I wasn’t able to attend yesterday’s meeting in person, however, I was introduced to a new program called Google Hangout which allowed me to attend the meeting virtually using my web camera and internet connection to connect to the meeting remotely from the Big Island of Hawaii.
A brief synopsis of a “hangout” from Googles website:
Bumping into friends while you’re out is one of the best parts of going out and about. With Hangouts, spontaneity hits the web. Whether you’re home in your pajamas or hitting the streets with your mobile phone, video hangouts let you bring up to 9 people into your world. It’s the next best thing to everyone being there.
Most folks have heard of or used programs such as Skype to do free video conferencing, however, I really liked this Google Hangout program for a few reasons of course the number one reason was that it allowed for a free video conference to be done from one island to another without the transportation cost and time that flying to Oahu would have required.
Here is a quick screen shot of what I was looking at most of the time… I could open and close individual windows but I wanted to keep my mug on the screen just to remind me not to do anything socially unacceptable and just to remind me that I was on camera!
According to the Google Hangout specifications, you can bring up to nine people in on a video conference. I can really see this as a great money savings tool here in the State of Hawaii where travel costs and time in general spent on travel is a huge part of each counties budgets.
The “Hangout” that we created was a secured hangout that only folks that were invited by the person creating the Hangout would be allowed to participate in.
Here are the members that attended and a link to their facebook pages:
Kirk Izawa talked about Oceanic’s new device which allows your house to basically be an “Intelligent Home” where you can physically set up a few cameras in your house for under a couple $100 bucks and be able to do things like watch the inside of your house from your mobile device.
My immediate thought was about the invasion of privacy issue and who else could possibly access the cameras in my house if I were to get one, however Izawa assured the Hui that only the folks that owned the system would have access to the system.
Greg Yamane over at Pulp Connection writes:
… At the core of this is home security. That’s what really matters. If something’s going down in my home, I don’t necessarily want the ability to watch it in real time. I want someone to react in real time and act on the potential incident/intrusion. If I’m going to dish out monthly for this service, I want to rest assured that safety and security are paramount. The whiz bang tech is secondary… More here “Random ocHui Thoughts“
Getting back to the Google “Hangout” there were other benefits of using the program like the fact that as the notes were being taken using the Google Document’s program… I could access them at anytime and print them out at any point during the meeting.
I had no problem seeing or viewing the person who was speaking, but I would suggest that an external mic be brought in to use as I wasn’t able to hear most of the comments that were being said by others simply because the computer that was on that end of the receiving end of things was turned to the speaker and not the audience.
Ed Sugimoto (@WorldWideEd) spoke briefly about a Beta trial of a “Hotspot Loaner” program and there was also talks of a Micro-Sponsoring program where Oceanic would help out certain organizations possibly with internet connectivity during certain activities. I was able to somehow squeeze in the Pahoa Community Center as a place to be looked at for micro-sponsoring.
Our next meeting is scheduled for May 18th and unfortunately it is an invite only meeting.
- Oceanic Time Warner’s Social Media OcVIP’s (damontucker.com)
- Google+ launches Apps section for Hangouts, API comes out of preview (thenextweb.com)
- Use Slideshare in Google+ Hangouts (freetech4teachers.com)
- Video: Google’s big plans for Hangouts On Air (gigaom.com)
- Big update to Google+ Hangouts brings games, phone calls, and more (geek.com)
- How Google+ Can Succeed at Business Without Really Trying (mashable.com)
- New Apps for Google+ Hangouts Move Out of Preview (sproutsocial.com)
- All Startups Should Use Google Hangout (davidcummings.org)
Filed under: aloha, Announcements, Entertainment, Environment, Hawaii, Something New?, State Affairs, Technology, Television Tagged: | Google Hangout, Intelligent Homes, Oceanic Time Warner, OCHui, Social Media, Social Television, The Greenhouse Hawaii