More Features for ReadyTalk

ReadyTalk

ReadyTalk is a telephone/web conference service used throughout the UC system.  All UCI campus departments are eligible to sign up for service. ReadyTalk adds new features as they become available.  In the last few months, the following capabilities have been added.

ReadyTalk for the iPad
Conference participants can access a web conference via their iPad.

iReach integration
Users can easily create and distribute a press release about an upcoming webinar.

Surveys
ReadyTalk enables users to email a custom survey to participants after a webinar.

Video Clip Playback
With video clip playback you can easily upload and stream short video clips to your entire audience providing a rich web conferencing experience.

Guides on how to use these new features can be found on the ReadyTalk web site.

QuickLauncher – New Feature for ReadyTalk

ReadyTalk

ReadyTalk, one of UCI’s conference calling solutions, has a new feature.  QuickLauncher is ReadyTalk software you can install on your Windows or Macintosh computer to facilitate the creation and management of  telephone and/or web-based conference calls.

The QuickLauncher resides in your taskbar and allows you to:

  •    Start and Join ReadyTalk Web Meetings with a single click.
  •    Start an Audio Meeting by having the audio bridge dial you into your meeting.
  •    Launch ReadyTalk’s full service Conference Center to manage your scheduled meetings.
  •    Invite others to your Web and Audio Meetings

As a reminder, UCI’s phone system has a built-in conference calling feature which can be used at no cost if all participants are using the UCI phone system.  (Toll charges may apply for calls to off-campus participants.)

OIT has published general information on ReadyTalk conferencing online.  ReadyTalk’s Getting Started page includes reference cards, training videos, and links for downloading QuickLauncher.

Printed Directory

NACS offers faculty and staff the option of receiving a printed campus directory. To manage costs and conserve resources, NACS wants to ensure that copies of the printed directory are sent only to those who require them.  To receive a printed directory, you must request one at the directory update web page.  NACS thanks those who elect to “go green” and use electronic alternatives.

After logging in, check “Yes” under the question: “Do you want one (1) copy of the printed UCI Campus & Medical Center Directory?”. You may also use this link to update your other directory information.  Please note NACS distributes only to faculty and staff on the main campus.  Medical Center personnel have their own distribution mechanism.

NACS also offers an online directory tool which can be found on the campus home page through the “People” search feature, or at http://directory.uci.edu/

The on-line directory has been recently enhanced to offer a wider and more flexible range of search criteria, including the ability to limit searches to faculty and staff, students, or department names.  The “Advanced Search” makes it easier to search based on first name, last name, UCInetID, department, or phone number.  You can also combine those criteria for more specificity.

And You Thought You Take a Lot of Calls

You may not realize it, but NACS employs telephone operators as a part of the campus telephone service.

Two operators are on duty Monday through Friday from 8 am to 5 pm. The operators handle calls from campus telephones dialing “0” and calls to the University from all over the country and the world. The operators are the first contact the public has when calling the general telephone number listed for University of California Irvine (949-824-5011).

Not only do these professionals have to know a great deal about the units, services, structure, calendar, and activities of the University, they are called upon to handle an impressive number of requests.

In the course of a typical year, the operators handle almost 100,000 calls, with a peak day being almost 600 callers. Their goal is to help every caller quickly, and almost 80% of all calls are answered within ten seconds.

Should you ever need to reach someone by telephone while off campus, our friendly Campus Operators are ready to help you.

Improvements to Cellular Coverage

 

NACS is working with Sprint Nextel to improve Sprint PCS coverage on the main campus.  Sprint Nextel is adding Sprint PCS equipment to the existing Nextel site located at Engineering Tower.  This should improve in-building coverage for Sprint where it has been poor.

NACS and other campus departments are also working with AT&T (formerly Cingular) to construct a new cell site that will be located on the rooftop of the Science Library.   This site will bring coverage to the western portion of the campus in an effort to restore coverage to UCI’s AT&T users.  Cingular sold their interest in the joint venture network to T-Mobile when Cingular bought AT&T Wireless assets a few years ago.  Since then, their two sites on campus have only carried T-Mobile traffic, which had a negative impact on AT&T/Cingular coverage at UCI.

In addition to these two projects, NACS is developing a “master plan” for future cell site installations to bring new carriers on board, and add better coverage to existing carriers that have sites on the campus.  One idea that we are evaluating is a distributed antenna system or DAS.  This system, installed by a third party, leverages advances in technology to deploy small “microcell” nodes that are fed by fiber optic cable back to a central distribution point on our campus.  The DAS system has a very small profile compared to the sites that exist on campus today.  This solution can work better in our environment, improving in-building coverage and adding carriers without the challenge of finding a rooftop or other space for several hundred square feet of equipment and large antenna arrays.  In some cases, the antennas can be completely hidden, with attendant aesthetic benefits.

In this information age, NACS understands the desire of many to be mobile, whether it’s simply a cell phone, PDA, or data card for their laptop.  We will continue to work with cellular carriers to implement better coverage on campus.