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Understanding New Media

Extending Marshall McLuhan – Second Edition

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Robert K. Logan

Marshall McLuhan made many predictions in his seminal 1964 publication, Understanding Media: Extensions of Man. Among them were his predictions that the Internet would become a «global village,» making us more interconnected than television; the closing of the gap between consumers and producers; the elimination of space and time as barriers to communication; and the melting of national borders. He is also famously remembered for coining the expression «the medium is the message.» These predictions form the genesis of this updated volume by Robert K. Logan, a friend and colleague who worked with McLuhan. In this second edition of Understanding New Media Logan expertly updates McLuhan’s Understanding Media to analyze the «new media» McLuhan foreshadowed and yet was never able to analyze or experience. The book is designed to reach a new generation of readers as well as appealing to scholars and students who are familiar with Understanding Media.
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Chapter 46. Video Conferencing and Web-Based Collaboration Tools

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← 372 | 373 →

· 46 ·

VIDEO CONFERENCING AND WEB-BASED COLLABORATION TOOLS

46.1  Video Conferencing

Content and extension: The content of video conferencing, a hybrid of the telephone and digital video, is the audio and video signals transmitted between groups of individuals physically separated from each other.

Video conferencing extends the eyes, ears, and voices of its users.

Cascade: The cascade is from the images and voices of one group of individuals through the telephone or Internet connections to the users on the other end of the videoconference.

LOM: Video conferencing and the Web cam enhance being there for parties not co-located, obsolesces the telephone conference call, retrieves the conference, and reverses into confusion and cacophony.

Video conferencing only requires a telephone and a closed-circuit video linkup. It is a way in which long-distance meetings can be conducted, avoiding the expense and time costs of travel. Video conferencing can contribute to collaboration among non-located individuals by overcoming the barrier of ← 373 | 374 → distance. There are a number of products dedicated to video conferencing, and a number of users are taking advantage of the Internet and video conferencing using a Web cam and an Internet connection. An Internet-based video conference has two advantages over stand-alone dedicated systems. Firstly, it’s cheaper, and secondly, it permits a richer multimedia environment. A list of equipment manufacturers, operating companies, solution providers, and software is available on the Web at en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Video_conferencing.

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