Whos at the Meeting

By Jeffrey Burt  |  Posted 2006-12-22 Print this article Print

?"> The technology hopefully would solve a number of problems that come with having thousands of songs stored in a device, Lamere said. Twenty-three percent of the songs are played 80 percent of the time, and 64 percent of the songs stored on these devices are never played, he said.

"People just forget theyre there," Lamere said.
Having a search engine that can more closely cluster like songs could improve that, he said. Commercial applications for the technology could include selling it to cell phone companies, which could turn around and offer it to users as an extra option to customers who store music on their mobile devices.
Nicole Yankelovich, another principle investigator, is working on a project aimed at improving the effectiveness of distributed meetings, where some people are attending remotely. "Some of the problems were trying to solve here are basic conference problems: whos here, whos talking," Yankelovich said. Suns Connected Conference Room prototype lets people see such things as whos talking, whos in attendance and whos voting which way. A menu of audio problems—from the sound being too soft, or even lost, to distractions—alerts people to issues. Click here to read about Suns Java Platform Standard Edition 6 (Java SE 6). In addition, documents can be shared, access controlled and conversations held outside of earshot of others in the meeting. Text chat is offered and a "waiting room" is offered for people waiting to come into the conference but who arent allowed into the meeting until their turn. Another feature theyre working on would allow remote users to control a camera so they could scan the meeting to see who is attending. In addition, a monitor in the room would enable people in the room to see the remote workers face. Project Darkstar is aimed at improving the process of designing massive online games, a small but growing part of the industry that Karl Habert, a director in Sun Labs, said is expected to grow to $11 billion by 2011. Such games now are primarily deployed and run by well-financed companies, which have the money and capabilities to handle the massive amount of data center space and resources needed for this space. Habert estimated is costs about $20 million to design a data center to run a massive online game and then develop the game itself. "Building an online game [infrastructure] is very complex," he said. "Theres a high capital outlay." Darkstar is a Java-based platform designed to take care of the basic technology needs required to run a massive, multiplayer online game—from the load balancing and communications to database performance tuning and scalability—freeing game designers to focus on their applications. People interested in creating such an online game could use the Sun technology and use it to create their infrastructure, and put their efforts into creating the games. "We want to really open up the MMOG [massively multiplayer online game] space," Habert said. It also will enable users to access the game from multiple devices, whether it be a home computer or a cell phone. Sun, of Santa Clara, Calif., is looking at business models for the technology, including whether to lease it to third parties or host it internally. "Sun hasnt committed to building a service around this, but were thinking about it," he said. The prototype is currently running in Sun Labs, and is available in "early access" form, Habert said. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, views and analysis on servers, switches and networking protocols for the enterprise and small businesses.


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