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Latest Telepresence and Visual Collaboration News:
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From the Very Creation of the Internet, U.S. Spy Agencies Fought to Block Encryption

May 25, 2015 | Telepresence Options

secert_room_AT&T

Story and images by WashingtonsBlog

American spy agencies have intentionally weakened digital security for many decades. This breaks the functionality of our computers and of the Internet. It reduces functionality and reduces security by - for example - creating backdoors that malicious hackers can get through.

The spy agencies have treated patriotic Americans who want to use encryption to protect their privacy as extremists ... or even terrorists.

Robotic arm precisely controlled by thought

May 25, 2015 | Telepresence Options

smart-neuroprosthetic

Story and images by Kurzweilai

Paralyzed from the neck down, Erik G. Sorto now can smoothly move a robotic arm just by thinking about it, thanks to a clinical collaboration between Caltech, Keck Medicine of USC and Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center,

Previous neural prosthetic devices, such as Braingate, were implanted in the motor cortex, resulting in delayed, jerky movements. The new device was implanted in the posterior parietal cortex (PPC), a part of the brain that controls the intent to move, not the movement directly.

Butt model and virtual patient to teach prostate exam

May 25, 2015 | Telepresence Options

Butt model

Story and images by David Pescovitz / Boing Boing

This is Patrick, a model butt combined with virtual patient software that helps train medical students on proper technique and bedside manner when giving a prostate exam.

"This virtual human patient can talk to the learner, expresses fears and concerns about the prostate exam, and presents a realistic patient encounter," says one of Patrick's designers, Dr. Benjamin Lok.

Google Tone broadcasts URLs to any device within earshot

May 21, 2015 | Telepresence Options

GoogleTone

Story and images by Tim Hornyak / ComputerWorld

A new Chrome extension can instantly share URLs among nearby devices, using sound to broadcast the information to microphones.

Google Tone is an experimental feature that could be used to easily share browser pages, search results, videos and other pages among devices in an office, classroom or family setting, according to Google Research.

Oculus Has No Plans to Block Virtual Reality Porn

May 20, 2015 | Telepresence Options

oculus-rift1

Story and images by Janko Roettgers / Variety

Facebook-owned Oculus VR has no plans to prevent the adult entertainment industry from using its Rift virtual reality headset, which is scheduled to launch as a consumer product within the first quarter of 2016, according to Oculus founder Palmer Luckey.

Asked about plans to block any X-rated content or apps during a panel at the first Silicon Valley Virtual Reality Conference in San Jose, Calif., on Monday, Luckey responded: "The rift is an open platform. We don't control what software can run on it," adding: "And that's a big deal."

Trial by 'immersive' video link a world-first

May 19, 2015 | Telepresence Options

videocamera

Story and images by Felicity Nelson / Lawyers Weekly

A new virtual courtroom will be put to the test in Brisbane this week in a mock trial using videoconferencing.

The project, undertaken by David Tait, professor of Justice Research at the University of Western Sydney, marks the first time this model has been used anywhere in the world.

Microsoft's real-time Translator now available to all Skype users

May 14, 2015 | Telepresence Options

skype-translator1

Story and images by Lee Mathews / Geek

It's not quite a Babel fish, but at least you don't have to let a living thing swim into your ear canal. Microsoft's real-time Skype Translator service is now available to anyone who uses the messaging and video conferencing service.

In case you haven't seen it in action, the Translator is like something straight from the pages of a science fiction novel. It can translate incoming Skype IMs in more than four dozen languages -- including English, Spanish, French, German, Hindi, and even Welsh. In true Star Trek style, it can even translate Klingon (yes, really, and you can learn how to speak it with Duolingo).

Citrix enters IoT space with Project Octoblu and Amazon partnership

May 14, 2015 | Telepresence Options

citrix-workspace-hub

Story and images by Roland Moore-Colye / V3

ORLANDO: Citrix has entered the Internet of Things (IoT) market with Project Octoblu, a combination of cloud-hosted software and hardware as part of a partnership with Amazon.

Citrix chief executive Mark Templeton said at Synergy 2015 in Orlando that Project Octoblu is the result of Citrix's acquisition of machine-to-machine software specialist Octoblu in December 2014.

Time to patch your Cisco TelePresence systems

May 14, 2015 | Telepresence Options

Cisco_MX200

Cisco TelePresence kit and software need patching after the company turned up vulnerabilities that open them up to remote command injection and denial of service attacks.

Story and images Richard Chirgwin / The Register

TelePresence TC and TE software has two vulnerabilities: an authentication bypass that gives attackers root access to devices running the software, while the DoS attack means crafted packets could trigger a restart of the affected systems.

Google Confirms Cops Can Wiretap Your Hangouts

May 14, 2015 | Telepresence Options

Google_hangouts_encryption

Story and images by Motherboard

In the wake of all the Edward Snowden revelations, a seemingly endless series of encryption apps, all promising some degree "NSA-proof" security, have come out trying to take advantage of this new anti-surveillance business opportunity.

But despite some apps' relative success, the reality is that most people probably just use mainstream messaging apps like iMessage or Google Hangouts.

Higher Ed Expands Reach Through Video Conferencing

May 13, 2015 | Telepresence Options

Lifesize_classroom

Story and images Heather B. Hayes / EdTech

When Louisiana Delta Community College (LDCC) merged with three different regional technical colleges between 2010 and 2012, the university found itself spread across eight campuses statewide, with too many students to teach and not enough teachers or classrooms to accommodate them.

The technology team had a solution in mind: video conferencing. Not the outmoded, difficult-to-use and less reliable systems of times past, but something that would allow instructors to walk in, turn on and get straight to work teaching and interacting with onsite and remote students.

Skype vs. Skype for Business: Who can stick with the free app, who needs to upgrade

May 12, 2015 | Telepresence Options

skype_for_business_contact_list

Story and images by Christopher Null / PCWorld

Now there are two Skypes for online videoconferencing: the free, consumer version most of us know, and Skype for Business. This rebranded, redesigned Microsoft Lync takes the look and feel of the consumer Skype we all know and applies it to the enterprise.

Even though the two applications often appear virtually identical now, they are different--and not just because Skype for Business, like Lync before it, costs money. Skype for Business offers capacity and productivity advantages geared for businesses that are big--or that want to look big. For a business with any of the following needs, graduating from free Skype to Skype for Business provides a worthwhile return on investment.

Cisco to Buy Tropo to Build Out Collaboration Portfolio

May 10, 2015 | Telepresence Options

CIscoProjectSquared

Story and images by Jeffrey Burt / eWeek

Cisco Systems is looking to add to its collaboration capabilities by acquiring Tropo, a company that offers a cloud API platform designed to make it easy for developers to put communications into their applications.

Being able to embed real-time communications into applications is becoming increasingly important given the rise of such tends as IT mobility, cloud computing and the Internet of things (IoT), which are helping fuel the growing demand from businesses and individuals alike for the ability to communicate from anywhere and on any device via the cloud, according to Cisco officials.

Crestron Debuts HDMI and VGA Scalers

May 6, 2015 | Telepresence Options

Crestron_HD_Scaler

Story and images by Government Video

ROCKLEIGH, N.J. -- Crestron recently announced the introduction of two high-definition scalers. The Crestron HD-SCALER-HD-E (HDMI-in/HDMI-out) and HD-SCALER-VGA-E(VGA-in/HDMI-out) provide streamlined, application-specific HD scaling solutions. They deliver all the features and controls needed to display all AV sources correctly and affordably. Both automatically scale any input signal to match the native resolution of a display or other HDMI device.

"Many applications require only one input type - either VGA or HDMI. The HD-SCALER-HD-E and HD-SCALER-VGA-E are each designed for a specific application, so you're only paying for the inputs you need," said Justin Kennington, technology manager, Crestron DigitalMedia. "You simply get the right product for the job, and the best possible image every time."

Veteran sales exec Chuck Robbins to become Cisco CEO

May 5, 2015 | Telepresence Options

Chuck_Robbins

Story and images by Pranjal Kshirsagar / Firstpost

Cisco has announced that its Board of Directors has appointed Chuck Robbins as Chief Executive Officer effective July 26, 2015. Robbins was also elected to the Board of Directors of Cisco, effective May 1, 2015. John Chambers will assume the role of Executive Chairman on July 26, 2015, and will continue to serve as the Chairman of Cisco's Board.

"This is the perfect time for Chuck Robbins to become Cisco's next Chief Executive Officer. We've selected a very strong leader at a time when Cisco is in a very strong position," said Cisco Chairman and CEO John Chambers. "Chuck knows every Cisco segment, technology area, and geography, and will move the company forward with the speed required to capitalize on the opportunities in front of us. He is a champion of the Cisco culture and has an incredible ability to inspire, energize, and connect with employees, partners, customers and global leaders. Chuck's vision, strategy and execution track record is exactly what Cisco needs as we enter our next chapter, which I am confident will be even more impactful and exciting than our last," added Chambers on why Robbins was the choice for this position.

A fast, high-quality, inexpensive 3-D camera

May 5, 2015 | Telepresence Options

Motion-Contrast-3D-prototype-scanner

Story and images by KurzweilAI

Northwestern University engineers have developed a 3-D capture camera that produces high-quality images and works in all environments, including outdoors, overcoming limitations of Microsoft's Kinect. It's also designed to be inexpensive.

The research is headed by Oliver Cossairt, assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer science at Northwestern's McCormick School of Engineering,

A whiteboard of the future

May 5, 2015 | Telepresence Options

black-side-of-the-microparticles

The black side of the microparticles contains magnetic nanoparticles that make it possible to write on the screen. A magnet pulled across the surface of the white display attracts the black side and the balls flip to face the magnet. (credit: Yusuke Komazaki/University of Tokyo)

Story and images by KurzweilAI

Researchers from the University of Tokyo have developed an inexpensive handwriting-enabled e-paper suited to large displays like whiteboards.

The display is made from black-and-white microparticles about 0.1 millimeter in diameter. One hemisphere of each particle is black and carries a negative charge, while the other is white and carries a positive charge. The particles are sandwiched between two electrodes. By switching the direction of the voltage across the electrodes the background display can be switched between black and white.

Three Easy Ways to Enhance Your Online Privacy

April 30, 2015 | Telepresence Options

Online_Privacy

Story and images Juan S. Galt / The Cointelegraph

As the Internet has exploded with information sharing, it has diluted the privacy that we cherish in our offline lives. Here are three apps that can help you bring privacy to your online life.

Before the information age, our views and personal lives were often enough kept behind closed doors, drawn curtains and confined to our communities. With so many relationships made digital and international, a lot of what we share today is no longer obscure. It is usually a Google search away.

WebRTC: Are We There Yet?

April 29, 2015 | Telepresence Options

WebRTC

Story and images by Tsahi Levent -Levi / No Jitter

For all the hype around WebRTC, many of you may routinely ask the question, "Are we there yet?" The answer, without doubt, is, "Yes."

  • Google
  • AT&T
  • Cisco
  • Microsoft
  • Facebook

... the list goes on and is growing.

Last week marked WebRTC Global Summit in London. This year, organizers coupled it with a TADhack event and Kranky Geek. My presentations there were about the history of WebRTC and suggestions on where are we headed.

Mayo Clinic Pilots Use of Telemedicine Kiosks for Its Employees, but Will Pathologists Be Included to Provide Medical Consultations?

April 29, 2015 | Telepresence Options

telemedicine-HealthSpot-kiosk

Story and images by Dark Spot

Coming soon to a pharmacy, school, retail store, or employer near you is a new generation of walk-in telemedicine kiosks. These kiosks are specifically designed to allow consumers to have private medical consultations with physicians. For that reason, pathologists and their medical specialty associations may find it timely to engage the company offering these kiosks with the goal of incorporating pathology consultations in the service mix offered by this new generation of telemedicine kiosks.

No less than the famous Mayo Clinic has become the latest healthcare provider to partner with HealthSpot, the company that designed this new telemedicine kiosk. This pilot program will be called the Mayo Clinical Health Connection and Mayo Clinic is placing these kiosks in its facilities in Austin and Albert Lea, Minnesota, specifically for use by employees of the Mayo Clinical Health System. Mayo officials hope that the use of these kiosks will contribute to reduced healthcare costs and improved access to medical services.

Embrace Video

September 2, 2014 | Telepresence Options

Shaping a new SMART

September 17, 2013 | Telepresence Options

Focus on the Future

March 2, 2012 | Hogan Keyser

First Look: Cisco Cius

February 13, 2012 | Hogan Keyser

Eye Ball

January 2, 2012 | Hogan Keyser

iPad face, robot body

December 5, 2011 | Hogan Keyser

3D Research and Application

September 30, 2011 | Hogan Keyser

Polycom Acquires Accordent

March 24, 2011 | 

Low-cost Video Chat Robot

February 11, 2011 | Kendal Kirby

New BlackBerry PlayBook

September 29, 2010 | Chris Payatagool

DiData UK Buys Mvision

September 17, 2010 | Howard Lichtman

In The Picture

April 12, 2010 | Howard Lichtman

TelePresence @ Home

February 4, 2009 | Chris Payatagool

FOXSexpert: Hooking Up to Internet Sex Toys

November 25, 2008 | John Serrao

Holobama: 'Holograms' greet Election 2008

November 6, 2008 | John Serrao

Home again

September 15, 2008 | Chris Payatagool

War Is Halo

July 28, 2008 | Chris Payatagool

WAN refresh

April 2, 2008 | Chris Payatagool

Just shoot me

February 24, 2008 | Chris Payatagool

Immersed in Work

February 14, 2008 | Chris Payatagool

Presence of mind

January 15, 2008 | Howard Lichtman

Liberate your avatar

December 20, 2007 | Chris Payatagool

Samsung: Next HDTV to Offer 8x Better Resolution

December 18, 2007 | John Serrao

Endless Self-Reinvention in Virtual Worlds

November 28, 2007 | John Serrao

It's Telepresence

November 14, 2007 | Chris Payatagool