asks: "My company is engaged in making trusses for various home, business, and industrial applications. One thing our truss plant does not have is a signal device to keep everyone on schedule for shift starts, breaks, lunch, and so on. Currently the plant manager is responsible for making sure everyone takes off when they are supposed to. This is, of course, highly inefficient and is causing problems. They approached me, asking to research into time control devices that can signal all the starts and stops (our time clock is integrated into our POS/sales system). Of course, one of my first stops was Slashdot ;-). Please keep in mind I am fairly new to Linux. So, in the interest of trying to keep the cost down, does anyone know of a Linux software/hardware combo that can control a horn or bell - as well as length of ring/tone - for multiple events? Any feedback would be greatly appreciated."
A friend of mine once wired his CD remote control to the computer and wrote a simple timer in C: Voila! A simple alarm clock (assuming the remote was pointed in the right direction). A similar principle would also work here. You could tie a computer to the aux-in of an amp, which is in turn tied to LARGE speakers at both ends of the plant, and have it make the right noises at the right time. I'm sure this has been done in a variety of ways, before. If you've done something like this with a computer, particularly at an industrial scale, please share the details.