The Missouri Research and Education Network (MOREnet) is helping schools and other organizations communicate around the world. In 2010, MOREnet launched a pilot program using Desktop Video Services. Much like traditional video rooms, the end user can communicate two-ways, both with the videoconference room and other desktop end users. Using the Polycom Converged Management Application (CMA), which is designed for its compatibility to H.323 videoconferencing, the desktop end-user only needs to download an application and use a webcam.
By itself, the technology is exciting, but the pilot demonstrated to MOREnet some of the innovative and useful ways its members used this new application. Eight MOREnet members were part of the pilot program utilizing more than 50 endpoint licenses. A user in a state agency office used the video desktop service to provide live video hearings to commissioners in a public hearing setting, allowing the commissioners to participate in the hearings without leaving their offices. One commissioner even attended the public hearings using CMA from China.
A Missouri K-12 member used the software, a laptop and a webcam so a high school student could attend his classes after a debilitating car accident. Another K-12 member is using the software to record high school courses so any absent student can log in from home and watch what he or she missed in school.
Gone are the days when expensive equipment and video rooms are needed to maintain a course online. With a camera and the help of MOREnet’s Network and Video Services, videoconferencing and video courses are accessible to almost anyone. MOREnet plans to launch this new service to its members in Fiscal Year 2012.
Today, MOREnet has evolved from focusing on Internet service delivery to a consortium-driven organization deploying and supporting the technology resources members need to be successful. MOREnet provides such essential services as technical support, videoconferencing support, technical training and network security. From advanced communication tools and online resource databases to network configuration and assessment, MOREnet is committed to supporting and enabling its members’ missions through the use of technology to enhance opportunities for public access, learning and research.