OK, so why the #$%^*(%$^#@  are you guys trying to keep the FISO telecon from being "public"? Well, here's where that odd rumor that it isn't comes from. Yes, we already covered it in our essay in The Space Review, but we'll make it easy for you, and explain it more carefully. 

We specifically limit real-time dial-in telephone access to space professionals to increase discussion quality. We don't have listen-only phone lines, however, and when we get lots of people on the line the quality degrades, mostly because of background noise. Yes, we've done almost 300 of these telecons, and we've got it figured out. More than 50 or so people on the line, and things can get messy. So, when we have that many people on the line, and we hear excess static, or talking, or music, or dogs barking in the background, we politely ask "Hey, could someone please turn down the noise?" That "someone" usually doesn't do it because, hey, it's not me! You can't hear it if it's from your end. No offense, but making these dial-in events public in real-time, inviting lots of casual listeners to dial in, will compromise quality.

That's why we archive the presentations after the fact so everyone can podcast at their convenience. Enjoy! That public archive page is at http://fiso.spiritastro.net/archivelist.htm. It's usually ready within a half hour of the conclusion of the telecon. We do this in the spirit of open-access as per OMB policy for Federal Public Websites, which this is not, by the way -- you probably noticed this is an academic website -- OMB M-05-04 "disseminate information to the public in a timely, equitable, efficient and appropriate manner."


Let's be very clear here. The FISO telecons ARE OPENLY ACCESSIBLE a few minutes after the fact. You can see them, and you can hear them at our archive page. Don't let anyone tell you they aren't "openly accessible". The presentations, as presented and archived, are completely "public". Nothing "stealthy" going on here!

So this is just a request to honor our design for a quality FISO seminar. If you didn't get an invitation by e-mail from us, we'd appreciate it if you didn't dial in. It's not that we don't want you to hear it, but just that everyone benefits if the online numbers are kept modest. If it is demonstrably essential for you to hear the telecon in real time, instead of an hour or so later, please get in touch, and we'll work something out. If you are a space professional who would like to get an invitation, please get in touch. The presenters usually make their e-mail address available in the accompanying "invite" file. So we suppose you could give them a buzz if you have a question to ask them.

Your cooperation is appreciated. By the way, if you have a suggestion for a FISO seminar presenter, please let us know!

Dan Dumbacher   dan-dumbacher@purdue.edu
Dan Lester            danflester@gmail.com
Harley Thronson   Harley.A.Thronson@nasa.gov

P.S. Oh yes, people often ask why we don't just Webex this, and do video with Ustream or YouTube and all that stuff. The answer is simple. Because we don't need to. In our experience, participating in other online presentations, video just is an added, and somewhat useless, complication. The speaker would need to screw around trying to connect properly, and in most cases waste a lot of time doing so, unless a lot of time is devoted to preparation. We could also give jetpacks to everyone to let them come to a central auditorium to hear the presentation, but we don't think we need to do that either.