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Dr Patrick Dixon - Videoconferences - Video explanation followed by studio tour and demo

Why videolinks can be better than being there in person

(Archive article from 1999 but of historical interest)

  • Conferences are the ideal place to showcase new ideas and management tools
  • Use the tools of the future to talk about the future - the medium is the message
  • Many messages about the digital world can only be delivered remotely
  • Videoconferencing shows the power of virtual communication to build effective teams and relationships

Limits to globalisation with current management models

  • The current pace of globalisation cannot continue using old management models - more international face-to-face meetings, more travel
  • Already many industry leaders spend more than 6 weeks a year at 35,000ft
  • Time away from home is often doubling every 24 months

World-class remote lecturing

  • The aim should be that when the audience looks at the big screen, they forget that the podium is empty
  • This trick of virtual reality can be achieved using a high-tech multimedia studio
  • Well lit presenter in front of a large multimedia screen
  • Presenter appears on screen as if being filmed in the venue on the podium
  • Good camera images / excellent sound clarity
  • Able to walk around / see whole audience clearly
  • Able to engage the audience / ask questions / react

So how is this done?

  • Capable of 384kbps (3 pairs ISDN data lines)
  • Received picture projected on huge screen / sound to sound desk
  • Images to presenter provided by camera (s) operated by technicians
  • Sound to presenter provided by roving microphones
  • For extra call security and stability it is best to use a Bureau, which tests both sites in advance, dials to both, and monitors the connection

How much does it cost?

  • Example: London to US using BT Bureau (00 44 207 298 4055)
  • Total call and bureau charges 2 hours = approximately $1100
  • Speaker fee is less than half normal - and no travel costs



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