Running two presentations at once

edited July 2013 in General Discussion
I think I have just narrowly avoided having the Church Board force EasyWorship on me, by convincing them that it won't do what our pastor is asking for. I love OpenLP, in particular for the model of Christian co-operation embodied in it (as well as the features, obviously). I still have a slight concern that they'll force me to change to a commercial software package despite my protestations, so, I'd like to demonstrate that we can meet the requirement whilst retaining OpenLP

I'm wondering, therefore, if anyone can assist me with the pastor's requirement? What he wants to do is run his own presentation by himself, for himself (basically, his speaking notes) to a 3rd monitor (flat screen TV) on the back wall of the auditorium, at the same time as the main presentation is being displayed front-of-house. I've made two suggestions that I'm certain would work:

1. Plug his laptop into the 3rd monitor and run his presentation from that
2. Save his notes as images (.jpg or similar), save them to a USB, plug the USB into the TV/3rd monitor and use the TV remote to control his "presentation"

Both of these seem pretty simple and effective solutions to me, but everyone seems hung up on being able to do it all from the main Worship PC. So, ideally, what would be required is to have OpenLP running two separate presentations on different monitors, each controlled from one of two places (sound desk and pastor's bluetooth mouse).

Since I'm pretty sure this wouldn't work, the other possibilities I thought of were:
1. have OpenLP running on two monitors (PC and Projector), controlling the main presentation on the projector, while the Pastor's presentation runs separately on monitor 3
2. have both presentations running from the desktop, with one displaying on the projector and the other on monitor 3, which would mean, I guess, "blanking to desktop" from OpenLP during the sermon.

One issue with either of the above (assuming they would work at all), is how to get the desktop and bluetooth mice/mouses to control one presentation each

I'd really welcome any other/better suggestions or advice on how to execute or improve my own.


Marc H


  • edited July 2013

    I would do it like this:
    - Plug the third monitor/tv screen in the regular "media computer". Make sure that the third and second screen display the same (this could be the tricky bit, but should be possible. At least you can do such things on linux, but should also be possible on windows.)

    The preacher than uses the android remote control or a bluetooth mouse or a presenter (the remote control app has the advantage, that it even works, when OpenLP itself does not have focus, which allows the operator to do other tasks (e. g. Audacity recording)).

    If it is a problem, that the projection is displayed on the third monitor as the time, you just turn it on when you need it (or maybe it has a "freeze option").


    EDIT: I think the approach with "two instances of OpenLP/Presentations/..." is too complicated and not the way to do it.
  • Just to be clear on what you want to show during the sermon.

    Projector - Slides that go along with the sermon meant ofr the congregation.

    3rd Monitor - This is located at the back of the sanctuary and contain the sermon notes ONLY for the pastor.

    Computer Monitor - Displays whatever you need at the controls to make the other two work.

    If this is correct in that you want the projector and the 3rd monitor to show different things I would say I like your idea of using his laptop for the 3rd screen the best. He may even want to use different software depending on how much he jumps around in his notes. I use occasionally for drama. It can scroll automatically but we just pause it and scroll up and down with a mouse. It's free as well.
  • Thanks for your comments googol and Tom.

    Tom: yes, you've described my requirement correctly.

    I agree that plugging the laptop into the 3rd monitor is the simplest and most effective way to go. Unfortunately, some other people seem to want a much more complicated solution. I think I'll just stick to my guns and hopefully convince them otherwise.
  • Is there a way to actually do what the main use case is here with OpenLP:
    .) 1. Monitor: OpenLP
    .) 2. Monitor: Main presentation
    .) 3. Monitor: Notes that go along with the presentation

    Can Powerpoint show the presentation on one screen, the notes that go along within the presentation on the other screen?

    Another question:
    Maybe it would be possible to have the OpenLP be adapted
    - to add the notes to the OpenLP preferences of the PPT file
    - put some extra control information to the notes to align the presentation on 2.Monitor to notes on the 3rd Monitor
    sth like:
    [slide 1]
    Blah Blah
    [slide 2]....
  • mlh156
    --One issue with either of the above (assuming they would work at all), is
    how to get the desktop and bluetooth mice/mouses to control one
    presentation each--

    Linux does have some distributions are simpler to set this up than others.  Ubuntu is not the simplest. 

    Under Linux using multi seat you would login two different users.   So
    the instances are nicely split.   Yes 8 users per PC is not strange to
    Linux.  Yes 2 quad output video cards.

    Now if you machine is Windows or OS X assigning the keyboard's and mice is a price tag.    Under windows the only cost effective way I know is remote web control and then use like the android app/tablet to web page to control the second.   Yes a 100 dollar android tablet + 100 dollar wifi access point + 25 dollar network and assign the presentation machine a static IP address is cheaper than paying for Windows multiseat software and way less problem causing(yes that is decanted network for controlling openlp).  Yes some windows applications hate remote desktop and hate multiseat.    Yes openlp development branch has password protection and https on the remote so this does reduce hardware cost for security.

    So this is a case OS defines answers.   Linux users its yes we can by multiseat and multiusers but do we really want to.

    Windows,  OS X its either invest in another machine or tolerate controlling openlp by tablet/phone.   So leaving the computers connected keyboard and mouse as not required most of the time to run openlp.   Yes the every now and again mouse fight will happen.   Some operations just cannot be done without having the mouse to control the main interface of openlp.

    Yes extra machine is the best option if you are stuck to Windows and OS X.
  • edited July 2013
    Well I don't know no too much of the technical details, but:

    -) You already can 'remotely control' the presentation, eg, when you click on the slide you show it on the screen. So you know how to show eg slide 5 by triggering this event on powerpoint/impress on monitor 2. At the same time you could show the Notes section [slide 5] of the presentation comments, which are somehow seperately (from powerpoint) stored by OpenLP. For example by rightclicking a powerpoint/impress presentation and clicking a new action 'attach peaker notes'
  • tomzi this person request is horrible.  2 independent users controlling the system at once.  

    --One issue with either of the above (assuming they would work at all), is
    how to get the desktop and bluetooth mice/mouses to control one
    presentation each--

    This translate to 2 people controlling the system.   The speaker up the front being able to flick through there notes that might be longer than the slides/videos or short than the slides.

    If it was just what you are suggesting
    tomzi.   On the extra screen you would open up in a web browser full screen on the third screen.

    Yes I can do 2 independent users in control its just horrible.

    Yes its a lacking feature with openlp is automatically display stage view on a screen.

    Yes throwing up a stage_view in a web browser makes openlp almost identical to what easy-worship provides.   Easy-worship does not support person up front being in-control of there notes independently to slide changes.

    mlh156 we have both easy-worship and openlp here.   openlp is used more.   Easy-worship has lots of gotches.  Like failing to play a presentation because you attempt to load it from a network share.   Those gotches causes Easy-worship the complete thing to lockup.

    mlh156  request is past what Easy-worship can do.   But mlh156 could ask if stage view will do what he wants.
  • edited July 2013
    I didn't say it is easy to implement. I'am just showing a possible usecase. It might even be a completely different view in openlp as well. The main point being that the person speaking in the front can see his notes and does not (at the same time) have to worry about what is displayed on the main projector.

    There more I think about it the more ideas might be possible:
    - If the screen for the speaker is big enought it could display the presentation as will in a PIP, eg.

    [Slide 1]SNOTESNOTESNOTESNOTES |       PIP           |
    |    presentation     |

    - When ever you click to the next slide the next slide is shown on the beamer (audience) and on in the PIP view and the section with the notes is marked specially.

    . Intercepting the click event from eg the prompter
    . what about events within one slide in the powerpoint presentations
    . is it possible to grab the powerpoint screen to a PIP part of the screen for the preacher?

  • . is it possible to grab the powerpoint screen to a PIP part of the screen for the preacher?

    Yes it is and its implemented for the remote in the development branch, No animations/transitions/videos in the picture displayed on remote.   Reason the remote that is also a web page from openlp implements still shots in the development branch.   Both openlp stage view and remote are web pages so same generation method could be reused for the stage view.

    Problem here presenter may want to leave slide up for a long time.   What is not implemented is 1)connecting many notes to a slide and being able to flick through them independently to main view.  Like 5 notes to 1 slide for example cannot be done at this stage .
    2) Stage view/s having a picture in picture option same as remote.
    3) Stage view/s assignable to a full screen by openlp. (should be possible without adding extra dependencies thinking webkit is already used else where in openlp)
    4) And finally someone redesigning the web page of stage view to match what you are requesting.  5) Consider the possibility to have more than 1 stage view format.   Different parties on stage at times need to know different things.

    . what about events within one slide in the powerpoint presentations
    Existing bug.  Openlp handing of this is already interesting(in a bad way)  you click to go to next slide next slide does not come but event showing next bit happens instead.   Basically don't event inside slides with openlp unless you want to be driven around bend at times wondering why click on side did not work.

    tomzi openlp currently has 3 views.   2 are for web browsers.   Stage and Remote.   The two for web browsers are designed for the people on stage.   Development branch has password protection and encryption on the remote.

    Basic shape of openlp development branch fit 1 Computer, 1 projector, and 1 wifi router with tablets and phones on stage.    No backwall projection.   Yes there are many venues where projecting to back wall or having a back screen is not possible.   There are also many venues where back wall projection is possible and openlp does not support it very well due to openlp not being able to directly say stage view full screen on X monitor.    Remote on stage has been a bigger focus yes presenter wants to be in control.

    tomzi you would not happen to have some web development skill by any chance.
  • Thanks tomzi and oiaohm. This is all getting a little over my head, I have to admit. At this point, I don't think the Stage View option is going to work for me due to a lack of funds to invest in additional hardware - maybe something for the future.

    Thanks also, oiaohm, for your comments on comparing EasyWorship and OpenLP. There is still a bit of a push in our Board to move to EW, due to the Song fold-back function it has. That doesn't impress me because I'm not a fan of being reliant on the projector operator being awake - the last thing I want is having the wrong words projected in the fold-back and throwing me or my team into confusion. Anyway, the push for EW is still there, so it's good to get some comparison, from experience, on how the two stack up.

    For now, I think it's probably safest for me to go with the option of having the minister plug his own laptop into the third monitor, but I'll be watching with interest for further developments in OpenLP fold-back functionality.

  • mih156 remember openlp stage view can be used on the same machine as running openlp.

    Its just a pain in but having to remember to open a browser full screen on the extra projector.   So it can be worth while to kvm switch the monitor from the stage.  Yes openlp does support binding its remote to or loopback in other words.

    Even now stage view is not past being an option in some cases.
  • This hasn't been updated for a while now...have I missed the solution? 

    I too have similar requirements at my church. I too am a fan of OpenLP! 

    As a pastor I need full control of my presentation with notes + whiteboard.  So, what I've done so far is to use my iPad on the pulpit along with an app called Doceri which allows me to control OpenLP and also do annotations on top.  It's not perfect but is the best solution so far. 
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