said.

The Surface Hub starts up when people walk into the room, as its motion sensors pick up the movement. There are two speakers on either side of the screen and two pens that can be used to draw on a whiteboard app or annotate webpages or PDFs that can be accessed through the Surface Hub itself or controlled remotely by a tablet or laptop.

If a user has an Apple computer instead of a Microsoft product, they still would be able to use the Surface Hub and project their own screens by plugging in through HDMI or other standard connections.

A machine running Windows 10, however, can share screens with the hub wirelessly.

Files created through the whiteboard app or clippings from the internet can then be sent via email or uploaded to the web to others working on a project.

"It's definitely not a computer, but it's built for the purpose of collaboration," said Colleen Sandusky, network administrator for the library.

Video conferencing is supported by Skype for Business and can host up to 50 people, Sandusky said.

"We see this as a way to expand capabilities for businesses and to expand our services to them," Thornton said.

Eventually, the Surface Hub will be available to the general public, but the library still is working out a policy of use.

"It's going to get used a lot," Thornton said, when they do put the policy in place.

The library will play host to an open house 10:30 a.m. Saturday, when they will show off the hub's capabilities.


Rate this article

Do you want to leave a comment?   Please Log In or Register to comment.