RFD: comp.soft-sys.multimedia.cu-seeme.*

Michael Sattler (msattler@jungle.com)
Fri, 27 Jan 1995 03:49:57 -0500

After a recent discussion with Dick Cogger of Cornell about the load the
mailing lists were experiencing I was inspired to dust off my RFD, clean it
up, and submit it. The following was posted this day:



(moderated) comp.soft-sys.multimedia.cu-seeme.announce

(unmoderated) comp.soft-sys.multimedia.cu-seeme.misc
(unmoderated) comp.soft-sys.multimedia.cu-seeme.mac
(unmoderated) comp.soft-sys.multimedia.cu-seeme.pc-clone
(unmoderated) comp.soft-sys.multimedia.cu-seeme.reflectors

Distribution : world
Summary : For users of Cornell University's SeeMe desktop
videoconferencing software (CU-SeeMe)
Proponent : Michael Sattler <msattler@jungle.com>

This is a formal Request For Discussion (RFD) about the creation of several
newsgroups relating to Cornell University's SeeMe (CU-SeeMe) desktop
videoconferencing software.

This RFD has been posted in accordance with the Guidelines for Newsgroup
Creation. It's language is based on previously submitted RFDs. After
mailing to newgroups@uunet.uu.net this RFD will be cross-posted to the
following relevant newsgroups:


It will then be sent to the existing mailing lists, detailed in the Charter
section (below).


CU-SeeMe is an Internet desktop videoconferencing system for the Macintosh
and PC that (currently) uses public "reflector" sites to allow net.denizens
to interact with each other across platforms. CU-SeeMe for Macintosh and
Windows is available from ftp://ftp.gated.cornell.edu/pub/video.

There are currently two mailing lists (maintained at Cornell University)
that deal with CU-SeeMe: an announcements-only list and a technical
discussion list. The former is used to tell users about newly released
versions, etc. The latter hosts an active discussion on the installation
and use of CU-SeeMe and supporting system software. These are
CU-SeeMe-Announce-L@Cornell.edu and CU-SeeMe-L@Cornell.edu, respectively.

There are currently two other "unofficial" CU-SeeMe mailing lists: one
devoted to public reflector events and the other to being a forum for
reflector operators. These are CUSM-EVENTS@www.jungle.com and
CUSM-REFLECTOR@www.jungle.com, respectively.

* Group 1: (moderated) comp.soft-sys.multimedia.cu-seeme.announce

This would be a "moderated" newsgroup. I use quotes because it's a
non-standard use of the word moderated. This newsgroup is intended to only
carry announcements from the CU-SeeMe development staff regarding new
versions, work-arounds, and the like. It's expected that this group would
show very light traffic (as the existant mailing list currently shows). For
the purposes of discussion, the proposed newsgroup moderator is the current
list moderator, R.Cogger@cornell.edu (Richard Cogger). Having the
announcement list and this newsgroup gated would be a good thing.

* Group 2: (unmoderated) comp.soft-sys.multimedia.cu-seeme.misc

This would be the catch-all discussion group not dealing with the specific
technical issues covered in the other groups. The name "misc" was chosen
to be in line with current newsgroup name conventions. In the past this
type of group was know as a ".d" (for "discussion") group.

Topics would include:

+ policy (eg. the merits of setting a maximum transmission cap
to prevent flooding the Internet) and operation (eg. using
the reflector software to enforce a cap) of public reflectors

+ announcements of "events" (eg. broadcast of the Burning Man
extravganza) and public exhibition use of CU-SeeMe (eg. in
museums (eg. the Exploratorium in San Francisco) and
conferences (the Rotterdam School of Management)))

+ distribution of lists of public reflectors

+ moral, ethical, and philosophical issues surrounding the use
of desktop videoconferencing, broadcasting events, and
responsible use of the Internet bandwith by CU-SeeMe.

* Group 3: (unmoderated) comp.soft-sys.multimedia.cu-seeme.mac
* Group 4: (unmoderated) comp.soft-sys.multimedia.cu-seeme.pc-clone

These would be platform-specific newsgroups open to all topics relating to the
installation and use of CU-SeeMe. Included are germane discussions of:

+ computer and audio/video hardware (eg. video capture boards
and video cameras) and system software (eg. Winsock and MacTCP)

+ conflicts with other software

+ performance analysis of particular configurations

+ other technical topics as they relate to CU-SeeMe (eg.
multicasting, Maven audio teleconferencing software)

* Group 5: (unmoderated) comp.soft-sys.multimedia.cu-seeme.reflectors

+ distribution, installation, debugging, and other technical
aspects to operating a reflector for the CU-SeeMe community.


CU-SeeMe (available for the Macintosh (audio/video) and PC (video-only))
has recently recieved coverage in the American press of late as an on-ramp
to the "information superhighway". With the impending availability of
Connectix's sub-US$100 video camera (for the Macintosh) and the
ever-lessening cost of video cards and camera (for the Macintosh and the
PC), the target audience for CU-SeeMe is expected to grow (explode?).

CU-SeeMe, which offers audio (currently on selected platforms), video,
scrolling text, and an in-beta-test future of plug-in modules for
specialized applications, firmly belongs in the comp.multimedia hierachy.

More information about CU-SeeMe may be found at


More information about the Connectix QuickCam may be found at


(Both of these web pages are maintained by the proponent. Both of these
web pages have pointers to other, related resources on the web.)


After a discussion period of 21-30 days, if there are not overwhelming
objections to any of the proposed groups, there will be a Call For Votes
(CFV) posted to the groups as this RFD has been. The voting period will be
at least 21 days. Each group that passes, by receiving 100 more YES votes
than NO votes *and* twice as many YES votes as NO votes, will be created.

Michael Sattler <msattler@jungle.com> San Francisco, California |
Digital Jungle Consulting Services http://www.jungle.com/msattler/ |
And so these men of Indostan/ disputed long and loud/ each in his own |
opinion/ exceeding stiff and strong/ though each was partly right/ and |
all were in the wrong! - John Godfrey Saxe |