sitting a bit of a longer sit tonight will be sitting in the zen hall if anyone wants to join in.
sitting a bit of a longer sit tonight will be sitting in the zen hall if anyone wants to join in.
I have heard a reference to those participating in Zazenkai through Zen Hall.
Today (after some challenges) I was able to log in to USTREAM. There I could leave a message, see who was logged in and follow the broadcast. Does something similar to this occur through Zen Hall at the appointed time?
Going to do the zazenkai in the sitting hall, if anyone wants to join in.
Figures. Today was the first time someone joins me in Zen Hall and I was late. Peter, was that you?
Couldn't get online at first. When I got online and got to Zen Hall, the camera angle I had previously set up was changed. (Note: When someone joins you, and the screen is being shared, the view changes).
Anyway, it was good to sit with someone or someones. I couldn't really tell if others were present. Get back to me, if you would please. So we can figure out how this medium works.
I'll just hang out in the Meeting Hall for a while, if you're available to chat.
Sorry Don, it was not me. I'm usually a late-night sitter (10 pm Eastern US time). I'd like to add a morning sit during Ango, so perhaps I will "see" you soon.
it was indeed Peter, but the other Peter, me
I usually sit earlier, but as i was late anyway I decided to match your time, as I too find it nice to "sit together",
Thank you and Gassho
Hello Peter and Peter Lin,
Thanks for dropping in PL!
I think I've discovered the source of my technical difficulties. For some reason my computer is suddenly suffering from "low virtual memory". And I thought I was the only one! Anyway, my means is down for a couple days, but suffering is a characteristic of our existence and the sitting must go on. 4pm now. Catch you later.
After computer repairs (which were needed in any event) and several tests with a Computer Tech (as well as a second computer and web cam) on hand...
The picture problems remain (off and on) in Zen Hall and Meeting Hall. Must be a real challenge to maintain a system and comms across the diverse providers and connections we represent. No matter. If we see each other that's great, if not it's still great.Hope to see you around sometime in my usual time slots, or yours. It's all good practice. Especially if its sitting.
I just experienced some video weirdness too. Must be something going on with MeBeam, rather than with your computer (at least the video problem).
My Zafu still works fine, though.
Had a sitting companion this morning. Thanks very much. I appreciate it.
I'd like to continue to try to "document" what appears to be happening in Zen Hall. It may be of benefit if it helps identify or resolve the tech blips.
When I first returned to Zen Hall after resolving the computer problems on my end, one of the choices presented to me on screen was to "allow" access to my camera and mike. I clicked on "allow". Made sure my camera/mike was properly identified. Now at this point MeBeam/Zen Hall is controlling my camera. First thing I noticed was that it took anywhere from 1-2 minutes for a picture to appear. When things started to go wrong, it was generally in this sequence (keeping in mind, I am on Zen Hall by myself):
-The picture and blue text area would go black; sometimes the yellow text area would remain; sometimes not.
-The starting picture would be the usual larger display. The picture which comes back up after the black thing happening is a "thumbnail" display.
-After this, the "thumbnail" would come and go, as would any text I had added below.
Watching what happens, I notice my camera actually shuts off. More precisely, something shuts it off. I am using a Logitech 9000 so I bring up that controller and my camera works fine. It also works fine on Skype. Only on MeBeam/Zen Hall does this occur, where I have allowed that program access.
This morning, I took time to set up the camera to give a shot of me sitting in front of my altar. At the end of my sitting was the first time I noticed someone had joined me. I saw a "thumbnail" of the back of that person clearly and a number of blue text lines with no text in them below.
My thumbnail was shrunk to a shot which was only the top of my altar.
Anyone else believe this is important enough to try to resolve? If so, feedback would be nice from those experiencing difficulties. If not, I will take the cue, just shut up and sit . Maybe some have just given up?
There is no stress involved just an issue which may or may not warrant address.
I'll just leave it with you. In the same spirit (at least) as Peter above, my seiza bench has always worked for me.
I have had many of the same issues you're describing, and am also using a logitech cam. I don't have these isseus on Skype or other video svc, either. I have no idea why Mebeam is resizing/messing up the video, although I know it's been brought up before. I don't have any real computer knowledge, so I'm little to no help in that regard.
I'm out of town for a couple more days, but will return to the Sitting Hall this weekend. I expect to find myself shrunken or invisible very soon. :shock:
Don't we all, Chris.Originally Posted by TwoDots
PS ...and Deep Gassho to those who just sat 11-11:30pm (Atlantic Halifax TZ).
I've again been the mysterious sitter next to you, Don, the last two days, only I changed the camera perspective .
Usually I'm sitting earlier (it was 11 am here we we sat), but currently it fits my schedule nice and I like "not being alone",
i'm on a mac and things are somewhat different there, however, I experience tech problems more often recently, so now
I just enter the zendo and let the mebeam fix itself, sometimes I have no picture when I start but later, sometimes the other
way around, just the dwarfs I saw not yet
Yes, I saw you there. This morning there was a third spot taken in the hall. A blue thumbnail was all I could see.
(I think) what I am noticing is related to your remark about letting MeBeam fix itself. If I set up ahead of time, the video stuff settles down a bit. I still can't enter text. The other thing is somehow related to my monitor. If I turn off my monitor while warming up the environment, my camera stays on longer. No idea what that's about. Perhaps just a coincidence?
I also noticed a few more people have booked time. I think that's great, myself. I will try to sit with as many as possible. That will be part of my ANGO, at very least. You know, Sangha is as Sangha does. Solidarity in Shikantaza is a good thing, right? Maybe? To me, it would be nice to see the schedule (and places taken) full. I wonder how many can join one sitting?
I will leave a light on in Zen Hall, just in case.
I think Mebeam may have been down tonight -- went to the Sitting Hall at my appointed time and saw a black screen. My camera didn't turn on as it usually does, and nothing happened. While this was perhaps some inane lesson on sunyata, it wasn't entirely helpful. On the bright side, I sat anyhow. Thus continues the Saga of Mebeam, which shall be chronicled so that future generations can know of our frustration. :roll:
I am pleased to be able to book time again. My work schedule is all over the board lately but I have been blessed with a coworker that does not like to seem me forced to take a taxi home from work simply due to a wonky schedule.
SO I will dig the little webcam out from behind the computer where it fell and see if I cant manage to convince it to work on my new Mac.
Look forward to seeing you all in the sitting Hall.. blue thumbnails or in "RL"!!
My son and I are "backyard camping." If MeBeam and he both cooperate (he fell asleep about 15 minutes ago), I'm going to try Zazen in the Zen hall from a tent!
We are REALLY roughing it -- I don't like to be this close to the edge of our WiFi signal.
getting back to you, don, on your post a few posts down, or up, from here -- yes, i also feel the zen hall is way cool, and yes, i'm having the same difficulties, thought it was due to my netbook -- and for the record, this "shrinking" of the video is a new thing, not what we were experiencing last year -- re: the black screen, it always comes back, i think -- and y9ou can go to "view", at the top of your browser window(mine is firefox), and hit "zoom" -- again, though, this is not what we had to do before, it did not shrink the way it is now -- if every9one is experiencing this(and it is great that there is "everyone" in the hall, rather than empty(except ron)), then the guy at mebeam must have done some changes -- there is a forum, but sad to say, i found them very unhelpful when we had previous issues -- that was when we had to have 2 windows open, or would get kicked out in 5 minutes -- that was cured by an upgrade
are you using a netbook, or a laptop? -- i'm wondering if this issue is isolated to those using the small screen netbooks -- is everyone experiencing this shrinking?
wonderful to see everyone in the hall, hope it continues -- since the day i joined the forum, i think 2 yrs ago, i've wondered why it wasn't full -- i initially thought it wasnt working, then, somewhat disappointed, realized it simply wasn't being used -- got tired of sitting alone in there(ron sits too late for this old fart), so i stopped using it -- will start trying it again now
just back from getting a "tune-up" at a 10-day retreat, and i've been on an extended "zen philosophy" fast, so i'd missed this thread -- i'll start paying more attention now -- but mostly, i'll pay attention to the hall
Hello Roky,Originally Posted by roky
Thank you for your reply.
I'm using a desktop. The problems don't seem to be isolated to smaller displays. Some days/times are better than others. A computer tech told me the problems are related to bandwidth and transmission speed. Anyone can go on the MeBeam website and read the notice there about asking questions; then draw their own conclusions.
I noticed in the recent ordinations that the ordainees were well displayed on the laptop sitting in the camera view. I asked about how that was done at the Tea Party yesterday. A different program was used for that. I think I have it correct to say it may be a bit more complicated to use and requires a server, as well as a subscription. The program and subscription (in this case) were generously donated.
I know the policy here regarding dana and respect that very much, but can't help saying I wish we could have some wider discussion about ways and means which might allow Zen Hall and Meeting Hall to function a bit better. I believe there are complications but putting our heads together could (perhaps) assist.
One could say it shouldn't matter. Sitting is just sitting. If I have this inclination to sitting occasionally with Treeleafers in Zen Hall, then I will just accept it may be attachment; one fortunate attachment.
I'll probably hang out there more, not less, despite the challenges.
See you around the Hall, Roky.
Couldn't get on Zen Hall at all this afternoon. Tried from 3:24pm to 3:58. Anyone looking for a Meditation Partner on Skype? I found a neat "plug-in" for those with Skype accounts (with multiple video display).
Good to see you're still kicking!!! Too bad the zen-hall is acting up, it went wacky on me last night. It usually sorts out in a few days.
hey ron, i've been checking in now and then, just not posting(as the dude said, "sit down and shut up"), and always glad to see you're "keeping the faith" -- and i think good news -- mebeam/zenhall is back to normal this am, even stayed full size, and then politely shrunk itself, only slightly, when i was joined by, perhaps, nadia? -- and this is double good news for me, as i also found that i can now access mebeam in linux, in my case, linux mint, which i so much favor over windows -- either its a coincidence, or, these changes were bought about by installing the latest adobe flashplayer, 10.1, so if you see this don, you may want to try that, or at least give the hall another try today -- and of course, there will always be performance fluctuations, due to server load -- and the performance on linux is a bit improved ovefr windows, since there is no firewall needed in linux
if this stays as reliable, i will try and use it for the zazenkai this saturday
Hello Roky,Originally Posted by roky
Yes, I've had the new Flash Player for a few days...and the Zen Hall worked very well this morning. As I was told by someone in private message, Zen Hall just is as it is and won't be replaced until something better comes along.
That is what prompted me to post "Mini-Zen Hall", to try a new format. No response so far, though. Oh well, nothing ventured...
I'll try Zen Hall again in my second time slot.
don -- good to hear that the zen hall is working for you -- i'd rather continue with the zen hall now that its working, rather than move into the mini, but thanks for the effort
the history of the zen hall is interesting -- you may find some of the past if you do a forum search, "zen hall", including my somewhat desperate attempt at reviving it, "save the zen hall"
when i joined treeleaf 7/08, it was the main feature that attracted me, but it was empty -- i actually thought it was not working, but it was, nobody was using it, and it has mostly stayed that way except for ron, and occasionally me -- and if i'm going to sit alone, i don't need an internet connection to do it, so i gradually stop , using it -- and then i periodically drift back, and if a new batch of treeleafers have started to use it, i join in, as i am now
the zazenkais, for instance, were done both on ustream, live, and in the zen hall -- at the end, we would all chat briefly, including jundo -- now, zazenkai is one-way tv, with just ustream -- this weekend, if i can do the zazenkai live, i will also open a second window, in the zen hall, as was previously done
i would not expect any improvements to the zen hall -- it basically is not that popular, and jundo certainly doesn't need it to do his daily broadcasts -- each time i return to treeleaf, i half expect it to be gone -- reason for this? -- relative/absolute -- in the absolute sense, we're all sitting together all the time, so who needs the hall -- for that matter, who needs jundo/taigu's talks, since we've already "heard" them? -- for folks thinking this way, the online part of treeleaf is for posting -- but, for those of us for whom that reasoning is a bit "silly", there is also the other part of life(jundo's "other channel"), the relative -- in that part, seeing someone else sitting with you online, listening to jundo talk, helps to make a connection, and inspires practice -- its called sangha, as i'm sure you know(having just completed a 10-day retreat, i can assure you that i might have made 5 on my own, but the sangha got me through all 10) -- summary: most feel they don't have a need for the zen hall, but many do
ok, time to shut up
i like the zen hall, it gives me a more "real" feel of belonging to a sangha, it
just feels better, though yet I only see Don and Taylor there :-) But thats also
probably because of our different time zones and schedules.
Well, sometimes pitching ideas is a lot like throwing jello at a wall. You do it and just see what sticks.Originally Posted by Peter Lin
The Zen Hall has been working well today. I'm going to head over there now and dress the altar.
i just crawled out from under my sick mercedes, which needs a new rear end, so had to skip your sit, don -- next time
peter, i see you up there around rons sit time -- too late for me -- i was able to do it at the retreat, but not surprisingly, i have much energy on retreats, when i haven't spent all day wearing my self down with craving/aversion
Had a sit with two of you this morning in the Hall. One (I think) was Don; I'm not sure who the other was. Three people in the Hall was a first for me; good times.
Good chance that was me, first time in. Saw all the recent activity and thought why not
I went in about 12:40 UTC or so. Saw two others.
I will probably jump in for my morning sits, its good to see it being used.
Gassho ~ Dave.
tried out the Zen Hall a few minutes ago, the hall was empty, but still felt the presence of the sangha there.
Made a booking for tomorrow, to be continued.
I hope lots more folks sit there. Its popularity is made by folks using it, saying they are using it and sticking with it. I will sit my sittings on it if it means more folks will join in. That said if its down, sit anyways
I agree that sitting with others on screen gives a sense of connection different from an empty hall, or no hall at all (while of course I think I sit with the sangha computer on/camera on or not). I really want to encourage everyone inclined to use it Roky, Don and Ron especially, to help keep it up as you are now and if you can lend a hand by looking around at different options as Don has done lately. His idea of a mini hall or 7+host seat hall via a skype set up is a good idea it has the catch of having to have hosts to be there operate it. but it may prove worth while to try it!
In order to move forward we need to address the issues that are outstanding now and state them. Using those, along with what you want the hall to be able to do for the sangha, search out compatible software. The current hall is always on (well in reality when you visit the hall pages.... the page loads an embedded flash player that is actually hosted on mebeam (plus some parameters on size, name blah blah). SO this creates room in Mebeam nameed Treeleafzenhall or the like...if one is not created already, so really it only exists when you look at it (hehe like ego!!)so if i load the page..i created the room...then each person after joins the room once all leave the room ...poof disappears.
This is good as its basically "always on"
Catch is treeleaf is not the host...mebeam is so if mebeam is busy/has maintenance/goes out of business/changes its name for the embeded player (which it does once a year) we have to fix stuff or wait it out.
Now heres something that im glad stumbled onto!!
Tonight I took some time to mess around in oovoo (software and service) and found i can set up a host-free...web based video chat room for a max of 6 people.
I was thinking of suggesting oovoo as a supplementary thing to the zen hall but thought it was like a skype idea... i learned something new and i would encourage all yall that use the zen hall to click the link for below for a test run and feed back. (may require a flash and Java update but otherwise its web based so it should be good to go). If it works okay (worked good for the Tokudo) then maybe I could look at second room for 6 (2 subscriptions would allow us 2 rooms of 6 sitters).
TRY ThIs and maybe post here or in its own thread, your impressions of the oovoo room and any issues or the like... one issue I know is if your connect is poor it will drop video and keep the audio of on sitter at a time as needed.
Just got off oovoo with Shohei. It looks like something some of us could try right away. Seems pretty simple to operate. No host required. Sound was good. Picture was excellent. You can mute the mike and/or speakers. It only takes six people at a time but when was the last time you saw six people on at the same time in Zen Hall? Exactly. Just use the link in Shohei's post above and try it out. (I think he's hanging out there for the evening waiting for you!)
Interesting... Oovoo doesn't seem to be compatible with the TrueColor function (on a Micrsoft LifeCam). If anyone runs into a problem getting their video to show up, check for TrueColor settings... Once I switched mine off, video worked perfectly.
Says it won't work with Safari.Originally Posted by Shohei
Gave the ooVoo room a go tonight - much better video quality than Mebeam. It's nice to be able to tell who you're looking at, instead of guessing. I don't know all the logistics of it, but I think it's an improvement on the current software.
I just tested it with Safari 4.0.5 and it worked ok for me.Originally Posted by rculver
Don, I was the third person joining you in the Zen Hall this morning, btw.
It was good sitting with you and Peter Lin this morning, Sven.
Thanks for the Safari update as well.
figures, as soon as mebeam finally works on linux, we're going to switch to something that doesn't :roll:
unfortunately, tried it, and checked on their forum, no linux -- and for me, once you've tired linux, going back to windows is a drag, literally
treeleaf zen hall is experiencing one of its periodic surges, and i would suggest putting all the eggs in one basket for now, since there still aren't that many eggs -- plus the fact that we have a scheduler for the zen hall, and its work quite well now
anyway, the real problem isn't technical, not that it hasn't been a pain at times -- i see the core issue as being the lack of support from treeleaf's hierarchy, promotion of the "absolute" idea, that whenever we sit alone, we sit together -- so why bother sitting in the zen hall? -- but of course, make sure you watch zen tv everyday, and post, post, post -- for me, the priorities are bass ackwards
look, sitting alone in your room may work for the enlightened few here, but for many of us, the more support the better -- for anyone serious about their practice, this is how they got here in the first place, not for more internet entertainment
for instance, what happened to the sticky"zen hall" at the top of the forum? -- gone -- this used to be one of the first things a new treeleafer would see, which then would at least promote some interest -- and i know jundo, as non-pushy as he is, has occasionally said folks need to sit more -- all he needed to do was add "and they should do it in the zen hall" and use of the hall would escalate
ok, end of rant, now i will let my butt do the talking, on the cushion
When I started posting Zen Hall difficulties here, I confess I had a few objectives. One was to try to find out if there was anyway to resolve some of these issues. Then there was the idea of raising the profile of Zen Hall. Next, I thought if a few more people used it perhaps more would come over to the practice of sitting together (even though I understand it's not an imperative).
In the process I learned about other options and made a post seeking comment on the Mini-Zen Hall idea. There are enough interested to start one and (frankly) I think we should, more for the experience but also for the back-up element. But there is no rush. A lot of diverse needs require identification and consideration.
As it turns out Shohei has done some very good work of his own, along the same lines and it is in place already. It was used in the ordinations and for some meetings. Four of us sat aroung last night chatting. Three of us just sat together prior to that.
I really see this as an ongoing project. Meanwhile Zen Hall is working fairly well.
To test new audio/video platforms (including the oovoo one Shohei wrote about), we need as many as possible to try the link he provided, as well as provide feedback. There may be others to try until we find a back-up which works for all interested parties. It will stand us well, if needed, and the exercise will get some up to speed in terms of set-up, operation and maintenance of an ever-evolving technology, with new offerings appearing regularly.
Like Roky, I think Zen Hall is worth the effort. Personally, I think we need to learn more about the way it operates and how to maintain the scheduler.
Just the way I see it...
...but when I sit there, I just sit.
I'll check to see what version of Safari I'm running. I'm still kind of fond of the "old" zen-hall though.Originally Posted by Sven
the oovoo chatroom doesn´t seem to support Safari 64bit, any sollutions?
Same message I got. I'm clueless as to a solution.Originally Posted by Janne H
To Janne and Ron,
Perhaps contact Shohei?
for those having trouble with the zen hall(mebeam) shrinking you down to postage stamp size, as has happened today, you can try not connecting from the treeleaf page, but instead connect from mebeam directly: http://www.mebeam.com , and type in "treeleaf-zenhall" as the room and connect -- it may still shrink, but as it starts out larger, it is a bit improved in size
and good to have this for backup when the occasional incompatability develops between the treeleaf site and mebeam
again, just search the treeleaf forum for "mebeam", and many of the problems have come up before
sorry folks I had no clue. perhaps firefox/chrome/opera? (no sticks or stones please... im not the developer)
Thats the only suggestion I have.
Last night I was using Google Chrome for Mac and was reduced to a postage stamp but only when someone else entered the hall. I'll try the direct link method tonight.
Going to try this post again -- the last one was ejected into deep space, or whatever happens when they don't show up on a thread.
"Open the pod bay doors, Jundo.
I'm sorry Chris, I can't do that..."
Roky - thanks for the MeBeam tip. I went to MeBeam's site at Don's suggestion, but I could never get the name of the room correct.
I'm going to sit the zazenkai in the hall from 2000-0000 EST Saturday. Unless, of course, there's a toddler-infant rebellion in my house.
Hi Folks here is the fix for the safari 64bit issue. Thank yous too don Don!
Give that ago!Originally Posted by oovoo support site
The mebeam link is nice. It was lovely to sit "with" people tonight!
I must learn this wisdom of recognizing when an offering may improve on silence and when it will not.