is an internet video-conferencing client written by students at Cornell
University. It was first developed for the Macintosh
in 1992 and later for the Windows
platform in 1994. Originally it was video-only with audio added in 1994
for the Macintosh and 1995 for Windows. CU-SeeMe's audio came from Maven,
an audio only client developed at the University
The commercial licensing rights were bought by White Pine Software in
December 1998 and the product was then released a commercial product.
Unfortunately, White Pine Software ignored the original hobby market of
CU-SeeMe users and attempted to compete against hardware assisted
video-conferencing companies. They were too early for acceptance as
audio/video quality was an issue at the time (excessive latency) and thus
the product was only useful to hobbyists.
White Pine Software was subsequently bought by First Virtual
Communications and at some point the client was renamed simply CU
and was made part of a fee-based video chat service called CUworld.
The client evolved further, was renamed "Click To Meet" and
became the major offering of First Virtual.
First Virtual filed for bankruptcy on January 20, 2005 and the
assets were acquired by RADvision on March 15, 2005. RADvision
continues to offer the product through clicktomeet.com.
There is still a small but active community of users who continue to use
cu-seeme. Although there had been no releases of software from the various
incarnations of White Pine since around 2000, there are freeware
alternatives available for both Windows and Macintosh platforms. A search
of the web will quickly locate the CU-SeeMe "reflectors" that
are still operational.
radio stations report that they used this to deliver audio over the net.
have no personal experience or involvement in such use, but have seen it
CuSeeMe worked pretty well for
what it offered at the time (a reflector
that could actually handle load on a 386, etc.). It actually got me into
streaming :-). I had started using Linux SLS (anyone remember that?) in
1992-ish and around 1993 my university wanted a reflector
coded/installed. Ah those were the days :)
And Vic/Rat/MBone at around the same time (some in development a few
years before that).
I wouldn't be too hard on CuSeeMe, we have them to thank in part for
IPTV as it is today.