So the world of jabber communication has been a bit unreliable. After successfully trying a jitsi video conversation at home between my distro and Soph’s ubuntu, I tried to have a meeting with someone I’m mentoring and it totally failed. On agreeing to the call, it would hang up. After that I had a successful video meeting with someone and then it failed again for Soph and I.
Because I’m committed to open source, I persisted and discovered something surprising about an old friend. I’ve had pidgin knocking around for a while and occasionally use it to (text only) chat with the rare geeky friends I have. I even put it in my autostart config so it starts automatically (by the way, I found getting a programme to start automatically at startup much easier on my Crunchbang distro using Openbox than in Ubuntu). Then I discovered that pidgin has audio and a video calling! You just right click on your contact and select ‘Audio call’ or ‘Audio/Video call’. Can’t think why I missed this before.
Now I’m happily using good old pidgin, which I think is a bit more mature than Jitsi (I hated their taskbar icon anyway).