Can it be done? Ideas welcome

I have been looking for ways to improve the wheel and think I have come up with something that might work. I believe I can get a low end server to act as an interface to the main automation items in the home in conjunction with a HA Panel like Comfort II but the big winner would be running 4 or even 6 Touch Screens off of the one server via cat 5 and USB.

With the Comfort Panel in the background, you have the stability that a computer can?t provide but you still have the low cost touch screen interfaces with enormous potential as opposed to the standard ?touch screen? solutions that are purpose designed and won?t go much further unless you sell your soul to Crestron or AMX.

I am interested in any thoughts on this concept and if you think it is worth pushing on.

To do it I would need to buy;

Average Server of any quality as long as it is a P4. (approx $500)

Either 2 x 8? and 2 x 12? Touch Screens, a 1 into 4 VGA Splitter and a powered USB Hub. I have the specs and it is quite easy to make the multiple screens work off of one computer over cat 5 cabling.

I will then purchase a Neothings 8 Source x 8 zone component A/V matrix distributor that can be controlled via rs232 or I/R.

I will get a Comfort II and the requisite expansion cards for i/r and r/f, alarms, sprinklers, curtains and if necessary cbus.

I would then use the server as the glue to tie all of these together but most importantly to turn 4 touch screens that will set me back at most for the lot into very smart Wall mounted interfaces.

The screens would be powered via cbus and incorporated into the movement detectors so they are not one when there is not point as long as they turn on when powered up.

I would use something like Acer Grid Vista to set each screen up as an individual screen that functions independently of the others.

The screens can then be used as interfaces, picture slideshow on screensaver, security vision on doorbell and if I want to really push the limit, I could interface it to the phones and VOIP.

There is also a professional sound card with up to 8 addressable outputs that could be used for a separate audio distribution system and run a separate drive for music libraries.

The software I think would best bring it together is Charmed Quark which allows me to effectively stretch a desktop over the 4 screens and set the appropriate keys to relate to the given areas or view the main menu in each quadrant as needed.

The money shot might just be in using some older PDA's with wifi/bluetooth as remotes for each zone.

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