Tagged: e-conference

Big Blue Button: thoughts from test one

Well, we’ve tested the big blue button at UCS – and included people from academic side, ITS and research community. Thanks to all 🙂

From a technical perspective, it seemed to go very well. It all worked, the presentation, audio, the text, web cam and desktop sharing.

I think the main issues focused on strategies for the presenter, such as how to manage the audio side. Our suggested practice when delivering a presentation is for all mics to be mute. This should stop the echo / repeat in the speakers microphone. However, when i then ask questions, I need to toggle between turning people’s mics on and off. This is a bit of a nightmare, when trying to facilitate the session. There must be a better way to manage this part.


  • I’m keen to work out is how I can share my desktop and also see the text box when presenting. For instance, if I ask a question when demo’ing some web based material, I’ve no idea what people are responding. This would be nice to sort out.
  • As a presenter, what is the best way of managing lots of web cams / video inputs?
  • We also need to work up recommendations around how to set up and re-visit meeting rooms. Is it best to create an number of open rooms?

I’d be interested to see if the presenter can present the stuff and manage the session, or will we need to recommend there is a session chair.

We did encounter a problem uploading the slides, however, this is to do with the way we’ve installed the software, not the actual software.

The questions, I have for the those who participated are;

  • where you able to see and hear everything you should have?
  • did your experience deteriorate as the session went on?
  • was the audio acceptable? was there any obvious time delays?
  • does this meet your expected needs? What are we missing?

The next stage will be to develop two authentic tasks (from the perspective of the Elevate Team);

  1. run an actual staff development session to those at UCS Ipswich >>> to develop the presenter guidelines
  2. support individuals on 1-2-1 support at UCS Ipswich >>> run via desktop sharing


emailed response from Andrew Farthing

I had a problem with loosing contact and a message saying ‘attempting to reconnect’?  Connectivity then dropped in and out? When I eventually got connected again it had all finished!

emailed response from Mark

StartSelection:0000000199 EndSelection:0000001370 Where you able to see and hear everything you should have?
No! The video worked well but I could not hear anything. I checked my sound before and during the test (by playing a podcast on Wolsey, which worked well) but I didn’t hear anything at all during the test. I tried the mute/un-mute buttons but nothing happened.

Did your experience deteriorate as the session went on?
No. I learned how to resize the presentation window and size the content to fit and get all the windows organised.

Was the audio acceptable? was there any obvious time delays?
(see above)

Does this meet your expected needs? What are we missing?
I think that this could work well for some aspects of ChYPP synchronous modules. Your comments about who should speak and when is interesting. As in a class, when someone is presenting there may be the odd question but mostly students will keep quiet and ask questions at the end. Perhaps this just needs agreeing at the beginning?

Thoughts about presenting with BBB

Well, I’ve drunk coffee, and tried BBB in a lecture room. A few things spring to mind;

  • once the room has been created – upload the two presentations. These need to be as PDFs, and the first one is … welcome & house rules (see >> http://dl.dropbox.com/u/12497737/bbb/bbb_house_rules.ppt)
  • when sharing the desktop … best to do on the fly, and share regions. this is very straight forward. Just make sure you close it after wards !! Therefore, as part of the set up process make sure you have all applications and web pages set to run … nothing more annoying than getting flustered trying to find the web page
  • in terms of interactivity within the presentation … there isn’t much to use, ie., no polls, surveys, etc., you’ve just got the hands up signal. So you’ll need to use this (and chat) for audience response sessions – if it was more indepth, you’ll need to set up a google form, put the link in the chat box, give them a few minutes, and share the results
  • the youtube shared via the desktop will not work due to the audio on the youtube not playing, plus issues of refresh rates etc., Therefore, best to share the link through the chat room – but this will need to be managed as you’ll need to bring them back into the presentation

Next stage is to write the short presentation, and try it on monday, with web cam etc.,





Big blue button test … from the presenters perspective

We’ll be testing the big blue button desktop conferencing tool next week. So as part of is, I’ll be looking at it from the perspective of the presenter today. As a presenter I’ll looking to be able to do the following;

  • present
    • talk over a powerpoint
    • share (display) my desktop
    • play a youtube video
  • show myself at the start of the presentation, and then be able to turn off my web cam for the majority, then re-enable it for question and answers
  • encourage audience participation through the use of hands up, agree/disagree gestures, text responses during the presentation
  • during Q&A, allow the audience to ask questions (voice / webcam)
  • record it and make available at a later date

All of this without too much stress. Note, I’d recommend a session chair to be online to help manage the questions, and I’d like to do this without having to install lots / any software. So, big blue button …. lets see