The University runs a campus messaging service, displaying a slideshow of University information and more general news in rotation. There are a number of such displays dotted around campus. We have one in the school office.
Traditionally, this display has been driven by an off-the-shelf PC. Due to where the screen was situated, this meant running trunking up above the ceiling tiles and across the office to the nearest convenient place that the PC could be housed. It also meant we had an aging PC on all the time, consuming energy.
During the Christmas break CS support experimented with replacing this PC with a Raspberry Pi. To the uninitiated, a Raspberry Pi is a credit-card sized, low powered embedded computer which has been designed principally to promote programming to children. The current Pi model draws approximately 3½ Watts and can be situated directly behind the screen.
The main OS for the Pi is a derivation of Debian GNU/Linux called Raspbian. It turned out to be quite simple to customize a stock Raspbian image to make it suitable for campus messaging. There are a number of existing customisations for running display screens but unfortunately none that we found were quite suitable.
I hope we are able to soon share our customisations so that they are available to both the wider University and anyone else who may be interested in running display screens in this way.