The Caucus software (and the philosophy behind the software)
has generated fervent users and dedicated supporters.
Here are quotes and references from a few:
- Howard Rheingold
is the irrepressible author of
The Virtual Community,
editor-in-chief of the
Millenium Whole Earth Catalog,
and founder of the online communities
I have been using computer conferencing software since the early
1980s, starting with Participate on the Source in 1982 and PicoSpan
on the Well in 1985. I have helped design and launch over a dozen
virtual communities. I've used Well Engaged, PicoSpan, and
WebCrossing, but Caucus is by far my favorite. The feature set,
reliability of the software, responsiveness of the software, and
availability of technical support from the original creator of the
software have made it my favorite by far since 1998, when I first
started using it. I wholeheartedly recommend it.
In February 1998, after starting more than a dozen virtual
communities for fun and profit, I started Brainstorms in order to
create a high-quality intellectual salon, thinktank, and social
network. I used Caucus, and Brainstorms has been highly successful,
intellectually and socially, since its opening day. There are
hundreds of posts each day, in over thirty conferences, by hundreds
of people. The software is both powerful and easy to use, and almost
never breaks. We've had negligible downtime in seven years.
- David Woolley
is probably the foremost authority on web-based conferencing
and collaboration systems.
on the Web site is the ultimate summary and guide to all such
When we were evaluating discussion software for
Twin Cities Free-Net in
1996, Caucus was clearly the best choice for us.
Six years later, we're
still very happy with it.
Its elegant design makes it easy for people to
learn and use, its rock-solid reliability makes it easy to administer, and
its extraordinary customizability has allowed us to adapt it to fit our
- Stuart Karabenick
is an Emeritus Professor of Psychology at
Eastern Michigan University,
and was the Director of the Center for Research Support
and Associate Director of the Center for Instructional Computing.
He is now a Research Scientist in the Combined Program in
Education and Psychology at the
University of Michigan.
Caucus is one of the premier computer conferencing systems.
Through 15 years of development, which involved close
collaboration with clients, it remains user friendly both for
participants and managers.
At Eastern Michigan University, there were at peak over 10,000 accounts.
Caucus was used either to augment or to completely deliver hundreds of
on-campus and distance courses.
Responses of faculty (and administrators) to Caucus were outstanding.
We had instructors up and running with ease, often requiring
only a few minutes for experienced computer users and 30 minutes for novices.
Most especially like the linear design, which avoids the confusion
of most multi-threaded systems.
The ability to upload files, automatically email participants of
new activity (email notification), and search by author and
content add additional functionality.
It has always been easily customizable as well.
Having selected Caucus originally and helped to develop its
use at a major university, I remain an enthusiastic supporter
of this product and its user support.
I have now used Caucus successfully as a primary support tool for my research projects at the University of Michigan.
- Mark Heiman,
a system administrator at
reviewed a variety of conferencing and collaboration tools,
and chose Caucus.
Mark has since added several features of his own design to the
"public" portions of the software.
Carleton College uses Caucus extensively, with an installation supporting
2700 users and more than 400 conferences. It is used by faculty for
courses, by committees and departments, by student organizations, and as a
general conversation space for the campus community.
Caucus is clearly a mature application based on years of thought and
experience with collaborative design; is easy to use, easy to administer,
and flexible enough to be used in many different ways.
Plus, its extensible
interface allows us to expand the feature set to meet our particular needs.
- Marcus Hildebrandt
is the CEO of an application service provider located in Berlin, Germany
that hosts a Caucus-based service.
We use Caucus very successfully for e-learning and
global virtual conferences: inhouse and public ones.
We and our customers really like Caucus (and will stick to it as to my point
of view there is nothing comparable on the market):
- Because it is running under Sun solaris and can be nice and smoothly
integrated in very complex environments through the LDAP compatibility of
Thus our customers only have to authenticate once and have then access to
individual created platforms including different groupware packages.
- Because it is very easy to use even for first time visitors.
- Because it fosters knowledge management very efficiently through the
"move features" and the "notebook function".
- Because it creates very important transparency for e-moderators and
participants via the "who has seen this item" feature.
- Because I like the people and the philosophy behind the software.