If you want to show Keep&Share on a large screen such as a TV, these are our recommendations to make sure that you can always display Keep&Share with an up-to-date web browser:
1. Purchase any large TV with an HDMI input that fits your space and/or goals. It can be either a smart TV or a regular TV, but it should have an HDMI input. A smart TV will probably be more cost-efficient than a regular TV or a large computer monitor.
- In some cases, an HDMI projector might be an alternative to a TV. However, projectors can be very finicky about room lighting, ambient lighting, bulbs going out, fans failing, screen material, etc. A TV is a fairly simple low-tech device whereas a projector might require a bit more technical know-how.
2. Find something that has an HDMI output to connect to the TV:
- Any old computer (desktop or laptop) that has an HDMI output should work. This should give a good picture but depending on the graphics capabilities of the computer it might not be able to use all of the TVs different resolutions. An old computer will likely use a lot of power because old computers are not power-efficient; 100 watts or more would not be unusual even when the computer is idle. Old computers generally have spinning fans, spinning hard disks, and batteries that are prone to failure. Consider replacing spinning hard disks with an SSD and any batteries before putting an old computer into service for this purpose.
- A VGA, DVI, or DisplayPort to HDMI converter can be used to get an HDMI output from an old computer that does not have an HDMI output. Be sure to select the correct converter based on the computer's supported output format. Converters might not yield the best picture depending on the graphics capabilities of the computer and the converter.
- A Google Chromecast or similar device may work. Chromecast plugs into a TV's HDMI port. Generally, it gets power from the TV and connects to a WiFi network. Once set up, open a tab on a computer running Chrome and browse to the web page you want to display on the TV. Use Chrome's "Cast" feature to display that tab on the TV. According to Google, this is currently limited to 720p display. Since Chromecast is a wireless device only power would need to run to the TV which could be very convenient. A dedicated computer is not needed to run the TV because any existing computer on the same network can cast to the TV. Whatever computer is doing the casting to the TV must leave that tab open for it to remain displayed on the TV. Chromecast devices are low power devices and have no spinning failure points.
- An iPad with an HDMI output adapter can do screen mirroring to a connected TV. This would mirror whatever is on the iPad screen to the TV; the iPad can be used to interact with the website while the mirroring is in effect which could be useful. An iPad certainly uses a lot less power than an old computer.
- Android tablets that support screen mirroring might be another option to research
- A do-it-yourself option if no old computer is available would be a Raspberry Pi 4 running the Raspbian operating system. Raspbian includes a modern browser-based on Chrome, called Chromium. The Raspberry Pi 4 has an HDMI output and is small enough to fit behind the TV. It can be set up to respond to a wireless mouse and keyboard or even many standard TV remotes and run an on-screen keyboard. It can also be controlled over the network. It draws no more than 10 watts of power. It can be wireless OR wired depending on what works best for the situation. By default most Raspberry Pi 4 setups are fanless and use a micro SD card for storage so they are highly reliable as a result. They are fairly inexpensive but do require a bit more technical know-how to set up and get running.
- Most newer computers can be purchased with HDMI output capability. If it is especially important to keep things familiar to people who may need to maintain or interact with the system, purchasing a new computer specifically to dedicate to the TV display may be a wise choice. Modern computers are generally more power-efficient, use SSDs for storage, and many can be configured to run with little or no fans required. Intel "NUC" series computers or Apple Mac mini computers might be a good starting point for looking at options for new computers that would work well when paired with a TV.