Tuesday, March 8, 2011

A Skype Alternative That May Be Even More Powerful? #edtech

With the news breaking yesterday that Skype will be adding advertising to support their free version on the Windows platform (see this article from Information Week), I found it very timely that earlier today I was introduced to FlashMeeting.  I have yet to hold a meeting within this application but have seen some amazing things happening with it.  Basically, you are able to host a meeting with multiple attendees, all able to share their webcams and join in the conversation.  There is also a chat component.  What makes this application so powerful?  You can record the entire conversation!  It also has a whiteboard.  While it certainly isn't an alternative to Eluminate (yet), it is a definite alternative to Skype (if you don't like the new ad driven platform).  From what I can tell you sign up for a free account at FlashMeeting.This account will let you participate in meetings.  But to actually create a meeting you need to contact the site administrator and ask for a booker account.  I am anxiously awaiting a response, so I can share how easy or diffiicult the setup process is.  There is some great potential here.  I may even try to revive a "Digital Decompression" project I had attempted to get going some time ago using FlashMeeting.  In the meantime, take a look at this fantastic example from the Education 2020 wiki.
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