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Director, OpenShift Strategy at Red Hat. Founder of Rishidot Research, a research community focused on services world. His focus is on Platform Services, Infrastructure and the role of Open Source in the services era. Krish has been writing @ CloudAve from its inception and had also been part of GigaOm Pro Analyst Group. The opinions expressed here are his own and are neither representative of his employer, Red Hat, nor CloudAve, nor its sponsors.

3 responses to “Tips For Google+ Hangouts”

  1. Jon Reed

    Krishnan –

    Was good to hear from a fellow enterprise G+ Hangout user – I think G+ Hangouts are undervalued for enterprise content. Maybe it’s because folks tried them early and found them buggy, I don’t know.

    I started taping Google Hangouts before Google made it easy with the auto-YouTube process, though I still prefer to record them myself as I did with the SAP HANA one I just posted, for several reasons. Still, with the taping hurdle solved more folks should try this!

    A few additional points I’ll add to yours:

    - G+ Hangouts have surprisingly good video and audio quality for multiple participants. Previously I had attempted to tape multi-party video on Skype and had only miserable fails. Plus Skype charges per month for multi-party video. I can only recommend Skype for a one-on-one video taping.

    - Google Hangouts tend to deteriorate in technical quality over time so if you chat for a while, then reboot the Hangout when you get into the content you want to tape.

    - I find Chrome to be the best browser for Mac or Windows for G Plus tapings.

    - Get people logged off Skype unless you want those Skype instant message sound pings to interrupt your taping. :)

    - Google Hangouts are bandwidth intensive so maximizing bandwidth on all sides, reducing additional apps running, perhaps rebooting computers fresh before starting – all work to maximize the chances things go well.

    Of course some of the things you note on your list will always happen but a bit of informality doesn’t ruin things if the guests and content are good.

    Speaking of which, have enjoyed yours, checked out the most recent PaaS versus IaaS one – good stuff. When someone’s kid interrupts a Hangout that’s always a bonus.

  2. Jon Reed

    p.s. a comment on taping methods, as there are reasons to do your own taping. At this point there is no software specifically for taping your own Hangout, which creates a challenge as you then need software (and a sound card) that can tape both your own mic and “what you hear” simultaneously. (essentially, an advanced screen capture program).

    I can only speak to Wintel, but Camtasia is the one software program I know does this (on both Wintel and Mac I believe).

    However Camtasia is a weighty investment and actually brings way more functionality than needed for this purpose. Having tested numerous Wintel alternatives I am huge fan of Screen Cast O Matic, http://www.screencast-o-matic.com/, which should work for Windows and Mac. The “pro” version is very affordable and offers the dual taping functionalities needed.

    Two things to keep in mind when taping with such software:

    - Screen cast o matic records everything in the window you set, and that includes your mouse, so mouse movements get recorded. Camtasia may have a setting that allows you not to tape your mouse movements, I’m not sure.

    Why does that matter? Because if you tape the recording yourself you will need to manually click on the screen if you want to ever be the one featured in the screen (and then manually unclick when you are done). I tend to only do this at the beginning and end of my recordings, otherwise I don’t worry about being featured in the full screen.

    Even with the manual recording, I still prefer this method, without going into all the considerations one of them is that I believe I get better recordings when the Hangouts are private, that’s a personal editorial choice. :) (allows for some frank off the record comments and a more relaxed environment, plus people who aren’t invited to the recording don’t feel excluded, and so on).

  3. Megan Jones

    I have had a Google+ since it was in it’s beta days. I think that the hangout is one of the best features on G+. As a recent college graduate all my my best friends are scattered throughout the country (and world) and G+ hangout is great for catching up. It is great not to have to always schedule a hangout but also to randomly log on and see that you can join a hangout!