Thursday, May 3, 2007

Our Virtual Date

Last week Katy and I made a virtual date to see Jonathan Coulton at Johnny D's, a club in Somerville near our house. The plan was for me to call Katy's cell phone via Skype at the appointed hour and have her put me on the speakerphone.

Several events intervened between the making and keeping of the date. First, my Skype account died; Skype suffered some sort of billing glitch that nailed a number of people on April 26th, and I was one. By the night of the date they STILL hadn't reactivated my account. Luckily, I had, er, ah, "other technical means" of placing a call to the U.S. from Hyderabad via the Internet as a backup.

The second thing is that JoCo announced that he would try streaming video of the show live via Ustream. Cool!

So - at the appointed hour I called Katy and wound up getting an excellent audio feed from the cell phone. I lucked out, because Ustream's video feed was pretty good, but the audio on the feed was awful.

This hybrid system chugged along GREAT for the first 10 minutes or so, until shortly after JoCo joined openersPaul and Storm on-stage. Then disaster struck: it's raining this morning in Hyderabad, and we had yet another power cut (we've been having them on and off all night).

45 minutes later I managed to reacquire all the signals, just as Paul and Storm closed their set. Katy wandered over to the camera and waved at me; it's REALLY dark, so I couldn't make out her features, but I could see her silhouette. Yea!

So, we talked for a while, Katy bought some swag, and then we disconnected so I could commute into work. Once there, I called back (no video feed, though...) and got the remainder of the concert, right through to the encore.

Thank you, JoCo and the Internet, for making this date possible.

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