Alpha Infrared Remote
Alpha
Remote Control
Programming Manual
for
Alpha 200, 300, 400, 4000, and 7000 series signs.
Also for Big Dot, and Solar signs.
© 1998-2003 Adaptive Micro Systems, LLC
Form No. 9704-0002C
10/27/03
i
© Copyright 1998–2003 Adaptive Micro Systems, LLC. All rights reserved.
Adaptive Micro Systems • 7840 North 86th Street • Milwaukee, WI 53224 USA •
414-357-2020 • 414-357-2029 (fax) • http://www.adaptivedisplays.com
Trademarked names appear throughout this document. Rather than list the names
and entities that own the trademarks or insert a trademark symbol with each
mention of the trademarked name, the publisher states that it is using names for
editorial purposes and to the benefit of the trademark owner with no intention of
improperly using the trademark.
The following are trademarks of Adaptive Micro Systems: ActiveX, Adaptive, Alpha,
AlphaLert, AlphaNET, AlphaNet plus, AlphaEclipse, AlphaPremiere, AlphaTicker,
AlphaVision, AlphaVision InfoTracker, Automode, BetaBrite, BetaBrite Director,
BetaBrite Messaging Software, Big Dot, Director, EZ KEY II, EZ95, PagerNET, PPD,
PrintPak, Serial Clock, Smart Alec, Solar, TimeNet.
The distinctive trade dress of this product is a trademark claimed by Adaptive Micro
Systems, LLC.
Due to continuing product innovation, specifications in this manual are subject to
change without notice.
ii
Contents
General information ...................................................................... 1
Remote Control description.............................................................................1
Using the Remote Control with a sign .............................................................2
Basic sign operation...................................................................... 3
Turning a sign on and off ................................................................................3
Setting a sign’s time and date .........................................................................4
Clearing a sign’s memory................................................................................5
Setting a sign’s password ...............................................................................6
What to do when you forget a sign’s password .......................................7
How to delete a sign’s password..............................................................7
Sound control..................................................................................................8
Remote Control sounds ...........................................................................8
Putting sounds in a message ...................................................................8
Setting a sign’s serial address.........................................................................9
Transferring a sign’s memory from one sign to another ...............................10
Beginning text messaging ..............................................................11
Example 1 — Using upper and lowercase in 1 and 2-line messages ............11
Example 2 — Displaying messages in file name order (A, B, C, etc.)............14
Example 3 — Displaying messages in time order .........................................16
Example 4 — Changing the text of an existing message ...............................18
Example 5 — Deleting messages..................................................................21
Advanced text messaging ..............................................................22
Example 6 — Displaying the time and date ...................................................22
Example 7 — Creating a news program on a sign ........................................26
Example 8 — Using fonts .............................................................................31
Example 9 — Using colors............................................................................36
Example 10 — Speeding up and slowing down messages ...........................37
Example 11 — Special effects with modes (Trailing modes) ........................39
Example 12 — International characters ........................................................40
Graphics ...................................................................................42
Example 13 — Creating a movie marquee ....................................................42
Example 14 — Using multi-line graphics ......................................................48
Example 15 — Deleting a graphic .................................................................51
Example 16 — Using 1-line graphics ............................................................52
Appendixes................................................................................55
Appendix A — Modes, fonts, colors, and graphics on signs.........................55
Appendix B — Understanding the cursor and line positions .........................59
Appendix C — Sign diagnostic test ...............................................................60
Quick Reference Card ...................................................................61
iii
Warranty
Adaptive Micro Systems, LLC. warrants to the original purchaser that the
sign, keyboard and power supply will be free of defects in workmanship and
materials for a period of one year from the date of purchase.
Adaptive Micro Systems, LLC. will without charge, repair or replace, at its
option, defective product or component parts upon delivery to the factory
service department accompanied by proof of the date of purchase in the form of
a sales receipt.
This warranty does not apply in the event of any misuse or abuse of the
product, or as a result of any unauthorized repairs or alterations. This warranty
does not apply if the serial number is altered, defaced or removed from the
sign.
The purchase price of this product does not include, from Adaptive Micro
Systems, LLC, any on-site support, service or maintenance.
Local ordinances prohibiting the use of flashing signs may exist in some
locations. Compliance with local ordinances is the sole responsibility of the
customer.
To obtain warranty coverage, this product must be registered. Please
complete the enclosed warranty registration card and mail it to Adaptive Micro
Systems, LLC.
How to obtain warranty service
1.
Contact the distributor from whom the sign was purchased. If you do
not know where the product was purchased, contact Adaptive Micro
Systems Customer Service at 414-357-2020.
2.
If the distributor cannot service the product, obtain a Return
Merchandise Authorization (RMA) number through that company.
An RMA number is required to obtain warranty service.
3.
Fill out the Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA) Form on the
following page. To obtain warranty service, this form including the
RMA number must accompany the product.
4.
Follow return instructions on the RMA form to return to Adaptive
Micro Systems, LLC.
iv
Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA) form
RMA Number:
Date of Purchase:
Company Name:
Contact Person:
Address:
Phone Number:
______________________________________________
______________________________________________
______________________________________________
______________________________________________
______________________________________________
______________________________________________
______________________________________________
Description of Problem: _____________________________________________
______________________________________________
______________________________________________
______________________________________________
______________________________________________
Return Instructions
Step 1:
Obtain an RMA number from your distributor.
Step 2:
Fill out this form and include proof of purchase receipt if product is under
warranty.
Step 3:
Pack this form, the sign, keyboard and transformer in the original carton (or a
suitable replacement). Please write the RMA number on the outside of the
package. Any damage to the product during shipment is the responsibility of the
freight company or the owner of the sign.
Step 4:
Ship the package, postage/shipping prepaid to:
Adaptive Micro Systems, LLC.
Attn: RMA No. __________
7840 North 86th Street
Milwaukee, WI 53224
PLEASE WRITE THE RMA NUMBER ON THE LABEL OF THE SHIPPING BOX.
THANK YOU.
v
vi
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
General information
A Remote Control can be used to turn a sign off and on or to clear its
internal memory. Also, a Remote Control can set a sign’s time and date
and its serial address.
However, a Remote Control’s most important—and most used—
purpose is the creation of text messages and graphic images on a sign.
To show you how to use a Remote Control, this manual presents
practical, everyday examples.
NOTE: Some signs (or a network of signs) can also be programmed
using a personal computer and special software. (See the
document Networking Alpha Signs manual, part number
9700-0112, for more detailed information.)
Remote Control description
A Remote Control is a hand-held keyboard used to operate an Alpha
sign. From its front, a Remote Control emits an infrared light which
controls many of the functions of an Alpha sign.
A Remote Control needs four AAA batteries to operate.
Point this end of the Remote Control at a sign.
Press PROGRAM to put
the sign into
programming mode.
(This mode is used to
set the date and time,
type in messages, etc.)
ON - OFF
SOUND
PROGRAM
RUN
APPEND CURSOR SPECIAL FONT
SCROLL FLASH
ROLL
WIPE
1
2
3
4
AUTO
SPEED
TIME
DOT
7
8
9
0
B
A
¢
#
N
:
T
S
?
’
Use one of the SHIFT keys
to access these white
functions (like ROLL and
TIME) . . .
*
K
L
-
R
Q
.
,
V
F
E
P
U
6
+
/
”
COLOR
ROTATE
5
&
J
O
WIDTH
HOLD
SELECT
D
%
I
=
>
M
;
C
$
H
G
<
To turn the sign off or
on, hold down SHIFT
and then press
PROGRAM.
Press RUN twice to
exit programming
mode.
REMOTE CONTROL
W
X
. . . and these white
characters (like # and !).
!
Y
Z
SHIFT
INSERT
SPACE
RETURN
CAPS
SHIFT
BACK
ADV
DELETE
Figure 1: Infrared (IR) Remote Control keyboard
General information
1
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Using the Remote Control with a sign
To program a sign with a Remote Control:
• Stand at least 5 feet and no more than 30 feet from the sign.
• Make sure nothing reflective is in front of the sign. (Light from
the sign’s display that is reflected back can interfere with the
Remote Control.)
• If nearby fluorescent lights interfere with the Remote Control,
you may have to relocate either the lights or the sign.
30
30
o
o
30
o
30
o
If a sign is this far from the floor...
...then hold a Remote Control this far
away:
10 feet
from 10 to 30 feet
15 feet
from 19 to 30 feet
20 feet
from 25 to 30 feet
Figure 2: Using a Remote Control with a sign
2
General information
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Basic sign operation
Turning a sign on and off
When you plug in the sign’s power supply, the sign starts up
automatically, and unplugging the power supply turns the sign off.
However, instead of unplugging a sign, there is another way to turn a
sign off:
Using the Remote Control, hold down SHIFT and then press PROGRAM to
turn a sign off and on.
NOTE: Messages that you have programmed into the sign will not be
lost when you turn a sign off. Messages will be retained for
up to 30 days if the sign is not powered.
Basic sign operation
3
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Setting a sign’s time and date
Once set, a sign will remember the time and date unless the sign is
unplugged or interrupted by a power loss. However, models equipped
with battery-backed clocks will continue to keep accurate time.
Step
When you do this...
1
Press PROGRAM.
2
Press BACK until SET TIME AND DAY or SET
TIME appears.
3
Press ADV.
4
Press D to set the day of the week.
Press H to set the hour.
Press M to set the minute.
You see this...
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
SET TIME
AND DAY
SET TIME USING D,H & M
MONDAY
1:07 PM
SET TIME USING D,H & M
MONDAY
1:07 PM
NOTE: Press SELECT to change from 12-hour
(AM/PM) to 24-hour mode (0 - 23).
5
Press BACK until SET DATE appears.
SET
DATE
SET USING D,M & Y
6
Press ADV.
THEN
JAN 26, 2001
Press D to set the correct day.
Press M to set the month.
Press Y to set the year.
7
JAN 26, 200
NOTE: Press SELECT to display the date in
different formats—for example, JAN
26, 2001 or 1/26/01, or 26/1/01, etc.
8
4
After setting the date and time, press RUN twice to return to normal operation.
Basic sign operation
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Clearing a sign’s memory
NOTE: Clearing a sign’s memory erases all messages, graphics, and
the password that have been programmed into the sign.
Step
When you do this...
1
Press PROGRAM.
2
Press BACK until CLEAR MEMORY appears.
You see this...
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
CLEAR
MEMORY
WARNING!
*******
3
Press ADV.
THEN
CLEAR
ALL? Y/N
4
Press Y to clear the sign’s memory. The sign will return to normal operation and display a series
of demo messages.
Basic sign operation
5
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Setting a sign’s password
Some signs allow you to set a personal password to protect your
messages and graphics from tampering by others.
NOTE: DON’T FORGET YOUR PASSWORD! If you do, you won’t
be able to operate the sign.
However, if you do forget the password, see “What to do when
you forget a sign’s password” on page 7.
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
1
Press PROGRAM.
2
Press BACK until SET PASSWORD appears.
3
Press ADV.
SET PASSWORD? Y/N
4
Press Y to set a password.
ENTER 6 CHARACTERS
Type a 6-character password. (Only asterisks
will appear on the sign as you type.)
******
SET
PASSWORD
THEN
Re-type the password when prompted.
RE-ENTER THE 6
THEN
5
CORRECT will appear if you entered the same
password.
CORRECT
THEN
If you failed to type the same password,
ERROR will appear, and you’ll have to start
over from Step 1.
6
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
Basic sign operation
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
6
Press RUN twice.
PASSWORD RUN? Y/N
Press Y to password protect the sign.
SECURE
THEN
7
NOTE: If you select N, then a password will
not be needed when you press
PROGRAM.
The sign will return to normal operation.
Now, whenever you press PROGRAM, you’ll
have to type the password you just entered.
What to do when you forget a sign’s password
Step
1
When you do this...
Press PROGRAM.
You see this...
ENTER PASSWORD
******
2
Hold down SHIFT and press L six times.
THEN
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
3
Enter a new password. (See “Setting a sign’s password” on page 6.)
How to delete a sign’s password
If you no longer want to be prompted to password protect a sign, you
must clear the sign’s memory in order to delete the password. To do this,
see “Clearing a sign’s memory” on page 5.
Basic sign operation
7
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Sound control
Remote Control sounds
On some signs, whenever you press a Remote Control key, the sign
will beep. To turn this feature off (or on again), hold down SHIFT and
press RUN.
NOTE: On some signs, you will first have to press PROGRAM, then
hold down SHIFT and press RUN.
Putting sounds in a message
In addition to text and graphics, you can also place sounds in a
message:
NOTE: Sounds can not be placed in one-line signs.
Step
When you do this...
1
Press PROGRAM.
2
Press ADV.
3
Type THIS IS 1 BEEP
You see this...
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
:
:
A]
[AUT]THIS IS 1 BEEP
A]
The [AUT], which stands for Automode, will
appear automatically when you start typing.
4
To add a beep, press SPECIAL.
[AUT]THIS IS 1 BEEP
SPECIAL
[AUT]THIS IS 1 BEEP[BP3]
A]
5
Then press B.
[BP3] means that you’ll hear 3 beeps when
this message is displayed. Press SELECT
to change to [BP1] for a single beep.
6
8
Press RUN twice. The message will be
displayed and 1 beep will sound.
THIS IS 1 BEEP
Basic sign operation
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Setting a sign’s serial address
The serial address is a number that you can assign to a sign.
Typically, this feature would be used for a sign that is connected to other
signs on a network. Giving a unique serial address to a sign allows you to
send messages to that particular sign.
See the document Network Configurations (part number 9708-8046)
for more detailed information on networking signs.
Step
When you do this...
1
Press PROGRAM.
2
Press BACK until SET SERIAL ADDRESS or
SET SERIAL appears.
3
Press ADV.
You see this...
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
SET SERIAL
ADDRESS
SERIAL ADDRESS = 00
Type a number, like 10.
4
NOTE: A serial address is actually a number
from 0 to 255 in hexadecimal (00 to
FF). However, in typical use entering
a number from 00 to 99 is fine.
SERIAL ADDRESS = 10
NOTE: When a sign leaves the factory, its
serial address is set to 00.
5
Press RUN twice to set the new serial address and return the sign to normal operation.
Basic sign operation
9
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Transferring a sign’s memory from one sign to another
You can transfer the messages from the memory of one sign to the
memory of any another signs by completing the following steps.
NOTE: To complete the transfer of memory from one sign to other
signs, all signs must be connected together and all must be
set to with the RS485 jumper. For further information on
connecting signs, see the Network Configurations Manual,
pn 9708-8046.
Step
When you do this...
1
Press PROGRAM.
2
Press SPECIAL.
You see this...
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
:
SPECIAL
10
:
3
Press D.
4
The sending sign transmits all messages to the receiving sign(s) and then resumes displaying
messages as programmed.
SENDING
Basic sign operation
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Beginning text messaging
This section shows you how to start creating messages on your sign.
Though a 2-line sign is used in all the examples, the differences
between using a 2-line sign and using a 1-line or other type of sign are
minor. (For more information, see “Appendix B — Understanding the
cursor and line positions” on page 59.)
Example 1 — Using upper and lowercase in 1 and 2-line
messages
In this first example, you’ll display the text THIS IS YOUR FIRST
MESSAGE on both lines of the sign, like this:
THIS IS YOUR FIRST
MESSAGE
Your first message
will look like this.
. . . and then the text This is your second message on just the bottom line:
This is your second
Step
1
When you do this...
However, your second
message will just use
the bottom line of the
sign.
You see this...
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
Press PROGRAM.
:
A]
2
Press ADV.
“A” is the file
name of
your
message
:
These dots are called the cursor. When
the cursor is on both lines (like here), it
means that the sign will try to display
your entire message on both lines of the
sign.
For more information on the cursor, see
“Appendix B — Understanding the
cursor and line positions” on page 59.
Beginning text messaging
11
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
[AUT]T
Type THIS IS YOUR
FIRST MESSAGE
3
Note:
If you make a
mistake while
typing, press
DELETE to
erase a letter.
A]
[AUT], which stands for Automode, will
appear as you type your first character.
Automode automatically displays your
message in different formats.
Your message
should look like this
when you’re done
typing.
IS YOUR FIRST MESSAGE
A
A]
THIS IS YOUR FIRST
MESSAGE
4
Press RUN twice.
Because Automode [AUT] was used in your message (see
Step 3), the text of your message will be displayed in a variety
of formats. For example, one of the formats (or modes) called
Scroll moves your message from the bottom to the top of the
sign.
Now that the first message is done, we’ll enter a second message which contains upper and lowercase characters.
5
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
Press PROGRAM again.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE ?
6
Press SELECT.
The A changes to a question mark
(?) after pressing SELECT.
:
B]
7
:
Press B.
“B” is now the file name of your second message. If you pressed
A instead of B, you would have written over the first message.
12
Beginning text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
8
Press CURSOR until the
sign’s cursor is on the
bottom line.
B]
:
The cursor should end up here.
Type T
9
Press CAPS to switch to
lowercase letters.
Type his is your second
message
B]s is your second message
Your message should look like this
when you’re done typing.
This is your second
THEN
message
10
Press RUN twice.
You should notice two things:
• This message only appears on one line. (This
is because the cursor was positioned on the
bottom line in Step 8.)
• The first message doesn’t appear at all.
(We’ll fix this in the following example.)
Beginning text messaging
13
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 2 — Displaying messages in file name order
(A, B, C, etc.)
Once you’ve programmed messages into the sign, you may want to
set the order or sequence in which messages appear. This method will
display messages by their file name (A, B, C, etc.) in the order you set
(C, B, A, for example.) If you do not set the sequence, the messages will
appear in alphabetical order.
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
This example continues where Example 1 left off.
This example assumes that there are two messages (files A and B) in the sign:
File A = THIS IS YOUR FIRST MESSAGE
File B = This is your second message
1
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE B
Press PROGRAM.
:
2
RUN
Press RUN.
:
TIME (or TIM) or DEMO (or
CAN) may also appear here.
If RUN appears on the
sign, go to the next
step.
3
:
RUN
:
RUN
B
Otherwise, press
SELECT until RUN
appears.
4
Press B.
This is your second
5
Press RUN.
THEN
message
You have just programmed the sign to run only message file B.
Next, we’ll program the sign to display message B first, then A.
14
Beginning text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
6
Press PROGRAM.
7
Press RUN.
8
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
:
If RUN appears on the
sign, go to the next
step.
RUN
:
RUN
:
RUN
BA
:
Press SELECT until
RUN appears.
9
Press B, then A.
The order of these letters determines the order in which
messages will appear on a sign.
(In this case, message B will appear first, then message A.)
File B
This is your second
THEN
message
10
Press RUN.
File A
THEN
THIS IS YOUR FIRST
MESSAGE
These two messages will keep being
displayed in this order until a new file
name order or a new message is entered.
Using this method, you can program the order
of some or all of the messages you’ve entered on a sign.
Beginning text messaging
15
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 3 — Displaying messages in time order
In Example 2, you set the order of messages by file name. However,
that method could not specify an exact time when a message would
appear.
In this example, we’ll show you how to make a message appear and
disappear at times you specify.
NOTE: Unless a sign has a battery-backed clock, displaying
messages in time order will only work so long as a sign is
powered. When a sign without a battery-backed clock loses
power, its internal clock becomes inaccurate and must be
reset (see “Setting a sign’s time and date” on page 4).
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
For this example, make sure that your sign’s internal clock has been accurately set.
(See “Setting a sign’s time and date” on page 4.)
This example continues where Example 1 left off.
This example assumes that there are two messages (files A and B) in the sign:
File A = THIS IS YOUR FIRST MESSAGE
File B = This is your second message
In this example, we’ll program the sign to display File A on Monday through Friday from 1:10 PM to 2:30 PM.
We’ll program the sign to always display FIle B.
16
1
Press PROGRAM.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
2
Press SELECT until B
appears on the sign.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE B
3
Hold down SHIFT and
press 9 for TIME.
ON ALWAYS is the default
setting for a message. A
message set to ON
ALWAYS will run
Since file B is already set up, we’ll go on to file A.
4
Press PROGRAM.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE B
5
Press SELECT until A
appears on the sign.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
TEXT B ON
ALWAYS
Beginning text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
6
TEXT A ON
ALWAYS
Hold down SHIFT and
press 9 for TIME.
First, we’ll select the ON time or when the message starts.
7
TEXT A ON
MO-FR 0:00
Press D (for day) until
MO-FR appears.
Press D to set the day, H for hour, and M for
minute (in 10-minute increments).
8
TEXT A ON
MO-FR 13:00
Press H (for hour) until
13:00 appears.
Hours must be represented in 24-hour or military
style. So 1:00 PM = 13:00, 2:00 PM = 14:00, etc.
9
TEXT A ON
MO-FR 13:10
Press M (for minute)
until 13:10 appears.
Minutes are in increments of 10.
TEXT A OFF
MO-FR 0:00
10
Press SELECT.
After setting the ON time, we’ll select the
OFF time or when the message stops.
11
Repeat Steps 7, 8, and 9 to set an OFF time (a time like 13:20, 13:30, etc.)
This message
should only
appear
between the
ON and OFF
times you set.
Beginning text messaging
THEN
message
Press RUN twice.
File A
12
File B
This is your second
This message
should appear
continuously.
THIS IS YOUR FIRST
MESSAGE
17
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 4 — Changing the text of an existing message
After typing in a message, you may want to add or remove text from
it. The following is an example of this common situation:
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
This example continues where Example 2 left off.
This example assumes that there are two messages (files A and B) in the sign:
File A = THIS IS YOUR FIRST MESSAGE
File B = This is your second message
and
that File A, then File B is displayed.
In this example, we’ll change File A and File B to the following:
File A = THIS IS YOUR FIRST MESSAGE, BUT NOW IT’S LONGER
File B = This is the second message
1
Press PROGRAM.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
2
Press SELECT until B
appears on the sign.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE B
3
Press ADV until the
space after your
appears.
B]
[AUT]This is your
We’re going to delete your and replace it with the.
4
5
Press DELETE until your
(and the space after it)
are erased.
B]
[AUT]This is
INSERT
[AUT]This is
Press INSERT.
Text you type now will be inserted
here—after the space following is.
6
18
Type the
(and then SPACE).
INSERT
[AUT]This is the
Beginning text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
7
Press INSERT to turn
text insertion off.
8
Press ADV until the first
few letters of second
appear.
B]
[AUT]This is the
B]
[AUT]This is the sec
the has replaced your
Press APPEND to go to
the end of the message.
9
B] s is the second message
DON’T OMIT THIS
STEP.
10
Press RUN twice.
File B
This is the second
THEN
message
Next, we’ll add text to the end of File A.
11
Press PROGRAM.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE B
12
Press SELECT until A
appears on the sign.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
13
Press APPEND.
S IS YOUR FIRST MESSAGE
A]
APPEND takes you to the end of a message.
14
To type a comma, hold
down SHIFT and press
W.
Beginning text messaging
S S YOUR FIRST MESSAGE,
A]
19
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
15
Press SPACE and then
type BUT NOW IT.
IRST MESSAGE, BUT NOW IT
A]
16
To type an apostrophe,
hold down SHIFT and
press V.
IRST MESSAGE, BUT NOW IT’
A]
17
Type S LONGER.
AGE, BUT NOW IT’S LONGER
A]
18
Press RUN twice.
File A
THIS IS YOUR FIRST
MESSAGE, BUT NOW IT’S
THEN
LONGER
20
Beginning text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 5 — Deleting messages
To delete all the messages in a sign, see “Clearing a sign’s memory”
on page 5.
However, if you only want to delete selected messages, then use the
method shown in this example.
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
This example continues where Example 4 left off.
This example assumes that there are two messages (files A and B) in the sign:
File A = THIS IS YOUR FIRST MESSAGE, BUT NOW IT’S LONGER
File B = This is the second message
In this example, we’ll delete File B.
1
Press PROGRAM.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
2
Press SELECT until B
appears on the sign.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE B
3
Press DELETE.
4
Press Y to delete the
file.
DELETE TEXT
FILE B ? Y/N
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
5
Press RUN twice.
File A
THIS IS YOUR FIRST
MESSAGE, BUT NOW IT’S
THEN
LONGER
Beginning text messaging
21
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Advanced text messaging
Before attempting the following, make sure you’re familiar with the
previous examples in the “Beginning text messaging” section of this
manual.
Example 6 — Displaying the time and date
NOTE: Your sign must have a battery-backed clock option installed
to keep accurate time. Without this option, a sign’s clock will
become inaccurate when the sign is turned off.
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
In this example, we’ll create a message that continuously displays the current time and date:
Rosco Advertising
1:43 PM
1
Delete all the messages currently stored in the sign.
(See “Clearing a sign’s memory” on page 5 or “Example 5 — Deleting messages” on page 21.)
2
Press PROGRAM.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
3
Press SELECT.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE ?
4
Press A.
:
A]
5
Press CURSOR to set
the cursor on the top
line.
:
:
A]
[RL ↑]
6
Hold down SHIFT and
press 1 for ROLL.
A]
This stands for Roll mode.
22
Advanced text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
[RL ↓]
A]
7
Press SELECT to
change the Roll
direction to ↓
8
Type T
Press SELECT to change the Roll direction:
[RL↑] = Roll up a message
[RL↓] = Roll down a message
[RL ←] = Roll a message to the left
[RL →] = Roll a message to the right
[RL ><] = Roll a message in from both sides of the sign
[RL <>] = Roll a message out from the middle of the sign
[RL ↓]T
A]
Using CAPS to switch
between uppercase and
lowercase letters, type
the following:
he current time at
Rosco Advertising
ime at Rosco Advertising
A]
9
NOTE: This message
is one line of
text. Don’t use
RETURN to put
carriage
returns in the
message.
10
11
12
Press CURSOR until the
cursor appears on the
bottom line.
A]
Hold down SHIFT and
press 1 for ROLL.
A]
Press SELECT until the
Roll direction changes
to →
ime at Rosco Advertising
:
ime at Rosco Advertising
[RL ↑]
ime at Rosco Advertising
A]
[RL →]
We’ll make the time roll to the right.
Advanced text messaging
23
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
13
Press WIDTH to make
wide characters for the
time.
ime at Rosco Advertising
[RL →][WID]
A]
This will display the time in wide letters.
14
Hold down SHIFT and
press 9 for TIME.
ime at Rosco Advertising
A]][WID]11:35
AM
This inserts the current time.
Hold down SHIFT and
press 1 for ROLL.
15
Then press SELECT to
until the Roll direction
changes to ←
ime at Rosco Advertising
A] ]11:35
AM[RL ←]
We’ll make the date roll to the left.
ime at Rosco Advertising
16
Press WIDTH to turn off
wide characters.
A]:35
AM[RL ←][SLM]
[SLM] means the following characters won’t be wide.
Now we’ll put the date into our message.
17
Press SPECIAL.
ime at Rosco Advertising
SPECIAL 35
AM[RL ←][SLM]
ime at Rosco Advertising
18
Press M.
A][SLM]MAY
1,
2000
Pressing SPECIAL and M inserts the current date into a message.
24
Advanced text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
The current time at
will roll down into line 1
The current time at
THEN
Rosco Advertising
will roll down into line 1
19
Press RUN twice to see
the message.
Rosco Advertising
THEN
The current time
(in wide letters)
will roll into line 2
from the left
Rosco Advertising
11:37 AM
THEN
The current date
(in normal letters)
will roll into line 2
from the right
Advanced text messaging
Rosco Advertising
MAY 1,2000
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Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 7 — Creating a news program on a sign
Your sign can serve as an electronic bulletin board providing
company news on a more timely basis than a traditional printed
newsletter.
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
In this example, we’ll create a sample company news program using the following format:
SALES NEWS
Record January sales
1
Delete all the messages currently stored in the sign.
(See “Clearing a sign’s memory” on page 5 or “Example 5 — Deleting messages” on page 21.)
2
Press PROGRAM.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
3
Press SELECT.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE ?
4
Press A.
:
A]
5
Press CURSOR to set
the cursor on the top
line.
:
:
Move the cursor
here.
A]
First, we’ll place a fireworks graphic in message file A:
6
:
Press SPECIAL.
SPECIAL
[SPC]X
7
Press X.
A]
[SPC]X = fireworks graphic
Press RUN twice to see the fireworks graphic.
8
26
NOTE: In addition to the fireworks graphic, there are several others that you can use in
messages.
See “Appendix A — Modes, fonts, colors, and graphics on signs” on page 55.
Advanced text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Next, we’ll create sales news in message file B:
9
Press PROGRAM.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
10
Press SELECT.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE ?
11
Press B.
:
B]
12
13
Press CURSOR to set
the cursor on the top
line.
:
:
B]
:
Press SPECIAL.
SPECIAL
[SPC]2
14
Press 2.
B]
[SPC]2 = Snow mode
15
[SPC]SALES NEWS
Type SALES NEWS
B]
[SPC]SALES NEWS
16
Press CURSOR.
B]
:
The cursor should now be on line 2.
17
Hold down SHIFT and
then press 6 for
ROTATE.
Advanced text messaging
[SPC]SALES NEWS
B]
[ROT]
27
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
18
19
20
Using CAPS and SHIFT
when needed, type
Record July sales -Widget orders reached
2.5 million this month.
Hold down SHIFT and
then press 6 for
ROTATE.
Using CAPS and SHIFT
when needed, type New
manager -- Mary Jones
promoted to Eastern
Region Sales VP.
[SPC]2SALES NEWS
B]
.5 million this month.
B]
llion this month.[ROT]
B]
stern Region Sales VP.
[SPC]2SALES NEWS
On a 2-line sign:
SALES NEWS remains
on the top line while the
rest of the message
rotates across the
bottom line.
SALES NEWS
Record July sales –
21
Press RUN twice to see
what message B looks
like.
On a 1-line sign:
SALES NEWS
Record
SALES NEWS is pushed off
the sign when the rest of the
message starts rotating in.
Next, we’ll create birthday announcements in message file C:
22
Press PROGRAM.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE B
23
Press SELECT.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE ?
24
Press C.
:
C]
25
26
Press CURSOR to set
the cursor on the top
line.
:
:
C]
:
Press SPECIAL.
SPECIAL
28
Advanced text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
[SPC]5
27
Press 5.
C]
[SPC]5 = Slide across mode
28
[SPC]5BIRTHDAYS
Type BIRTHDAYS
C]
[SPC]5BIRTHDAYS
29
Press CURSOR.
C]
:
The cursor should now be on line 2.
30
31
32
33
Hold down SHIFT and
then press 1 for ROLL.
C]
Using CAPS and SHIFT
when needed, type the
first name: Tom Jones
C]
[RL ↑]Tom Jones
Hold down SHIFT and
then press 1 for ROLL.
C]
[RL ↑]Tom Jones[RL ↑]
C]
[RL ↑]Mary Smith
Using CAPS and SHIFT
when needed, type the
second name: Mary
Smith
[SPC]5BIRTHDAYS
[RL ↑]
[SPC]5BIRTHDAYS
[SPC]5BIRTHDAYS
[SPC]5BIRTHDAYS
On a 2-line sign:
BIRTHDAYS
Tom Jones
34
Press RUN twice to see
the message.
On a 1-line sign:
Tom Jones
Advanced text messaging
BIRTHDAYS remains
on the top line while
the names roll up.
BIRTHDAYS is pushed
off the sign when the
first name rolls up.
29
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Finally, we’ll create the news program by making the message files display one after the other.
We’ll start the news program with the fireworks (message file A),
display people’s birthdays (message file C),
and then the sales news (message file B).
35
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE C
Press PROGRAM.
:
36
Press RUN.
RUN
:
TIME (or TIM) or DEMO (or CAN) may also appear here.
If RUN appears on the
sign, go to the next
step.
37
:
RUN
:
RUN
ACB
Otherwise, press
SELECT until RUN
appears.
38
Type the order of the
message files: A, C, B.
Press RUN to see the completed news program.
39
First you should see the fireworks (file A), then the BIRTHDAYS (file C), and finally the SALES
NEWS
(file B). These three message files will keep repeating until you enter a new message or reset
their order.
NOTE: You can also schedule a message to run at a particular time. For example, you may
want to display a message only during lunch time. In this case you might schedule it
to run from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM. (See “Example 3 — Displaying messages in time
order” on page 16.)
30
Advanced text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 8 — Using fonts
Fonts are the way characters are displayed on a sign. In the world of
printing and publishing, fonts are given names like Times or Helvetica
and qualities like serif or sans serif, font size (like 12 point or 14 point),
bold or italic, etc.:
This is Times — a serif font.
This is Helvetica — a sans serif font.
Depending on what sign you’re using, there may be many or perhaps
just a few fonts available. However, most signs have at least one serif
font—called [SF7]—and two sans serif fonts—called [SS5] and [SS7]:
Serif font
This is SF7
Sans serif
fonts
(SS7 is what
you normally
see on a
sign.)
This is SS7
Upper and
lowercase letters
can be used with
this font.
Upper and
lowercase letters
can be used with
this font.
Only upper letters
can be used with
this font.
THIS IS SS5
Also, any of the sign’s fonts can be made bold (or wider) by using the
WIDTH button.
To determine what fonts are available on your sign, see “Appendix A
— Modes, fonts, colors, and graphics on signs” on page 55.
The following examples demonstrate how to use fonts on a sign:
Using the most common fonts
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
1
Delete all the messages currently stored in the sign.
(See “Clearing a sign’s memory” on page 5 or “Example 5 — Deleting messages” on page 21.)
2
Press PROGRAM.
3
Press ADV.
Advanced text messaging
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
:
A]
:
31
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
4
5
6
Press CURSOR to set
the cursor on the top
line.
Hold down SHIFT and
press 5 for HOLD.
Press FONT.
[HLD]
A]
[HLD][SF7]
A]
[HLD][SF7]This
7
8
Using CAPS and SHIFT
when needed, type This
is SF7
Press CURSOR to set
the cursor on the
bottom line.
Move the cursor
here.
:
A]
is SF7
A]
As you type, the font you selected
will appear as it will actually be
displayed on the sign.
[HLD][SF7]This
is SF7
A]
:
Move the cursor here.
9
Hold down SHIFT and
press 5 for HOLD.
[SF7]This
is SF7
A]
[HLD]
This is SF7
10
Press WIDTH.
A]
[HLD][WID]
[WID] = wide text
11
12
Using CAPS and SHIFT
when needed, type This
is wide SF7
A]
Press WIDTH again.
A]
ide
e
SF7
SF7[SLM]
[SLM] = slim (or normal) text
32
Advanced text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
13
14
Using CAPS and SHIFT
when needed, type
Normal SF7
A]
F7[SLM]Normal
SF7
Press RUN twice to see what you’ve typed.
Now we’ll demonstrate the two sans serif fonts—[SS5] and [SS7]:
15
Press PROGRAM.
16
Press ADV.
17
18
19
Press CURSOR to set
the cursor on the top
line.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
:
A]
:
Move the cursor
here.
:
A]
Hold down SHIFT and
press 5 for HOLD.
A]
Press FONT until [SS5]
appears.
A]
[HLD]
[HLD][SS5]
Type THIS IS SS5
20
[HLD][SS5]This is SS5
(Only uppercase letters
can be used with the
SS5 font.)
A]
21
Press CURSOR to set
the cursor on the
bottom line.
22
Hold down SHIFT and
press 5 for HOLD.
[HLD][SS5]This is SS5
23
Press FONT until [SS7]
appears.
[SS5]This is SS5
Advanced text messaging
[HLD][SS5]This is SS5
A]
:
A]
A]
Move the cursor
here.
[HLD]
[HLD][SS7]
33
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
24
Using CAPS and SHIFT
when needed, type This
is SS7
25
Press RUN twice to see what you’ve typed.
A]
[HLD][SS7]This is SS7
Using the largest fonts
Once in a while you may want to use very large fonts in order to
create a message that fills all the lines of a sign. (On a 1-line sign this
always happens because there is only a single line.)
To use the largest fonts available on a sign, position the sign’s cursor
to the middle of the display and then select the font:
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
1
Delete all the messages currently stored in the sign.
(See “Clearing a sign’s memory” on page 5 or “Example 5 — Deleting messages” on page 21.)
2
Press PROGRAM.
3
Press ADV.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
:
A]
4
Press CURSOR until the
sign’s cursor moves to
the middle.
5
Select the HOLD mode.
(Hold down SHIFT and
press 5.)
6
Press FONT until the
largest font size
appears.
A]
A]
:
:
[HLD]
[HLD][SF16]
34
A]
On a Series 4000 sign, [SF16] and [SS16] are the largest fonts.
(On a Series 7000 sign, the largest fonts are [SF24] and
[SS24].)
Advanced text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
7
Type THIS IS BIG!
8
Press RUN twice to
display the message.
Advanced text messaging
THIS IS BIG!
A]
THIS IS BIG!
35
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 9 — Using colors
If your sign has multiple colors available, then you can use different
colors in your message.
NOTE: A sign with a “C” in its name, like 4120C, has color
capabilities.
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
1
Delete all the messages currently stored in the sign.
(See “Clearing a sign’s memory” on page 5 or “Example 5 — Deleting messages” on page 21.)
2
Press PROGRAM.
3
Press ADV.
4
Select SCROLL. (Hold
down SHIFT and press
3.)
5
Press COLOR until
[RB1] (Rainbow 1) is
selected. (Each letter
will appear in several
colors.)
6
Type This is Rainbow 1
7
Select SCROLL again.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
:
A]
:
A]
[SCR]
A]
[SCR][RB1]
A]
RB1]This is Rainbow 1
A]
[SCR]
A]
[SCR][MIX]
A]
[SCR][MIX]This is MIX
8
Press COLOR until
[MIX] appears. (Each
letter will appear in a
different color.)
9
Type This is MIX
10
Press RUN twice to see the two colored messages scroll up from the bottom of the display.
36
Advanced text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 10 — Speeding up and slowing down messages
Signs have the option of speeding up or slowing down how fast
messages move. Once you pick a mode, like Rotate, a speed can be
selected by selecting SPEED on the Remote Control. Then press SELECT
to change the speed:
[SP1]
[SP2]
[SP3]
[SP4]
[SP5]
Slowest
speed
[NHL]
Fastest
speed
Here’s an example of how to vary the speed of the Scrolling mode of
a message:
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
1
Delete all the messages currently stored in the sign.
(See “Clearing a sign’s memory” on page 5 or “Example 5 — Deleting messages” on page 21.)
2
Press PROGRAM.
3
Press ADV.
4
Select SCROLL. (Hold
down SHIFT and press
3.)
5
Select SPEED. (Hold
down SHIFT and press
8.)
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
:
A]
:
A]
[SCR]
A]
[SCR][SP4]
[SP4] is the default speed setting.
6
7
Press SELECT until
[SP5] (fast) appears.
A]
[SCR][SP5]
Type SCROLL = SPEED
5
A]
[SP5]SCROLL = SPEED 5
Advanced text messaging
37
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
8
Select SCROLL again.
9
Select SPEED again.
10
Press SELECT until
[NHL] appears.
(No Hold = very fast.)
11
Type SCROLL = NO
HOLD
12
Press RUN twice to see your message. The first part of the message should scroll up slowly,
and the second part of the message should scroll up without pausing at all.
38
A]
[SCR]
A]
[SCR][SP5]
A]
[SCR][NHL]
A]
[NHL]SCROLL = NO HOLD
Advanced text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 11 — Special effects with modes (Trailing modes)
Modes, like Rotate and Roll, are used to create special effects with
messages. Typically modes are used once at the beginning of a message.
However, a mode can also be placed at the end of a message (called a
“trailing mode”) to create a special effect.
NOTE: The following can not be used as a trailing mode: Condensed
Rotate, Scroll, Slide, Snow, and Spray.
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
1
Delete all the messages currently stored in the sign.
(See “Clearing a sign’s memory” on page 5 or “Example 5 — Deleting messages” on page 21.)
2
Press PROGRAM.
3
Press ADV.
4
Hold down SHIFT and
press 4 for FLASH.
5
Type ATTENTION!
6
Hold down SHIFT and
press 1 for ROLL.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
:
A]
A]
A]
A]
:
[FLS]
[FLS]ATTENTION!
[RL ↑]
This is the trailing mode. Roll “trails” the first mode, Flash.
7
Type TRAILING MODE
8
Press RUN twice to see trailing mode in action. ATTENTION! should flash and then roll up the
screen.
Advanced text messaging
A]
TRAILING MODE
39
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 12 — International characters
International characters—like ü and é—can be included in messages.
NOTE: International characters can not be used with the small [SS5]
font.
The following table summarizes all the international characters that
can be used:
Type a Base Character, like A.
A
International
Characters
Base
Characters
A]
Then press SELECT to choose
an international character.
(Use the CAPS button on the Remote Control for the lowercase letters.)
A
C
E
I
N
O
U
â
Ç
é
ä
ç
ê
å
C
Ä
c
Y
?
!
$
ï
ñ
ô
î
Ñ
ö
ü
ÿ
¿
¡
¢
û
Y
?
!
ë
ì
N
£
ò
Ü
y
è
I
n
Ö
ú
ƒ
i
$
Å
É
ó
U
æ
E
o
u
Æ
e
O
á
¥
o
a
A
a
The following example shows how to use international characters in
a message:
Step
40
When you do this...
You see this...
1
Delete all the messages currently stored in the sign.
(See “Clearing a sign’s memory” on page 5 or “Example 5 — Deleting messages” on page 21.)
2
Press PROGRAM.
3
Press ADV.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
:
A]
:
Advanced text messaging
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
4
Using CAPS and SHIFT
when needed, type
Submit your re
5
Press SELECT until é
appears.
6
Type sume
7
Press SELECT until é
appears.
8
A]
A]
A]
[AVT]Submit your re
[AVT]Submit your ré
[AVT]Submit your résume
[AVT]Submit your résumé
A]
Press RUN twice to see your message.
Advanced text messaging
41
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Graphics
In addition to pre-programmed or “canned” graphics (see
“Animations available on signs” on page 57), you can create your own
custom graphics using DOTS files.
You can display a DOTS graphic that you create either by itself or
with text.
NOTE: After you create a DOTS graphic, to display it on your sign, the
DOTS graphic must be placed in a text file—even if you just
want to display the graphic all by itself.
Example 13 — Creating a movie marquee
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
In this example, we’ll create three graphics (or DOTS files)
and combine them with text to make a flashing marquee:
First you’ll create
these three
graphics files
(called DOTS
files A, B, C).
Then this text
will be added
after the three
graphic files.
1
Delete all the messages currently stored in the sign.
(See “Clearing a sign’s memory” on page 5 or “Example 5 — Deleting messages” on page 21.)
2
Press PROGRAM.
Graphics
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
42
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
PROGRAM
DOTS FILE A
3
Press BACK.
The name of your first DOTS graphics is A.
(The second one will be named B and the third one C.)
The blinking DOTS cursor keeps
track of where you’re drawing.
4
Press ADV.
Press Q to move the
DOTS cursor here.
REMOTE CONTROL
ON - OFF
SOUND
PROGRAM
RUN
APPEND CURSOR SPECIAL FONT
ROLL
5
Press Q until the DOTS
cursor is on the bottom.
WIPE
1
2
3
4
AUTO
SPEED
TIME
DOT
7
8
9
0
B
A
¢
#
<
N
M
:
T
S
?
’
6
*
K
L
-
R
Q
.
,
V
F
E
P
U
5
+
/
”
COLOR
ROTATE
&
J
O
WIDTH
HOLD
SELECT
D
%
I
=
>
;
C
$
H
G
W
X
These keys move the
DOTS cursor.
!
Y
Z
SHIFT
INSERT
43
SCROLL FLASH
SPACE
RETURN
CAPS
SHIFT
BACK
ADV
DELETE
Also, you can draw (or
erase) dots when you
hold down SHIFT and
press one of these
keys.
Graphics
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
6
Hold down SHIFT and
press L to draw a line
across the entire
bottom of the display.
SHIFT + L
Complete DOTS graphic
A by using E, J, and Q.
7
NOTE: Remember:
hold down
SHIFT with
these keys to
actually draw.
SHIFT + J
SHIFT
+E
SHIFT
+Q
8
Press RUN.
9
Then press Y to save
graphic A.
PROGRAM
DOTS FILE A
10
Press SELECT until a
question mark appears.
PROGRAM
DOTS FILE ?
11
Type B as the name of
the next graphics file.
PROGRAM
DOTS FILE B
DOTS graphic B
12
Repeat the previous
steps to draw graphics
B and C. (Both are just
smaller versions of
graphic A.)
Graphics
DOTS graphic C
44
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
NOTE:
In order to display a DOTS graphic, it must be placed in a text message.
In the following steps, we’ll create a text message and add the three DOTS graphics just created.
13
Return to the
PROGRAM TEXT FILE
display.
(Press BACK.)
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
14
Press SELECT until a
question mark appears.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE ?
15
Press A.
16
Press CURSOR until the
cursor is in the middle
of the display.
17
Hold down SHIFT and
press 4 for FLASH.
A]
18
Hold down SHIFT and
press 8 for SPEED.
A]
19
Press SELECT until
[SP5] appears. (This is
the fastest speed.)
20
Insert the first DOTS
graphic you created (file
A) by holding down
SHIFT and pressing 0.
:
A]
:
:
A]
[FLS]
A]
A]
[FLS][SP4]
[FLS][SP5]
[FLS][SP5][DOT]
A
The letter A is the name of the graphic file.
(Don’t worry if it’s a large letter like this.)
45
Graphics
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Insert the second DOTS
graphic by holding
down SHIFT and
pressing 0 again.
[DOT]
A]
A
Press SELECT.
21
Then press SELECT
until the letter B
appears.
Insert the final DOTS
graphic by holding
down SHIFT and
pressing 0 again.
A]
[SP5][DOT]
A [DOT] B
[DOT]
A]
A
Press SELECT.
22
Then press SELECT
until the letter C
appears.
P5][DOT]
A]
A[DOT] B[DOT] C
Now we’ll add the message Movie News after the three graphics:
23
Press FONT until [SS7]
appears.
OT]
A]
A[DOT] B [DOT]C [SS7]
[SS7] is the normal character font.
A [DOT]B [DOT]C[SS7]M
24
Type the letter M
T]
A]
25
Press FONT until [SS5]
appears.
[DOT]
A]
B[DOT]C[SS7]M[SS5]
[SS5] is the smallest character font.
26
Type ovie and then
press SPACE.
Graphics
B[DOT]C[SS7]M[SS5]OVIE
A]
46
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
27
Press FONT until [SS7]
appears.
28
Type the letter N
]
A]
29
Press FONT until [SS5]
appears.
S7]M[SS5]OVIE[SS7]N[SS5]
A]
30
Type ews
T]
A]
C[SS7]M[SS5]OVIE[SS7]
C[SS7]M[SS5]OVIE[SS7]N
M[SS5]OVIE[SS7]N[SS5]EWS
A]
31
47
Press RUN twice to
watch the marquee you
created.
Graphics
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 14 — Using multi-line graphics
The graphics you create will normally use all the lines of a display.
For example, a graphic created in a 2-line sign will typically use 2 lines, a
graphic created in a 3-line sign will typically use 3 lines, etc.
Multi-line graphics are easy to create and use. After you create a
graphic, simply place it in a text message in which the cursor is set to the
fill position (see “Appendix B — Understanding the cursor and line
positions” on page 59).
Combining text with a graphic is a little more complicated because
you have to make the graphic small using a special technique shown in
this example:
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
In this example, we’ll use a 2-line graphic and use it with a text message:
This small graphic is used twice in this example.
1
Delete all the messages currently stored in the sign.
(See “Clearing a sign’s memory” on page 5 or “Example 5 — Deleting messages” on page 21.)
2
Press PROGRAM.
3
Press BACK.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
PROGRAM
DOTS FILE A
The name of your DOTS graphics will be A.
The blinking DOTS cursor keeps track of where
you’re drawing.
4
Press ADV.
Graphics
48
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Press X to move a
vertical line across the
sign. This reduces the
size of the drawing area.
5
W moves this line left
(increases drawing
area)
X moves this line right
(reduces drawing
area)
Keep pressing X until
there are 8 dots
between the vertical line
and the end of the sign.
SHIFT + F
6
Draw the following
graphic using the keys
indicated.
SHIFT + Q
SHIFT + D
7
Press RUN twice.
PROGRAM
DOTS FILE A
8
Press BACK until
PROGRAM TEXT FILE
appears.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
9
Press SELECT until a
question mark appears.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE ?
The bottom row of
dots should be
blank.
:
10
Press A.
A]
:
We’ll leave the cursor as it is—in the fill
position.
11
49
Hold down SHIFT and
press 6 for ROTATE.
[ROT]
A]
Graphics
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
12
13
Hold down SHIFT and
press 0 to insert your
DOTS graphic.
[ROT][DOT]A
A]
The A is the file name of your DOTS
graphic.
Using CAPS and SHIFT
when necessary, type
Graphics!
[ROT][DOT]A Graphics!
A]
(Place a space before
and after Graphics!)
14
Hold down SHIFT and
press 0 to insert your
DOTS graphic again.
15
Press RUN twice to see
your graphic and text
message move across
the sign.
Graphics
[DOT]A
A]
50
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 15 — Deleting a graphic
If you want to delete an entire DOTS graphic file, use this example as
a guide:
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
This is a continuation of the previous example.
It assumes that the following is a graphic in DOTS file A:
This is the DOTS graphic used in “Example 14 — Using multi-line graphics” on
page 48.
51
1
Press PROGRAM.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
2
Press BACK.
PROGRAM
DOTS FILE A
3
Press SELECT.
PROGRAM
DOTS FILE ?
4
Type the letter of the
graphic you want to
delete. (In this case,
type A.)
5
Press Z.
6
Press Y to delete the
graphic. (Or N if you
don’t want to delete it.)
7
Press RUN four times to return to normal operation.
Graphics
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Example 16 — Using 1-line graphics
Graphics normally use the entire height or lines in a display. Unless
you’re using a 1-line sign like an Alpha 215, using a 1-line graphic with
text is a little tricky. However, in a multi-line sign like an Alpha 4120, you
can use 1-line graphics by “fooling” the sign:
Step
When you do this...
You see this...
In this example, we’ll create a 1-line graphic and use it with a text message:
This is a 1-line graphic that is used twice in this message.
1
Delete all the messages currently stored in the sign.
(See “Clearing a sign’s memory” on page 5 or “Example 5 — Deleting messages” on page 21.)
2
Press PROGRAM.
3
Press BACK.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
PROGRAM
DOTS FILE A
The name of your DOTS graphics will be A.
The blinking DOTS cursor keeps
track of where you’re drawing.
4
Press ADV.
Graphics
52
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Press X to move a
vertical line across the
sign. This reduces the
size of the drawing area.
W moves this line left
(increases drawing
area)
X moves this line right
(reduces drawing
area)
5
Keep pressing X until
there are 5 dots
between the vertical line
and the end of the sign.
SHIFT + L
6
Draw the following
graphic using the keys
indicated.
SHIFT + Q
SHIFT + E
The graphic
should be 7 dots
high.
SHIFT + J
7
Press RUN twice.
PROGRAM
DOTS FILE A
8
Press BACK until
PROGRAM TEXT FILE
appears.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
9
Press SELECT until a
question mark appears.
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE ?
10
Press A.
11
Press CURSOR until the
cursor is on the top line.
:
A]
:
:
A]
Move the cursor to the top line.
53
Graphics
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
12
Hold down SHIFT and
press 6 for ROTATE.
13
Hold down SHIFT and
press 0 to insert your
DOTS graphic.
[ROT]
A]
[ROT][DOT]A
A]
The A is the file name of your DOTS graphic.
14
Using CAPS and SHIFT
when necessary, type
Graphics!
[ROT][DOT]A Graphics!
A]
(Place a space before
and after Graphics!)
15
Hold down SHIFT and
press 0 to insert your
DOTS graphic again.
16
Press RUN twice to see
your graphic and text
message move across
the sign.
Graphics
[DOT]A
A]
54
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Appendixes
Appendix A — Modes, fonts, colors, and graphics on signs
Modes determine the way text and graphics move on a sign. For
example, the Rotate mode moves a message across a sign from right to
left. Fonts are the size and shape of text characters. Animations are preset
moving graphics which can be included with the message. For example,
included in the birthday announcement, you could insert the balloon
animation.
Modes available on signs
● ● ● ● ● ● ●
Alpha 220C
● ● ● ● ●
300 Series
● ● ● ● ● ● ●
Alpha 420
● ● ● ● ●
● ● ● ●
● ● ● ● ●
● ● ● ●
● ● ● ● ●
● ● ●
● ● ● ●
● ● ●
● ● ● 1
● ●
●
● ●
1 ●
● ● ●
● ●
● ● ● ●
● ● ●
● ●
● ● ● ● ● ● ●
●
● ●
● ● ●
● ●
● ● ● ●
7000 Series
● ● ● ● ● ● ●
●
● ●
● ● ●
● ●
● ● ● ●
Big Dot
● ● ● ● ● ● ●
● ● ● ●
● ● ●
● ●
● ● ● ●
Solar Series
● ● ● ● ● ● ●
●
● ● ●
● ●
● ● ● ●
1.
55
[WI <>] = Wipe Out (vertical)
Wipe
● ● ● ●
4000 Series
● ●
[WI ><] = Wipe In (vertical)
[WI <>] = Wipe Out (horizontal)
[WI ><] = Wipe In (horizontal)
[WI ] = Wipe: Up, Down, Left, or Right
[SPC]0 = Twinkle
[SPC]4 = Switch (half the display)
[SPC]4 = Switch
[SPC]7 = Starburst
[SPC]6 = Cycle Color Mode
[SPC]6 = Spray
[SPC]1 = Sparkle
[SPC]2 = Snow
[SPC]5 = Cycle Color Mode
[SPC]5 = Slide
[SCR] = Scroll
Rotate
[CRT] = Rotate Condensed
[ROT] = Rotate Standard
[RL <>] = Roll Out (vertical)
Roll
200 Series
[RL ><] = Roll In (vertical)
[RL <>] = Roll Out (horizontal)
[RL ><] = Roll In (horizontal)
[RL ] = Roll: Up, Down, Left, or Right
[SPC]3 = Interlock
[HLD] = Hold
[FLS] = Flash
[AUT] = Automode
Signs
Switch
Modes
The “Spray” mode is not available for the Alpha 420 Series, however it is an option in
the Alpha Messaging Software. If selected for an Alpha 420 sign, the “Cycle Color
Mode” will be used.
Appendixes
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Fonts and colors available on signs
Signs
Available
Colors for
Sign
[SS7] = 7 row sans serif
[SF7] = 7 row serif
[SS5] = 5 row sans serif
[WID] = Wide (bold) fonts
8
[SS5] = 5 slim
[SS7] = 7 slim
[SRF] = 7 fancy slim
[ST5] = 5 stroke
[ ST7] = 7 stroke
[STF] = 7 fancy stroke
[WD5] = 5 wide
[WD7] = 7 wide
[WDF] = 7 fancy wide
[WS5] = 5 stroke - wide
[WS7] = 7 stroke - wide
[WSF] = 7 fancy stroke - wide
[SDS] = 7 shadow
[SDF] = 7 fancy shadow
3
300 Series
[SS7] = 7 row sans serif
[SF7] = 7 row serif
[SS5] = 5 row sans serif
[WID] = Wide (bold) fonts
8
Alpha 420C
[SS5] = 5 slim
[SS7] = 7 slim
[SRF] = 7 fancy slim
[ST5] = 5 stroke
[ST7] = 7 stroke
[STF] = 7 fancy stroke
[WD5] = 5 wide
[WD7] = 7 wide
[WDF] = 7 fancy wide
[WS5] = 5 stroke wide
[WS7] = 7 stroke wide
[WSF] = 7 fancy stroke wide
[SDS] = 7 shadow
[SDF] = 7 fancy shadow
Alpha 420R
[SS5] = 5 slim
[SS7] = 7 slim
[SRF] = 7 fancy slim
[ST5] = 5 stroke
[ST7] = 7 stroke
[STF] = 7 fancy stroke
[WD5] = 5 wide
[WD7] = 7 wide
[WDF] = 7 fancy wide
[WS5] = 5 stroke wide
[WS7] = 7 stroke wide
[WSF] = 7 fancy stroke wide
3
[SS7] = 7 row sans serif
[SF7] = 7 row serif
[SS5] = 5 row sans serif
[WID] = Wide (bold) fonts
8
200 Series
220 C Series
Big Dot
Appendixes
Available Fonts
3
56
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
[SS24] = 24 row sans serif
[SF24] = 24 row serif
[SS15/16] = 15 row sans serif
[SF15/16] = 15 row serif
[SS7] = 7 row sans serif
[SF7] = 7 row serif
[SS5] = 5 row sans serif
[WID] = Wide (bold) fonts
[32H] = 7 high slim
[3AH] = 16 thick high fancy
characters
Solar Series
2
●
●
●
●
Special + Z = Cherry Bomb
●
●
●
Special + Y = Turbo Car
●
●
Special + Y = Balloon
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
Alpha 420
●
●
1
●
2
4000 Series
●
●
●
●
●
Big Dot
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
Solar Series
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
●
1
●
●
Special + X = Fireworks
●
●
Special + W = Fish
●
●
Special + W = Running Animal
300 Series
●
Special + V = Don’t Drink and Drive
●
Special + U = No Smoking
●
●
Special + S = Thank you
●
Special + B = Trumpet Playing Music
Special + 9 = Slot Machine
200 Series
Alpha 220C
Signs
Special + A = News Flash
Special + 8 = Welcome
Animations available on signs
7000 Series
●
●
●
●
●
None available
1. If the “Trumpet” animation is selected in the Alpha Messaging Software
for an Alpha 420 sign, the “Thank You” animation will be displayed. The
“Trumpet” animation is available for the Alpha 420 Series using the
Remote Control.
2. The “Don’t Drink and Drive” animation is not available for the Alpha 420
sign, however it is an option in the Alpha Messaging Software. If selected
for an Alpha 420 sign, no animation will be displayed.
57
Appendixes
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
How to create a graphic
1.
Press PROGRAM and then BACK:
PROGRAM
DOTS FILE A
REMOTE CONTROL
ON - OFF
SOUND
PROGRAM
RUN
APPEND CURSOR SPECIAL FONT
SCROLL FLASH
ROLL
WIPE
1
2
3
4
AUTO
SPEED
TIME
DOT
7
8
9
0
B
A
¢
#
N
M
:
;
T
S
?
I
”
’
U
*
K
P
L
-
3.
Use the direction keys (D, E, F, etc.) to move the DOTS
cursor in the direction indicated by the white arrows.
4.
To draw a line, hold down SHIFT while pressing one of
the direction keys. For example, to draw a diagonal line,
hold down the SHIFT while pressing R.
5.
When you’re done, press RUN twice.
6.
Press BACK until this display appears:
R
Q
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
.
,
V
Next, press ADV. The DOTS cursor will be in the upper
left hand corner of the sign.
F
E
+
/
O
6
&
J
=
>
COLOR
ROTATE
5
SELECT
D
%
H
G
<
C
$
WIDTH
HOLD
2.
W
X
!
Y
Z
SHIFT
SPACE
RETURN
CAPS
SHIFT
7.
Press SELECT and then a letter, like A:
:
INSERT
BACK
ADV
A]
DELETE
8.
:
Enter the DOTS file. For example, hold down SHIFT and
press 6 for ROTATE. Then hold down SHIFT and press 0
for DOT:
[ROT][DOT]A
A]
9.
Appendixes
Press RUN twice to display the graphic.
58
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Appendix B — Understanding the cursor and line positions
This appendix applies to multi-line and not single line signs.
The cursor is where text or graphics will appear on a sign and is
represented by a colon (:) on the sign. Press the CURSOR key to change
the cursor position.
Where the cursor is positioned will have an effect on how a text and
graphics (see the examples in the “Graphics” section) appear on a sign.
The following shows how cursor position affects how text appears:
How text will appear
(on a 2-line Series 4120)
Cursor position
This message won’t fit
Top
:
THEN
A]
on one line
This message won’t fit
Bottom
A]
:
THEN
on one line
This message won’t fit
THEN
on one line
Middle
A]
:
If large text like this appears,
This message
use FONT to reduce the font size.
Fill
59
:
A]
:
This message won’t fit
on one line
Appendixes
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Appendix C — Sign diagnostic test
Your sign can do a self test to determine if all the LEDs (or
incandescent lights) are working properly.
For all signs . . .
Step
When you do this...
1
Press PROGRAM.
2
Press BACK until SET
TIME AND DAY or SET
TIME appears.
3
Press ADV.
You see this...
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
SET TIME
AND DAY
SET TIME USING D,H & M
TUESDAY
Type TEST
or type TESTR
4
56
NOTE: Typing TEST
deletes all
messages in
the sign.
However, if you
type the letter
R immediately
after typing
TEST, your
messages will
be preserved.
1:10 PM
1:00 AM00
THEN
A series of test displays will appear.
Press PROGRAM to exit the self-test mode.
Appendixes
60
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Quick Reference Card
Message control keys
ON - OFF
SOUND
PROGRAM
RUN
APPEND CURSOR SPECIAL FONT
WIDTH
COLOR
To turn the sign on or off, hold down SHIFT and then press PROGRAM.
To enter messages, set the date and time, clear memory, etc., press
PROGRAM and then:
PROGRAM
TEXT FILE A
OR
PROGRAM
Press BACK to select one of the following:
DOTS FILE A — press ADV to create a graphic.
SET TIME AND DAY — press ADV to set the time and day.
SET DATE — press ADV to set the date.
SET SERIAL ADDRESS — press ADV to set the sign’s
address.
SET PASSWORD — press ADV to set a password to
prevent someone from changing the sign’s text.
Press ADV
to enter a
message in
file A.
RUN
Press twice to exit PROGRAM mode.
APPEND
When editing text, this takes you to the end of a message.
CURSOR
See “Appendix B — Understanding the cursor and line positions” on page 59.
SPECIAL
Used to set various text modes. (See “Display modes and special keys” on
page 62.)
FONT
Changes the font—[SF7], [SS5], or [SS7]—used in a message.
(See “Example 8 — Using fonts” on page 31.)
WIDTH
Changes the width of a font. Text that appears after [WID] will look bold.
To return to normal text, press WIDTH again and [SLM] will appear.
(See “Example 8 — Using fonts” on page 31.)
COLOR
Changes the color of text.
61
Quick Reference Card
Alpha Remote Control Programming Manual
Display modes and special keys
ROLL
WIPE
SCROLL FLASH
1
2
3
4
AUTO
SPEED
TIME
DOT
7
8
9
0
HOLD
ROTATE
5
6
SELECT
ROLL
Hold down SHIFT and press 1 to use the Roll mode in a message.
Use SELECT to change the direction of the roll.
WIPE
Hold down SHIFT and press 2 to use the Wipe mode in a message.
Use SELECT to change the direction of the wipe.
SCROLL
Hold down SHIFT and press 3 to use the Scroll mode in a message.
FLASH
Hold down SHIFT and press 4 to use the Flash mode in a message.
HOLD
Hold down SHIFT and press 5 to use the Hold mode in a message.
ROTATE
Hold down SHIFT and press 6 to use the Rotate mode in a message.
AUTO
Hold down SHIFT and press 7 to use the Auto mode in a message.
SPEED
Hold down SHIFT and press 8 to change the Speed in a message.
Use SELECT to set the speed (NHL = slowest, SP5 = fastest).
TIME
Hold down SHIFT and press 9 to include the time in a message.
Date
Press SPECIAL and then M to include the date in a message.
Twinkle
Press SPECIAL. Then press 0.
Sparkle
Press SPECIAL. Then press 1.
Snow
Press SPECIAL. Then press 2.
Interlock
Press SPECIAL. Then press 3.
Switch
Press SPECIAL. Then press 4.
Slide Across
Press SPECIAL. Then press 5.
Note: On the Alpha 220C, this mode is not available. Cycle Color is used.
Spray
Press SPECIAL. Then press 6.
Starburst
Press SPECIAL. Then press 7.
Carriage return
Press RETURN.
Half space
Hold down SHIFT and then press SPACE.
Temperature
Press SPECIAL. Then press T. Press SELECT to change between Celsius and
Fahrenheit. (The Temperature option is not available on all signs.)
Quick Reference Card
62
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