Finally back on coffee kitchen: Startups are working on new virtual platforms

Finally back on coffee kitchen: Startups are working on new virtual platforms

New platforms need to offer what conferences are missing in the case of Zoom. How the virtual office, digital conference, the future can look like, young Startups.

Vishal Punwani invites you to visit is currently in his office. In a corner, a yoga Mat, and in another, a Beamer and a screen for the cinema atmosphere is, in addition, a game console with a large Screen is located. Between the cozy sitting areas, a coffee bar and table tennis are here and there are desks with computers. In addition to the ping pong table, two colleagues from the Startup to discuss-founder about the latest developments. In the middle of the room, under one of the overhanging office palm trees, watching the two ladies together, a screen full of programming code. “Here, we need to adjust a little,” says one of the two.

Punwanis office is probably one of the most beautiful and most flexible, there is. And Best of all: It’s completely digital. He can enter from any place in the world – he needs only an Internet connection and a Computer. His colleagues are not physically on-site, but in the Form of avatars. You can see yourself on your respective screen from the top and can move with the keyboard or mouse through a kind of computer game. on the platform, the Punwani with his co-founder Emma Giles has established means. She is a Zoom Alternative with the possibility of Breakouts spontaneously and autonomously assemble. If you come with your own Avatar, the two women hatch just above the code, will automatically open the cameras: Now we are three of us in a video conference – in the Background are from the bird’s-eye view of our own avatars, as well as the ping-pong table, the work tables and the other staff avatars.

The spontaneous exchange, and the Social signals are missing

This type interact, similar to that of a Party or a conference, when you let a group of the next drive, and random encounters has. And that is exactly what is missing according to psychologists, in times of video conferencing: The spontaneous exchange of ideas, the best ideas often arise; in addition, more and more people of the “Zoom-fatigue reports” – the new way of Conferring exhausted us.

Tech companies are therefore working on Alternatives not only for the virtual office life, but also for digital conferences in order to allow for more of what we have lost. The innovation coming from Startups, all of which had to rethink due to the corona crisis: the base is lost, whether it’s because you felt alone in your home, office, or because their original business model no longer worked in the pandemic. And show amazing creativity for our digital future to come.

“Zoom has not helped us so much from the ‘in-Between’ what the genuine life,” says Punwani looking back over his Attempts in March 2020, the sense of community in his young Startup for learning software to maintain. It was to fill a gap. How, for example, the spontaneous discussion in the coffee kitchen. Or the opportunity to be with colleagues in a room, without having to actively communicate, but to feel the presence of the other. Punwanis colleague Anuj Adhiya, Vice President of Growth at Sophya, added: “Zoom has us locked in boxes.”

To him had been missing in the video conferences, the social signals that help the environment to assess this: “you build a rigid frame to something like that Unstructured such as social relations.”

Also interesting: “Enough of your Zoom Calls? How companies video games use to communicate“

This is exactly what drains us as if we are much in video conferences, explains Robin Welsch. The psychologist employed at the Munich Ludwig-Maximilians-University, issues of space perception in virtual worlds. “We looked on the Zoom all the time and are not able to interpret that look. The Zoom-Fatigue‘, so this exhaustion to video conferencing caused.“

While in real life, more or less by itself it is clear who is speaking and who is looking at whom, to look at video conferences all on-screen self. “You don’t focus on me, even if I’m the speaker,” says Welsch and the rational Knowledge of it doesn’t help that it just seems that way, and that the other participants look likely to be the speaker. “We are in the process of this ongoing social signals all the time the back of the head, and that is exhausting.”

At a meeting in the analog world, however, there are a lot more social signals, which help us to judge situations. There is a full a level, the way the case for digital conferences, so Welsch: “It is the informal exchange, the Whispering missing with my neighbour and during a lecture, for example,” he says. Especially in the case of conferences, the Networking effect is also important: that the Professor presents his new doctoral students, colleagues, dealing with similar themes – and happens to be in the coffee break meeting.

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