How do you do remote presentations?

Dear lazyweb,

have you ever done a presentation or given a talk to a remote audience, via the internet? Or setup an infrastructure to make this possible?
Which software did you use, which setup, which protocols?

What I am looking for is

  • something like a one-to-one video chat with an extra channel for a (shared) screen,
  • just that the “one” on the other end is a full room with people, caught by a camera and some microphones feeding a single source.
  • The (shared) screen would be given by the single person end, for the interactive slides and demos.
  • Bonus points for being able to show little movies over the connection.
  • The multiple person end would be able to overlay the video of the single person to the display shared screen locally, either by a second projector (second head/screen to the computer) or as a little window on the first screen.

This should be really possible with today’s FLOSS software and the common hardware. But how?

Thanks for your hints.

PS: Reminds me of what somebody told me a few days ago. Yamaha builds pianos with which one can give remote performances over the internet, due to the mechanics being controlled by commands recorded from the sensors on the other’s piano mechanics, see e.g. this video. And, FWIW, it’s built on Linux 😉


7 thoughts on “How do you do remote presentations?

  1. one way to do is – from your side, set up multicast stream of you, with RP at the multiple one, thus, they are able to see you. for your screencast, you can use same thing, so everyone would be able to see you and see what you are showing in 2 different places, to get back and voice – you have simple videochat session that many tools are providing. with one mic for audience
    just my 2 euro cents

  2. Have a look at Access Grid ( [link fixed by frinring] ), its a multi-cast video and audio system quite widely used in academia. Needs quite a chunk of bandwidth but does almost all of what you ask already (and its written in Python so bits could be added relatively easily perhaps).


  3. @Osis: Some more cents would be nice 😉 Which tools, which software?

    @Rog: Thanks for the link, looks promising. Will investigate.

    I just wonder if one could use any of the onboard utilities of a plain KDE/GNOME/X desktop?

  4. Well, it’s probably only one half of what you want, but iChat should be able to do just that:
    The main problem is, it’s obviously only for Mac. On the plus side, AFAIK the presentation feature is realized by a AVC video stream over Jabber. So in theory only the presenter needs a Mac while everybody else needs just a Jabber client that can use ffmpeg to decode the video stream.

  5. With “basic” kde/gnome/X utils just use vnc for the presentation and ekiga or another video/audio conferencing tool for the live feed…

    Start a vnc server at your side and run your presentation/slides inside it, on the other side just run a vnc viewer.. (vncviewer, krdc, don’t know what’s in gnome for that..)
    with a decent vnciewer and window manager on the client side you should be able to set up two monitors on the client and have the vncviewer maximize on one screen and videoconf. app on the other

    I never did anything like this exactly… but few times i did it the other way around, running vnc server on the client (x11vnc on linux to attach directly to their Xserver), connecting to it and running presentations/videos directly on their computer (they have to be able to start up the vnc server in a way that you can connect to it, that you can run/setup the videoconferencing/whatever you need)…

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