New features in hosting for BigBlueButton

Hosting

We’ve been busy improving our features in the hosting of BigBlueButton in the past few months. This post gives you an update of what’s new in the Blindside Networks hosting for BigBlueButton.

All of these features are now available in your sessions.

1. Who is Talking

Whenever a user’s microphone generates audio, BigBlueButton now displays their name in the upper-left-hand corner.

This “who is talking” label makes it easy for the instructor to see who is generating audio (regardless of the class size) and to click any label to mute the user’s microphone (if they are causing unwanted background noise).

The name remains visible as long as their microphone is generating audio, and then fades out after a few moments.

2. Shared Notes Recording Format

We’ve added a new recording format called “notes” that captures the last version of the Shared Notes before the meeting ended.

The “notes” recording format lets users easily retrieve the Shared Notes from a previously recorded meeting (such as when the instructor used the notes to summarize the key points in the lecture).

For more information on how the “notes” recording format appears in your learning management system, see

https://support.blindsidenetworks.com/hc/en-us/articles/360037600531-December-6th-2019

3. Easily See Who is in a Breakout Room

To make it easy for the instructor to see current members of a breakout room, BigBlueButton now displays members underneath the title for the Breakout Room.

In the screenshot above, Kevin Tang, Matthew Shears, and Sandra McCoy are in Breakout Room 1, while Alexia Matthews and Susan Jones are in Breakout Room 2.

4. Maximum Time for Recorded Sessions now 9 Hours

We had previously set a maximum time limit of 6 hours for recorded sessions. We have now increased the maximum time to 9 hours.

Having a time limit ensures that if one user forgets to logout, everyone else leaves. Or, if the instructor does not end the session, the session does not create a 100+ hours recording (yes, it has happened in the past).

5. More Features: New Notifications, Adjustable Webcams, and Warning when No Microphone in a Recorded Session

Based on feedback from instructors, we’ve made a number of smaller improvements:

  • Added an option in Settings to notify you when a new user joins (audio and/or toast messages)
  • When viewing webcams, you can now adjust the relative size of the webcams (this is very good for learning sign language, for example, while still having the presentation visible)
  • BigBlueButton now displays a warning message when it is recording the session but no one has a microphone (this is helpful to know if you are recording some content ahead of class but forgot to share your microphone when clicking the Start/Stop Record button).

The following KB article provides a detailed overview for each of the above improvements:

https://support.blindsidenetworks.com/hc/en-us/articles/360037099732-December-3rd-2019

If you have any specific features you would like to see in 2020 in our hosting for BigBlueButton, please don’t hesitate to reach out and let us know.

The Blindside Networks Team