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Remote Collaboration

10 replies on 1 page. Most recent reply: Jun 14, 2006 2:25 PM by Bruce Eckel

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Bruce Eckel

Posts: 868
Nickname: beckel
Registered: Jun, 2003

Remote Collaboration (View in Weblogs)
Posted: Jun 9, 2006 12:44 PM
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Summary
I've been having some good collaboration experiences lately with a coauthor in another state, working on a book project together.
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I use Hamachi as the network channel between us, then use NetMeeting and Skype. (It's not completely clear to me why we're using Hamachi for this; I think NetMeeting can work without it, but that's how we got started and it works, so we just keep doing it that way).

We both have to change to 1024x768 resolution so that the response is OK, but that's quite tolerable. Then I work on editing the book while he looks over my shoulder and ensures that I don't change the meaning or introduce errors. Occasionally I give him control, when he needs it, but usually what I'm doing is editing his work. It works surprisingly well. It even seems like it is better than if we were in the same room, because then we'd have to be jockeying for physical space. Here, we each have our own screen. And since neither of us have to travel to do this, I'm convinced we are getting more time than we would otherwise, and it's much easier to get small chunks of time now and then (we have sometimes traveled to meet, and then we end up trying to cram lots of time in, past the point of diminishing returns energy and concentration-wise). Occasionally he can even take care of kids while his wife is out (by plugging them into video), and we could never get meeting time in that situation otherwise.

Before we did this, I had struggled with trying to find remote code-editing systems because I had a(nother) case of premature optimization. I had an earlier experience trying to share desktops when one of the participants had insufficient bandwidth, so I was convinced that I needed to find something that just worked with character editing instead of copying all the bits from one screen to another (and even at the lower 1024x768 screen resolution, the response is not instantaneous, but it's usable).

I'd still like to have a code-editing system that would work for remote pairing, but the most promising one of these was a plugin for gnu emacs and we could never get that working -- my impression was that the project had been abandoned.


Martin Stanhope

Posts: 3
Nickname: slithytove
Registered: Jun, 2006

Re: Remote Collaboration Posted: Jun 9, 2006 2:33 PM
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Of course if you had access to SubEthaEdit on a Mac it would be a lot simpler ;-)

http://www.codingmonkeys.de/subethaedit/

Hamachi is great for setting up free cross-platform zero confguration networks that work securely over the internet.

regards,

a long time fan

Bruce Eckel

Posts: 868
Nickname: beckel
Registered: Jun, 2003

Re: Remote Collaboration Posted: Jun 9, 2006 3:01 PM
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> Hamachi is great for setting up free cross-platform zero
> confguration networks that work securely over the
> internet.

That must have been it -- the "zero configuration" part.

Bruce Eckel

Posts: 868
Nickname: beckel
Registered: Jun, 2003

Re: Remote Collaboration Posted: Jun 9, 2006 3:09 PM
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> http://www.codingmonkeys.de/subethaedit/

This looks really great. Except that I am forced to work under Windows for this project. I sent a message asking them about some kind of Windows translation.

Roland Pibinger

Posts: 93
Nickname: rp123
Registered: Jan, 2006

Re: Remote Collaboration Posted: Jun 9, 2006 4:52 PM
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I'd still like to have a code-editing system that would work for remote pairing, but the most promising one of these was a plugin for gnu emacs and we could never get that working -- my impression was that the project had been abandoned.

Google Writely? http://www.writely.com/

Bruce Eckel

Posts: 868
Nickname: beckel
Registered: Jun, 2003

Re: Remote Collaboration Posted: Jun 9, 2006 5:55 PM
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Here's an interesting approach, although currently screens can only be broadcast from a Mac:
http://www.componentx.com/ScreenShare/web.php

Lucian Pintilie

Posts: 3
Nickname: luci
Registered: Aug, 2005

Re: Remote Collaboration Posted: Jun 12, 2006 2:34 AM
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For Java projects, NetBeans provides a Collaboration module: http://collab.netbeans.org/

They make life easier for developers with an account at java.net, but under the hood there's Jabber as protocol. I've played with it locally (with a local Jabberd server) once. It worked.

Martin Stanhope

Posts: 3
Nickname: slithytove
Registered: Jun, 2006

Re: Remote Collaboration Posted: Jun 12, 2006 7:14 AM
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MoonEdit and ACE look like they could be viable alternatives to SubEthaEdit that can run on Windows

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collaborative_real-time_editing

Ian Bicking

Posts: 849
Nickname: ianb
Registered: Apr, 2003

Re: Remote Collaboration Posted: Jun 12, 2006 1:28 PM
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If you want to get all retro and text-mode, GNU Screen kind of works.

Eric Rizzo

Posts: 2
Nickname: erizzo
Registered: Oct, 2005

Re: Remote Collaboration Posted: Jun 13, 2006 1:17 PM
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> <p>I'd still like to have a code-editing system that would
> work for remote pairing, but the most promising one of
> these was a plugin for gnu emacs and we could never get
> that working -- my impression was that the project had
> been abandoned.

Google for [eclipse "pair programming"] and you'll find some good information, including the following links:
http://www.pikesoft.com/blog/index.php?itemid=70&catid=3
http://wiki.eclipse.org/index.php/RT_Shared_Editing
http://www.industriallogic.com/software/sangam.html

...and many more.

Bruce Eckel

Posts: 868
Nickname: beckel
Registered: Jun, 2003

Re: Remote Collaboration Posted: Jun 14, 2006 2:25 PM
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I think we tried one or two of these and got stuck with either the configuration, or in one case it looked like the project had been abandoned.

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