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ENHANCED VIRTUAL SIDEBAR

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000246968D
Publication Date: 2016-Jul-19
Document File: 6 page(s) / 148K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Related People

Andrew Henderson: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

Presented herein are techniques to allow virtual collaboration participants, such as chatroom participants, to have multiple sidebar conversations using audio and/or video. In some instances, the sidebar may be publicly available and/or broadcast, so that any collaboration participants can view or participate in the sidebar conversation as they wish. Although many large chatrooms have sidebar features, these sidebars typically only allow text-based conversations. Consequently, the techniques presented herein vastly improve sidebar conversations.

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ENHANCED VIRTUAL SIDEBAR

AUTHORS:

Andrew Henderson Damien McCoy

CISCO SYSTEMS, INC.

ABSTRACT

    Presented herein are techniques to allow virtual collaboration participants, such as chatroom participants, to have multiple sidebar conversations using audio and/or video. In some instances, the sidebar may be publicly available and/or broadcast, so that any collaboration participants can view or participate in the sidebar conversation as they wish. Although many large chatrooms have sidebar features, these sidebars typically only allow text-based conversations. Consequently, the techniques presented herein vastly improve sidebar conversations.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

    When people are physically present in a meeting or attending a presentation, there are often a couple of 'sidebar' conversations happening at the same time. Similarly, in messaging applications, there are often similar 'sidebar' conversations taking place inside chatrooms, e.g. in the 'Ask User 1' room. Typically, these sidebar conversations are restricted to being text-based and are not visible to others in the room. The techniques described herein support multiple sidebar conversations in a virtual collaboration environment (e.g., chatroom, message board, etc.). The sidebar conversations allow a subset of room participants to collaborate via audio and video. In some instances, participants outside the subset can see or monitor the sidebar and decide to listen in and/or join the sidebar audio/video conversation

Copyright 2016 Cisco Systems, Inc.

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Example Use Case

    The example use case illustrates how the techniques presented herein can be used in a messaging application with chatrooms. However, in other instances, the techniques could also be used to facilitate multiple sidebar conversations in message board environments, video conference environments, or any other collaboration environment.

    In Figure 1, a chatroom environment is shown. The environment includes four rooms: Room A, Room B, Room C, and Room D. In Room C, Contact A has shared a presentation with multiple other participants in the room. There are no sidebars currently active in this room. However, when Contact B sees the presentation, Contact B wants to discuss the presentation over a call. As is described in further detail below, in order to start a sidebar call in this particular chatroom, a user may click the icon of another user and then select initiate sidebar from a menu that appears. Alternatively, if a user wants to initiate a video call for the entire room, the user may actuate a video call icon that is built into the chatroom environment. However, in other instances, video calls or video sidebars may be initiated in any manner.

    In Figure 2, Contact B starts a sidebar call with Contact A and the call between Contacts A & B is shown inline in Room C. In this particular instance, the sidebar conversation is visible to all the other participants, but only the subset of room participants in the...