A la Carte has realized its mission of “teaching America how to cook” by going into private homes and/or corporate environments by broadcasting a selected group of cooking classes live over the Internet.

This unique, one of a kind experience will surely help the organization change the way America learns how to cook.

Beginning with the How to Boil Water Series, real on-site classes – held at the school – is  streamed over the Internet into consumers’ homes and/or workplaces in real time. These “remote” participants simply need a broadband Internet Connection (T-line, Cable, DSL, etc.) and a reasonably up-to-date Personal Computer/Laptop/Handheld Device. Remote participants would be required to download a small piece of software for their device, login to the online session(s) and watch the broadcast. The software, called Visimeet, is similar to standard Web Conference software such as GoToMeeting® or AdobeConnect® and currently requires a simple, wizard-guided installation.

Now, unlike a one-way broadcast – where viewers simply watch – remote participants will be able to interact with the on-site class in a number of ways, either via chat or by voice over Internet through their computers. A technical producer will also be available over the phone to help usher remote participants through the online interactions and facilitate communications.

Also, different from a regular one-way broadcast, remote participants will be able to select from up to 6 different camera views. There are five stationary camera views and a single roving camera view. Each of the state-of-the-art stationary cameras is initially set to capture certain oven tops, class locations and/or food preparation workstations. During the course of a 2-3 hour class, A la Carte producers may adjust the cameras (Pan, Tilt, Zoom, etc.) to capture different activities and student interactions. So, if remote participants are interested in seeing how one group of on-site students are preparing a dish, they can enlarge the camera view on their screens to focus in on the activity of interest. If they want to change to another camera view, they do so by manipulating the screens.

All of the activity takes place on “The Cloud”, thereby optimizing the experience for all participants. Remote users are actually logging into a central server hosted by IOCOM, a large video conferencing technology vendor and partner of A la Carte. Likewise, the video feeds are being sent from A la Carte to IOCOM servers. The remote users and the video meet in between.

Prior to the online course, remote participants will be provided with the recipes, a shopping list and a suggested kitchen equipment list. They will also need to do some basic tests on their home PCs to ensure an optimal experience.

A la Carte technical representatives will assist remote participants who may be experiencing trouble accessing the online session.

Each class’ session will be recorded in their entirety and available to remote participants for a considerable length of time. Online Participants who are enrolled in the online courses will be able to access them later via the Visimeet Software. A 20-minute edited version will be available approximately one week after the live session and will be available for anyone who signed up for the live session or it can be purchased separately.

Customers may sign up for the online classes in person at the school, over the phone or online at alacartecs.com.

Remote Participant Technical Requirements

  • Windows XP or later. Mac OS X 10.5 or later. (English US/UK)
  • Pentium 4 (2.0GHz) or faster
  • 512mb RAM
  • Integrated/USB camera & headset or echo-cancelling microphone
  • High-speed internet connection
  • IOCOM Visimeet Software Client

A la Carte Broadcasting Technology

  • IOCOM Visimeet
  • 1 Microsoft Lifecam 1080p Webcam
  • 4 Vaddio WallVIEW 70/Sony EVI-D70 System
  • Wireless Ipod Touch
  • 3 IOCOM Clear Area Box Microphones
  • Shure PG14/PG185 Wireless Lapel Microphone
  • Phoenix Audio Octopus
  • Dell Precision Server
  • 10 MBPS Optimum Online Boost

Technology Vendors

Denman Wall, Principal
Website Designer and Chief Architect
Valley Stream, NY

International Collaboration LLC
John Harrison, Principal
IOCOM/Video Equipment Implementation Partner
Houston, TX

Visimeet Software and Host Provider
Chicago, IL