My take on Cornell v. 1.0

rdawgie@mindspring.com
Sun, 31 May 98 14:00:20 -0500


Dear List,

Having used Cornell 0.96a17/1.0 for about two weeks now, here is
my take on it. I have discovered a few bugs and several areas where I
wish it operated differently.

Bugs:

1) When you right click on a persons video window or their name in
the participant list, you are presented with a drop-down menu for things
like toggling between Micro Size and normal size, private chat/talk, etc.
If the person disconnects while this drop-down menu is open, it (the
menu) will not close after the person has disconnected. It remains "on
top", cannot be hidden or otherwise closed or moved. The only way I
found to close it is to quit the program and relaunch it.

2) This may not be considered a bug but sure had a confusing
effect. I normally have the "Open in MicroSize Automatically" option
enabled. I once took a normal vid (160 x 120) and positioned it as far
left as possible on my desktop, i.e., only a small portion of it was
visible. The person either disconnected or I otherwise closed the vid
without repositioning it. This apparently caused the screen position of
this window to get saved with a negative horizontal value. Thereafter,
the first window I attempted to open in a reflector would "flash" as 160
x 120 briefly, then disappear altogether as a 80 x 60 image somewhere in
the Twilight Zone beyond the left edge of my screen. After I figured out
what was happening, I disabled "Open in MicroSize Automatically" but
found there was not enough of the vid title bar to "grab" with the cursor
in order to drag it back into visible territory, as only the minimize,
maximize and close boxes could be accessed, none of which would help in
repositioning. SOMEHOW I got it resolved although I don't remember
exactly how. This brings up an alternate approach: What is the name of
the file in which these screen positions are saved? Could it not simply
be edited in case this should happen again?

3) Does/will the Import feature for the phone book work? I can't
get it to.

Wish list:

a) I miss not having some visual clue on a persons window itself
as to whether they have my vid open. I have always thought the "Visible
users" section of ANY client's Participant list to be useless. If you
already have their windows visible, why have a separate list of those
names? But because the "are they looking" cue is the color of the icon
in the participant list, I now HAVE to have that section of the list open
(and wasting screen space) in order to tell whether they are looking at
me. It also is additional eyestrain to have to keep shifting my gaze
from a vid window back and forth to the list. The yellow/grey icon
should be repositioned to somewhere on the video frame itself.

b) Once a reflector name is entered in the phone book, it cannot
be edited, only deleted. So what? you may say. Well sometimes I
misspell things. Sometimes someone will give me an IP, not knowing the
ref name and say check it out. In this case I have to "dummy" up a phone
book entry, and enter the info. If I find it's one I want to keep (under
its proper or a different name) I cannot edit the name field. Perhaps a
"Copy" or "Save As" button in this module would make things easier.

c) Deleting a phone book entry should require a confirmation
keystroke. With the "Delete" button right next to the "Save" button,
some carelessness and a too-fast button finger has caused me to delete
entries I did not intend to. WP 2.1.x had the same problem. Stuff
disappeared that I wanted to keep, with no way to get it back.

d) Is it really a big deal to provide an entry field for
conference passwords? Is non-support of this feature part of the
licensing agreement with White Pine?

e) When vids open, they seem to do so at random positions on the
screen rather than in any organized way. For a chuckle, set your max
screens at 24, do an "open all" in a busy reflector, and watch the
helter-skelter results. This should be improved.

f) As a refop, I would appreciate a statistic somewhere on the
main screen, maybe beside my IP field, that shows the number of active
connections at that moment, without having to do a separate click on the
ref IP to get that info.

g) I REALLY miss the ability (found in WP 2.x but inexplicably
removed in 3.1) to be able to superimpose text on my local vid window.
Is this a huge re-write? Would it appreciably increase the over-all size
of the program?

h) Why aren't the various sliders for the audio and video codecs
numerically calibrated? I find it awkward to have to tell people
"Position the Quality slider under the "y" of the word quality" (or
similar instructions, less easily described if they should put it
somewhere else.) "Quality = 20%" would be much more elegant.

All of this is pretty nit-picky I admit. Guess I'm remembering
the old 4-H motto: "To make the best better."

-RedDawg

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E-mail: rdawgie@mindspring.com
ICQ UIN: 286166
Date: 05/31/98
Time: 14:00:20
"Beer: It's not just for breakfast any more."
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