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Video Conferencing (aka VTC or Videoteleconferencing) Options at NCEAS


NCEAS offers several VTC options, that also can serve as excellent audio conferencing options if you don't have (or turn off) your Webcam.

We support “hosted VTC services” using either:

  • GoToMeeting
  • WebEx

Please contact email:vtc@nceas.ucsb.edu to schedule your meeting, ideally 72 hrs in advance of your intended meeting

In addition, for ad-hoc conferences with smaller numbers of participants, we recommend using either:

  • Skype
  • Google Hangouts

both of which offer free, high-quality audio- and video- conferencing suitable for both personal and professional use. You can sign up for free accounts on Skype and Google in a matter of minutes, and easily create your own ad-hoc conferences well-suited to small to medium groups (recommended <8 participants). These two services enable individuals to initiate conference calls whenever they wish, without requiring advance scheduling through NCEAS staff.

We are happy to assist you with any of the above technologies, and recommend that any remote participants test their systems in advance if they are unsure about performance and compatibility. Assistance can be found either by emailing vtc@nceas.ucsb.edu or help@nceas.ucsb.edu or seeing Thomas Hetmank in rm. 314.


GoToMeeting

NCEAS now has one single-host (Organizer), 25 user maximum account for GoToMeeting.

Comments on GoToMeetingSessions

Meetings can be scheduled by going to www.gotomeeting.com

  • Account Name: gotomeeting@nceas.ucsb.edu
  • Account Password: (ask Computing Support team)

Anyone with the above Account Name/Password has Organizer status by default, and can Host a Meeting, or Log-in and Schedule a Meeting. Dedicated apps also exist for accomplishing this without going to the Web site.

Once a meeting is scheduled, a unique ID is provided for that meeting, looking something like: 100-900-700

This ID is both

  • the Access Code for dialing-in to a meeting (via toll number that is currently 619-550-0004 but might change), and
  • the Meeting ID code to enter when using the Web or a dedicated GoToMeeting app (e.g. for iPad or Android)

Note that an Organizer must be present to initiate, and continue a meeting, but the Organizer role can be passed from a current Organizer to another once it is started, and a meeting can have several participants in the Organizer role. This allows an original Organizer who must leave a meeting early to pass the torch on to another meeting participant for extended discussion.

Scheduling GoToMeeting VTCs at NCEAS:

For Working Groups (and residents) to use our GoToMeeting VideoTeleConferencing Services, someone (typically an Organizer) with appropriate authentication can schedule and/or initiate the meeting. This is currently the computing support team, and Ginger.

The preferred method is that an NCEAS' staff person (as above) can schedule and initiate the meeting ⇒

  1. Receive a request from a working group (or resident) to schedule a meeting. The request should come in through vtc@nceas.ucsb.edu which currently goes to Ginger and help, thereby creating a ticket in RT.
  2. Use our secret password to schedule the meeting at www.gotomeeting.com.
  3. Join the meeting as an Organizer at the scheduled time.
  4. Pass on Organizer status to the Meeting leader so that the NCEAS person can leave the meeting.

or if, for example, some group wants to convene a meeting during off-hours (e.g. 8PM, or a Saturday) the following method can also work ⇒

  1. Temporarily change the password*.
  2. Share this with a designated Organizer for the meeting, who would probably be a leader or other designated liaison from a legitimate NCEAS-hosted project (e.g. SNAP, OHI, Arctic Options, etc.).
  3. Have the WG leader schedule and/or host the meeting for the group her/himself.
  4. Whoever (e.g. Ginger, or member of our computing staff) provides the temporary password, is responsible for changing it back soon afterwards, to our default secret account password. The one situation we want to avoid is multiple people (e.g. Working Group leaders) knowing our temporary passwords, so that they might schedule or convene meetings without informing us beforehand, as this could lead to conflicts between scheduled meetings and unscheduled ones.

*Passwords must be 8-32 chars, and include letters and numbers. As the temporary password could be forgotten, and is intended to be temporary (only used for allowing some group to hold one meeting) when communicated to the designated Organizer, using clear-text in email is permissible, and a “cc” should be provided to help@nceas.ucsb.edu and gillquist (Note to us: alias as vtc@nceas).


Skype Premium

Summary

  • Supports Windows, OS X, Linux, tablets, and phones
  • One-to-one and group audio/video conferencing is supported, up to 10 concurrent users
  • Username: nceas.premium
  • Please get the password from Thomas (314) or Nick (305)

Connecting to NCEAS

  • Contact help@nceas.ucsb.edu to set up a conferencing time and testing ahead of any meetings
  • For two-way communication with the meeting participants, you must have a headset. Otherwise, we will not be able to troubleshoot any audio/feedback issues. If you just need to listen in please mute your microphone.
  • A wired internet connection is preferred over Wi-Fi

Google+ Hangouts with Premium Features

Residents with an @nceas.ucsb.edu Google Apps for Education account have Google+ Hangouts integrated into their webmail and calendar.

There are several ways to start a meeting:

  • Create a hangout at https://g.co/hangout
  • Schedule a video call in Google Calendar
  • Clicking on a user's name in the Hangouts sidebar in Gmail

H.263 TCP/IP

NCEAS has a Polycom VSX 7000e video conferencing system available to engage in face-to-face meetings with multiple collaborating sites. Remote sites must have a H.263 compatible device or software, frequently this is another Polycom unit.


Other Services

NCEAS has a variety of laptops, projectors, LCD monitors, microphones, and webcams to support other videoconference software. We can accommodate using other video conferences services if account access is provided (ex. WebEx, GoToMeeting, etc). Please contact help@nceas.ucsb.edu ahead of any meeting so that we can setup hardware for your group.


video_conferencing.txt · Last modified: 2014/06/03 12:16 by hetmank