January 1st, 2006 - Ongoing
Visualcasting is a new SAGE network service that supports global collaboration by enabling two or more users to share application content, sending multi-gigabit streams as required - enabling two or more remote users to interact with one another, as well as with their data, at the same time. Connected, participating endpoint sites form a virtual laboratory, as visualcasting enables everyone to see the same content at the same time.
Endpoints can be of any size and configuration, varying from a single high-resolution monitor to room-sized tiled display walls. Each site maintains control of the layout (position, size, overlapping) of its displays. Visualcasting lets users select what information they want to send, and to whom. The technology currently used to broadcast information to two or more sites is called multicast, and while effective, today’s networking infrastructure does not automatically support it, and requires network engineering to implement. Unlike multicast, which requires network engineering, visualcasting is application-centric.
Visualcasting addresses the problem by enabling applications to select what information to send, and to whom to send it, without the need for technical support and network modifications. Moreover, visualcasting supports endpoint displays of variable size and configuration. Visualcasting is application-centric, enabling researchers to dynamically create their own virtual laboratories for global collaboration.
Each endpoint runs SAGE to send and/or receive real-time streams of ultra-high-resolution 2D and 3D content. Visualcasting manages the streams so the same content is made available to all participants. Visualcasting is supported by a bridging system that receives pixel streams from SAGE applications and replicates these streams to each endpoint. Visualcasting nodes are strategically placed in core network facilities and allocated to service distant collaborators.