Archive for January, 2012
Noventri worked with ARAMARK, the Greater Richmond Convention Center’s food and beverage partner, to replace paper menu boards with digital menu boards by Noventri. The new digital menu boards allow for easier viewing of menu choices over a larger area, thus avoiding excessive crowding.
The Cyber Café is a comfortable lounge area that offers free Internet access with six freestanding Internet-accessible kiosks and is a wireless “Hot Spot” for patrons with laptop computers. The café also features a food and beverage area for “grab & go” food for conventioneers on the run.
The convention center, located in Virginia’s capital, hopes to see a significant increase in sales since the Cyber Café renovation and new digital menu boards. Noventri digital menu boards add a more current and up-to-date feel, which ties in well with the look of the Cyber Café and its computers. The digital menu boards will also promote food options available at other food outlets within the convention center when the café is closed.
Noventri Eco-Series Menu Boards are unique because they have removed the high costs of traditional digital menu board options and are extremely stable and low-maintenance. Eco-Series players also assist in meeting green agendas since each player uses 98% less power than a PC.
Noventri provides digital signage / digital menu boards at other ARAMARK locations, including: Minute Maid Park, Greater Columbus Convention Center, Verizon Center, Citizens Bank Park, M & T Bank Stadium, Pennsylvania Convention Center, Fenway Park, and Kansas City Convention Center.
Noventri recently quoted Da Vinci on the landing page of their newly redesigned website…. “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” With this quote in mind Noventri redesigned their website for a fresh, simple, and clear experience for their visitors. Also, the Noventri team has taken great care to design a digital signage player and installation experience that reflects the same simplicity.
So it goes without saying, that I have given some thought to the word ‘simplicity’. According to Dictionary.com, the definition for ‘simplicity is “freedom from complexity, intricacy or division into parts.”
This definition reflects the Noventri view regarding digital signage and its corresponding content. Less complexity. This means less complexity in buying, installing, and using digital signage as well as, less complexity in digital signage content. Complex selection of digital signage hardware and components, complex installations, complex usage and complex content can be disastrous and leave users confused and disoriented. The result is for the viewer to ignore what they cannot make sense of.
Why? Note the above definition. Simplicity is the freedom from complexity and division into parts. Our mantra is that zones and moving content is confusing and distracts from the main message, thus the need to simplify.
My favorite definition for ‘simplicity’ is the one provided by Merriam-Webster. It defines the term as “the state of being simple, uncomplicated, directness of expression.”
There you have it…directness of expression. How can you convey your message in a direct manner if the message is competing with other content on the screen? Now, let me ask: How many static signs do you see that relay several unrelated messages at the same time. None. A sign is and should be dedicated to the intended message. Likewise, digital signage should follow the same rules and functions for directness of expression.
Perplexing as it may be to many, the digital signage industry continues to push the idea of busy screens, multiple zones, etc. I don’t know why, but it brings to mind a statement by Confucious, “Life (or digital signage) is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.”
Joshua Brewer from 52 Weeks of UX recently posted his thoughts on simplicity and went further to define Da Vinci’s quote by saying, “Simplicity…is freedom from complexity,” while sophistication “implies a sense of style, cultivated beauty and refinement.” He clarifies that this is not a contradiction.
Brewer then says, “I believe the ultimate level of sophistication happens when the refining process is so complete that there is truly nothing else to add and nothing else to take away; when the nature of a thing is perfectly represented and understood by its state and appearance. To behold it is to know and understand it.” Couldn’t say it better myself.
Brewer then sums up his post with these final words, “There is a delicate balance between the simplicity of use and the complexity of usefulness. But it is true the product that is clear in its purpose, elegant in its execution and simple in its use will set itself apart from the competition and endear itself to the user.”
That is what Noventri is striving to attain with their website redesign and ongoing research and development put into their digital signage solution, the Eco-Series SF-100e digital signage player.
Noventri has spent years listening to customers and are continuing to reduce and refine the features and benefits of the digital signage experience in order to find that “delicate balance between…simplicity of use and the complexity of usefulness.”