Tuesday, 24 March 2009

A Very Excited Bean...

We finally got what has turned out to be a long term project launched last night. This is the highly technical linking of two households by video, over the web, so that Hannah can 'talk' (ie sign) to her grandparents 150 miles away. (Phone conversations are a bit limited when you can only say 'yeah'.) This has taken about two years and involved several steps:

1. get broadband at our end - a big issue for some years due to the length of line between us and the exchange. don't get us started. still causes problems, but we do (obviously) now have it.
2. persuade parents that the purchase of a webcam is useful, nay vital for this process (not difficult).
3. set up webcams on computers - required waiting until we visited, but otherwise straightforward.
4. teach parents how to use skype - still in troubleshooting phase.
5. work out why internet speed is so low at our end that video won't work - turned out to be a dodgy router but delayed us for a couple of months - grr.
6. arrange time with all present to try out system.

And it worked! We (three - Steffie was in bed) spoke to Granny, Grandpa, Uncle Stuart and Auntie Kerry (and bump). Hannah signed. It was GREAT! Hannah was so chuffed at seeing them, and seeing herself, on 'telly', and quickly got the hang of staying in view of the camera. I can see her spending a *lot* of time signing at Granny and Grandpa.

One plus was that she was also able to show them her certificate for being 'Hedgehog of the Week' at nursery (my big girl! - proud mummy moment) - you can't do that down a phone.

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