Images and Video in Collaboration


Last week I was working on a short piece for InfoWorld about collaboration--what companies spend too much money on and what they don't spend enough on. One inexpensive collaboration tool that is underutilized is video. I'm not talking about video conferencing, but the now near ubiquitous ability to create and easily distribute short videos.

If there's anything YouTube has taught us, it's that user-created video is coming into its own. In a recent article called Video Knowledge, Jon Udell references the work of Sean McCown, a professional database administrator who writes the Database Underground blog for InfoWorld. Sean's been bit by the screencasting bug.

Every now and then you come across something that changes the way you do everything. I just got the latest release of Camtasia Studio and man is it great. It's got some cool new features that I'll let the website go into details on, but what I wanted to talk about is how this kind of thing can be used in our environments.

I sat down last night and made a video of the restore procedure for one of our ETL processes. It was 10mins long, and it explained everything someone would need to know to recover the process from a crash. So why can't you use this same thing to record your DR strategy? Think about it... would you rather sift through tons of documents or watch a video and see exactly what you need to do, and do it at the same time. This way you can also have the important things explained to you.
From Database Underground | Not just a DR Plan Anymore | By Sean McCown
Referenced Wed Dec 20 2006 07:21:45 GMT-0700 (MST)

Sean's using video to teach and ensure his ideas are communicated clearly. People watching the screencasts get a firsthand look at how something is done rather than just reading about it.

Digital cameras are another technology that doesn't get enough use in the enterprise. I remember hearing about the CEO of a department store who used his camera phone to take pictures of particularly attractive retail displays and email them to his merchandisers. Simple, cheap, and effective.

I think over time we'll see imaging and video play and increasingly important role in business communications.