Pilot Project Explores Breeze Capabilities, Puts Nervous System Online

Mediaworks is working with Dr. Vijaya Kumari from the School of Medicine on a pilot project using Macromedia's Breeze live technology to convert PowerPoint lectures on the nervous system into online presentations for distribution to incoming medical students. After converting Dr. Kumari's PowerPoint slides, which are enhanced with animations and audio, into the Breeze format, they can be delivered as streamed media online, and students can view them from a Web browser (i.e., they no longer have to own a copy of PowerPoint). The use of this software also allows the instructor to deliver materials without enabling simple downloading or copying of potentially copyrighted or copyrightable materials.

Mediaworks is also exploring the interactive capabilities of Breeze Live to offer Dr. Martin Wilson in the Division of Biological Sciences the ability to conduct online office hours or support sessions for students who need help with software that is required in a new modeling class he will be offering this fall (http://www.dbs.ucdavis.edu/courses/modeling/). The software allows an instructor to give an online demonstration of the software and/or take control of a student's machine to assist directly with the use of the software. Breeze supports real-time audio/video chat, a shared white-board, screen sharing and embedded Flash or streamed PowerPoint, all as part of the same online session.

In the future, Mediaworks expects to use the real-time capability of Breeze to provide remote support to its clients all over campus. Since Breeze does not require any software installation on the part of the user, support staff can help people with online tools directly over the network. This will allow for more personalized service without necessarily requiring a time-consuming trip across campus to provide an office visit. To view a demo of Macromedia's Breeze or read more about the software program, see http://macromedia.com/software/breeze/.