Post by Mayayana
| This also works on the public internet, provided that the
| two machines have public IP addresses or appropriate firewall rules.
Returning to the earlier question, do I have
a unique IP? I doubt it. My understanding is that
the cable neighborhood has a unique IP and the
cable company handles the local delivery.
(Remember in the early days of cable how people
were accidentally seeing each others' desktops
in Network Neighborhood?)
| Well, at least (potentially), you can now take
| two webcams and "talk to yourself" on the same
| LAN segment, using your new Linphone :-) I can't wait
| to test mine out.
Yes. What'll they think of next, huh? But
before I got a chance to try that out I came
YellDownstairs v. 1.04 beta. So far it seems
to work quite well, as long as there isn't a loud
truck driving by. And it doesn't require any
special hardware other than functional vocal
Well, talking to yourself, is all part of the VOIP
When I got VOIP here, the provider wisely offered a
two week period with a "trial" phone number. I got to
keep my POTS phone in a functional state for those
two weeks (before number portability brought the
phone number to the new provider).
And it took me a week of testing before
I was reasonably happy. I bought a second physical
phone, connected it to the VOIP box and "talked" to
my old POTS phone. And adjusted settings (VOIP box has
eight CODEC choices etc). I also hooked up the answering
machine, visited a payphone, and tried a "real" call on
the "trial" number, as one of my test cases. I considered
that test time to be essential to building my confidence.
If I needed help from Tech Support from the ISP, it
would have been hell to do that with a dead POTS phone.
What that test did not uncover, is the VOIP server
drops a call, after the call reaches two hours of
runtime. I neglected to do timeout testing... Oh, well.
Since you mention hardware, I think you already know
that webcam microphones suck. If I were to set this
up for real, I would use my separate microphone that
happens to have a powered amp inside. It's not the amp
that makes it special, but the microphone part seems
to be better than the other "examples" I have sitting
My point and shoot camera, shoots video. It has a microphone
built in. And it picks up digital electrical noise from
the rest of the camera (and webcams do this too). If you
shoot a movie in your kitchen, the background noise sounds
like an episode of the original Star Trek.
Based on my experiences so far, I would not underestimate
the difficulty of dialing in a microphone. Don't rely
on the webcam. Even if the webcam had connectors on it,
so you could do satellite microphones, that would be better
than nothing. I doubt I could successfully do a video call
with the webcam I have now, and it would be the audio
part that was lacking. The video is good enough.
My upload is limited to 1Mbit/sec, and that will limit
some of the video clients as to what resolution they can
support. So maybe the open source one with the VP8 codec,
might run out of bandwidth or something. It's still
considered a video call, even if the video has to
be in a 160x120 pixel window :-) That's how small video
was when I got my first (goofy) webcam.
While you're "talking to yourself", you can use
the performance monitor to record network transfer
rate, and see just how much bandwidth a video call
with a modicum of movement in the picture field uses.
We used to video conference at work, with a 2B+D or so
connection. And the video was so fancy, if you waved
your hand in front of the camera, there would be a
"cloud" of pixels following your hand. That was about
the limit of the fun we could have with that. The setup
used half the bandwidth for the overhead presentation
(you put up a slide and it would be transmitted to the
other site), and the other half was used for the live video.
I think my cheesy ADSL, it has more "upload" than that
thing did. I doubt I could connect an HD camera though.
A lot of webcams slow down to 5 FPS, when they're set to
"max res". If you want 30FPS from your source, that's
pretty well guaranteed with 640x480, but anything higher,
YMMV. This is something they're careful not to state
on the outside of the box. They will say "30FPS" on
one line of the box, and "fancy high res WxH" on a
second line on the box. But they'd get sued if
they put them together like "1920x1080 @ 30FPS",
because a USB2 camera won't do that. It's more
likely to be 640x480 @ 30FPS and 1920x1080 @ 5FPS.
And there aren't a lot of true USB3 cameras yet.
The last time I checked, there was only one chipset
for USB3 so far.