• United States

Finding a comb

Jun 20, 20032 mins
Data Center

Desktop videoconferencing over the public Internet is still not an every day occurrence, but it is getting closer. Today, I got a demo of a new technology coming out at the end of the month that brings the one-to-one video chat closer to reality. More on that in about a week. But here’s the problem with videoconferencing and it has got nothing to do with technology.

My conference call with the vendor was scheduled for 1p today and was to use a beta version of the company’s product, letting me see the product in action and the executive I was speaking with. Okay, you say, what’s the issue? The problem is that I work from home on Fridays. I realized about an hour and half before the call that they would actually be able to see me and that wearing a baseball cap and old t-shirt isn’t the best option for a work-related video call. After a quick shower and change, I looked more appropriate for the camera. While the technology worked well and could be useful, do people really want to be during every conversation – meaning getting dressed more for the office than the house? Of course there other issue to regarding being seen the whole time. I tend not to be able to sit still, so I’m constantly fidgeting. And it never fails that your face gets itchy while someone is watching you, so scratching can’t be a pleasant viewing experience! Sometimes the relative anonymity of the phone is worth the trade-off of visual cues one would have in a video call.