Programmable Billboards Get Super Kickoff

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Digital Visual Werks and Hewlett-Packard will debut programmable display billboards at the Super Bowl, the two companies said yesterday.

Gaslamp Shuttle and Cloud 9 Shuttle, two of the transportation services for the 2003 Super Bowl in San Diego, will deploy the DVW displays during the game Sunday.

If a shuttle bus travels to an area of town that is mainly Spanish-speaking, for example, English-language ads automatically change to Spanish. If a local coffeehouse wants to promote a cappuccino special, the coffeehouse can specify that its ads run in the morning hours, while a fast-food restaurant could specify lunch and dinner ad times.

The displays hold up to 24 ads and change via a scrolling mechanism that is "queued" on demand by wireless technology. Ads also can be queued automatically as a function of time, weather or location. The images are first printed on HP systems and then illuminated by fluorescent bulbs from within the display units.

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