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The Tragedy in Japan

The disaster in Japan has rattled the world.   Hope Industrial Systems, Inc. expresses its sincere condolences to all those affected by the tragedy and asks that everyone keep the Japanese people in their thoughts.

Since the events in Japan, some customers have voiced concern about possible disruptions within our supply chain.  Hope Industrial Systems, Inc. does not have any direct manufacturing in Japan and we expect no related interruptions in our product delivery schedule.

Although we do not yet know how these events will effect the electronics market, we are confident in our ability to continue to provide our customers with the same reliable service and support. Our suppliers are keeping us up-to-date on anything that could potentially effect our products or deliveries.

We will let our customers know if any new information arises, but feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns.

A note about USB vs. PS2/Serial KVM Extenders for Industrial Touch Screens

Adderlink X2 Silver KVM

Adderlink X2 Silver KVM Extender

As we have mentioned in other posts, all of the KVM extender models we sell use the Adderlink X2 Silver internal electronics. We package this device in various industrial enclosures, but also sell it stand-alone.

This model uses PS2 for the remote keyboard/mouse devices, VGA for video, and Serial RS-232 for the touch screen. It’s no mistake that Serial and PS2 are chosen for pointing devices: these are simple protocols that are very easy to reliably extend over very long distances (up to 300m for this model). We sell USB adapters for both PS2 and Serial for users who do not have these native connections.

There is a sea of USB KVM extenders on the market, but in extensive testing we have found that the ability to work reliably with the Elo Accutouch touch screens we integrate can vary. To understand why, we need to look at the types of USB KVM extension typically found on the market: (more…)

New product prototype: Industrial Folding Keyboard

Our engineering group objected to posting pictures of such an early prototype, but we are really excited about our new keyboard design:  the industrial 4-position folding keyboard.

New Folding Keyboard Collage

New Industrial Folding Keyboard from Hope Industrial Systems

(more…)

Cables and KVM Extenders: Moving signals from the control room to the industrial touch screen

At Hope Industrial Systems, we like to say “we sell industrial monitors and touch screens, and things to help you buy our monitors and touch screens.” This means we carry a variety of mounts, keyboards, screen protectors, cabling options and other accessories so that a customer can build a full custom workstation based on our displays and touch screens.

Noticeably absent from this list is computers. While most of our customers connect our screens to some sort of PC, we at Hope Industrial do not sell PC’s because we believe that Tier 1 computer vendors, like Dell and HP, are better at making and supporting basic computers than we or any other industrial equipment manufacturers could ever be. There are a variety of reasons for this that we will save for another post.

The model that many of our customers follow is to put a desktop or server-class PC in a clean room out of harm’s way, exposing only our rugged displays and workstations to the rigors of the factory floor. To get the touch screen and video signals back to this clean room, we offer a variety of solutions: (more…)

Why do we use Resistive Touch Screens?

At Hope Industrial we have always used resistive sensors in our industrial touch screens. Specifically, we use 5-wire AccuTouch Resistive Touchscreens from Elo Touchsystems.

Touch Screen Sensor

AccuTouch Resistive Touch Screen Sensor

Resistive touch screens are made of at least two layers of flexible sheet (polycarbonate, in our case) laid atop a glass substrate. The sheets are coated with a resistive substance and are kept separated by tiny dots. When the touch screen is pressed, the flexible layers are pushed together, generating a change in resistance on both vertical and horizontal axis. This change in resistance is measured by sensors on the edges of the screen and the degree of change is measured as a touch point. Of course there are a variety of different touch technologies out there: Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW), Capacitive, Infrared, etc.

Interesting stuff, but the point of this post is not to compare and contrast these technologies (Wikipedia does a great job of that already), but to explain why we chose 5-wire resistive, and why we use Elo products specifically. (more…)

Sulfur Protection

Many industrial environments have invisible airborne substances that can damage electronic equipment.  Dust and moisture in the air are common enemies of electronic circuits.  There are other less common substances that are found in specific industrial environments that can be even more damaging.

Sulfur is one of those substances.  Airborne sulfur uses moisture in the air and is corrosive to the copper and silver commonly found in the conductive traces on circuit boards, in LCD circuits and resistive touch screens.  All of these components are found in the construction of an industrial lcd monitor. (more…)

Configuring a Fully-Enclosed Universal Mount Monitor – Part II

Pedestal Mounts

In this post we will continue breaking down the main components for completing a Universal Mount Monitor configuration. In Part I, we detailed the various cable exit cover plate options for our fully-enclosed Universal Mount Monitors. The next step to completing your configuration is deciding how you want to mount the monitor.

All of our Universal Mount Monitors have side yoke mount holes, as well as VESA mounting holes on the rear cover. You can mount the monitors virtually anywhere – on a pedestal anchored to the floor, attached to a wall, column or post, or even hung from the ceiling! (more…)

Configuring a Fully-Enclosed Universal Mount Monitor – Part I

Sometimes it can get confusing making sure you have all the right parts for a fully-enclosed Universal Mount Monitor configuration, so we’re going to break down the main components to help make your decision a little easier. A complete Universal Mount Monitor configuration consists of the base monitor, a cable exit cover plate, and a mounting option, as well as any additional options including keyboards, PC enclosures, and KVM extenders. Our rear cover plate options give users access to internal connections without compromising NEMA ratings. We offer a variety of cover plates to meet the needs of each customer, and we’ve described them in detail below (our mounting options will be described in Part II). (more…)

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