Tell Us Your Story: Vanco International - AV Tech to the Rescue in Work at Home Equation
I, along with so many other K-12 parents across the globe, am still getting used to this whole ‘home schooling while working from home’ notion. It’s been an interesting adjustment to say the least, but by being in the AV industry, I was able to look into and implement technology solutions that would help my kids stay on track while my wife and I are busy working from home during the day.
With a little help from our good friend Alexa, and Vanco’s Evolution EVOSKILLZ, I was able to build out daily learning schedules for each of the kids to suit their particular needs (and attention spans). It's a great tool for automatically embedding audio from a secondary analog audio source onto an HDMI video signal. Analog audio from the output of the Amazon Echo Dot, dictated by Alexa, automatically interrupts TV audio and is embedded and switched onto the HDMI output of EVOSKILLZ, which is connected to our living room TV.
When the kids earn some extra TV time after finishing a subject early, Alexa working with EVOSKILLZ cuts into the TV audio of whatever they were watching and tells my kids what school subject they need to switch to next. Once Alexa is done speaking, EVOSKILLZ automatically switches back to the HDMI input audio and it is business as usual for our living room TV. This combination of technology keeps my kids focused on their schoolwork and on a schedule split between all the necessary subjects, just like if they were in the classroom.
We also use OSD (on-screen display) and scheduling through Vanco’s Evolution EVO-IP HDMI over IP solution on all displays within the house to help re-enforce and keep the kids on track during the day. An example of how I’ve used this is by creating a personalized message that overlays on each screen with an image of me saying, “No TV Until Your School Work Is Done”. When the work is done, I simply disable OSD on the screens and they’re free to watch their shows until their next subject begins.
Feedback from the kids has been great overall. My daughter loves it because in her own words, “it’s just like my teacher is telling me ‘it’s time for math now!’”. My son on the other hand, sees this as another opportunity for my wife and I to cut into his virtual socialization and Fortnite playing time, but he does admit it has helped him get through his schoolwork more efficiently.
It may not be the easiest of times for families who are stuck under the same roof balancing work and home schooling, but just like me, you all work in the electronics industry and there is no better time to leverage the helpful tools and technologies you sell to your clients every day to make your own lives a little bit easier.