Its called IRC
Yes agreed, for education sector and child safety that is not enough of a controlled environment.
I will dig about for some stuff on the distance learning and have you guys ever thought of trying Yuuguu for your own purposes as it is a great collaboration tool for free.
Thanks for the chat.
Its called IRC
I wish these companies would understand their audience a little better before shouting about how brilliant their software is for them.
Yuuguu may be an excellent collaborator for older students at university/research level but I'm afraid any chat tool can and will be abused by the children of 11-18. It's down to the fact they do not want to talk about work in that environment (silence is a virtue - or at least used to be).
If YOU would like anymore information on the shinanigans, with instant messaging programs, in schools please speak to ANY member of staff in an educational establishment. I'm sure every one of them will have a story to tell.
So before you try to sell anymore of your ideas to the forum, bare in mind that we deal with the end product of these tools day in day out, and our picture is a lot broader than yours.
I wish it wasn't the case because there are possibilities of some good collaboration, IF we lived in an ideal world.
Sorry to burst your BuurBlee
yuuguu.com is blocked here at the moment so I cant even begin to investigate how to block the app.
We would like to understand our audience better but i do believe that collaboration software may have a place in 16-18 year old teens. We are not about shouting how good our software is before we have thought about ideas. Tone is hard to tell as you know in IM and our comments are to be taken as we would like to help. I remember my A-levels and working in study groups where collaboration tools would have made things a lot more easy when working outside of college.
Thank you for your broader picture as i bet it is hard work dealing with children of this age with temptations such as IM and i imagine with all the cyber bullying you hear about, you would have to be so careful of what the kids use.
It i still very interesting how they came about Yuuguu and managed to bring it into your environment.
One thing that has just occurred to me is that our software lets you share your screen with people who only need an internet connection. I would be very worried about the children using this if they have access to documents/information that you do not want others outside of the school to see.
It has been very interesting to talk with you all and it seems that below the age of 16 i would have to agree that our software would not be beneficial to the pupils.
Thanks for the comments and don't worry you have not burst our bubble at all and hopefully Generation Y will help to create the ideal world or near to it, so children can learn to use technology for both work and fun.
Thanks for the help posted regarding blocking this program. I do use software restriction policies but this is complicated by the fact that the executable it runs is javaw.exe so blocking this I guess would block all java apps. And the fact that it can be installed using normal user rights. It is disappointing that yuuguu have developed a program which doesn't allow us to control its access.
I am in fact all for these sort of collaboration programs and we are like many schools implementing a VLE designed to perform these such functions but in a controlled way so they can actually possibly be effective in improving learning. Software like yuuguu however simply undermine what we are trying to achieve. I've seen what they chat about using these programs and I can assure you they are never discussing work! These programs are fine for use outside of lesson time but during lessons they simply make the teachers job much harder and do nothing to promote learning.
What i am willing to do is discuss with our team here and see if we can think of an idea how to block it. Please bear with me though as we are releasing a new version so time is very tight.
I accept what you say regarding the usage of Yuuguu. The problem for those of us who work in schools have is that there is no limit to the imagination of the under 18s and the creative ways they use things that people didn't intend them to use... and that's not just in IT!
In fact, I think that something 'not being suitable' probably makes teenagers in particluar even more creative in its use.
In Kent, Kent Police's child protection officer Murray Letham goes round to schools and other organisations explaining the risks that children expose themselves to on the internet and how we, as adults, can help to educate inform and protect them.
Both in my job and as a parent I have taken what he has said to heart.
Perhaps, your organisation could have a chat with someone like Murray about the risks and how you can help to prevent child abuse through your service. A call to Kent police will put you in touch with Murray and I'm sure he'd be happy to help or tell you who you need to speak to.
Last edited by elsiegee40; 2nd April 2009 at 10:45 PM.
I agree, my son nearly three and has just finished a ten week course of school before he goes to Pre-school in Sept. This has helped him develop and shows how good he is at interacting with other children.
That too makes me shudder to think of how careful i need to be to protect him when i have so much technology around the house.
That sounds like a good idea to contact Kent police and it would be nice if we can do something to help stop this from the original source rather than you guys having to deal with trying to block us. As many people have said, it is easy for us to sit here and say how good our product is without having to think firstly about what it is kids will do with this technology.
I remember watching a programe a month or two ago where a child was giving lessons to there children over the internet (she was a child prodigy). Would be nice if all kids could embrace technology but obviously it is just not going to happen.
My worry is the statistics about cyber bullying death increases. My son was born with Pierre Robin Sequence and has had his 4th operation in his life two weeks ago. He needs speech therapy and although his ability to solve problems is astonishing his speech will effect him in some ways, we will work hard to help him get ready for school.
Right now we need to concentrate at Yuuguu on becoming self funding as we are a start-up company but when we have the time we will look into how we can build our software with this topic in mind.
Thank you to all who have posted and sorry for going off the original topic.
Another Yuuguu developer here. I can see how Yuuguu is going to cause some problems in environments where communication needs to be controlled. It is designed to make communication easy for people with little IT knowledge.
We're going to take a look into how you might block Yuuguu as soon as we can, but I thought I would share some technical tips with you about how it works. It might be enough to get you started.
You are correct in that the desktop application runs inside Java. But it still talks to our servers over the internet using standard protocols.
If you block access to our messaging servers, you kill Yuuguu. The desktop application could still be executed, but it wouldn't do anything. You couldn't even get past the 'login ... connecting' screen. Students would quickly get the message that the party was over.
Yuuguu basically does two things as far as you are concerned:
1. Instant Messaging
2. Screen Sharing and remote control of mouse/keyboard
The instant messaging uses the industry standard XMPP protocol, but we send it over port 443 SSL to keep comms secure. I guess this will make blocking at the XMPP protocol or port level impractical. We connect to a DNS address of xmpp.yuuguu.comwhich load balances our messaging servers, and so a block to this I reckon would work.
Once you stop XMPP traffic, you not only stop instant messaging, but you also stop our control protocol which manages sharing screens and remote control. This means that screen sharing could not be started. You would not need to block our screen share data traffic, as the process could never be initiated.
We don't build administration type features into the product by design intent. It's primary intent is to allow teams who normally collaborate together to do so over the web. It is also designed to be very easy to use for non-technical people. Sadly, both of these design goals conflict rather strongly with locking down a network as an admin. It is perhaps no surprise - and to their credit - that students have found this to be the case.
I haven't tried blocking xmpp.yuuguu.com myself yet, but I would suggest it is worth a go.
As an aside, I thought it was a very interesting statement made about wanting to encourage human interaction, and how to behave in meetings, how to read body language etc. I think that is very worthwhile indeed. I personally was not helped one iota with that at school, and entered the world of adult work basically half functional. School in the UK in the 1980s didn't seem to relate to the fact that in a few years you would go to a place of work, typically, and have little further day to day use for geography and latin, et. al. Things do seem better for my nine year old girl! Anything to redress this balance would be hugely welcome. As to how Yuuguu relates to that, I think it is a separate concept. Once you *can* relate in the real world, you find it is sometimes expedient to do so over the internet instead. A half-world plane trip to review a document, say thank you and 'I accept' isn't really the way forward anymore. That said, Yuuguu staff meet up face to face regularly; it's just that when we do, we make sure it is for more 'human' and relationship-developing activities than such mundane tasks.
Hope this helps.
I'll try and get back with a 'proper' answer if this guess doesn;t work,
Al. Yuuguu Dev.
our CTO suggests you block *.yuuguu.com
Perhaps rather then a generic version of Yuuguu, you have one geared towards educational establishments.
The problems with generic is that it is far too easy to use tools not designed for a these institutes. I'm all for helping you with your endeavours but as the software stands it is not suitable for my establishments. Perhaps you may look into providing a yuuguu plugin for Moodle (open source VLE) that may assist your efforts in online collaboration.
This is one example of many uses I can see for specified educational tools from your company.
Many thanks for your suggestion about releasing a specific version. We may consider that in the future, if there was a demand sufficient to justify the development work, and if the company began to actively pursue a target market of closed-environment education. It's not currently our main focus. But things do change, quite rapidly sometimes!
What I would say though is that the tips to block Yuuguu's Free and normal commercial versions would still apply. We would not stop releasing our core products even if we did produce closed-environment friendly packages.
All the best, and nice 'talking' to you all -
Hope we've been of some assistance today.
have a good weekend!
Apps like this tend to be either difficult to block or very simple I've found.
If you use mandatory profiles for the students - it's easy - simply wipe the AppData folder and everything in it at logoff (if you have it redirected) and/or pre-populate their AppData with items you know and trust.
Roaming profiles are harder, but you could wipe the specific java folders in AppData or redirect their AppData to a network share and then lock it down some other way.
Thankfully where I am, all the kids use mandatory, so this kind of application isn't a huge issue for us personally but I can see and understand how it could be.
FYI - We don't allow any kind of 'chat' outside of our VLE and even then, we have chat inside the VLE disabled at current, SMT may well override us on it but that's their call to make.
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