General musings from the MacVector team about sequence analysis, molecular biology, the Mac in general and of course your favorite sequence analysis app for the Mac!

Flying for business is so 20th century!

The volcanic ash cloud covering most of Europe is a timely reminder of just how powerful nature is. With the disruption to air travel it’s also a great reminder of just how most communications can be done without meeting face to face. Whereas it is always nice to meet with MacVector users, any such visit inevitably involves substantial travel. With the tools available now, there’s almost no need to travel. We’d prefer to keep our travel costs down (& our software!) and the cost to the environment. We’re also sure you’d prefer to be in the lab, rather than being sat in a meeting!

Here at MacVector, Inc. we use many different communication means, both to keep in contact with each other and to communicate with MacVector users. For internal chat we use Skype and iChat/Mobile me. For voice conferencing we mainly use Skype again and also our own phones which are also running on voip. We’ve also used iChat for video conferencing. When it works it is brilliant. However, it is quite temperamental. Skype is slower but more reliable. For file sharing we use the incredible Dropbox. Is there an easier way to share documents and files with colleagues? For mobile communications we have a mixture of devices, there’s iPhones, iPads, Android phones, and others.. We’ve used a variety of webcasting platforms. However, unfortunately Mac seems to be a second class citizen in this world. Our current favourite (for quite a while now) is Adobe Connect Pro. The voice function is far from perfect, but the video performance for sharing a screen is very good. Far better than every other platform we have tried.

Finally we have our twitter feed, our RSS feed, our forums, our website and of course this very blog you are reading.

However, it is nice to get out of the office and meet MacVector users for real! We will be visiting the ASM in May. If you’re also attending please do pop along to see us. Pick up a MacVector mousemat whilst you are there, and you’ll also have a final chance to win an iPad with our survey.

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