I work at a distance. I work with people I know and have worked with f2f. We meet weekly or more, and we use the following:
- elluminate – web conferencing tool that is ugly, but works
- sometimes DimDim (ugh) – frustrating web conferencing tool
- teleconferences, i.e., phone
Sometimes, in addition we use things like:
- wikis – PBWorks
- Etherpad – for real time collaboration/brainstorming (doesn’t do tables, unfortunately)
None of these are ideal, but they are affordable/what we have access to. I don’t see a huge advantage with the more expensive versions of elluminate for the problems i have.
- web conferencing: usually requires a lot of screwing around with audio/video settings, multiplied by the number of people in the room. technology not transparent.
- web conferencing: none of us are very skilled at it yet. i think it takes time to get to a place where people are comfortable, the technology becomes more transparent. I am working to get better at this and think of ways to help facilitate/participate better in these sessions
- phone: can be hell to be the one person on the other end of a room full of people, but it’s the easiest way to be a part of what they’re doing, without asking for a lot of accommodation and causing inconvenience to the whole group