Friday, November 28, 2014

Experience on a virtual "window to the office" solution

For some time we played around with an idea to have a virtual window to the office and through that connect all the teammembers working in different offices, cities and countries into one virtual room. The idea is that everyone would have an "always on" video meeting connecting everybody together onto one screen.

The virtual window actually did not start off very well and I think this is something interesting to learn from. The main reasons as I see it were two:
- Quite fast it felt like the window was not for me to see others, but for others (and the boss) to see me. And that is not a nice feeling.
- Technically the cameras of videoconferencing and laptops usually do not cover the whole room where they are in. So you get a creepy feeling as someone can watch you on the other end while himself being outside of his camera angle.

However I still think an always on virtual window to the office is useful for some situations. For example in a situation where a multi-location team is doing a change to a critical system where all the specialists are intensively and tightly working together for an hour or two.