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New communications App, "Discord"

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Bearking USCAE
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Abiding by our lovely Tin's request, I'll make a short post about a new communications program I was shown by a friend. By short, I mean incredibly thorough and detailed as all my posts usually are =)

The link to the website can be found Here! if you would prefer to skip my babbling and read it all for yourself =)

But anyway, the program is essentially a mix between Teamspeak and Skype, pretty much deadsmack halfway. I am a regular user of both of these programs for voice communications so I kind of know the limits to both.


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A screenshot of what the program looks like and how aesthetically pleasing it is!

Before we jump into Discord, i want to describe the limitations of the other 2 programs.

Skype

Let's start with Skype. It's a decent program that was designed as a solution for conference and long distance calls over the internet that quickly evolved into a common chat program. Calls are intended to be of high quality which is good for a quick hello to a long lost loved one, but to constantly host a call for game communication can be taxing on your bandwidth, especially when you start hosting 4+ people. I'm not going to even imagine hosting a large raid group of 30 people, but i have hosted a call of 10 people which was riddled with bugs and noise. Skype also hosts ads which can ngaw away at your bandwidth when you aren't paying attention.


Pros:

  • Is completely free
  • Good for calls with a small group
  • Is portable and can be used on both PC and phone
  • Very simple to use. Click and call

Cons:
  • Bandwidth intensive
  • Has ADS on the side
  • Good luck calling a raid group of 100 people!
  • Hard to manage permissions (yes, skype has permissions)


TeamSpeak

Now TS. A fantastic program, do not get me wrong. It is unparalleled when it comes to huge group management and allows for hundreds of people to communicate together effectively. Only one problem i've had with it is the lack of focus on the messenger side (which is completely understandable since it's primary focus is voice comms). But i have had scenarios where people without a microphone were left unheard since the messenger is nearly non existent. I may be wrong about the next fact, but TS is also stuck to a single platform (PC) and of course you have to turn on your PC to use it. Meaning people who are out will be out of touch with everyone else.

Pros:
  • Very very very good at handling voice comms
  • Permissions are easy to use and control hierarchies are clear
  • Light on internet bandwidth

Cons:
  • Not entirely free, you have to pay for servers
  • Settings somewhat complicated, especially for new (and non-technically proficient) users
  • Restricted to a single platform, not portable
  • Not very messenger friendly
  • Can only be in a single server at a time


Discord

Finally we have Discord. As i said earlier, it is a mix between the two. Discord is essentially Skype but instead of a friend's list, you join servers like teamspeak. Anyone who is a Discord member can create a server for free. With this server, they just simply link an invite code to their friends and voila, they're in! The best part, you can be in multiple servers at a time so you do not have to continuously reconnect and disconnect between two different groups of people. You can however, only be connected to a single room for voice communications at time.

An example, I can be in a USC server and talk to our fellow shipmates while we are blowing our enemies away while being in a second server with my other friends and typing about how lovely the 40'C weather in Australia is. Discord is also available in the web browser. This means anyone can use it without having to install it on their computers (good for when you're at work!) and is also available on smart devices. So essentially, everyone can still be connected at all times with a solid framework for communication.


Pros:
  • Completely Free
  • Servers can be made instantly for free by anyone
  • Is portable everywhere
  • Low bandwidth usage
  • Can support large groups of people for calls
  • Very easy and simple to use
  • No install required
  • Has a solid messaging system that retains chat history

Cons:
  • Slightly lacking in the administrative controls department
  • Still new, security issues not surfaced yet
  • Server invite links are uncontrolled and can be given to anyone if admin controls are not in place, they can however be revoked by a server admin

Anyway, this is my experience with using the program so far. If you are willing, give it a shot! I'm starting to use it to permanently replace my skype to casually talk to my friends. I have not yet tried it to replace TS as of yet. In my opinion, there's a good chance TS may still be the choice for large voice communications but i can absolutely see Discord being used as a communications platform between members that isn't the forums. I think it would be perfect for building bonds between team members as everyone is constantly in touch with each other.

If enough people get on board with the Discord hype train, I am happy to start up a USC server (or someone else can) and we can all start chatting away!

-Bear
Yes! I am gonna try out Discord
20 votes
80%
No, I am quite happy with my other apps
5 votes
20%
Number of voters: 25
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Posted Aug 7, 15 · OP · Last edited Aug 7, 15
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Tin85 USCEC
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Thank you BearKing :)

Discord sounds quite interesting. I agree with your pro and cons regarding Skype and TS.
Voted "Yes". In fact, i have already checked it out briefly.
The text chat option on mobile devices looks very interesting. Could be a great way to stay updated on what happens in the verse with USC while im not at home.
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Posted Aug 7, 15
Kahuana USCDF
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I used a communications web app that function like Discord that has been along for some time. I cant seem to find it but used it in EVE Online and worked out great and people loved it. It was like fleetchat or squachat or something. Razor Comms has a voice app too.
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Posted Aug 7, 15
Kraxous USCDF
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Just installed this - it's very nice!

I don't think it's worthy of replacing TeamSpeak, especially due to the customisation options between TeamSpeak 3 and Discord; TS wins by a longshot. I think this type of VoIP client is more of a... Casual approach. Useful to those who'd just like to chat without the advertisements from Skype or the technical know-how of TeamSpeak. While I prefer Discord's UI and intractability, the lack of features in terms of making the server "your own" is very underwhelming.

If people began to use this for the USC, sure, I'd be up for it. But for the time being I'd prefer to use TS.

Flash still needs to properly configure TS. *cough, cough*
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"Be kind; everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle."
- Unknown
Posted Aug 8, 15
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Lykinn HIGHCOM
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I'm giving it a try as well. As Kraxous mentioned, I'm not sure if this will replace Teamspeak, sense we can do more fancy stuff in that which (in context for Star Citizen) I think will be quite useful for us.

That said, it seems like one hell of a replacement for Skype. Interface is nice and modern, it's quite simple to use, and I really like the way that the servers are organized. I could see this as something that is a good way to be connected with other people without having to visit our forums, sit in TS all day, or seek someone out on Steam.

They left a good first impression on me, I'll continue trying it out and maybe bothering a few other people to give it a try. If anyone wants me on a server of their's, feel free to give me an invite :d

Also created a USC server, if you want to join in: https://discord.gg/0RZR3XKajg07ZzOn
"Let us never forget those who journeyed into the howling dark, and did not return. Their decision required courage beyond measure."
Posted Aug 8, 15 · Last edited Aug 8, 15
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Bearking USCAE
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Sorry for the inactivity! It's been a hectic last few days for me.

Yeh Discord is definitely an amazing replacement for skype! But TS does still seem to have superior management capabilities.

Anyway, i've joined the USC server on discord and I look forward to meeting everyone there! In fact, i think this is the very first time (since me joining the USC a few years ago) that anyone has had a solid chance of talking with the local bear =D. I encourage everyone that reads this to download Discord and get chatting away with everyone if you haven't done so already!

-Bear
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Posted Aug 10, 15 · OP · Last edited Aug 10, 15
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Lykinn HIGHCOM
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Bumping this again because it's been a great addition so far, even just as a better chat room than the Steam one
"Let us never forget those who journeyed into the howling dark, and did not return. Their decision required courage beyond measure."
Posted Aug 14, 15 · Last edited Aug 14, 15
Maligali USCDF
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USCDF XO
All come onto discord, it's amazeballs :d
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Posted Aug 14, 15
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I've chatted away for the first time with USC Peeps on Discord this weekend. (Awsome talking to you guys! :d)
I found it amazingly easy to use and the sound quality was really good. +1 from me for Discord.
I think it's the ease of use that makes it so easy to meet people online... in general I think it's an awsome hang out.
I've always wanted to talk to people but could never catch anyone online... now I find it aswome that people just loung around in discord and hit up a chat whenever...
Makes it realy easy now to catch USC members online and chat in real time or voice chat.

I understand that the app in in open Beta at the moment and the developent team is looking for feedback.
I was thinking... If we could all list our wish list of stuff we would like Discord to do or where we found discord lacking vs Teamspeak, perhaps we could write up a combined feedback and see where it goes?
Posted Aug 16, 15
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Flash USCDF
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I'll probably install it to use as a group chat. Sort of like whatsapp.
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Posted Aug 17, 15
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