interesting thread of discussion on AG...

Mary Fritsch fritsch at
Wed Aug 11 10:25:58 CDT 2004

I am on this mailing list as a participant of the Genomics Conferences...

>Date: Wed, 11 Aug 2004 13:36:34 +1000
>Reply-To: Markus Buchhorn <Markus.Buchhorn at>
>Sender: "AG Virtual Conf. on Genomics and 
>Bioinformatics"              <VIRTCON at LISTSERV.NODAK.EDU>
>From: Markus Buchhorn <Markus.Buchhorn at>
>Subject: shared ppt issue for the virtual conference
>Hi all
>Jennifer and I have been discussing this in email for the last few days. 
>In a nutshell there are really only two options:
>  - dppt
>  - Shared Presentation (SP)
>The SP approach may work Ok if all the participating sites are up to a 
>stable version of the AG 2.x code, and have Windows/PPT on their display 
>machine. It does not yet work on the Linuxen/OO platforms.
>There have been reports of inconsistencies between AG 2.0, 2.1 and 2.2, 
>although the ANL folks suggest it should be Ok. This is too hard to judge now.
>To convert a site from 1.x to 2.x is a serious effort. The software is Ok, 
>but it's a change of mindset that the node-ops will have to get used to.
>The safer approach (sadly) appears to be to use dppt this time round. 
>Presumably many sites out there either still run 1.x, or have run it in 
>the past and are familiar with dppt.
>Now, the core issue with dppt is that it requires Java, and specifically 
>the MS-JVM and not the Sun JVM. With Windows XP, some versions have had 
>the MS-JVM excluded (SP1a onwards). If you have upgraded XP or XP-SP1, it 
>should be Ok; it doesn't get removed. If you have bought a new box with 
>XP-SP1a factory installed on it, you don't have the MS-JVM. You can 
>download the MS-JVM from many places, but not from MS :-(. Do a google for 
>'msjavx86.exe'. It's a 5MB installer, and I found over 5000 sites with it. 
>Whether you trust them....
>So, given the limited time, the question will be if *all* sites are 
>running 2.x with Windows/PPT on their display. If yes, we can go with 
>shared-presentation. If not, dppt seems to be the best choice - least 
>amount of new training required, and it works on Windows and Linuxen/OO.
>First chance the 1.x sites get though they should move to 2.x - *after* 
>this virtconf :-) The shared-presentation tool, and the shared-browser 
>(and shared-vnc soon) are a lot better.
>That would be Jennifer and my recommendation, $0.04 between us. What do 
>other people think?
>         Markus
>P.S. There are some other tricks you can play, e.g. putting ppt slides 
>into video streams, or using vnc, etc. but these greatly diminish the 
>quality. dppt is not ideal either (intra-slide animations don't work), but 
>at least we can get everyone to see the same slides. Willy or somebody 
>will need to coordinate the dppt-masters somehow.
>Markus Buchhorn, ANU Internet Futures             |Ph: +61 2 61258810
>Markus.Buchhorn at                        |Fx: +61 2 61259805
>The Australian National University, Canberra 0200 |Mob: 0417 281429

mary fritsch . futures lab . mcs . argonne national lab . 630 252 5297 

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