Telepresence User Guide

Telepresence System User Guide

Version 3.0.1


The Telepresence system is intended to facilitate communication both within your office and with distant locations. Using the Telepresence program on your Macintosh, you will be able to make video calls by selecting the name of the person you wish to speak with. Once the connection is made, their image will appear on your Telepresence screen and your image will appear on theirs.

This User Guide describes how the Telepresence equipment works and the features included in the Telepresence computer program.

Audio/Visual Equipment

The Telepresence system (Telepresence) uses several pieces of audio/video equipment and a computer program which runs on your Macintosh computer.

You have on your desk:

Each of these is linked directly into Telepresence through special wiring. Each piece of equipment also needs to be plugged into a power outlet and turned on.

The ITRC Telepresence system operates like a telephone system except that you use your computer to make calls and to hang-up. The system handles all the connections for you, so you interact only with the computer screen.

The Troubleshooting section at the end of this document describes how to check your equipment if there are any problems. Ideally, your power bar should be left ON and each of the four pieces of equipment listed above should also be left ON at all times.

Using the Telepresence System

There are two things you need to do to use the Telepresence system. First you need to login to the system to inform the Telepresence system that you are in your office. Once the system knows that you are available, it allows other people to contact you. If you have not logged in you will not be accessible through Telepresence. See the section Logging in for full details.

The next thing you need to do is start the Telepresence program. This is the program that lets you call other people. It is described in the section called The Telepresence Program.

Logging in

When you first turn on your Macintosh you may be asked to register with the system. This lets the system know that you are available. When you have logged in to the system other people may communicate with you through Telepresence. The information you will see displayed on your computer screen is shown below.

Telepresence Login Window

Your computer account name will be automatically put in the User name box (where it says "your-name"). You should not have to change this.

The first time you start up your computer you will have to enter your password in the Password box. It will show up as a series of dots so no one can read your password. (If you do not know your password please contact the Telepresence technical support person.) Only authorized people may use the Telepresence system.

After you have successfully logged in to the ITRC Telepresence system for the first time, you may not want to be bothered by the login prompt every time you turn on your computer. If you don't want Telepresence to ask you for your password every time you login, then the next time you login do steps 1, 2, and then step 3:

ALTERNATELY You can turn the request for password back on from the File menu of the Telepresence program. If the password feature is currently turned off, the menu item will appear as :

Ask for password.

When the feature is on, a check mark will appear in front of the menu item as

[[radical]] Ask for password

By selecting this item, you can turn off or turn on the Startup Window.

You can control other's ability to contact you using the door states feature of the Telepresence program. You may set your door state when you register or you may change it any time in the future. Your current door state is highlighted. (The door state meanings are described in the section Setting Your Door States .) To change your door state point to the desired door picture and click your mouse button.

You are now ready to use the Telepresence system.

Starting the Telepresence Program

The Telepresence program lets you contact other people using the Telepresence system. You can contact other people in your group, or almost anybody in the world who has access to standard videoconferencing facilities.

There are two ways to start the Telepresence program:


If you have not yet logged in you will see the login window, as described above. It takes several seconds for the system to start up while it checks to see who else is available and who is away, so be patient. In a few moments you will see the Telepresence window.

The Telepresence Window

The Telepresence window shows you who is available to be contacted and their accessibility. Below is a picture of the Telepresence window.

Telepresence Window

The individual parts of the Telepresence window are described from top to bottom.

Close box In the top left corner of the window is a close box (shown above). If you point to this box and click your mouse the window can be closed (or hidden) in the same way as any other Macintosh programs. This is described in more detail in the next section.

Your Door State

The icon of the door indicates your current accessibility. The icon is either an open door, a slightly open door, a closed door or a locked door. See the section Setting Your Door States for more details.< p>

Message Box To the right of your door state is a message box. Messages give you information about what the system is doing. You will also see messages here if a person's line is busy or if they are unavailable. You will hear a tone whenever a new message appears to remind you to look at the status line. Messages are removed once the action about which they provide information is complete.

Name list The names of people you can contact are in the name list. Names which appear in grey show people who are currently not registered with the system and cannot be contacted. Names which are appear in black show those people who are logged in. Choosing names and making calls is described in detail later in this document.

Other people's door states:

The tiny door icons to the left of the names in the name list let you know other people's door settings. When you are in contact with a person in the list this icon changes to a check mark.

Special Items in the Name List:

Outside line This item will allow you to place video calls to non-internal locations. It will also allow you to receive incoming video calls from external locations. See the section Outside Video Calls for more details.

Project Room This item allows you to connect directly to the CSRI Project Room (Pratt 376), in Toronto. In this way you can attend a meeting in the Project Room while remaining in your office.

ICR Board Room This item allows you to connect directly to the ICR Board Room (Davis Centre 1331), in Waterloo. In this way you can attend a meeting in the ICR Board Room while remaining in your office.

IMPORTANT NOTE: You should be extremely careful when contacting either the CSRI Project Room or the ICR Board Room. You don't want to accidentally jump into another meeting that may be taking place in those rooms.

Buttons There are several buttons under the name list. When they appear in black they are enabled, and can be selected. When these buttons appear in grey it means they are disabled, and cannot be selected. Buttons are explained in detail later in this document.

Comment There is a small button in the bottom right corner of the Telepresence window, the Comment button. Select this to send a message to the system administrator of the Telepresence system. When you select the button, a window will pop up allowing you to type a message.

Comment box

Here are some occasions when you would select the Comment button:

Setting Your Door States

Your door state is shown in the Login Window and at the top of the Telepresence Window. It can be changed at any time by clicking on your door state icon.

Door states determine whether another Telepresence user can walk into your office by video, glance at you, and whether they have to request permission before making contact. All calls and glances will be announced with a tone regardless of your door state. The door states have the following meanings:

                 Glance              Ask                                                 
                         Contact  Permission                                             
 Open            yes     yes         no      * others may contact your office without   
                                              having to ask for permission. * others     
                                              may glance into your office.               
 Ajar            yes     yes         yes     * others may contact you but you must      
                                              explicitly accept the call. * others may   
                                              glance into your office                    
 Closed           no     yes         yes     * others may contact you but you must      
                                              explicitly accept the call * others may    
                                              not glance at you at any time              
 Locked           no     no          n/a     * no-one may contact you or glance at      
                                              you while your door state is locked        

To change your door state: