Curated by: Luigi Canali De Rossi

Wednesday, February 9, 2005

Avatars And Live Video Add Human Touch To Teleconferences

Spontaneity can be a catalyst in conventional meetings, often smoothing the decision-making process and bringing participants closer to a successful outcome of the meeting.

Unfortunately, body language and other non-verbal cues that greatly influence the smooth flow of a personal encounter are not available in teleconferences.

Photo credit: Jesper Noer

Organizers of teleconferences are less restrained to limit the number of attendees by physical factors such as time zones, personal calendars and available meeting space. Hence the chance of anonymous encounters is larger with teleconferences than with conventional Meetings. These issues and the obvious absence of video images hinder a natural conversation flow.



Simple web conferencing tools that incorporate voice communication usually include indicators to show who is talking and who is waiting to talk, so that some semblance of normal conversation can be maintained.

Instant messaging (IM) tools and email have employed emoticons to try to convey some form of non-verbal communication, but voice communication requires a different solution.

That is why many companies look to live video feeds to provide the non-verbal accompaniment to voice communication in web conferences. Unfortunately broadband-quality Internet connections are required to accommodate these feeds adequately. Even then, the average broadband connection is not fast enough to provide a smooth, low-latency video feed and the resulting service, though better than a static image, is often out of sync with the voice.

Avatars and--to some extent--live video images can help. Read Chris Duncan's full story

Reference: Kolabora [ Read more ]
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posted by Marjolein Hoekstra on Wednesday, February 9 2005, updated on Tuesday, May 5 2015

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