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Skype - Talk to your Laptop

Skype has been out for a couple of months now, but I only recently had a look. I have never been very impressed with the audio quality of these various voice-chat systems. However, Skype is a whole different story. With similar-looking clients for Windows, Linux, OSX and PocketPC, a mechanism called SkypeOut for making calls to regular phones and some nifty P2P principles applied to the problem of getting in and out from behind firewalls and NAT gateways all combining to create something that works extremely well for most people. The biggest problem people generally have with it is figuring out how to get a microphone installed and configured for their systems.


I installed it on a machine at home before heading to Paris and have been using it to talk to Christine from Paris. I also got my parents to install it by themselves and have had 3-way conference calls with me in Paris, my parents in Toronto and Christine in California. I have also called landlines in the US from Paris and Christine called my hotel landline in Paris using Skype. Overall the quality of all these calls were amazing. Every now and then there would be a slight drop or when 2 or 3 people all spoke at once it would occasionally garble things, but it is definitely the coolest piece of software I have used in a while. Although I may have to invest in a headset for it. You get some strange looks when you sit there talking to your laptop.

Categories: Software
Last modified on 2005-04-16 23:24

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Things that ... make you go hmm on : PHP creator is a Skype fan

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The creator of the popular PHP scripting language, Rasmus Lerdorf, has been assimilated into the Skype collective: I have also called landlines in the US from Paris and Christine called my hotel landline in Paris using Skype. Overall the quality of all these calls were amazing. Every now and then there would be a slight drop or when 2 or 3 people all spoke at once it would occasionally garble things, but it is definitely the coolest piece of software I have used in a while. Although I may have to invest in a headset for it. You get some strange looks when you sit there talking to your laptop.I conducted a radio show interview with Rasmus back in 2000 (show #6, June 30, 2000) when we were getting the Script School radio show started. He was a very informative and gracious guest and it was a pleasure having him on. I should roll that interview into a podcast with some reflective commentary because it would be interesting to revisit that interview five years later.

Skype Journal on : How do you use your Skype?

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Arieanna's share on Get Real resonated with me, although I can't still claim that I don't use telcos at all. But I use them less and like them less. ........ I don't use the telcos for anything at the moment. No landline or anything. .......... Part of my decision to stick with Skype is that I don't see any future product from either telco or cable provider to offer the same level of social connectivity....

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