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The Use of Videoconferencing in Higher Education


Asynchronous Transfer Mode networks (based on packet switching). A mode of data transfer in which units of data are not time-related to each other.
An item of equipment containing an encoder and a decoder. A device which performs the dual function of encoding two-way analogue data and two-way digital data into analogue data.
Echo Canceller
A unit of hardware and software connected to the audio system, used to reduce the amount of echo 'reflected' back to the site transmitting the audio, and thus ensuring adequate sound quality.
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
A series of audio visual communications recommendations which were ratified by the CCITT in December 1990. The aim of the series, which applies to audio visual communications over 56/64 Kbps to 2.048 Mbps channels, is to ensure videoconferencing systems and video terminals will interconnect across any network. H.320 is an umbrella standard encompassing a series of recommendations
Higher Education Institute
Higher Education Funding Council
Integrated Services Digital Network. Basically the existing telephone network using existing but upgraded switches and wiring, but all digital, giving a bandwidth for a basic call of 64 kbps. This increased bandwidth allows the transmission of high fidelity compressed audio, as well as the potential for video communication. Broadband ISDN (ISDN-2, ISDN-6, ISDN-30) is a communication channel having a bandwidth greater than a voice-grade channel 1 and therefore capable of higher-speed data transmission.
Joint Academic NETwork.
Joint Information Systems Committee (of the Higher Education Funding Councils of England, Scotland and Wales). Responsible for funding SuperJANET.
Kilobits per second
Local Area Network. A system for intercommunication between computer terminals, PCs and related equipment operating within the same general area.
Metropolitan Area Network. A geographically extended high-speed LAN designed to interconnect users within a city or metropolitan area.
Multicast Backbone. A virtual network that has been in existence since early 1992. Originated from an effort to multicast audio and video from meetings of the IETF. Shares the same physical media as the Internet. MBONE today is used by several hundred researchers for developing protocols and applications for group communication. It is a co-operative, volunteer effort.
Megabits per second
Multimedia Integrated Conferencing for Europe
Multipoint Control Unit.
Switched Multimegabit Data Service.
A national high performance network supporting UK education and research. It currently provides three services: a high performance IP service to all connected sites, an ATM service to a sub-set of the connected sites and a video network to the ATM sites.
UK Education and Research Networking Association. A company that has been set up to manage the networking programme for the UK higher education and research community
Video Cassette Recorder
World Wide Web.

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