Re: cuseeme packet structure

Richard Cogger (
Thu, 9 Nov 1995 15:09:38 -0500

At 1:59 PM 11/7/95, wrote:
>Save me the time, but has anyone run etherload (the free copy) and
>monitored the traffic?
>Or has anyone used etherdump to capture a few packets.
>I haven't, but I'm kinda weary of waiting for cornell to release the
>I've heard they have a lot of lawyers and protect intellectual property
>rights with a vengence, more so than many other universities.

This comes up from time to time. I will put it on the record again:

Cornell intends to make the protocols and formats used by CU-SeeMe public,
open, documented, and published. The base video encoding will be included,
although future enhanced ones might not. We should have done so earlier;
the only excuses we have are the usual ones that everyone uses:

(1) We've been too busy producing much needed functionality.

(2) We're going to change it all, clean it up, get rid of a lot of hacks,
and we don't want to spend the time documenting some of the kludges when
we're just going to fix them anyway. (Note that we are happy with the
general soft-state oriented protocol arcitecture and its operation and
don't plan to change that.)

Currently we have a few more, relatively small items we want to fix and
release over the next month, in terms of functionality; then: we plan to
spend a couple months on documentation and cleanup. We will start by
writing down what's in use now, embarrasing as some parts of that might be,
as a basis for redesign. Then we will get the changes made and clean up
the documentation. Then we will release it. There may be a charge for the

We will make all of our draft documentation available as it is produced to
members of the CU-SeeMe consortium at no charge; others will have to wait
until it is finished.

Note that none of the above has anything to do with lawyers and protecting
intellectual property, but by contrast, we do protect the rights to
commercial redistribution of CU-SeeMe including the use of the source code.
For better or worse, we decided to license the commercialization rights,
both in order to be able to continue to fund development here of the free
version and in order to provide a commercially supported and enhanced
option for the many who want it. As with any set of tradoffs, the ones
we've made will not do everything that everyone might want.