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Campus Computing News

By Claudia Lynch, Benchmarks Online Editor

Presidential Inauguration a Streaming Success!

Dr. Norval Pohl was named UNT's 13th President on October 15, 2000 and at 3 p.m. on May 4, 2001 he was inaugurated -- live, and on the Internet. That's right, as the inauguration was taking place in the Coliseum, streaming audio and video was being sent out over the Internet.* It was also broadcast on NTTV.

According to Austin Laird, Distance Learning Administrator in Central Web Support, The Center for Media Production (CMP) filmed and actually encoded the live stream. It was then sent to Central Web Support's streaming media server. This was the first live Internet broadcast here at UNT and everyone involved agrees it was a resounding success.

Laird, who was monitoring the media server, stated that the stream was uninterrupted, with good audio and video. The number of users connected peaked at fifty-four at 3:45 p.m. An average of fifty connections were maintained from 3:20 until the end of Dr. Pohl's speech.

There were a total of 187 requests for the stream; 111 of those from unique IP addresses. Twenty-five of the requests were from outside of the UNT domain.That left 86 unique UNT IPs, which would include anyone watching from dialup (if anyone braved it from dialup :-)

You missed the inauguration?

If you weren't able to attend the inauguration or watch it from the comfort of your home/office, all is not lost. You can see what all the "pomp and circumstance" was about here: http://www.unt.edu/inaugural Not only are there links to streams of Dr.Pohl's speech and the presentation of the mace and medallion to Dr.Pohl, there are also links to information about former Presidents and Chancellors of UNT, biographical information about Dr. Pohl, information about the UNT system, and more.

Webcasts in the future

The Center for Media Production has plans to do future Webcasts of graduations, convocations, Faculty Regents lectures and other events. All of these using the Central Web Support server. CMP sample streams can be found at http://www.cmp.unt.edu/streamedsamples.htm


*Streaming media defined (from http://illinois.online.uillinois.edu/IONresources/streamingMedia/Introduction.html -- further information available from this site.)

Streaming media is delivery of continuous audio, video, and/or text over the internet. The media is fed to the user as the media is viewed. In other words, it's a continuous transaction. This is very different from the typical "stateless" internet transactions which require all data to be downloaded before the media file can be accessed. Non-streaming files such as most .wav, .avi and .mov files download completely to the client computer before they begin to play. If the file is relatively long, as would be the case with a lecture, the time to download might be the same as the length of the lecture!