We held our 2nd Architecture / Agile virtual meeting last night with Adrian Wible of Thoughtworks presenting.

This was the first time I had actually been at the controls of the Live Meeting. We only decided to do this on Saturday so there was not much time for promotion and only a few showed up.

The good news is that we got to experiment with all the features I could make work including web audio, video, desktop sharing, tie in of a phone conference, recording, Q&A, shared whiteboard and chat.

Things I learned this week:

  • As a presenter, when I switch the video I'm looking at it switches it for everyone on the meeting!
  • Need to figure out the panoramic camera? I guess it is a device, I was hoping it  would stitch the individual  videos together!
  • Before trying to tie in the phone conference make sure the phone conference leader (ie me) is actually in the call or the  strings to connect will not work.
  • The web audio is delayed by quite a bit from the phone, one thought was to tie in the web audio to the phone call just for recording purposes although people would still be able to listen.
  • If on the web audio, the presenter has a lot more control over muting and audio control than on the phone call where you can only mute all or not vs being able to mute one person at time.
  • Either the presenter or the attendee can mute an attendee's audio but only the attendee can un-mute (unless I missed something there).
  • The meeting start time was strange, it correctly said the proper time but I did not catch that the daylight savings was turned off so it was GMT-5 instead of GMT-4 so that people could not get in until I reset it at just about the meeting time. Normally attendees can join 1/2 prior to the meeting.
  • Need to prepare and utilize a few generic slides with phone info, user group info, upcoming meetings, etc as a default screen until the presentation begins.
  • Apparently there is no real public chat built in but this is probably just that I don't know how to use it. We did have the Q&A session I was monitoring.

The main concern I had was how to make it much more interactive. I think it is hard for the presenter to just keep talking without the nice live feedback that an in-person meeting provides. Adrian did stop at various points to have people ask questions. Perhaps this should be much more often when on-line.

The video helps but needs to be two way, I rotated the picture a number of times and if you are using web audio, it will supposedly point to the current speaker. Not too interesting if it is a presentation.

We need a video colage!

Anyway, those are my thoughts from last nights meeting. Bottom line is I need to learn Live Meeting better.

Thanks to the MVP program for making the live meeting available and to Jeff Barnes for his phone conference line!