Hi~! Welcome to the Alpha Site of DCinemaCompliance. We invite you to cruise around, to see where we have gotten thus far with this QualityActive© tool. To do that you can sign in with the name and password of joew. Got that?? joew...for both.
30 Second Elevator Pitch
The DCinemaCompliance system is set of Quality Assurance tools for a cinema chain's projection and engineering facilities. It is open source and free, supported with a SaaS model.
— Technical setup and maintenance repository
— Complete equipment inventory system that includes all data required for FLMx interface
— DCPs and Checklists for employee Self-Compliance Monitoring
— Employee Training system for that purpose
One downloaded file installs the SQL database and GUI, then prompts for the management/regional and local multiplex layers of a chain.
Modeled on techniques derived from ISO 9000, employees are taught the skills and given the tools – lessons, checklists and DCPs – to self-certify their auditoriums for their customers and report back to the Office of the CEO that the picture / sound / safety experience of their auditoriums are at the levels promised.
Technicians benefit by getting timely, relevant reports from an interested and trained staff. Management benefits from regaining control of all their information in a secure, RESTful system from which they can share chosen information with distribution and other associates.
There are also more introductory packages such as the online forms and free DCPs and lessons at cinematesttools.com and consumer facing plays at Quality-Active.com
Video Presentation – with the idea that someone offering funding will want to know the state of the program.
The Basic Idea
Every business has people who use tools and systems that together are used to perform tasks. (If yours doesn't, you don't need to read any further.) These tools and systems need to be
- Setup properly,
- Used properly,
- Checked regularly to make certain that the devices are still set up properly and working within expected (and promised) parameters.
If the tool is computer-based, as many things are, its software (and firmware) needs to be updated and it needs to go through different backup and security steps, as well as be maintained.
The people need to know how to use these tools safely and securely.
There also needs to be a system that makes certain that these things are reviewed periodically, as appropriate to the person and system and tool.
That is the basic concept of this compliance system. There is a section that includes an Inventory of everything in the projection area. There is a section that has checklists that go through each piece of the inventory on a regular basis. There is a repository that stores setup information for the audio and picture calibrations.
ISO 9000/9001 – What's up with that?
The ISO is an organization that was set up to be the ultimate go to place for international standards. Although there have been standards since forever, they were often country-centric (or country and their former colonies-centric.) Now the opposite is happening. Countries are accepting the ISO standards and codifying them into their own laws. But somewhere along the way someone thought, 'Hey, these standards are all well and good, but how do we know if someone is following them?' And instead of setting up an ISO police force, they set up a methodolgy of Quality Managment – and that is what became the ISO 9000 system. According to the system, a company would say that they would follow the specifications appropriate for their industry at the quality level that they decide upon, and set up procedures to make certain that what leaves their shipping dock met that level. Not everyone had to make the super-ultra level, but they had to ensure that they met the level that they
For example, the case of the company that makes the paint that goes on the outside of the wire that descibes the type of wire that is inside the plastic case. In our example, that paint could be made to last 100 years in super tropical humidity and temperature, or could be made to last only 2 years in typical home use. They set up a set of processes that does one or the other or something in between, according to the ISO 9000 principles. That would include making the quality control chief a direct report to the big boss...no one in between can say, 'Hey, we are low on dosh this month so we can't give you the filters and correct stirring sticks to make the paint properly.'
This is fine. Everyone should tie into the ISO 9000 plan. Except, the set up and implementation takes a long time because everyone has to be real specific about what they are going to do at each step, and how they are going to verify each step is done correctly so that some customer on the other side of the planet can rest at night knowing they bought the right stuff. And, you can't just make one section of your establishment according to the principles. The entire facility has to be aligned with checklists that verify that the floor was the right level of clean and everything else in between.
Small companies don't have the time to let executives go off to get trained then make up a billion page set of policies and procedures for everything from the front door to the exit and all the seats in between. But, in the case of the cinema, it would be great to have the main operating engine – the projection room – get the kind of constant and organized care that will more likely give more hours of great customer experiences. Especially since there are nearly 100% fewer technical people going through the projection room on any given day. Especially since there is a million dollars of equipment in a 10 screen facility, with the precious 100s of millions of dollars worth of copyrighted materials from all those studios. Especially when there are other benefits too.
For example, one place for all the information to go. The router went out, and I have a new one. Did anyone back up the old setup file so I don't have to spend hours getting it set up again? Yes, it is downloadable from the inventory page for the router. The distributor wants to know the PEM file for the projector in 7 before they'll send us the key. Yes, it is downloadable from the inventory page for the projector. In fact, a report can be sent regularly to the distributor with all the information applicable for them and nothing else, because the inventory database is set up to be RESTful – a technical term meaning that the informatin is secure, but it is also able to be used in a sophisiticated way with people who you trust.
This page could go on and on, but it is time to get to the next section.
The areas of interest are;
- In "List Interface": Fill in each Auditorium's equipment list by hitting the Add+ button, then following the logical path of dropdown menus. Hundreds of equipment manufactrurers and products are already on the list.
- Eventually there will be a Master Manufacturers page that will be used to keep equipment lists current and categories complete...though we are well on our way.
- In the "Checklists" tab – yes, it needs a little smoothing to get the pull down right – there are the beginnings of Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly and Yearly tasks that need to be done in the facility or each auditorium.
- For example, you might decide that checking the Grounding Rod and the Screen Gain don't need to be checked but once a year, while checking each room's audio and picture quality needs to be done at least weekly, though on separate days of the week.
Not seen in this portion of the public demo are a few features:
- The entire process is created using Open Source Software packages, most predominantly MySQL, Joomla, Fabrik and Akeeba. The complete package that includes this DCinema specific work will also be free and Open Source...as in free beer.
- The package loads and walks the manager through the process of creating a layered Regional, then Local set of users and passwords...an Access Control List (ACL) in user interface parlance.
- The entire installation package is One-Click...well, it is actually, download the package, create a MySQL database/username/password, then start the install package with a single command.
- The database tool allows for different sections of infomation to be RESTful, so that it can interface with FLMx and other community tools.
- The database tool allows for CSV files to be imported to make already created user and equipment date to be quickly used.
- An API will be generated such that automated and manual test or monitoring equipment can be interfaced to this reporting tool. Fabrik, which we'll call the database GUI tool, incorporates the ability to have great (free and open soucre) graphics, such as these from http://nvd3.org/
More to come soon. We invite comments, offers to help and offers to help fund this Open Source project.
Finally, here are some links to some Screencasts made that show some of the work (unfortunately, Screencast requires Flash):
- Download and Inital Setup:
- Setting up the Regional Manager :
- Setting up the Local Manager :
- Setting up the Technical Manager, Filling In the Facility's Equipment and Using the Checklist:
PS – It should be noted that we don't advocate that there be compliance, a lá, an accord with the non-existant SMPTE or ISO police force. We rather espouse the concepts of ISO 9001, the Quality Management technology that includes these types of inspections and reports and a statement of self-compliance.