Pope Benedict conducted the first ever video conference with the astronauts of the International Space Station. The pope spoke to the astronauts through a video link in the Vatican’s library. http://thecelebritycafe.com/feature/pope-has-first-ever-video-conference-space-station-05-21-2011

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Polycom is right on the money with its UC offerings and recent additions to its telepresence product portfolio: http://www.conferencingnews.com/news/36804

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According to a press release that just hit the Web, Polycom’s new EagleEye Director creates a user experience that we haven’t seen before. This dual-camera tracking system actually makes sure that whoever is speaking is always highlighted (zoomed in and centered), creating a more personal and realistic meeting experience. Polycom’s Eagle Eye should limit the need for camera and remote control adjustments. “Unlike simple camera tracking technology of the past, the EagleEye Director gracefully transitions between highlighting individual speakers to capturing the entire room, allowing users to replicate a life-like conversation and drive more productive meetings.” More here: http://198.154.240.130/~ivcicom/polycom-eagleeye-director.html

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Many of us could stand to increase our powers of observation. Observational skills can be improved if, like working out a muscle, they are used more often. In a business setting an inability to correctly read others’ reactions can be disastrous and lead to poor decision making. More companies are using video conferencing for meetings with business associates at remote locations to get all of the advantages of visual collaboration. Next time you are in a video meeting, pay close attention to other participants’ body language. Think about what their visual cues are telling you that belie their words. The …

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Video Comes to Board Meetings

April 25, 2011, by nparker in Video Conferencing

WSJ: As videoconferencing technology becomes more sophisticated, it is slowly moving up the corporate ladder to the boardroom—helping to save some directors the hassle of air travel and making it easier for boards to recruit international members. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703907004576279382859573922.html

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Polycom Is On Fire!

April 22, 2011, by nparker in Industry News, Polycom

Polycom continues to energize the market place as the only leading pure-play video conferencing provider. Some wise moves by management are growing opportunities and revenue around unified communications (UC), and the market is reacting! http://www.thestreet.com/story/11091180/1/polycom-after-hours-trading.html?cm_ven=GOOGLEN

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According to study results released by Cisco, users of video conferencing receive both quantitative and qualitative benefits from the technology. It also sets out to explain why there may be hesitation to use this collaborative tool. TMCnet reports: The biggest barriers to adoption of video collaboration, the study found, are not technology limitations but rather lack of experience and/or lack of understanding about how benefits outweigh costs. People who regularly use this technology are generally eager to extol its benefits, and overwhelmingly say it is worth the cost. Yet those who do not use it have a hard time understanding why …

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Extroverts Make Better Leaders?

April 20, 2011, by nparker in Video Conferencing

According to a recent Wall Street Journal article, extraverts are more often leaders of companies than are introverts. In fact, in the business world saying you’re an introvert can be a kiss of death. If an executive’s job is high profile and requires interacting with people and energizing a group, introverts can fall short as they are more reserved and think things through before speaking. But what secret can extroverts learn from their introverted peers? According to the April 20th article: “Ian Cook, the chief of Colgate-Palmolive Co., characterizes himself as introverted. He believes his strong listening skills played a role …

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Time and Cost Savings: Virtual field trips enable students to safely visit new places without leaving the classroom. Increased Learning: Attention to the subject matter increases, resulting in improved retention. Student Collaboration: Students from different schools can work together on the same project. Team Teaching: Teachers can enhance curriculum by virtually bringing experts into the classroom. Professional Development: Teachers can learn new skills or earn a degree without leaving their school. Group Meetings: Increased speed of decision making for school board administrators.

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This  SCN magazine interview may be lengthy – but worth the read! IVCi made its name as a provider of video conferencing solutions in the mid-1990s, when the demand for the technology was beginning to grow. After adding an audio visual team and a Managed Conferencing Services department, IVCi has become one of the leading integrators in the country, reaching sales of over ($74) million last year. IVCi achieved this level of success by taking the unique step of incorporating audio visual services to its offerings, because it did not want to rely on outsourcing. IVCi is now an expert in designing and implementing top-of-the-line conference …

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